GOP – resusitating the brand -part II

I do have some caveats regarding the tenants of GOP 2.0

STRENGTHEN NATIONAL DEFENCE: I support strengthening the military and if necessary, to historical levels as a percentage of GDP. I’d like to hear from experts like Gen. Petraeus regarding his view as to exactly what is needed in economic terms to most effectively prosecute the WoT. As well as maintain our technological and military advantages, so as to be fully prepared for any future threat’s.

GAIN ENERGY INDEPENDENCE: Absolutely, however Long-term, only alternative energy technologies will prevent future energy crises. There is no substitute for development of new choices in energy sources; they are also a necessity and, a National Security issue as well.

Democrats have to agree to limited but adequate, development of short-term solutions.

Republicans have to agree to legislation with real technical safeguards, regulatory oversight and mandatory financial and legal consequences for businesses that violate environmental parameters regarding exploration, drilling and development of new oil, coal and nuclear resources.

Republicans and Democrats have to agree on federal legislation with near-permanent incentives and rewards for development of alternative energy solutions. Place a big enough carrot in front of companies, entrepreneurs and creative individuals and they will rush to fill the need.

SECURE THE BORDERS: immediately building physical barriers, as a precursor to an overarching, sensible immigration policy is only viable if coupled with real, undeniable and comprehensive immigration reform proposals. Physical barriers are at best a short-term ‘solution’, insufficient to fully address the problem. And Democrats will never agree to even temporary barriers without their being convincingly coupled with comprehensive reform and a firm time-line for the barriers eventual removal. Barriers cannot be sold as a means of preventing immigration, they can be sold as a means of funneling immigration into controlled access points.

SPUR HEALTHCARE COMPETITION: no government largesse, and yes free-market solutions… those principles alone however, are I suspect, insufficient to address the problem. Health care is increasing in cost expotentially with fundamental problems within the infrastructure of the American Health-Care system. Affordability is the principal problem of course and prescriptions such as medical pre-tax programs assume that someone is making enough to afford to have even more taken out of their paycheck. For the many millions of American families living paycheck to paycheck that prescription is unrealistic. Without affordability, health care becomes increasingly the privilege of the wealthy.

According to one report employee pay now makes up the lowest share of the nation’s gross domestic product since the government began recording the data in 1947, while corporate profits have climbed to their highest share since the 1960s. This disparity cannot be ignored by any fair-minded person.

The Economic Policy Institute, a Washington think tank, found productivity grew 17 percent nationally from 2000 to 2005, but median family income, adjusted for inflation, fell 3 percent. Millions of American’s are working harder, smarter and at best, just treading water.

Until conservatives address the underlying issue of the have-nots in society, they will always face calls for government ‘largesse’. Capitalism is an economic system with undeniable benefits for society, it is also indisputable that under such a system the 80/20 rule is unimpeded. Regardless of the benefits, when 80% of a socety’s assets naturally gravitate into 20% of the society’s members, social unrest is inevitable.

The answer of course is to find methodologies that allow the middle class to expand and to do increasingly well. As an observation, in the 1950’s, the GI bill, affordable mortgages and an expanding economy resulted in just such an expansion of the middle class. We need to determine the government incentives and societal infrastructure that most encourages that paradigm to return.

Geoffrey Britain

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