Here are five policy goals promoted by the left that could undermine America’s future.
Tax the wealthy. In an economy sputtering along (at best), Democrats maintain that raising taxes on the wealthy will help get us back on our feet and onto a “forward” path to a stable future. Even if it is conceivable that the rich need to pay more of their “fair share”, which is highly debatable, these new revenues will be incredibly useless unless they are used to pay off the debt in conjunction with reducing our deficit spending. Democrats have very little desire to stop spending—unless it involves the Department of Defense. Additional tax revenues will likely be needed in the future to combat the ongoing debt crisis. However, no amount of tax revenue increases will matter if government does not reduce and control its spending. Senate Democrats’ unwillingness to pass a budget in President Obama’s first term should never have been allowed.
Subsidize green energy. President Obama and fellow Democrats have a vision for the energy sector that involves very little foreign or domestic oil, and a heavy dose of wind and solar energy. Forget the unaffordable costs of this technology, this vision has led our federal government to spend billions of dollars we don’t have (see national debt clock) on companies that go bankrupt (Solyndra, SunPower, First Solar, BrightSource). Climate change science has become the final ‘judgment’ for many Democrats. Unfortunately, for Americans, this scientific judgment does not offer our government officials any enlightenment on spending taxpayer dollars. This administration has made too many bad investments, and has shown very little concern for the wasteful spending. There is room for discussion on alternative energy sources. But investing in unreliable, unaffordable technology is not a solution. Neither is funding corrupt or mismanaged “green energy” companies.
Craft sweeping assault weapons ban. AR-15’s have become the symbol of all violence and evil in America. They are the sworn enemy of the state. Vice President Biden and Democratic legislators, including California Senator Diane Feinstein, have called for a ban on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines. There is no mention of handguns, however, which plague the streets of this nation’s capital city (who has some of the nation’s toughest gun laws) where the assault weapons ban is being crafted. It is very unlikely that any significant gun legislation will be passed in the near future, unless the House of Representatives tilts to the Democrats in the midterm elections. However, most troubling is the emotional decision-making we see from many on the left who want to pass any anti-gun bill they can—whether they truly believe in it or not. These tragedies are a time to take a step back, not rush to action.
Legalize gay marriage at the federal level. The inaugural address was a strong indication that this administration plans on pushing for national recognition (legalization) of gay marriage—without regard for the voice of the people at the state level who have voted pro or con on the issue. The 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection clause has become the battle cry for Democrats and LGBT activists who demand marriage equality for LGBT couples. The media, much like the way they report on global climate change, rarely reports on any valid opposing viewpoints to legalizing gay marriage at the federal level. And when they do report on opposition to gay marriage, they always make sure to include images of Westboro Baptist Church—which almost any Christian will say does not look like anything taught in the Bible. There are many Americans, libertarians and social conservatives, who believe that gay marriage should not be recognized by federal law under the 14th Amendment. For these groups, it imposes too great a risk to First Amendment rights (free speech, exercise of religion). LGBT advocacy groups have effectively used the media and White House meetings (see President Obama’s ‘evolution’ on the issue) to promote their case for gay marriage. With the ever-tightening relationship between the federal government and LGBT advocacy groups, it is no longer a certainty that First Amendment rights will look the same in the future.
Expand(ed) the Violence Against Women’s Act. Less than a week ago, the House approved the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act –which sent it to President Obama’s desk last week for his signature. Despite Republican “opposition” to VAWA, Democrats were able to gather 87 Republican votes in the House to pass this reauthorization. You may have heard in the news cycle how Republicans do not like women, or how they do not want to afford women their due protection. For those who have heard about this act from the media, a common question is, “Why would anyone oppose the Violence Against Women Act?” Well, the Independent Women’s Forum released this statement less than two weeks ago, following the passage of VAWA in the House of Representatives:
“If we thought the Violence Against Women Act passed today in the House was really the best way to protect women, we’d be cheering. What concerns us most is VAWA includes no provisions for financial oversight, views violence more through an ideological lens than a practical one, erodes constitutional rights of the accused, and perpetuates the idea that society is hostile to women. Many tried to have a serious discussion about VAWA, but what we got instead was name-calling.”
It’s absurd to oppose such a law, right? Well, not if you believe men and women are equal under the law. Any man accused of domestic violence, according to this act, is automatically required to be arrested. Domestic violence is not a laughing matter. But we do have a judicial process that should allow men to be innocent until proven guilty.
Conclusion. As Milton Friedman once said, “One of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results.” Nobody doubts a world filled with no violence, domestic abuse, pollution, economic disparity, or inequality would be a great place to live. But do we have policy ideas to make this happen without infringing on other people’s rights? Are they pragmatic? The answer is no. Not in the list above. We have to make sound, educated policy–not something crafted out of fear, emotion or idealism.