We have been having a great deal of fun lately, what with the GOP’s promise to go after porn, but really, the platforms each party comes up with every four years are sort of only good for amusement, and massaging the party faithful, who prefer not to think too hard on the subject. Don’t believe me? Well, just consider these brief gems from past platforms . . .
I have pretty much omitted most references to veterans and honoring them. Why? Because both Democrats and Republicans each year have made the very same promises to veterans. No matter who gets elected this year, the same assurances will no doubt be made in 2020. Also, this is by no means an exhaustive list; some parties, such as the Green Party, were not represented on this list. I have put the website link at the bottom.
The only party that truly creeped me out was the American Independent Party of 1968.
GOP Platform - “they” refers to the Democrats
“We charge that they have shielded traitors to the Nation in high places, and that they have created enemies abroad where we should have friends.
“We charge that they have violated our liberties by turning loose upon the country a swarm of arrogant bureaucrats and their agents who meddle intolerably in the lives and occupations of our citizens.
“We charge that there has been corruption in high places, and that examples of dishonesty and dishonor have shamed the moral standards of the American people.
“We charge that they have plunged us into war in Korea without the consent of our citizens through their authorized representatives in the Congress, and have carried on that war without will to victory.”
“The right to establish "union shop" contracts by agreement with management.
“The right to strike.
“The right to free collective bargaining.
“The right to protection from rival unions during the life of union contracts.
“The right to assurance from employers that they will bargain only with certified unions as a protection against unfair labor practices.”
“We recommend to Congress the submission of a Constitutional Amendment providing equal rights for men and women.
“We favor legislation assuring equal pay for equal work regardless of sex.”
DEMOCRATIC (not Democrat) PARTY
“We recommend and endorse for submission to the Congress a constitutional amendment providing equal rights for women.”
“We pledge ourselves to provide special housing aids to veterans and their families.”
“We favor self-government, national suffrage and representation in the Congress of the United States for residents of the District of Columbia.”
“We recommend to Congress the submission of a constitutional amendment providing equal rights for men and women.”
“We advocate legislation to provide equal pay for equal work, regardless of sex.”
“Continued vigorous enforcement of the civil rights laws to guarantee the right to vote to all citizens in all areas of the country.
“Legislation to provide that the completion of six primary grades in a state accredited school is conclusive evidence of literacy for voting purposes.”
“We pledge our continued leadership in every field of science and technology, earthbound as well as spacial, to assure a citadel of liberty from which the fruits of freedom may be carried to all people.”
“In safeguarding the health of the nation the Eisenhower-Nixon Administration's initiative has resulted in doubling the resources of the Food and Drug Administration and in giving it new legal weapons. More progress has been made during this period in protecting consumers against harmful food, drugs, and cosmetics than in any other time in our history. We will continue to give strong support to this consumer-protection program.”
“Unemployment strikes hardest at workers over 40, minority groups, young people, and women. We will not achieve full employment until prejudice against these workers is wiped out.”
“In recent years, we have been faced with a shocking increase in crimes of all kinds. Organized criminals have even infiltrated into legitimate business enterprises and labor unions.
“The Republican Administration, particularly the Attorney General's office, has failed lamentably to deal with this problem despite the growing power of the underworld. The new Democratic Administration will take vigorous corrective action.”
“We will restore the morale of our armed forces by upgrading military professionalism, and we will allow professional dissent while insuring that strong and sound civilian authority controls objective decision-making.”
“The Criminal Justice Act of 1964, now before the President for signature, will for the first time in history ensure that poor defendants in criminal cases will have competent legal counsel in defending themselves in Federal courts.”
“Air and water pollution, already acute in many areas, require vigorous state and federal action, regional planning, and maximum cooperation among neighboring cities, counties and states. We will encourage this planning and cooperation and also spur industrial participation by means of economic incentives.”
“Welfare and poverty programs will be drastically revised to liberate the poor from the debilitating dependence which erodes self-respect and discourages family unity and responsibility. We will modify the rigid welfare requirements that stifle work motivation and support locally operated children's day care centers to free the parents to accept work.”
“A new Republican Administration will strive for fairness for all consumers, including additional information and protection programs as necessary, state and local consumer education, vigorous enforcement of the numerous protection laws already enacted, and active encouragement of the many consumer-protection initiatives and organizations of private enterprise.”
“The forty-hour week adopted 30 years ago needs re-examination to determine whether or not a shorter work week, without loss of wages, would produce more jobs, increase productivity and stabilize prices.”
“We pledge to include the following in a comprehensive program to restore the pre-eminence of U.S. military strength:”
“We shall take steps, including necessary legislation, to minimize the likelihood of massive electric power failures, to improve the safety of medical devices and drugs, to penalize deceptive sales practices, and to provide consumer access to product information now being compiled in the Federal Government.”
“The American Indian has the oldest claim on our national conscience. We must continue and increase federal help in the Indian's battle against poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, ill health and poor housing. To this end, we pledge a new and equal federal-Indian partnership that will enable Indian communities to provide for themselves many services now furnished by the federal government and federal sponsorship of industrial development programs owned, managed, and run by Indians. We support a quick and fair settlement of land claims of Indians, Eskimo and Aleut citizens of Alaska.”
AMERICAN INDEPENDENT PARTY
“We bear much of the "root causes" for the depredations committed in our streets and in our towns and cities. We hold that these are to be found in the apparent absence of respect for the law on the part of the perpetrators of these offenses, and the unexplainable compassion for the I criminal evidenced by our executive and judicial officers and officials. We advocate and seek a society and a government in which there is an attitude of respect for the law and for those who seek its enforcement and an insistence on the part of our citizens that the judiciary be ever mindful of their primary duty and function of punishing the guilty and protecting the innocent.”
“We will oppose federal legislation to enforce the registration of guns by our citizens, feeling that this measure would do little or nothing to deter criminal activity, but, rather, would prove restrictive to our decent, law-abiding citizens, and could well encourage further activity by the criminal. We will preserve to the states their rights to take such reasonable measures as they deem appropriate in this area.”
“Those totally unfitted by training, background and environment for urban living who have been lured to the metropolitan areas by the wholly false promises and commitments of self-seeking Political leaders must be afforded an opportunity for training or, in the alternative, an opportunity to return to gainful employment in the less urbanized area from whence they came. This we propose to accomplish in conjunction with private industry through a program of diversification and decentralization of expanding industry into areas away from metropolitan centers, thereby providing relief for many of the problems of the area while providing productive life for those afforded the opportunity to depart these overcrowded areas.”
“We must cooperate with the administrators of our institutions of higher learning now in the hands of revolutionaries. We must support these officials in the restoration of order on their campuses and we must assure that no assistance, financial or otherwise, from the federal level be given to those seeking to disrupt and destroy these great institutions.
“America is a nation "Under God" and we must see that it remain such a nation. We will support with all the power of the Executive action to restore to our educational institutions and the children they serve the right and freedom of prayer and devotions to God.”
“Our goal is to enable every American to secure quality health care at reasonable cost. We pledge a balanced approach—one that takes into account the problems of providing sufficient medical personnel and facilities.”
“At last we have the lawless elements in our society on the run”
“Recognition and support of the cultural identity and pride of black people are generations overdue. The American Indians, the Spanish-speaking, the Asian Americans—the cultural and linguistic heritage of these groups is too often ignored in schools and communities. So, too, are the backgrounds, traditions and contributions of white national, ethnic, religious and regional communities ignored. All official discrimination on the basis of sex, age, race, language, political belief, religion, region or national origin must end. No American should be subject to discrimination in employment or restriction in business because of ethnic background or religious practice. Americans should be free to make their own choice of life-styles and private habits without being subject to discrimination or prosecution. We believe official policy can encourage diversity while continuing to place full emphasis on equal opportunity and integration.”
“A priority effort to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment.”
“In order to achieve a free economy in which government victimizes no one for the benefit of anyone else, we oppose all government subsidies to business, labor, education, agriculture, science, the arts, or any other special interests. Those who have entered into these activities with promises of government subsidy will be forewarned by being given a cutoff date beyond which all government aid to their enterprise will be terminated. Relief or exemption from involuntary taxation shall not be considered a subsidy.”
“Government intervention in current problems, such as crime, pollution, defraud of consumers, health problems, overpopulation, decaying cities, and poverty, is properly limited to protection of individual rights. In those areas where individual rights or voluntary relations are not involved, we support an immediate reduction of government's present role, and ultimately, a total withdrawal of government intervention, together with the establishment of a legal framework in and ultimately, a total withdrawal of government intervention, together with the establishment of a legal framework in.”
“Republicans will not make idle promises to blacks and other minorities; we are beyond the day when any American can live off rhetoric or political platitudes.”
“We reaffirm our Party's historic commitment to equal rights and equality for women.”
“There can be no doubt that the question of abortion, despite the complex nature of its various issues, is ultimately concerned with equality of rights under the law. While we recognize differing views on this question among Americans in general—and in our own Party—we affirm our support of a constitutional amendment to restore protection of the right to life for unborn children. We also support the Congressional efforts to restrict the use of taxpayers' dollars for abortion.”
“We recognize that a hungry child is a child who cannot learn. Restoring school breakfast and school lunches for millions of children will improve their alertness and concentration in school.”
“Our country continues to accept refugees from troubled lands all over the world. In some cases, these are people who stood with America in dangerous times, and they have first call on our hospitality. We oppose, however, the granting of refugee status on the basis of lifestyle or other non-political factors.”
“We support the Government Shutdown Protection Act to ensure the continuance of essential federal functions when advocates of pork threaten to shut down the government unless their wasteful spending is accepted.”
“We oppose attempts to distort the electoral process by wholesale restoration of the franchise to convicted felons, by makeshift or hurried naturalization procedures, or by discretionary ballot-reading by election boards.”
“To renew American leadership in the world, we must first bring the Iraq war to a responsible end. Our men and women in uniform have performed admirably while sacrificing immeasurably. Our civilian leaders have failed them. Iraq was a diversion from the fight against the terrorists who struck us on 9-11, and incompetent prosecution of the war by civilian leaders compounded the strategic blunder of choosing to wage it in the first place.”
“An End to Insurance Discrimination. Health insurance plans should accept all applicants and be prohibited from charging different prices based on pre-existing conditions. They should compete on the cost of providing health care and the quality of that care, not on their ability to avoid or over-charge people who are or may get sick. Premiums collected by insurers should be primarily dedicated to care, not profits.”
“Minimum wage is an issue that should be handled at the state and local level.”
“Traditional marriage and family, based on marriage between one man and one woman, is the foundation for a free society and has for millennia been entrusted with rearing children and instilling cultural values. We condemn the Supreme Court's ruling in United States v. Windsor, which wrongly removed the ability of Congress to define marriage policy in federal law. We also condemn the Supreme Court's lawless ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, which in the words of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, was a "judicial Putsch" — full of "silly extravagances" — that reduced "the disciplined legal reasoning of John Marshall and Joseph Storey to the mystical aphorisms of a fortune cookie." In Obergefell, five unelected lawyers robbed 320 million Americans of their legitimate constitutional authority to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. The Court twisted the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment beyond recognition. To echo Scalia, we dissent. We, therefore, support the appointment of justices and judges who respect the constitutional limits on their power and respect the authority of the states to decide such fundamental social questions.”
“We support the right of the people to conduct their businesses in accordance with their religious beliefs and condemn public officials who have proposed boycotts against businesses that support traditional marriage. We pledge to protect those business owners who have been subjected to hate campaigns, threats of violence, and other attempts to deny their civil rights.”
“We support the public display of the Ten Commandments as a reflection of our history and our country's Judeo-Christian heritage and further affirm the rights of religious students to engage in voluntary prayer at public school events and to have equal access to school facilities. We assert the First Amendment right of freedom of association for religious, private, service, and youth organizations to set their own membership standards.”
“Our agenda is high on job creation, expanding opportunity and providing a better chance at life for everyone willing to work for it. Our modern approach to environmentalism is directed to that end, and it starts with dramatic change in official Washington. We propose to shift responsibility for environmental regulation from the federal bureaucracy to the states and to transform the EPA into an independent bipartisan commission, similar to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, with structural safeguards against politicized science. We will strictly limit congressional delegation of rule-making authority, and require that citizens be compensated for regulatory takings.”
“Our party is the natural home for those who come in search of freedom and justice. We welcome all to the Great Opportunity Party.”
“Statehood for the District can be advanced only by a constitutional amendment. Any other approach would be invalid. A statehood amendment was soundly rejected by the states when last proposed in 1976 and should not be revived.”
“Quite simply, the Republican Party is committed to rebuilding the U.S. military into the strongest on earth, with vast superiority over any other nation or group of nations in the world. We face a dangerous world, and we believe in a resurgent America.”
“We must help American workers and businesses compete for jobs and investments in global clean energy, high-tech products, internet technology products, and advanced manufacturing and vehicles. We must make American manufacturing more internationally competitive by making it the greenest and most efficient in the world, including by investing in industrial energy efficiency.”
““Restoring our democracy also means finally passing statehood for the District of Columbia, so that the American citizens who reside in the nation's capital have full and equal congressional rights as well as the right to have the laws and budget of their local government respected without Congressional interference.””
“Democrats believe an AIDS-free generation is within our grasp. But today far too many Americans living with HIV are without access to quality care and too many new infections occur each year. That is why we will implement the National HIV and AIDS Strategy; increase research funding for the National Institutes of Health; cap pharmaceutical expenses for people living with HIV and AIDS; reform HIV criminalization laws; and expand access for harm reduction programs and HIV prevention medications, particularly for the populations most at risk of infection. Abroad, we will continue our commitment to the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and increase global funding for HIV and AIDS prevention and treatment. Democrats will always protect those living with HIV and AIDS from stigma and discrimination.”
And so it goes . . .
I was swinging from the ceiling today, writing to the music provided by the CD “O” by Cirque du Soleil.
Now on YouTube: Jacob George
My interview with the late veteran and peace activist JACOB GEORGE:
"On the Air with Richard S. Drake" celebrates 25 years on the air in 2016.
Quote of the Day
The English are good at bad guys - the James Bond-style villain, cunning, slow-burning. The Americans are much more obvious about it. - Idris Elba