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Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Progressive Agenda Gets the Snooze Treatment

I consider myself someone who pays attention. Yet somehow poor Bill De Blazio and Al Sharpton managed to get their efforts to create a common agenda knocked off the radar pretty thoroughly. The cynical media, punditry, and others -- all hit the snooze button on his "Progressive Agenda." That's all the shame. It was missing some of the elements that are needed for a common plank. But it was a good effort and it all needed to be taken seriously. Anyway this is the agenda (Reformatted a bit) from their website. The reporters who covered De Blasio's announcement didn't even bother to report the actual agenda in most of the reports:

1     Lift the Floor for Working People

  1. Raise the federal minimum wage, so that it reaches $15/hour, while indexing it to inflation.
  2. Reform the National Labor Relations Act, to enhance workers’ right to organize and rebuild the middle class.
  3. Pass comprehensive immigration reform to grow the economy and protect against exploitation of low-wage workers.
  4. Oppose trade deals that hand more power to corporations at the expense of American jobs, workers’ rights, and the environment.
  5. Invest in schools, not jails-- and give a second chance to those coming home from prison.

2     Support Working Families

  1. Pass national paid sick leave.
  2. Pass national paid family leave.
  3. Make Pre-K, after-school programs and childcare universal.
  4. Expand the Earned Income Tax Credit and protect and expand Social Security.
  5. Allow students to refinance student loan debt to take advantage of lower interest rates, and support debt-free college.

3     Tax Fairness

  1. Close the carried interest loophole.
  2. End tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas.
  3. Implement the “Buffett Rule” so millionaires pay their fair share.
  4. Close the CEO tax loophole that allows corporations to take advantage of “performance pay” write-offs.

This agenda is close to the "Common Agenda" I was proposing at the end of last year. It's a shame it didn't catch on. It's also similar to Bernie's 12 point plan (or 11 points). What is missing (Ironically since Al Sharpton was part of it's creation) is a specific nod to Black Lives Matter, and the urgent need for banking reform and Infrastructure investment - which are tied issues (more to come).

https://progressiveagenda.us/agenda

Huffington Post Article with Al's great speech (I loved it):
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rev-al-sharpton/a-progressive-agenda-must_b_7307672.html
My previous post on Bill De Blasio:
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2014/12/time-for-christmas-truce.html
Previously I'd posted on what we needed for Infrastructure. But it turns out that currency reform and infrastructure reform are related issues. I'll be coming back to that -- but this is the previous post:
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2014/12/how-to-rebuild-our-infrastructure.html
Related Posts:
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2015/09/why-social-programs-are-investment-and.html
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2015/07/in-order-for-all-lives-to-matter-black.html
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-common-plank.html

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