I had intended to spend five weekly posts on the five chapters of the vacuous Agenda for America. Your reaction to Chapters 1 and 4 was underwhelming, but then the chapters were virtually empty on how Bush-Cheney intends to promote either economic growth or national security. So today, I’ll only briefly mention the other three chapters.
Chapter 2 is entitled “A Plan for Helping American Families in a Changing World”, which is their idea for health care reform. Health Savings Accounts and Medical Liability “Reform” are the two big ideas. Of course, their costly Prescription Drug Benefit will be implemented so taxpayers can pay for more Big Pharma profits. The chapter does note some forecasts that employment might rise by an amount around 8.9 million, but the Agenda does not tell us what Bush-Cheney policies will be to insure these forecasts actually materialize for once. While the chapter does say “the President proposes giving people the freedom to shop across state lines to find the best rates for their health coverage”, it does not mention allowing people to purchase drugs from Canada. I guess his claim Friday night that he wants to make sure drugs from Canada were safe was not communicated to the author of this chapter.
Chapter 3 is entitled “A Plan for Promoting An Era of Ownership”, which starts with ways households can increase their indebtedness by buying homes. “Strengthening Social Security” is the code for partial privatization. But with no cuts in benefits and no increases in payroll taxes, this section is silent on how the Social Security Trust Fund with be strengthened. The rest of this chapter simply spins how gets the alleged tax cuts with no mention of who will pay down the massive debt created by Bush’s fiscal recklessness.
Chapter 5 is entitled “A Plan for Supporting Our Communities and Honoring American Values of Compassion and Service”, which is code for a potpourri of rightwing ideas including promoting rightwing judges, reducing welfare benefits, and more faith-based initiatives. One section is entitled “Improving the Environment”, which touts all the misleading labels used as Bush has undermined environmental efforts. “Promoting a Culture of Life” is code for the efforts to undermine a woman’s right to choose, while “Defending Marriage” is code for restricting the rights of homosexuals.
Unless one is a rightwing nut, there is nothing of substance in Agenda for America. Does this mean that a second term for Bush-Cheney will accomplish very little? Or does it mean that what they intend to accomplish are things they do not wish to tell moderate Republicans and independent voters?