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View Diary: Conversation with two retiree GOP'ers, Romney in bigger trouble than he realizes (164 comments)

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  •  IMHO Obama's big mistake not unlike Lincoln's was (3+ / 0-)
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    dewtx, Calamity Jean, David PA

    Not understanding that he was in the midst of reformulating a new Social Compact for the U.S. not unlike Lincoln in 1863 then his inaugural address in 1864. What is so penetrating is FDR's concepts in his speech at the Commonwealth Club coincidentally on Sept 23, 1932:

    Thomas Jefferson as an advocate of a government that would “intervene, not to destroy individualism, but to protect it.” American history, he contends, is episode after episode of civilizing government confronting the problems of the country that have been caused by brutal individuals and arrogant classes. FDR even goes so far as to speak of government as a “privilege.”Roosevelt responds to the misery caused by the growth of “private economic power” with a mutant Hamiltonian Jeffersonianism—a centralized government that would defend a new concept of individual rights. Threatened by “economic oligarchy” which leads to “a drab living for our people,” Americans can no longer continue to enjoy the liberty and blessings the old Declaration heralded. Instead, echoing Woodrow Wilson’s faith in the administrative state, FDR boldly proclaims: “The day of enlightened administration has come.” Reliance on “enlightened administration” or bureaucracy, not enhanced private productivity, will redistribute our stagnant resources.

    Roosevelt’s new social contract between government and individuals will guarantee new rights—and new powers for government. The contract requires government to protect the individual against the “princes of property.” Each right corresponds with new assurances, backed by a federal government program. First: “Every man has a right to life; and this means that he has also a right to make a comfortable living.” Second: “Every man has a right to his own property; which means a right to be assured, to the fullest extent attainable, in the safety of his savings.” [bolds added by me]

    This would provide a social and political compass, direction and further be the moral or story line for all current and future policy initiatives.

    They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither safety nor liberty~Ben Franklin

    by RWN on Fri Sep 21, 2012 at 03:35:44 PM PDT

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    •  Good point! (0+ / 0-)

      And so true. The concept of the social compact (or social contract) is one thing that citizens should be (or become) familiar with--both on the philosophical end with Rawls and the practical and political end with FDR. The social compact that FDR helped to protect and extend, as you so well describe, is one of the many reasons why FDR was so loved by the "99%" of his day, and so detested by the "1%" of that day--and is still despised by the 1% of this day.

      Lincoln is still #1 with me because of what he did to preserve the Union and end the evil of slavery in the bloodiest war in American history and because of the promising future that was cut short by an assassin's bullet. FDR is, and deserves to be, there too in the high pantheon of great American Presidents. Where Obama will be I don't know, but think he'll be highly regarded. That's why I am supporting and will be working for President Obama--to preserve and extend the moral vision of Abraham Lincoln and the practical social vision of FDR for this generation and the ones following.

      These are troubling times. Corporations are treated like people. People are treated like things. ... If we ever needed to vote we sure do need to vote now. — Rev. Dr. William Barber, II to the NAACP, July 11, 2012

      by dewtx on Fri Sep 21, 2012 at 06:54:11 PM PDT

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      •  maybe intellectuals and regular citizens should (1+ / 0-)
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        write to Obama about expressing a new social compact into the 21st Century as the theme for his 2nd term as Lincoln did in 1864.

        When I view the Tea Party and its revulsion to the Fed as I view the Occupy Movement the common thread is that the government has failed to protect the individual from the ruthlessness of capitalism, this is a pervasive even institutionalized function. By reaffirming and developing modern concepts to protect individual rights within the modern society would cut into the Right Wing's base and go towards uniting the nation

        They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither safety nor liberty~Ben Franklin

        by RWN on Sat Sep 22, 2012 at 06:25:38 AM PDT

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