There is a lot at stake in this election. Will we invest in the infrastructure and technology and educational opportunities that will grow the economy or embrace policies that concentrate an ever larger share in a few hands while everyone else faces the reality of declining incomes and opportunities? Will we have the sorts of regulations that ensure that health insurance will be there when you are ill, that our food supply is safe, that the financial system is a method for financing our homes and businesses and retirements and not a casino where con men played crooked games to strip away the hard earned incomes of ordinary Americans. A Supreme Court that will determine whether government can decide who we can love and whether women can control their own bodies and whether dollars have more political rights than people. Yes, whether we will begin to turn back the rising of the oceans or plunge headlong toward a global catastrophe.
Each of these is a clear choice between the values that guide the Democratic and Republican parties. But all of these choices are likely to be made not on their own merits, but as mere byproducts of perceptions about economic policy and its impact on our economy and lives. Romney is not arguing that a vote for him is a vote for plutocracy, or to overturn Roe v. Wade and role back gay rights, or even to scrap the Affordable Care Act. He is trying to avoid any specific policy prescriptions. Instead he promises to get the economy going again, to overturn the shortsighted policies (whatever they are) that have held us back over the last four years. Romney is not arguing values, he is arguing the means to put Americans back to work, arguing that Obama may want good jobs and healthcare for all and to protect Social Security and Medicare, but that his vision of an America in which government is the shepherd and guarantor of those ends is doomed to failure, that we need to accept the crumbs that fall from the tables of unfettered crony capitalists because that is the best we can do; because we need those folks to make their billions so that we can scrabble for the jobs they are willing to give us and accept the education, health care and retirement opportunities that make them the biggest profits rather than what will build the strong united and prosperous country we deserve.
Despite the best efforts of Republicans in Congress and the timidity of Obama and Democrats, the economy has weathered the financial collapse and recession. The housing market is showing signs of life for the first time since the crisis, and as construction returns and state and local governments stop laying off public employees we should see the strength in the private economy translate into job and wage growth. If Romney is elected, Republicans will claim that growth as evidence that Obama failed, that we must cut taxes even further for the wealthy, abandon any efforts to address global warming and accept less health insurance, less Social Security, less safety net, less wages, less workers' rights, less education and less equality for women and minorities so that we can live in the Koch brothers paradise.
When Obama wins tomorrow, and when he makes good his promises to build a broad based prosperity based on shared responsibility and hard work, that will be the narrative that prevails. That is why the Republicans are fighting this desperate battle to win at any costs, why they lie, why they have spent billions on ads designed to rip this country apart, why they seek so determinedly to keep Americans from casting their votes for Obama. They know that Obama is on the verge of delivering real health care reform that will begin to control costs and make sure that affordable insurance is available to every American. They know that government determined to work for every American can deliver a safer stronger more prosperous America, one they can't hold hostage to their leveraged buyouts and privatized everything and medieval social policies that divide and distract working Americans.
Nothing less than the ownership of this country is at stake in this election. The winner will own the narrative, and with it the future of the country.
One more day. One chance to own it.
Yes We Can.