January 16, 2013

Morning Line: How the Democrats have deserted the working class

Sam Smith - A major reason the Republicans can get away with all their nonsense is because the Democratic Party, since Lyndon Johnson, has essentially deserted the working class. This is true of much of the liberal wing as well as the party's centrists. So the GOP can talk about abortion and gay marriage since there's no one talking about interest rates or credit cards, foreclosures, or the dismal employment picture.

To give a feeling for what has happened, below are some major legislation passed by each Democratic administration since FDR. Read it and weep.

Franklin Roosevelt

• Civil Works Administration
• Public Works Administration-PWA
• Railroad Retirement Act
• Norris-LaGuardia Act
• Federal Home Loan Bank Act
• Emergency Banking Relief Act
• Civilian Conservation Corps Reforestation Relief Act
• Federal Emergency Relief Act
• Agricultural Adjustment Act
• Tennessee Valley Authority Act
• Securities Act
• Home Owners' Loan Corporation
• Glass–Steagall Act
• National Industrial Recovery Act
• Securities Exchange Act
• Federal Credit Union Act
• National Housing Act
• National Labor Relations Act
• Social Security Act
• Rural Electrification Act
• Commodities Exchange Act
• Fair Labor Standards Act
• Javits-Wagner-O'Day Act
• Investment company act
• Veterans preference act
• GI bill

Harry Truman

• School lunch act
• Housing act
• Hill Burton hospital funding law

Truman also advocated national health insurance and repeal of the anti-labor Taft Hartley Act

Lyndon Johnson

• Vocational education act
• Urban Mass Transportation Act
• Nurse Training Act
• Food Stamp Act
• Economic Opportunity Act
• Housing Act
• Medicare and Medicaid
• Older Americans Act

Jimmy Carter

There were no major economic measures during the Carter administration, but he did, in 1976, support national health insurance and, later, hospital cost controls

Bill Clinton
Clinton repealed the Glass Steagall Act and signed the Commodity Futures Modernization Act which contributed the later great recession. He also backed free trade legislation that had a bad effect on American employment

Barack Obama

• Stimulus package
• Auto industry intervention
• Healthcare reform

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

FDR responded to radical movements and leadership. LBJ the same. There was no urgency for radicalism until Bush, Jr., but now as the Titanic is sinking, the Dems are being challenged to get real. It's not about a clash of partisan cultures, it about ending the partisan elite by cutting off their money supply. They can be made obsolete by public campaign financing and the revolution involved in getting that to happen. As with FDR and LBJ we're in an end game, where if change doesn't happen, it's Pottersville.

Anonymous said...

The myth is that radicals cost Humphrey the election. Not true, he was being held hostage by MacBird, who threatened to throw the election to Nixon if Hubert went peacenik. Hubert made the mistake of relying on McCarthy's endorsement, then went peacenik about two days too late. Lyndon, after 4 years treating HHH as his prisoner, supported him, but Nixon committed treason by sabotaging the peace talks and LBJ let it ride. Hubert was a shell of his former self when LBJ released him from house arrest. There was still a strong Congress until it rejected Carter and collaborated with the Ayotollah Reagan. The Dems are now as much on the wrong side of history pimping for plutocracy as were the Whigs that pimped for slavery. It takes a widespread radical movement to abolish political plutocracy, not so radical 100 years ago when TR made it a majoritarian progressive program.