It's time to defund the Republican Party
Back in 1981, the Republican Party decided to defund the Democratic Party. While the Republican party had principally been funded by rich people and big business since the 1920s, the Democrats were largely reliant on the labor unions.
So Ronald Reagan, as part of his "Reagan Revolution," figured the best way to destroy the Democratic Party was to destroy America's unions. His first shot was to destroy Patco, the air traffic controller's union, and he did it in less than a week in August, 1981.
He, with Republicans in Congress and conservatives on the Supreme Court than embarked on an eight-year campaign to eliminate unions from the American landscape, thus wiping out the Democratic Party's ability to win elections.
It worked, and by 1992 American union membership, and their ability to fund elections, had collapsed so severely that Bill Clinton and the Democratic Party had to take money from giant corporations and billionaires to prevail in that election year.
Reagan's plan not only kneecapped the Democratic Party for the next 40 years, but also changed the party at its core, turning it from LBJ's Great Society Party into Bill Clinton's corporate-friendly DLC/New Democrat Party, now in bed with big banks, insurance companies, etc.
If Democrats want to defund the Republican party, which may force it to start focusing on the needs of regular people rather than just billionaires and corporations, there are a few obvious steps they should pursue. They include:
- End Red State welfare. Kentucky gets $2.41 for every dollar they send to Washington DC. Most other Red States are similarly "taker" states, so let's fight for a law limiting states to no more than $1.50 for every dollar they sent to DC in tax revenues. Call it Welfare Reform!
- End corporate welfare that gets recycled to GOP politicians. This includes $600 billion a year to fossil fuel companies, and over $1 trillion a year we give to big Pharma, insurance companies (like subsidies for the "Medicare Advantageâ€ scam), and "Big Ag" support.
- End corporate monopolies. Break up giant corporations and make America safe again for small businesses while rejuvenating local economies. From airlines to tech to banking and retail, giant monopolies rip off working class Americans and use some of that money to fund the GOP.
- Bring back Eisenhower's 91% top tax rate. America's strongest economy was 1950 to 1980, with a top tax rate of 91% to 74%. We built highways, schools, hospitals, and put men on the moon. Reagan cut that to 25%, and the billionaires it produced now pour money into the GOP.
- Follow Europe's example and impose a 1% tax on great fortunes. Average Americans pay a wealth tax every year: the property tax on their largest store of wealth, their homes. Billionaires should pay a similar annual tax on their money bins.
- End campaign contributions from corporations, end SuperPACs and limit billionaires' ability to skew our politics. We did this in the 1970s after the Nixon bribery scandals, but the Supreme Court blew it up. There are multiple ways around that, and the Democratic Party should make this job one.
These simple "Contract with America" steps, along with restoring the ability of American workers to unionize, will not only revive the Democratic Party, but also restore America to economic greatness and give us a far more honest political system.