For decades conservatives have been badmouthing government. They’ve been intentionally mismanaging and corrupting it, to turn people against government.
It’s time to stand up and shout:
Horray for government!
I was reminded of this on my back from work the other day. Coming down the stairs to the bus tunnel at Westlake Station in Seattle, there was a middle-aged woman in distress. She was throwing her self against the railing, and she seemed to be crying. Her clothes were partially undone, exposing her rear end.
Knowing that there’s always a security guard down at the track level, I descended the steps and made a bee line to the guard, a big man, who listened with concern as I told him what I’d seen. He was gentle, not surly like some guards. I followed him to the steps, since I was curious, and another woman stopped him to tell him the same story.
There are millions of Americans who need help like that lady did.
Another example of why we need government is evident from the story Alabama’s GOP Delegation Voted Against Funding for Tornado Forecasting. Natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes remind us of why we need government.
During the 2008-2009 sub-prime crisis, it was government that came to the rescue.
There’s always been conflict in America between those who want a small federal government (Jeffersonians) and those who want a strong central government (Federalists). But modern day conservatives have gone too far. They want to weaken not only the federal government but also state governments, so that they can transfer more money and power to the super-rich.
Conservatives see only the bad things about government and overlook all the good that it does.
The Preamble to the US Constitution lists “promote the general Welfare” as one of the purposes of forming a more perfect union. And the Taxing and Spending clause states “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States.”
US Flag by Don Smith
Besides, under conservative rule, government is most wasteful and corrupt. Witness what happened when Republicans controlled Congress and the White House during the first six years of the second Bush presidency: reckless deregulation, no bid contracts, socialism for the rich, privatization to politically connected corporations, hundreds of billions of dollars wasted in unnecessary foreign wars, widespread corruption, etc, etc.
Something the Left sorely needs: better marketing of government as a force of good.
Accordingly, I suggest that the Left should begin an advertizing campaign with slogans like:
- Thank God for government.
- Horray for government!
- Government: there when you need it
- Without government, we’d be hunter-gatherers.
- Thanks to government we have law and order, clean water, seat belts, and the Internet.
How about a competition to come up with the best slogans and ads and music videos and songs celebrating government.
What are some examples you can think of?