Saturday, February 9, 2008


In my opinion, the biggest issue in this campaign is the looming failure of the social safety net, how to manage its fall, and how to manage the consequences. I try to keep an open mind about things, and looked at Obama’s website.

Barack Obama’s Plan
Restore Fiscal Discipline to Washington


Sounds good to me. Don’t see anything about addressing Social Security, Medicaid, or Medicare, but let's keep looking. These are all cut and pasted from his website:

* Obama will embrace the Millennium Development Goal of cutting extreme poverty around the world in half by 2015, and he will double our foreign assistance to $50 billion to achieve that goal.
* Obama will cut income taxes by $1,000 for working families to offset the payroll tax they pay.
* …climate change plan will invest in America's highly-skilled manufacturing workforce and manufacturing centers…
* Obama will also provide assistance to the domestic auto industry to ensure that new fuel-efficient vehicles are built by American workers.
* The Obama plan will increase funding for federal workforce training programs and direct these programs to incorporate green technologies training,
* Obama will also create an energy-focused youth jobs program to invest in disconnected and disadvantaged youth.
* Obama will also extend the Production Tax Credit,
* Obama will invest in rural small businesses
* He will improve rural schools and attract more doctors to rural areas.
* Obama will also increase the minimum wage and index it to inflation to ensure it rises every year. [note: Union pay and government contracts are tied to the minimum wage.]
* Obama will create a 10 percent universal mortgage credit to provide homeowners who do not itemize tax relief.
* Obama will create a fund to help people refinance their mortgages and provide comprehensive supports to innocent homeowners.
* Obama will double funding for after-school programs,
* Obama will reform the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit by making it refundable and allowing low-income families to receive up to a 50 percent credit for their child care expenses.
* Obama will also make the federal government a model employer in terms of adopting flexible work schedules
* Obama will create Early Learning Challenge Grants to promote state "zero to five" efforts
* Obama will quadruple Early Head Start, increase Head Start funding and improve quality for both.
* Obama will also provide affordable and high-quality child care to ease the burden on working families.
* Obama will reform NCLB, which starts by funding the law.
* Obama will address the dropout crisis by passing his legislation to provide funding to school districts
* Obama will double funding for the main federal support for after school programs, the 21st Century Learning Centers program, to serve one million more children.
* Obama will create new Teacher Service Scholarships that will cover four years of undergraduate or two years of graduate teacher education
* Obama will also create Teacher Residency Programs
* To support our teachers, Obama's plan will expand mentoring programs that pair experienced teachers with new recruits.
* He will also provide incentives to give teachers paid common planning time so they can collaborate to share best practices.
* Obama will make college affordable for all Americans by creating a new American Opportunity Tax Credit.
* Obama will develop domestic incentives that reward forest owners, farmers, and ranchers when they plant trees
* Obama will invest $150 billion over 10 years to advance the next generation of biofuels
* Obama will double science and research funding for clean energy projects
* Obama will also create an energy-focused Green Jobs Corps to connect disconnected and disadvantaged youth
* Obama will establish a federal investment program to help manufacturing centers modernize
* Obama will create a Clean Technologies Venture Capital Fund
* Obama will significantly increase the resources devoted to the commercialization and deployment of low-carbon coal technologies.
* His plan will provide retooling tax credits and loan guarantees for domestic auto plants and parts manufacturers
* Obama will create a competitive grant program to award those states and localities
* Obama will pursue a major investment in our utility grid
* Under the Obama plan, full-time workers making minimum wage would get an EITC benefit up to $555, more than three times greater than the $175 benefit they get today.
* Barack Obama is committed to signing universal health legislation by the end of his first term in office
* Barack Obama will establish policies to help Americans currently facing foreclosure through no fault of their own.
* Barack Obama has re-introduced the Responsible Fatherhood and Healthy Families Act
* Barack Obama would expand the highly programs like the successful Nurse-Family Partnership to all low-income, first-time mothers.

…Late term democracy.

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