The Filibuster Proof Majority
According to a site that I follow, fivethirtyeight.com, the Democratic Party has a 30% chance of obtaining a filibuster-proof majority (60 seats) in the U.S. Senate.
I do not want that to happen.
The Democratic Party is not a font of all wisdom and virtue. Just as the Republicans have tied themselves to people who have absurd beliefs about the real world (the Religious Right), the Democratic Party also has an element with equally absurd beliefs (the Anti-Business Left).
One area in which this is the case is with NAFTA (North American Free Trade Association) and LAFTA (Latin American Free Trade Association). On this issue, the Democratic left wants to see free trade curtailed – wants to see policies enacted that “keep jobs here in America” and stops the flow of jobs overseas. The fact of the matter is that by "shipping jobs overseas", the populations of other countries become more prosperous, which has two effects.
First, they are less likely to go to war because, the more a country trades with others, the more it has to lose by getting involved in armed conflict.
Second, a more prosperous country has more use for the goods and services of other countries.
In addition, there is the simple moral, humanitarian issue underlying this. To fight to prevent people who are now earning $200 per year . . . per year . . . with no health care, no decent food, and surrounded by outlaw militia that have nothing better to do with their time from earning $1000 per year, and later $2000 per year . . . is morally depraved. Yet, when the Democratic left talks about international trade they speak as if this part of their plan is perfectly acceptable. The welfare of human beings in other countries seems, to them, to be of no moral significance whatsoever, a long as Americans can "preserve their jobs".
Even that part of the Democratic Left's approach to international trade is absurd. Assume that you had a choice – you could either make Africa like Europe, or make Europe like Africa. Which do you think would benefit America more? All we have to do is look at how much economic benefit we obtain from trade with Europe compared to what we gain from trade with Africa. How many jobs are created because the Europeans are prosperous enough to buy what Americans are selling, compared to how many jobs are created by the demand for American exports coming out of Africa.
Another issue in which I worry about an unchecked Democratic majority is on the issue of Iraq (and of foreign wars in general). Far too many Democrats think that they know with certainty, and without evidence, that the best thing to do is to leave Iraq. They might be right. I, on the other hand, am reluctant to draw a conclusion one way or the other without evidence, and the evidence (in this case) is hidden from my sight.
On this issue, the Democratic Left is much like President George Bush. Bush did not need to actually look at the intelligence reports. He knew that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and was ready to use them on the United States. If the intelligence reports said otherwise, this simply proved that the analysts could not do their job very well. The Democratic Left knows that the best option is to leave Iraq. If the intelligence reports contradict this option then they, too, will simply assume that there was something wrong with the intelligence reports.
So, here is my recommendation to my readers. If you live in a state with a close Senate race, I would like you to take a good look at the Republican candidate in that election. If the Republican candidate is half way decent (not lost in some second-coming fantasy that utterly prevents him or her from making rational real-world decisions), then there is reason to consider voting to prevent the Democrats from having entirely unchecked political power.
We could be better off as a result.