Old Glory

   Progressive Values: We're all in this together.

Areas for Investigation and Discussion
Capitalism, while imperfect, is the best known mechanism for wealth creation, but unregulated market forces can produce vast inequality and other negative consequences. We believe that our government of, by, and for the people, while also imperfect, has a central role in using the common wealth for the common good in a blanced economy.

Many of the difficulties facing our country have come from a shift of our national wealth over the past 35 years, from the middle class to those at the very top. Our economic ship is top-heavy and is listing badly. We offer this web site as a vehicle for examining our economic dilemma and for developing realistic policies for the future, policies that free us from fear and contribute to the common good for us all.

Key progressive values appear above. Below, you'll find three suggested precepts relating to our current difficulties. To the left, you'll find interrelated subject areas that deserve investigation and discussion. Please join us in a much-needed dialogue on how to set things right for us all.

   Precept #1:  A Place at the Economic Table for Each of Us.

Progressive Value: A place at the table Our economic hardships are only partly due to the current Great Recession. During the past 35 years, we've watched silently (like the proverbial frogs in the slowly heating kettle) as globalization, accelerating automation, and union decertifications have hollowed out the middle class and vastly enriched the very wealthy. It's a reverse mirror image of the changes brought about by the New Deal which led to a vibrant middle class following World War II. Many of our families have been pushed away from the economic table. With the Great Recession, even fewer good-paying jobs are available, while expenses for health insurance, education, and transportation are increasing. These are structural problems that are likely to get worse, unless we intervene. Can we employ progressive values to provide a secure and rewarding future for our children and grandchildren? (Read more.)

   Precept #2:  Everyone Pays Their Fair Share Toward the Common Good.

Progressive Value:  Everyone pays their fair share.

Tax rates are at historic lows. At a time of economic recession, burgeoning budget deficits, and vast inequality of wealth, we need to take a closer look at the revenue side of the budget equation.

For some time now, budget discussion has been framed by conservatives to be only about spending. But on April 13, 2011, President Obama spoke to the nation about our values, about his deficit reduction plan, and about the need for additional tax revenue. He said, "Everybody pays, but the wealthier have borne a little more.... It’s a basic reflection of our belief that those who’ve benefited most from our way of life can afford to give back a little bit more. Moreover, this belief hasn’t hindered the success of those at the top of the income scale. They continue to do better and better with each passing year." (Read more.)  

   Precept #3: Affordable Health Insurance is Everyone's Right.

Progressive Values: Affordable Health Insurance

The cost of health insurance is a major economic burden on our government, our businesses, and the middle class; and rapidly rising health costs are a major cause of personal bankruptcy.

Our country has a strange hodgepodge of health insurance arrangements that we stumbled into almost by accident. We started with employer-based insurance as a fringe benefit, and then added Medicare and Medicaid for those who fell outside the employer framework. We wound up with a "system" that costs us twice as much per person as does the health insurance of other developed nations, which has poorer health outcomes, and which leaves 15% of us, or 45 million of our fellow citizens, uninsured. (Read more.)