U.S. Senator Rick Scott (R-Florida) went rogue last week and released what he calls his 11-Point Plan for America.
It is unclear why he did this. Congressional Republicans should waltz easily to an easy victory this November thanks to it being a mid-term election, coupled with an ongoing pandemic, high inflation, and the Democrats inability to accomplish much of what they promised their voters.
Not surprisingly, Scott’s plan is the same old rehashed culture war mumbo jumbo. There is nothing in the plan that will actually improve the lives of working men and women, and much that will hurt the poor especially if they also happen to be gay, trans, Hispanic, or if they rely on federal programs.
There is no call for an increase in the minimum wage. No help for those who lack health care. Nothing to address income inequality. Nothing to help working men and women realize their dream of home ownership. Just the same scare tactics employing non-existent bogeymen designed to give the MAGA base heart palpitations.
I am not going to go over every single tiresome point in Scott’s plan. This isn’t a podcast after all. I don’t have 2 hours to fill. But here are a few of the lowlights.
“Public schools will focus on the 3 R’s, not indoctrinate children with critical race theory or any other political ideology.”
The right has become incredibly adept in inventing bugbears to keep their base in a perpetual state of fear and anxiety, and few are better at this than a Florida politician. Scott’s plan, for instance, includes banning Critical Race Theory in public schools. By public schools, does he mean grade schools or graduate programs at state universities? Who knows! It doesn’t matter! What matters is that conservatives are outraged to the point of digging bunkers and stockpiling arsenals. And since American history does not begin with an R like “Arithmetic,” we can assume that history is not part of the curriculum in Rick Scott’s conservative utopia.
“We will re-fund and respect the police because they, not the criminals, are the good guys.”
Another absurdly simplistic and chauvinistic view of the world. A recent study reported in The Washington Post showed that on average, nationwide, three police officers were arrested per day for alleged criminal behavior. That’s 1,100 arrests per year. About three-quarters are convicted, a remarkably high percentage.
We will protect, defend, and promote the American Family at all costs.
Except when it comes to guaranteeing working family members a living wage, expanding child nutrition programs, extending the Child Tax Credit, helping families afford pre-school, child care, community college, or granting student loan forgiveness, etc.
“Socialism is un-American and always leads to poverty and oppression.”
Socialism has been a part of the American story since the The Socialist Labor Party was founded in 1876 in Newark, New Jersey, only 22 years after the founding of the Republican Party.
As for socialism’s relationship to poverty and oppression, there is of course a difference between Democratic socialism and revolutionary socialism. Democratic socialism (where the socialist party has been elected to govern in democratic elections) has often led to more equality, flourishing economies and a high quality of life, as in Allende’s Chile, Mosaddegh’s Iran, Árbenz’ Guatemala, Sukarno’s Indonesia, etc,. Which is why the CIA overthrew these popular governments in bloody coups.
Israel, Border Walls, etc.
“We will only help countries that are willing to defend themselves, like Israel.”
It is easier to defend yourself when America gives you $3.8 billion a year, like we did Israel. About $8.5 million of that aid went towards the economy, and the remainder went to the Israeli military.
Scott plans to “secure our border, finish building the wall, and name it after President Donald Trump.” Apparently he wants to name the wall after Trump because Trump promised to build a border wall and didn’t, and he promised to get Mexico to pay for it, and didn’t.
And what would be an 11-point plan to save America without furthering the conservative corporate agenda to destroy public schools by promoting private and charter schools.
Where we agree
The Democratic Party has given up on Democracy and is rigging elections.
Rick and I agree on this but perhaps not how he thinks. Both parties (along with the U.S. Supreme Court) have given up on democracy and have allowed corporations and the wealthy to call the shots when it comes to legislation and elections. How else can you explain that those policies Americans overwhelmingly want—Medicare for all, common sense gun laws, $15 minimum wage, a wealth tax—will never get passed in Congress?
Scott also wants term limits on members of Congress. Sure. Though this isn’t really a deterrent or solution to a problem since politicians mostly use their time in Congress to secure lucrative lobbyist or Wall Street jobs. The real deterrent would be to ban members of Congress from becoming lobbyists. Forever. Rick Scott, who will no doubt go on to become a lobbyist for the gun industry or Big Pharma when he finally loses his senate seat, naturally has no interest in this kind of reform.
“To judge a person on the color of their skin is wrong.”
Agreed. However, Scott’s 11-point plan is about ending programs that help rectify centuries of institutional racism while decreasing minority power by pretending minorities don’t exist. This has nothing to do with the content of one’s character.
You get the idea. Lots of fearmongering to scare the bejeezus out of his MAGA base. Not a care in the world for the working men and women of Florida or the United States. Just what we have come to expect from GOP (and, to be honest, Democrat) lawmakers.