A platform of integrated policies
Why was there a New Deal in the Great Depression of the 1930s and none in the Great Recession that started in 2008, the year Obama was elected president?
In the 1930s there were huge organizations that were on the side of regular people. They applied pressure on Franklin Roosevelt (FDR): Socialists, Communists, and growing unions. Since then, decade by decade, the organized groups were systematically beaten down.
In 2008 instead of providing a new deal to help the 99%, the government gave a huge bailout to the Wall Street banks! It was a sight to see how the two “Titanic” political parties worked together on that. First Congress responded to an enormous public outcry against the bailout and voted “no”. Then Bush and Obama, representing the two parties, worked it all out and within a week, after the public outcry had died down, they passed the bailout.
We the people did not need a Wall Street bailout in 2008. What we needed was a Green New Deal, an improvement on FDR’s New Deal. The Green New Deal would also emphasize infrastructure and arts, but would not prepare for war.
The “laundry list” of what encompasses a Green New Deal is large, including housing, healthcare, jobs, justice, education, environment, equality, peace and the arts. All the problems you can list are interrelated, and that actually can be a good thing, because all the solutions are interrelated as well. Early on in my vocation of political activist, I had a campaign slogan: To understand what’s going on, Follow The Money. To know what to do about it, Follow Your Heart.
To me, that relates directly to my understanding of the Green New Deal. No one can tackle every issue, but collectively, we can! Particularly when we organize together and have public support, we can make a big difference in the part of the Green New Deal that’s closest to our own hearts.
Talking about how everything is interrelated brings an important movement to my mind: Black Lives Matter. Sometimes people respond that “all lives matter.” Well, we will know that “all lives matter” — really — when we, as a society and individuals act in a way that it’s obvious that we believe that Black Lives Matter.