Russell Rowland

Why I’m a Democrat

October 12, 2016

I have never declared myself to be a Democrat on a public forum, and part of the reason is because I get tired of the way people make broad statements about other parties, as if each and every Democrat believes and supports exactly the same things. But the fact is, I am a Democrat. What’s interesting about that is that the older I get, the more my support for that party has to do with money. People assume that being a Democrat means you believe putting huge money into welfare programs and cutting back on military, etc. And part of me supports those ideas, but that’s not the core of my beliefs. The reason I’m a Democrat is because our history has shown that the structure that stimulates the economy more than any other is when we give our people the opportunity to make a better life for themselves. Roosevelt’s New Deal, Eisnhower’s Marshall Plan, even some of Reagan’s economic policies were geared toward creating an infrastructure that puts money back into the economy rather than putting the majority of the money into the hands of people who have very little interest in making life better for anyone other than themselves.

Donald Trump has never done anything with the intent of helping anyone other than Donald Trump. So the idea that he would suddenly have the interest of the American people in mind is completely delusional. The idea that he would suddenly become a completely different person is a fantasy, just as it has been a complete fantasy that he’s suddenly going to change direction with is campaign. One of the most baffling criticisms of Hillary is that voting for her is just going with the status quo. I’m not sure that’s such a bad thing. If I want someone to do surgery on my mother, I’m not going to go to a dentist. The people who have accomplished the most in the political arena have been great politicians, whatever that means. Hillary has proven herself to be very adept at this. Has she benefited personally from her efforts? Absolutely. But has she also shown a long and solid track record of using her power and influence to do things to help others? She certainly has. Way more than Trump ever has or ever will. The criticism that she’s in the back pocket of the banks is absurd. Powerful men have been raking in hundreds of thousands for speaking to large corporations for decades and no one has ever accused any of them of being influenced by these practices. So to suggest that she will handle it differently is really just an insult to her integrity that is based on nothing of merit.

In general, Democratic policy looks at long term success. In giving people the opportunity to take care of themselves now so that taxpayers are not paying for major health problems later. In taking care of our environment now so that we aren’t paying for Superfund sites later, in holding the wealthy and banks and corporations accountable so that we’re not paying billions in bailouts later, and in taking care of our veterans so that we’re not paying the price for their health care later. It’s not about bleeding hearts. It’s about trying not to bleed our treasury.