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What Should Be The Role Of Government In Helping Citizens Achieve The American Dream?

Kettering Republicans are getting campaign literature with this theme: “Achieving the American Dream Starts With Protecting Our Conservative Values.” The literature is paid for by “Ohio Conservatives For A Change.” This PAC is trying to persuade grassroots Republicans to choose DeWine / Husted as the Republican candidates for Governor / Lieut. governor. The Republican Primary is May 8.

The literature says,

“The American Dream doesn’t have to be just a dream. That dream can become a reality for everyone who calls Ohio home. To make that happen, we need someone who will uphold our conservative values. Mike DeWine is that leader. The one who will fight for our shared values to keep the American Dream alive and well.”

The literature doesn’t explain how “Ohio Conservatives For A Change” defines “American Dream.” It does say, however, “Together Mike and Jon will get to work combating the issues facing the Buckeye state to put our families, our children and our grandchildren in a position to succeed.”

Wow. “Ohio Conservatives For A Change,” wants to elect government officials who will “put our families, our children and our grandchildren in a position to succeed.”  It makes me want to know more about the families paying for this literature. This PAC evidently believes it makes for effective propaganda to make the claim to Republican families receiving this literature — those likely to vote in the Republican primary — that electing Dewine / Husted will help advantage their children and their grandchildren. Of course it’s safe to assume that these Republican children are already advantaged by the current status quo — these children already are in a “position to succeed.” The message of this PAC is that Dewine / Husted will help maintain the status quo.

We need a good debate about what the “American Dream” means. Certainly it must mean much more that maintaining the position of the wealthy and powerful to succeed. It must include the dream of a republic where there is “liberty and justice for all.” Since there is no liberty nor justice without adequate income, an “American Dream,” worthy of the name, is one of a republic where all citizens have income adequate for a decent life. Our system of self-government, as it is, fails to deliver such a republic. On the contrary, it structures and empowers an economy where over 85% of new income goes to the one percent.  Protecting and advancing the status quo doesn’t seem a reasonable choice — if the goal is “liberty and justice for all.” Protecting the status quo is a logical goal if the whole point is “to put our families, our children and our grandchildren in a position to succeed.”

I’d like to see political campaigns this year center on answering these questions:

  • What is the American Dream?
  • What Should Be The Role Of Government In Helping Citizens Achieve The American Dream?

 

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2 comments to What Should Be The Role Of Government In Helping Citizens Achieve The American Dream?

  • Chet Bauch

    Hi MIKE: Good commentary. I doubt whether the targeted Repub.’s have a clue as to what DeWine’s minions are espousing.
    Regards, CHET

  • Mike Bock

    Hi CHET,I thought this political literature was interesting as an example of Republican propaganda. It uses terms like “conservative values” and “American Dream” but offers no framework or specifics concerning Republican public policies. It is shocking that propaganda can be so effective that it gets individuals who rely on Medicaid and food stamps to vote Republican.

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