Sunday, August 10, 2008

Democratic Party Platform Approved

Keystone/Getty Images photo from the 1908 Denver Democratic Party Convention

Yes, I am hopelessly earnest, an optimist and still a romantic.

I believe that laying down our dreams, ideas, and principals on paper is an important step even if we consistently fall short from our ideals.

We need something to shoot for. We need to discuss and put forth our plans and decide as a party what we will work toward. We will not all be happy or agree all of the time, but we can decide on some common ground and goals. I have not read the approved platform yet, saw the highlights in the article linked to below and I am eager to read the whole thing.

And so, I was happy to read the news today that that platform has been finished. And I was also happy to see strong movement toward party unity though I wish it did not have to come so decisively through identity politics.

PITTSBURGH — Democrats adopted a party platform Saturday that attempted to appease Hillary Rodham Clinton supporters through strong language against sexism and a nod to her health care plan.

But the 51-page document, which sets out the party's basic stance on issues, reflects the priorities of Barack Obama, the presumptive nominee. From his call to draw down American forces in Iraq over 16 months to an energy plan that emphasizes less oil and more renewable energy sources, the platform calls for a major change in direction for the government.

Other highlights of the platform included a call to repeal the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, support for tying the minimum wage to inflation and new language addressing the use of federal lands.--


Though it calls for change, the platform harkens to a New Deal-era style of government, mentioning Franklin Roosevelt three times and calling for greater civic participation.

"Today, we pledge a return to core moral principles like stewardship, service to others, personal responsibility, shared sacrifice and a fair shot for all," the platform reads. "Today, we Democrats offer leaders — from the White House to the statehouse — worthy of this country's trust."

The biggest departure from 2004 was on the issue of the war in Iraq. The 2004 platform said "people of goodwill disagree about whether America should have gone to war in Iraq."

The 2008 platform, though, calls Iraq an "unnecessary war" and a "strategic blunder."By Tim Hoover, The Denver Post

There is a lot to like in the highlights I've read so far. It is, however, weak on particulars about how we are going to actually deliver healthcare, but does make a commitment to work toward a better system. Lots more to do in the real world. But writing ideas down and visualizing our goals does indeed often help make them a reality.

P.S. I also thought it was pretty cool that Obama kind of made an effort to crowd source the platform. read here.