It’s startling and apparently newsworthy when a prominent Republican says something that doesn’t sound like a quote from Forrest Gump’s evil twin. As the keynote speaker at the Republican National Committee's winter meeting, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal chastised his party and its dismal performance in recent elections, saying, "We've got to stop being the stupid party. It's time for a new Republican Party that talks like adults. We had a number of Republicans damage the brand this year with offensive and bizarre comments. I'm here to say we've had enough of that."
Mmm, okay. Good luck with that.
Seriously Bobby, let me offer a simple observation: You will always be the stupid party as long as your party embraces stupid ideas. I’m afraid simply gagging the most obnoxious and outspoken Republican wingnuts isn’t going to quite do the trick. Just so you know I’m not merely a partisan hack, I am willing to offer you and your party some free advice that I believe will help you shed the, “I’m with stupid” vestments your party has worn since Lincoln…slept in Lincoln’s bedroom. Remember, don’t get discouraged. You have to start somewhere. Ready? Okay.
1. The Economy: Trickle down economics doesn’t work. Gross income disparity is a bad thing. Policies that hurt the middle class are bad for the economy. Americans want to keep social security, Medicare and Medicaid financially strong entities run by the government, not private enterprise.
2. Corporate America: Running the government and running a business are different. Government workplace regulations that protect workers are necessary. Unions have their place and should not be demonized. The private sector does not do everything better than government. It’s only right that corporations and billionaires pay their fair share of taxes.
3. War and Peace: It is not in our best interests to be the world’s police department. We need to spend less on our military and more on encouraging peace. We should stop being the world’s leading exporter of weapons. Supporting brutal dictators because we believe it is in our national interest is always a bad thing. Drone bombings, indefinite detention, torture—these actions do not win the hearts and minds of people in other countries.
4. Security: We should never give the American intelligence community carte blanche to spy on anyone at anytime. Fences don’t work. Suppressing legal dissent or treating protestors as terrorists is wrong.
5. Social Issues: America is not, and should never become, a theocracy. Christianity is not the national religion. Imposing your religious beliefs on others through public policy as a bad thing to do. More guns is not a viable solution. Health issues should be between a patient and doctor; the government should not be involved. The War on Drugs has been a colossal failure and should be ended.
6. Misc.: The world is not 6,000 years old. Religious beliefs should not trump science. Man-made climate change is real and should be immediately addressed. FOX News is not your friend.
Wow. That’s enough for now. I know your mind is reeling, Bobby, but if you really want your party to stop being considered “stupid,” this is your chance. Start spreading the news today. No need for thanks. Just know I’ve got your back.