Medicare for All
A Modified and Enhanced Medicare for All, or a Single Payer System, will not only save lives, but will save Americans money. Any increase in taxes would be outweighed by eliminating the burden of the outrageous, ever growing insurance premiums currently being paid by individuals and business owners due to privately owned insurance companies profiting off of the American people and their health. Our health should not be up for sale, it should be a right as an American to obtain good health care.
Medicare for All is not a radical concept. 70% of all Americans (Democrats, Independents, Republicans, non-affiliated, or other) support Medicare for All. My Medicare for ALL policy would include:
- Restoring/Protecting Preexisting Conditions Coverage
- Covering Medical, Mental, Dental, Vision and Addiction Treatment
- Focusing on Prevention and Quality of Care
- Incorporating holistic treatments when and where they are proven to work
- Not raising taxes on any individual making $200,000 or less per year.
Energy Independence & a Vibrant New Economy
We should be investing in our People and our Planet via a Green New Deal. Renewable Energy and good jobs/economy are not mutually exclusive. Quite the opposite. Renewable Energy infrastructure build-out and maintenance will create an abundance of new and sustainable jobs. It is good for the economy. Renewable Energy is already becoming cheaper than, and creating more jobs than, traditional Fossil Fuel Energy. Not to mention the added economic and security benefits the United States will garner from being energy independent. My plan is to:
- Be 100% renewable by 2035
- Create good jobs and a vibrant new economy via renewable energy infrastructure build-out and maintenance
- Have Solar on every roof
- Have no new pipelines
- Invest in re-training energy workers displaced by renewable energy sources
- Take no money from Oil Companies
Strengthen our Democracy
The United States of America is at a crossroads. We are in a battle to save our Republic (Democracy). We must act to give more power to the people and less power to special interests and super rich corporations who currently own our government and thus our country. My plan is to:
- Get Big, Corporate money out of Politics - Repeal Citizens United
- Nullify the Electoral College via the National Popular Vote Initiative
- Reinstate and strengthen Voter Rights Laws
- Outlaw Gerrymandering
- Install National Auto-Register
- Create a National Holiday for voting
- Install National Vote by Mail
- Install Term Limits
- Abolish the Filibuster
- Work towards Public Funding of Elections
- Work towards basing our number of Senators on population
- Work towards ranked voting
- Work towards making other parties viable in our country
Invest in our Future through Infrastructure
The answer to our economic problems are not really that hard. We know what they are, we just have to have the political will to make them happen.
We know that every $1 we invest in infrastructure results in approximately $2 in economic growth. Do we have to wonder why the only presidents in the last couple decades to decrease the yearly operating deficit of our government have been Democrats? If we invest in our own people via infrastructure, we grow our economy, create good jobs for all, and add to our physical security as a nation. My goal is to repair and invest in:
- Roads & Bridges
- Water & Sewer
- Power Grid
- High Speed Mass Transit
- High Speed Internet across the nation
Invest in Eastern Oregon
We should invest in areas like Eastern Oregon (and others across our state and the country) that have been affected by changing times. Whether it be a change in the rate and methods of timber harvesting, or communities affected by the change and rate in our coal/gas/oil consumption, we should be building renewable energy farms and factories in those areas. People deserve the dignity of work and the same training that we offer to the young should be afforded to workers of waning industries, no matter their age.
Invest in our Future through Education for All
Investing in education will allow us to flourish economically as a nation. Through education we can remain at the forefront of technology and innovation, which is the key to keeping our country safe and secure. My plan is to create:
- Free State College
- Free Trade school
- Free New Business Training
- Free re-training for those displaced by changing times (such as oil workers, mill workers and loggers, just to name a few)
Strengthen Social Security
Currently if a person makes over $200,000, the individual doesn't have to pay SS taxes on amounts earned over $200,000. I say that we lift the cap on income over $200,000 so that everyone pays the same percentage.
There, was that so hard?
We should also work towards expanding minimum coverage and scope of Social Security. As automation takes hold more and more, we as a society can afford to retire at earlier ages. We should re-evaluate a reasonable age of retirement. We should also make sure that the minimum amounts paid out for retirement are adequate to meet basic needs. Our elderly deserve the right to retire in dignity.
Workers Bill of Rights
Whether we are talking about fast-food workers, retail clerks, or otherwise, all forty-hour workers should be able to provide for the basic need of their families.
- Initiate $15 National Minimum Wage (with automatic increases tied to inflation).
- Create Free Child Care.
- Ensure Equal Pay for Equal Work.
- Create Paid Family Leave
- Strengthen non-discrimination laws in regards to hiring and firing.
- Support Unions and Worker's Rights to Bargain.
- Eliminate "Right to Work" laws.
- Eliminate tipping. Workers should be able to rely upon their employer for an adequate and steady salary.
- Raise the Earned Income Credit up to $500 per month for working-class families, and allow families to collect monthly.
- In order to combat automation's impact on jobs, we should consider shortening the work week to 32 hours with a correlating increase in minimum wage to $20 an hour.
Restore Competition to our Economy
When a few companies dominate a given industry we no longer have true competition, and without competition we do not really have freedom of choice or a free market. We must reinstate and enforce Anti-Trust Laws.
Companies like Amazon pride themselves on eliminating competition by controlling markets through predatory actions. For example, Amazon is so large that they can afford to sell an item below cost until their competition goes out of business due to the lack of ability to compete in price. You may think that is a benefit to the consumer, but once the small business shuts their doors, Amazon then raises their price to whatever they want because they have eliminated the need to compete on price.
We have to do what we have done in our past when corporations get too big and powerful. We have to split them up.
I would start with Amazon, Google and Facebook. But, we also need to split up the too-big-to-fail banks and many other corporations that are robbing our economy of competition and thus robbing us of choice.
Can't Shut Down the Government Bill
Shutting down our government makes no sense. It is detrimental to the individual employees living paycheck to paycheck. It weakens our economy and it puts our country at risk to terrorist and other criminals who may take advantage of weakly funded law enforcement and emergency agencies.
It is not fair. It is not safe. It costs our economy money. And, it should be illegal.
I propose that we pass a law that simply reinstates the most recent budget until a new one is approved.
As an incentive for Congress and the president to agree on a new budget, their salaries will be cut in half until a new budget is agreed upon.
Small Business Investment Bill
Did you know that the legal definition of small business can include companies with up to 1,500 employees and/or revenues of up to 31 million dollars? We need to actually help true small businesses. Today's market does not allow for the average person to enter into the market in most established industries, and even when the "mom and pop" help to establish an industry, they are almost always flushed out once the industry is established and scale is achieved. It becomes a race to consolidation, which does not promote or reward competition, but kills it. When competition is dead, we the consumer truly lose options. Companies can do what they want with little care for what the consumer wants because they have Monopoly or Duopoly in the given industry.
So, let's help the truly small business with grants and incentives that encourage new ideas and competition.
Comprehensive Immigration Reform
- Stop mass deportation and immediately close the Trump Concentration Camps and the illegal, wholesale policy of separating children from their parents
- Reinstate DACA and make it irreversible. Everyone knows it is the right thing to do - AND- that we should not be going back on promises we make as a nation.
- Create a Path to Citizenship for those here now
- Deport Felons
- Enact e-verify so that employers can identify those without proper papers
- Properly fund the expedited processing of those requesting asylum, as required by International Law
- Increase legal immigration numbers so that we legally have the healthy number of new immigrants, whom we welcome to help build and grow our economy
- Properly fund the expedited processing of legal immigration requests
- Fund Border security
- Eliminate ICE and bring border security more in line with our morals as a country based on the rule of law
Make Private Prisons Illegal
We should not be profiting off of imprisoning our people. As long as people can make more money by creating more prisoners, there will be a motivation to create laws that imprison more people, and not necessarily for just reasons that benefit society as a whole. This is evident in the fact that America currently has the highest rate of its people behind bars.
Increase Corporate Responsibilities
The current credo we hear over and over again when corporations are destroying our lands or treating its employees or customers wrong, is that their sole responsibility lies with their shareholders profit. We need to expand corporate duties. No longer can corporation's sole focus be on profitability. We must create a Corporate Oath to do no harm to Society as a whole and our earth/environment which gives us life.
Gun Safety NOW!
America is having an epidemic of mass shootings. We must take common sense action to make our children a little safer. If government has one duty, it is to do what we can to make our children safer.
- Expand Background Checks - Close the Gun Show Loophole. Polls show over 90% of Americans support for expanded background checks. Why will Congress and the President not act? Could it be NRA money causing them to go against the wishes of their constituents?
- Reinstate the assault Weapons Ban. It worked. Polls show that over 60% of Americans support the ban on these weapons that are designed for the single purpose of killing a lot of people, fast.
- I will take no money from the NRA.
The War & Peace Doctrine
We have to re-asses our use of military force. Much of our use of force causes undue suffering around the world and for our own service people. My War & Peace Doctrine would include these principles:
- Pull out of our current forever war.
- Use diplomacy first.
- Strengthen our relationship with NATO and the UN.
- No Nation Building.
- Focus on empowering the people of countries in need through funding resources like clean water, food and education.
- When use of force is necessary, use surgical attacks avoiding civilian casualties if at all possible.
- Properly take care of our veterans. Our current level of homelessness and people in need among our veterans is unacceptable.
We have to stop putting people in need on a bus and shipping them off to another community. We are the UNITED States of America.
Most homeless are either temporarily down on their luck, military veterans and/or mentally or physically ill. It is our moral duty to help.
Many of the financial plans I offer up on this page will benefit the homeless, as will Medicare for All with treatment for the mentally ill and the drug addicted. But, we can go beyond that with funding for low income housing and regulations and subsidies to keep rental prices low.
As with many issues, investing in our homeless is not only the right thing to do, but will pay dividends in economic growth. When people have a home and mental and medical help, they can have better life and contribute to society. Everyone in society benefits from this plan.
Nationally Legalize Marijuana
It is time to legalize and regulate Marijuana and Hemp, much like we do alcohol. There are so many health benefits to be gained that it would be silly not to. Proper study, administration and education would come through legalization.
I would also release anyone in jail or prison based solely on Marijuana use.
Drug addiction is an epidemic. History has shown that the "war on drugs" does not work! We must prioritize education and treatment. We need to provide state of the art treatment centers free of charge. Investing in the treatment of our addicted will lower crime, lesson homelessness and add to our economic growth as the recovering re-integrate back into society. Everyone in society benefits from helping others' with drug addiction.
There is work to be done! My job is to support the movement, promote the cause, and work tirelessly to get equal rights laws passed.
- Fully fund Women's Health Care without exclusions/exceptions.
- Protect a women's right to choose.
- See Workers Bill of Rights section for more.
African American's Rights
First and foremost, I must listen to the needs of the African American community and do my best to fill those needs through legislation.
I do know that one of the first steps in solving any problem is to acknowledge the problem. Institutionalized Racism, for example, is deeply rooted in our country. We have been digging at that root, although loosened, it holds strong. This is a huge subject with boundless issues to tackle. I hope you will find that many of my other proposals will work to specifically lift those who have traditionally been left behind by our society.
Slavery, Jim Crow and Segregation and Systemic Racism can never be completely atoned for. But, I would like to specifically start a conversation about how we continue our work towards equality in our system, and that includes investing in African American communities. Without proper resources it is disproportionately harder for communities which have been systematically and generationally disadvantaged to dig themselves out of the hole that they have often been put in through no fault of their own. We should infuse African American communities with resources such as:
- Top notch education and vocational training for children and adults alike.
- Renovated neighborhoods.
- New and existing business grants.
- Installation of Renewable Energy Factories (solar panels, etc.,) in prominently African American areas.
Native American Rights
Again, First and foremost, I must listen to the needs of the Native American community and do my best to fill those needs through legislation.
Although I do know that nothing can change the past, one thing we can do, and must do, is to act now, in serious ways to, at a minimum, live up to our word as a nation. What are we if we cannot do that? A few places to start are:
- Honor our treaties in future matters of land rights, etc.
- Ban New Pipelines though Indigenous lands.
- Start a serious conversation about how we can rectify past treaty violations and return lands stolen by our past governing bodies in violation of those treaties.
Stand with Puerto Rico and Flint
When one of us suffers, we all suffer. I will call for immediate action in Puerto Rico and Flint, Michigan.
We should give Puerto Rico the aid that they need and deserve to rebuild their community.
I also support immediate action on statehood for Puerto Rico.
We should take immediate action to rebuild a healthy water source for Flint. The poisoning of our citizens should be considered a national emergency, and the fact that it is not resolved by now is truly a disgrace to our country.
Protect National Parks
The current president is stealing our collective land as we speak. I suggest that the destruction of our national parks land shall require a 2/3 vote of congress, as well as the president signing off on it, from here forward.
How I will pay for it
- Close corporate tax loopholes that allow some of the most profitable and powerful corporations to pay zero taxes while they take home record profits and pay their CEOs exorbitant amounts of money.
- Raise the income tax on incomes over 10 million dollars to 70%. Since our national income taxes are marginal, that means only dollars earned over 10 million will be taxed at 70%. Any amounts earned under 10 million will be taxed at the other, lower tax brackets as appropriate. This tax hike is supported by the majority of the American public and is actually lower than our top tax bracket percentages during the 1940's and 50's, which were as high as 94%...and notably were at those rates during some of our best times of economic growth.
How we will Win
Honest, Bold Leadership will win. Not political calculus and moral cowardice.
Old-school politics looks to the middle, undecided voter. Today there are less and less of those voters. Voters are polarized. But, there are almost unlimited "non-voters." Many of them want to vote, but are not inspired by cowardice and political calculus, so they stay home.
We also have to remember that a large majority of people (in all parties), believe in things like Medicare for ALL, expanded background checks for firearms, and aggressively combating Climate Change. By softening our views and our language when speaking about the "progressive" ideals (that most people agree with) we give people reason to doubt our motives and our resolve.
By being bold and honest we win the support of those in the middle who actually agree with us on so many of the issues, and most importantly, give the non-voter a reason to take part in saving our troubled democracy.
There are times in history (and in life) when we need to set political considerations aside and say (and do) what is right.
We do not have to (and cannot afford to) wait any longer. Trump has proven himself to be corrupt and unfit to lead a country. Impeachable acts have been committed in front of our eyes. Here are a few of the most obvious examples:
- Trump asked Russia (a hostile enemy of our country) to illegally obtain and share Hillary Clinton's emails, for his own personal gain, in order to win the office of president of the United States of America. A day later, Russia did as Trump asked. Trump was not legitimately elected to office.
- Trump was accused of physically, sexually assaulting women by grabbing their genitals without invitation. He then confessed on tape to committing that very crime as a habit.
- Trump is in violation of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution of the United States of America. He did not divest from his For-Profit companies as the Constitution calls for.
- Trump also confessed to the crime of Obstruction of Justice on National Television when he admitted to firing Comey because he wanted the investigation into his actions to end.
- The Mueller Report outlined numerous instances of Obstruction of Justice.
- Trump (by his own words) clearly tried to leverage the American people's money and his power as president to meet with a foreign leader to get Ukraine to investigate his political rival for his personal gain.
STOP the FIRES
The Pacific Northwest (and Southern and Eastern Oregon specifically) have suffered an unprecedented increase in wild fires and smoke. We cannot live like this. Although we will never stop all fires or smoke, we must make it a priority to get back to some level of balance with nature. We must:
- Acknowledge that Climate Change has played a part in hotter/dryer weather which leads to (and increases size and scope of) wild fires.
- Increase our number of Fire Jumpers to previous levels. These brave people can be an effective tool in fire management.
- Better manage our forests through surgical harvesting of our timber. This means harvesting in a manner that leaves the natural habitat off in a better place by clearing low lying fuel and thinning trees, but leaving a beautiful forested landscape behind.
For people with disabilities
We need to strengthen:
- Anti-discrimination laws
- Access to therapy/treatment
- Access to special training/education
- Physical access to public spaces
- Public education promoting better understanding