Thursday, March 10, 2005
Cross-posted from a diary on Kos. Regular readers of my blog might note that my style is a bit different when I'm writing for Kos ...

In the past two days, tunesmith has led a charge to unite right and left blogistan against the bankruptcy bill. See here and here. This movement has been picked up by the right, including various well-known right-of-center bloggers (see the diary and Politology for more info). And the media is now taking notice as well.

Moreover, as tunesmith noted in comments in his or her second diary, "We can talk about left vs right until we're blue (or red) in the face, but there are plenty of matters where it's simply the politicians versus the public, and the blogosphere is on the side of the public."

This is so true. Ever since the election, I have been thinking about how polarized we are and how politicians take advantage of this to press their own interests. I've been wondering whether there might be fundamental bedrock principles that everyone, lefty and righty, can agree on. Surely there are many. If we can find and establish these bedrock principles, then we can perhaps do a better job of advancing the interests of the public as opposed to the interests of elites and politicians.

I suggest that we [as in the DailyKos community] put together a document that expresses such values, and we ask our counterparts on the right to vet the document. If there's anything in there that they don't agree with, we take it out, no questions asked. If they want to add anything, they can, so long as we agree with it as well.

In the end, we should have a (perhaps short) political document that we could use to judge legislation and policy. Since we'll have to stay so basic to keep agreement across party lines, it would be clear that anything that conflicted with this bipartisan document would likely be very bad, and could be judged accordingly. This would provide bloggers and citizens with ammunition to take to the media that could help to shoot down policies (like the bankruptcy bill) that favor interest groups against the greater public good.

I'd like this to be a collaborative effort, but here's my start at getting us going. I will try to alternate between topics that the left might advance and the right might advance to keep the document as balanced as possible.I have invited the community at DailyKos to comment on this list and to add their own non-divisive statements. Link. If this takes off, I would plan to coordinate a final document and take this over to the right side of blogistan for their input. I'm also looking for suggestions for what we could call this document.
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