The Democratic Party’s Obituary

(Note: The following post is dedicated to the 140 Democrats in the House who voted for the bank bailout bill and those Democrats who agreed with them in the Senate.)

by Jeff Siegel

Friends and neighbors, we’re gathered here today to mourn the loss of a great institution, an organization that made the United States a better place to live. Yes, my friends, it’s time to say goodbye to the Democratic Party. Sadly, it passed over the weekend. As near as the doctors can tell, it choked to death on the Bush administration’s bank bailout plan. The party that has traditionally upheld the interests of working men and women tried to swallow all the campaign cash it had received from the financial industry, and it was just too much. Almost $25 million since 1992 — say it’s not so!

Oh, if only the party had not been quite so greedy, my friends. If only progressives like Barney Frank, faced with the choice of doing the right thing or doing Bush's dirty work, hadn't flinched. Did he really say: "If we defeat this bill today, it will be a very bad day for the financial sector of the American economy and the people who will feel the pain are not the top bankers and top corporate executives but average Americans." Oh Barney, we hardly knew ye!

Of course, my friends, the Democrats have been sickly for years, a shadow of their New Deal, Fair Deal and Civil Rights selves. First, there was the welfare reform act in the 1990s, and then the bankruptcy reform act a couple of years ago. We saw it coming, and we tried to warn them — get more exercise by walking the other way when the lobbyists came calling, eat better by turning down all those free dinners from the Washington fat cats.

But no, temptation stared them in the face and temptation won. Oh, the evils of the devils who live on K Street! Praise the Lord!

But what a legacy — battling the Depression, winning World War II, integrating the military, ending Jim Crow. And what a sad, pitiful way to go, too gluttonous, too insatiable, too ravenous in its appetite to realize it had betrayed the people who counted on it most.

Praise the Lord!

So rest in peace, Democratic Party. May you still live on earth in the acts of goodness you performed, and in the hearts of those who cherish your memory.

For other posts with similar sentiments, please see: "Note to Democratic Party: Drop Dead," and the series "Voting Your Conscience isn't Wasting Your Vote."

(Political graphic from Wrapped-in-the-Flag, a website that offers copyright-free political material.)

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