In my mind the decisive battle of World War II was D-Day and today is the 79th anniversary of the landing on the beaches of Normandy. Nazi Germany was trying to destroy democracy anywhere it existed on the globe certainly including in America. The Nazis wanted to replace democracy with right wing authoritarianism. The clearest threat to American democracy today is the American radical right wing which has largely taken over the Republican party. I think it’s most potent attack on democracy was thwarted last week. But we are far from out of the woods and I’d like to briefly explore that topic today.
It doesn’t take an ace political strategist to see that the forces of the extreme right were trying to make the reelection of Joe Biden an impossibility by taking down the American economy. Most American voters are ill informed and largely vote their pocketbooks. If the economy were to fall into a recession or worse and inflation were to skyrocket (including interest rates), in the minds of many voters Biden would have been to blame. Defaulting would have caused such an economic collapse and it would have advantaged the Republicans (or so the conventional political wisdom went anyway).
Despite the misgivings that many of us, (myself included), have about the deal that was struck it did avoid that disaster. In fact, except from the threat the Fed still poses the economy looks safe between here and the 2024 election. You might even call it the economic D-Day of 2023. The debt ceiling deal could be the battle that leads to the failure of the enemies of American democracy. Time will tell.
The war wasn’t over on D-Day in 1944 and the current threat to American democracy certainly didn’t end last week. What we have is the opportunity to defeat the forces of evil and it was enhanced (like D-Day, at great cost) last week.
There is still much work to be done and that includes getting the vote out next fall. We owe it to those who never made it back from their 1944 “trip to France”.
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