I. Political Reform
A. Campaign finance
1. Under the current system, no matter how many times soft money is reformed and giving limits are set, things will not change unless drastic changes are made.
2. Populist USA wants a cap to be set for each party in regards to funding. The cap will be proportionally based on party performance from the last election. Once the cap is set, parties will be allowed to raise funds up to but not exceeding the capped level This will keep the parties from raising obscene amounts of money; it will insure that the rich guy does not always win.
B. Term limits
1. Congress is increasingly dominated by career politicians, people who have almost no chance of being defeated in reelection campaigns. As such, they lose a sense of accountability to the people and also distort the intents of the founding fathers. The founding fathers intended for congressmen to be citizen servants, serving short terms in Congress. Instead, Congress has become dominated by professionals.
2. Populist USA wants to set a limit of twelve years of service in each house of Congress. Hypothetically, a person could still serve a total of twenty-four years in Washington. In realistic terms, though, term limits will open up Washington. New blood will be flowing in to the Congressional system quite often, freeing up stagnant channels. Reform and reinvigoration may proceed.
C. Size of the House of Representatives
1. The size of the House has remained static at 435 members since the 1920's. In the seventy years which have elapsed since then, the population of the country has grown exponentially, yet Congress has stood still. The founding fathers envisioned one representative for every 8000 people; Congress now has one representative for every 600,000 people.
2. Populist USA wants the number of seats in the House to be doubled to 870. This measure should place America more in line with representation standards throughout the world, at around one representative for every 300,000 people.
II. Economic Issues
A. Tax cuts
1. The people of America are overtaxed. The tax burden is oppressive, reaching as high as 40% for some Americans. Such a tax rate is oppressive.
2. Populist USA believes hard working Americans should be able to keep more of their hard earned money. As such, Populist USA wants to flatten out tax rates at 20% for those not in danger of poverty. Such a tax rate is fair and will still raise plenty of revenue.
B. Balanced budget
1. Unless our nation is in a time of crisis, deficit spending is fiscally irresponsible.
2. Populist USA will fight for a balanced budget. Populist USA will only support deficit spending in cases of national crisis, whether economic or security-based. Any extra funds will be used to pay down our excessive national debt.
C. Economic system
1. The old Populist Party of the late 19th century could not be described as an all-together capitalist party. It stood for reforms, including some nationalization of industry, that would make most Americans blush.
2. Populist USA is committed to capitalism, in the form of our current American economy. Although not an entirely free market economy, it serves us well and has made America the most prosperous nation in all the world.
A. Farm subsidies
1. The average American farmer is in a struggle for existence. Corporate farms and foreign goods have made competition tougher than ever before. At the same time, the American farmer is being forgotten by Washington. Our farmers need our help.
2. Populist USA will fight for the maintenance of farm subsidies. Farmers in America lead a hard life, working long days with little reward, and they do it to feed their fellow Americans and in many cases, the entire world. We owe our farmers a lot, and subsidies are the least we can do.
B. Land control
1. Too often federal agencies, with little grasp of delicate local situations, make broad decisions which affect many farmers. In some states, farmers moved into unappealing lands at federal behest, only to have the federal government later divert water necessary for irrigation. Why? To save trout.
2. Populist USA will stop this from ever happening again. Populist USA wants our farmers to have the top priority when it comes to resource allocation. Any tough decisions similar to the water diversion one will be carefully addressed by people fully aware of the situation. No longer will a bureaucrat hundreds of miles away sign a paper and kill a farmer's fields without ever having talked to the farmer.
C. Genetically altered crops
1. Genetically altered crops are the future of farming and productivity. They will feed more people and make farmers more money.
2. Populist USA wants to start programs which will help farmers convert their crops to genetically altered ones if they so desire. Farmers will be taught new techniques as well.
IV. Social Issues
A. Social Security
1. Social Security is a program designed to aid our elderly, our retired work force. All Americans pay into it over the course of their careers and none should be deprived of its benefits.
2. Populist USA will prevent Washington from anymore quick fix solutions. Too often in recent years has the government raided Social Security funds to meet current needs. If this continues, millions of American workers will not have any Social Security to fall back on in old age.
B. Medicare and Medicaid
1. Many American rely on Medicare and Medicaid to help defray the excessive costs of health care. Without these programs, health care would become a dire problem for these Americans.
2. Populist USA will maintain Medicare and Medicaid. Populist USA will not seek a national health care system, as proposed by presidential hopeful Dick Gephardt. Such a system is unworkable in a large nation like America and in the end, inefficient. As such, it is necessary to maintain Medicare and Medicaid.
1. Many Americans go through rough times and turn to welfare in those times. Welfare has helped millions of people overcome extreme poverty. It is an important program. However, it is too often abused by people seeking to simply draw a check, which hurts the wallets of millions of hard working Americans.
2. Populist USA will keep welfare but at the same time, overhaul the system. All welfare recipients of working age will receive an income at least matching the poverty level. In return, these people, unless they maintain a full-time job in the private sector, will perform civic improvement projects for the nation. Anyone who refuses to work on these programs will lose all benefits.
1. Abortion is a plague in America. Millions of children are murdered every year, in the safety of their mother's womb. This practice of wholesale, disgusting murder must be stopped. The children being aborted may well be our next leaders, our next heroes, our next patriots.
2. Populist USA will see that all abortions will be banned immediately. The only exceptions to the ban will be cases in which the mother's health is in jeopardy, cases in which the mother has been raped, and cases of incest.
1. Homosexuality is something people can choose to express or suppress. For thousands of years, people did suppress any homosexual tendencies. However, in our society now, these practices have become more than accepted. Homosexuality is ruining American family values and helping to spread a plague of AIDS.
2. Populist USA will never allow any law to be passed which will prevent gay marriages; marriage is a sacred bond between man and woman. Populist USA will also prevent gays from receiving any special rights. Populist USA also believes anti-sodomy laws to be morally positive and legally justifiable.
G. The Arts
1. While many Americans live on park benches and go hungry every day, our government is giving millions of dollars to fund the arts. The needy cannot eat art; a painting will never fill a stomach.
2. Populist USA wants to cut all federal funding of the arts. All the funds saved will be redirected to fighting poverty and paying down our national debt.
V. National defense and security
A. Defense spending
1. Our armed forces are essential to our preeminence in the world as well as our own national security.
2. Populist USA will at the very least maintain defense spending at its current levels. Populist USA will not support mistakes like those made by President Bill Clinton, in slashing defense spending. Populist USA wants funding to be spent on modernizing and effectively training the military, not necessarily enlarging it.
1. Terrorism is the greatest enemy of the American people. Already, thousands have died; hundreds died at the hands of Timothy McVeigh in Oklahoma City, and thousands died at the hands of Osama Bin Laden in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania.
2. Populist USA will fight terrorism tooth and nail. All terrorists will be sentenced to the fullest extent of the law, with no cake sentencing. Terrorist networks will be broken up and their assets will be seized. Populist USA will also support using U.S. troops to fight terrorists in foreign lands if they pose an imminent threat to America.
A. Educational Planning
1. Public schools in America are at an absolute low. Suburban ones are performing well for the most part, but schools in inner cities or just large cities in general are in an absolute freefall.
2. Populist USA believes no child should be left behind by our education system. Funding shall be increased and more plans should be created for this funding. No longer will money just be thrown at the problem. Instead, Populist USA seeks concrete plans and commitments. National proficiency testing and curriculum reform are two of the important goals Populist USA seeks to insure that no child is left behind.
1. America's current reliance upon other nations for our energy is dangerous. Every barrel of oil bought from the Middle East may be a dollar given to terrorism.
2. Populist USA believes America needs to become energy independent. New forms of gasoline, including ethanol, should be encouraged. Also, high efficiency engines should be utilized in our automobiles. In the long run, hydrogen fuel and maybe even solar power will be important. In the short term, though, America must find some way to lower the need for oil and to solve the problem as it currently stands.