Our Common Creed

We are commoners. We realize government is not of the people, by the people and for the people at the present time and we are committed to getting citizens back in the driver’s seat of our government.

We believe both major political parties are failing America. We don’t need three parties. We need at least one that truly works for the people.

We believe the biggest problem facing Wisconsin and all of America today is a political system that caters to a few at the expense of the many. At the root of this problem is political corruption that plagues us with “leaders” who are not free to lead and leaves our country paralyzed when it comes to dealing with the most challenging issues of our time.

We believe the way politicians seek public office — with fundraising that amounts to legal bribery and with advertising that is routinely misleading and often downright untruthful — is immoral and destructive to civic life. Power sought dishonorably cannot possibly lead to just and honest policymaking or clean and open government.

We believe in hard work and self sufficiency. We also believe in looking out for each other. We agree that it is wise to live within our means and pay for what we get today instead of mortgaging the future and saddling generations to come with our debts. We believe in a free market, not a market manipulated to favor the most politically privileged participants in our economy.

We believe in one-for-all economics — policies ensuring that the fruits of a vibrant economy benefit the whole of society. We are equally committed to rural revitalization and urban renewal. Instead of subsidizing global conglomerates, efforts to stimulate the economy should emphasize community-based small enterprise development, empower local entrepreneurs and cooperatives, and enable us to once again grow together rather than growing apart. We believe supply-side or “trickle down” economic theory has it wrong. Demand, not supply, is the primary driver of economic growth. Feed-the-rich policies have been a miserable failure, never producing more than a trickle for the masses and causing grotesque economic inequality and the slow but steady extermination of the middle class.

We believe government is necessary to a civil and just society and prosperous economy. But we insist on a limited government — one that is only as big as required to do what society needs done collectively. Government programs that work should be supported and ones that do not should be reformed or ended. Most importantly, what government does must serve the broad public interest and promote the common good, not just benefit those who lavishly fund election campaigns or have high-priced lobbyists advocating on their behalf.

We believe in one-for-all taxation. We see no need for new taxes, but insist that everyone pay the ones we already have. There should be one tax system that applies equally and fairly to all, not two as is effectively the case today — one for the wealthy and well-connected enabling them to avoid paying their fair share and another for the rest of us without the tax shelters and escape hatches.

We believe we are all in the same boat and will sink or sail together. We believe in waging war on poverty, not poor people. We believe it is everyone’s right to pursue material gain and accumulate wealth, but vigorously object to its use to buy government favors or special treatment.

We believe in aspiring to intelligence, not belittling it. Becoming well educated and learning to think critically should be valued and expected, not feared or obstructed. Education is our best hope for building a better and more prosperous future, and our best weapon against economic and social decline. For our nation’s youth to have a reasonable chance of experiencing the American Dream in the 21st Century, higher education needs to be made as accessible and affordable in the future as primary and secondary education have been in the past.

We believe in science. And we believe we all have a duty to respect nature and take care of the air, water and land. Environmental protection is not the enemy of economic development. A healthy economy and healthy planet must go hand in hand. We believe there are three bottom lines in business. A truly productive and successful company is one that is financially profitable, one whose workers and customers are treated justly and well, and one that is a responsible steward of natural resources.

We believe in the right of privacy and placing trust in individuals to make their own life choices and in families to serve as the moral backbone of our society. The limited government we insist on should not only be restrained in matters of the economy, it should be unintrusive with respect to our personal lives, morality and sexuality.

We believe in standing for and working to guarantee the basic human rights of all people regardless of race, gender, class, physical condition or sexual orientation, including all those enumerated in the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights and in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights approved by the United States of America and ratified by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948.