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New politics, patriotic capitalism

This is the first in a series of columns that will propose that progressive populist Democrats and conservative populist Republicans unite behind new economic policies that I will call patriotic capitalism.

The new political and economic paradigm of patriotic capitalism would break through our current political divides. It would create jobs and lower the deficit by incentivizing and rewarding the true innovators, job creators and American patriots who are workers who build the country, investors who finance the future, small-business leaders who create the jobs and inventors who imagine the future.

{mosads}Patriotic capitalism includes Holly Petraeus, the wife of Gen. David Petraeus and a champion of fair financial treatment of American troops and military families.

Patriotic capitalism includes new private-sector initiatives to dramatically increase credit to small businesses, support ventures that create new energy sources and conserve current energy use, and employ market strategies to raise capital to create jobs and rebuild America.

Mrs. Petraeus has now been named to play a major role with the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Implementation Team. She will direct the efforts to establish an Office of Servicemember Affairs, which will help those who serve the nation and their families at home receive fair treatment while they risk their lives for our country.

Liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans, the president and Congress can agree that those who wear the uniform of our country should never be dangerously distracted while they risk their lives, by abusive practices against them or their families.

In the search for civility and bipartisanship in Washington, let’s unite both parties behind this noble effort of Holly Petraeus. Let’s incentivize companies that best serve those who bravely serve us, and disincentivize those that seek to profit from abusive treatment of those who defend our flag.

In the coming weeks I will outline a series of specific proposals for a patriotic capitalism that would be embraced by a large majority of American voters.

I will renew my call for a Rebuild America Bond that would work like the U.S. Savings Bond and the War Bond of the 1940s to create jobs by attracting private capital to rebuild roads, bridges, schools and ports and address urgent national needs.

I will suggest a major program, working with private banks, to provide low interest capital to small businesses and consumers in families of American veterans, to create jobs and substantially lower the deficit.

A patriotic capitalist strategy would include a zero capital gains tax for investments in firms that create major new energy sources or promote substantial energy savings. Let’s free America from the chains of foreign oil, and protect Americans from the shackles of $5 per gallon gasoline that is inevitable and destructive unless bold action is taken.

A patriotic capitalist strategy would create a new political paradigm, a new economic strategy, a surge of jobs and a lower budget deficit. It would create the ground for some new alliances between left, right and center and a powerful platform for any Democrat or Republican running in 2012.

Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen and Bill Alexander, then chief deputy majority whip of the House. He holds an LL.M. degree in international financial law from the London School of Economics. He can be read on The Hill’s Pundits Blog and reached at


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