Friday, November 05, 2004

Historic Week in Review

I want to write about the search for truth, but that will have to wait. I begin with 'there is no truth, only perception', but it goes nowhere.

Instead, I'll give a quick wrap up to a week that possibly saw a massive change in our country and indeed, the world. We, America, re-elected George W. Bush to a second term as President of the United States. The significance of that action is difficult to grasp while in the middle of our everyday lives.

We have chosen a leader we like. We have chosen a man we feel we can trust, at least to be straight with us. We have chosen an aggressor. We have chosen a feeler rather than a thinker. At least that is the perception. Bush will be in office over the next four years, possibly bringing two or more democracies into the middle east. He will re-unite Europe as strong allies of ours in a fight to curb worldwide terrorism. He will open trade even further to push opportunities for our business to work within the world. He will re-write much of stale law that is past it's due. Social Security, Tax Code, Medicare/Medicaid, Small business Health Care, Tort Reform, and probably much more. He will appoint judges to many courts, including the Supreme Court.

We will be living with the Bush agenda for many many years to come. As history will decide whether invading Iraq was a wise decision, so too history will determine whether re-electing Bush was a wise decision.

We have also seen the setting foundation of the Republican party. Loaded with stars electable to the highest office, there is no comparable equivalent on the other side of the aisle. Republicans look to hold all three houses for long into the future. Unless....

Unless we screw it up. Unless we can't control spending. Unless we can't make peace in the middle east and ruin our source of oil. Unless we can't mend fences with Europe, China, Russia, and find ourselves on the outside of a world joined against our aggressive policies. Unless we lose our ability to tolerate, and our protection of civil liberties.

We shall see, history will tell, we've got work to do indeed.

The Hope for a Liberal America

I read Michael Moore's reaction to the election, and he actually makes a very good point.
55 million people voted for a very liberal senator. That is a huge number, and it shows just how compelling the liberal movement can be.

Is it possible to see how liberal ideals are actually the winner here in this election? I think so, here's how.
1. Kerry was an extreme liberal, and he got a hell of a lot of votes.
2. Just as Clinton was a moderate in his cutting capital gains tax and reforming welfare, Bush is a moderate with his No Child Left Behind and Medicare/Medicaid bills. Bush increased spending on social programs.
3. Reforming social security, healthcare and the tax code are progressive ideas, not conservative ones.
4. The next leaders of the republican party, McCain, Rudy G., G. Pataki, Ahnold, Powell, even Cheney are all social moderates on some issues, not conservatives.

The real loser isn't the progressives or liberals, it is the Democratic party. They've failed to be the champion of their own ideals, letting the republicans take it over. They've been forced even more left.

Don't let the gay marriage amendment or state bans fool you, none of the republican leaders I mentioned above would support a gay marriage amendment. Ahnold supported and funded embryonic stem cell research, and campaigned for Bush. Dick Cheney disagrees with his President on an amendment for gay marriage. The Democratic party is the loser, but you socially liberal and progressives, have hope. Your party is in power.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

And Back to Work We Go!

Okay, let's get back to work. Here are two different articles regarding reaction from the middle east on Bush's re-election. The first is from our friends in Lebanon, the second is a view from Japan. Check them both out and check the tone. We will be dealing with perception and media for the next four years and we must be vigilant in our investigation and presentation.

Our objective in fighting terror must be more than using our military. We must have an approach that includes politics and diplomacy. We must move forward quickly toward a Palestinian state. We must move quickly to setup Iraq independence. We must show we are not interested in imperialism.

When you want to fight crime in America, you need to have a strong legal system and strong police force. Those things, however, treat the symptoms, not the cause. Most would admit that the cause is poverty, which is why inner city poor neighborhoods breed crime. Once we promote prosperity, promote opportunity, show that there is hope and alternatives to crime, the crime rate goes down.

This must be accomplished in the middle east as well by promoting freedom, prosperity, personal property and wealth, and hope. Those things will grow and pull people out of the despair that fosters terrorism.

That's my take anyway. Congratulations to the President and all the election winners, now let's get to work!

The Election is Over

It was a long night for me and I'm quite tired.

Let me make a couple of quick points about what I saw as an everyday guy.

This was a very personal election, and you could see it in the election coverage. Chris Matthews was genuinely disappointed in the results as he was clearly pulling for Kerry. I can see in the faces and voices of the media just how this election affected everyone. Like a sporting event between two closely matched teams, we become emotionally invested, we root, we pull hard, we can't help but believe the positive and ignoring the negative.

I know you can see it in the faces of those you work with, go to school with, and live with. We are all tired and spent. Spend moments reflecting on how the NYTimes and CBS can become so corrupt by their hope and bias. They will rebound. We all will. It's over, and we can get back to the business of being a country again.

I think we need to prepare for the next 2 years (midterm elections) and 4 years with an aggressive agenda. We should see:
1. Social security reforms (partial privatization, change in benefits for those under a certain age)
2. Additional Medicare/Medicaid reforms (decreases in costs)
3. Health care reforms including HSAs and small business advantages (small business groups)
4. A new simplified tax code
5. An increase in environmental protection (yes, increase)
6. 2 new supreme court justices
7. Modification of embryonic stem cell research policy expanding it and increasing funding
8. Continued aggressive foreign policy, re-deployment of troops (out of Saudi Arabia?)
9. Creation of a Palestinian state
10. Federal voting standards

These are the first that come to mind. I'll be writing still, keeping tabs on our media and our politics and presenting, as always, the everyday joe's view of the world. Thanks for reading.