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Author Topic: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread  (Read 56123 times)
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #225 on: October 15, 2004, 01:10:20 pm »

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Environmental terrorist?  Okay.  So you want the economy to tank more by putting in so many restrictions that they're unprofitable.  Oh, and that life filled tundra up in Alaska where the oil is.  Wait...  What life?  IT IS BARREN.


I really do hate misusing "terrorist" this way and wish that poster hadn't done it. A "terrorist" is someone who, literally, causes violence or destruction to terrorize people -- to scare people into following an agenda rather than directly advancing that agenda.

So no, Bush isn't a terrorist against the environment. He doesn't need to be, since he directly controls policies that harm the environment.

While I, being an econ major, am willing to make compromises over the state of the environment for the good of the human economy, you seem to be implying that making a profit and boosting the economy is always preferable to economic regulation, no matter how drastic the deregulation (and Bush's changes have been pretty darn drastic). For what it's worth, the problems with our economy are caused by politics, by tax problems and legal snafus, by passing trends in people's waning and waxing consumer confidence and willingness to hire and whatnot. The business cycle, constant fluctuations in people's ability to provide supply and express demand.

The actual resources in the environment, however, don't fluctuate. They're there or they're not there; use them up, pollute them or destroy them and they're gone. There is a real argument against spending down from a fixed fund that we'll never replenish or only replenish after a long time -- our environment -- to ease the transition through the bad period of a cycle that will pass anyway if we give it enough time.

And by the way, you really are an idiot by referring to Alaska as "barren wasteland". The part of Alaska that the wildlife preserve is in is actually the richest part of America there is when it comes to exotic animals and wildlife -- it's been called "America's Serengeti", and it's the whole *reason* Congress decided to put such a big honking wildlife preserve there in the first place (no, they don't just create them for fun). It'd be different if we were talking about the ice-covered parts of northern Alaska rather than the forests and grasslands of the southeast (Alaska's a huge state, you know), but, hey, we're already drilling there.

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He wants to shrink the preserve a little.  So what?  I'd much rather have cheaper gas than preserve wasteland.


That oil would last us a month at worst, six months at best. And then the equipment would stay there, killing off vegetation and starving the caribou, destroying the tourist trade for generations after the oil had run out (if the impact on the human economy is all you care about).

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The lesser of the two evils IS Bush.  Kerry just says what he thinks the far left wants to hear.  He hides his own objectives and is a habitual liar.  The draft for example.  That is a DEMOCRATIC proposal that the Republicans, and the President especially, is against.  Expect to be drafted if Kerry wins.


Has Kerry tried to push his views to the left to get votes? I agree he probably has. But has Bush pushed his views to the *right* to get votes? Abso-fucking-posi-lutely. We're talking about a president who only ever takes advice from the same five or six people, most of whom worked for his dad. He's changed his own stated views on foreign policy -- not thinking America should be the global policeman to suddenly taking actions right out of the Project for a New American Century's playbook, right down to the country they recommended for a pre-emptive invasion to establish democracy in the Middle East. He used to want to push for a middle-class tax cut -- Karl Rove, whose only damn job as a party publicist ought to be airing ads, actually yelled at himi to "Stick to principle" and forced him to recenter his tax cuts on the wealthy. Why did John Iulio quit the faith-based initiatives project that was initially his baby? Because in the Bush White House, there's "no policy arm -- everything is dictated by the political arm". It's all about being right-wing and getting right-wing voters; no deviation from right-wing rhetoric allowed.

And no, neither candidate said a damn thing about the draft. For God's sakes, the draft is not going to happen, especially not by a Democratic president in his first term going up for reelection -- whether you think the Congress Democrats want it or not, the Democrat voter base would scream bloody murder (these are the people who went to anti-war protests and are voting for Kerry holding their noses shut, remember). I've never said Bush wanted a draft, and I'm still sure he doesn't -- in fact he's been so friggin' determined to make this war a light load on the American people and not disturb American prosperity because of it that he let Rumsfeld set us up for a quagmire in Iraq by sending as few troops as possible in the initial invasion (not a smart idea). Yes, Kerry wants to create new divisions (which, honestly, we need; we're stretched damn thin right now with the "backdoor draft" of reserves going full tilt) and I think it'll be hard to staff two full divisions with volunteers, but a draft's not a politically viable option for anyone.

By the way, yes, the bill for a draft was introduced in the House by a Democrat from New York last year, primarily to force the Republicans to side for or against it so that the Democrats could campaign against them that way. The Republicans trapped it in debate and only allowed it to be voted on in order to make it clear that they *were* against a draft. Yes, two Dems voted for it -- and all 402 other Democrats and Republicans in the House overwhelmingly voted against it. So both parties can shut up and stop waving the draft in people's faces to scare young voters.

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Kerry lies on his own record constantly.  He is the most liberal Senator in the Senate!  How do you have the gall to claim he's not biased?  Everything he does is biased.  At least Bush TRIES to give the people what they want.


Wait, why are liberals biased and conservatives not? Liberals are liberals because they believe what they believe is right, and good for people; conservatives are conservatives for the same reason. If you're one of those annoying conservatives who thinks that 90% of the country is actually conservative and the country only seems liberal because of the evil media and liberal government officials, you're far enough removed from reality there's no point talking to you. The country is split 50-50 between Kerry and Bush right now, so that's a good sign that at least half the people don't think Bush  *is* trying to give them what they want. I can tell you right now that Bush never tried to give me a lot of what I want, and I'm one of "the people".

And for what it's worth (though I don't think it's totally relevant) there's evidence that Bush actually doesn't listen to opinion polls that much, and has pretty much stuck with his same advisors even when public opinion has been burning strongly against his actions -- notice that his originally soaring approval ratings plunged several times throughout the course of the Iraq war, and he never responded by changing policy direction or changing advisors even when it was *obvious* that, say, in the wake of Abu Ghraib he could've saved himself by letting Rumsfeld go. There are *reasons* he went from 95% approval to 41%.

Also, Kerry being the "most liberal Senator in the Senate" is a reference to a study the National Journal did on his voting record *this year*, not over his whole career (and while he has been very liberal in the past, winning that award three other years, there have been years he's raised Democrat hackles by backing Republican-sponsored bills, especially on things like deficit reduction -- if you'll remember, he also pissed hard-left Dems off by voting to authorize Bush to go to war (as did most people at that time -- hell, I was sort of in favor of the war before I learned how much distortion the president had packed into his presentations in favor of it). In any case, if you do a similar study on Bush, he's by far the most conservative president we've had in a helluva long time -- definitely more than his dad, probably more than Reagan, and you have to go back to Coolidge to find someone who can compete with him before that.

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Kerry would only be a good President to a person who wants to government to control every aspect of the country.  *glances at all the horridly run government businesses*  Sorry, I'd rather keep my doctor as an independant.


If you'd been paying attention, you'd know Kerry was only talking about making available a government-funded opt-in HMO, not government seizure of all private-sector hospitals and health services and integration into a single-payer health-care system (which I would actually be in favor of, given that every other First World nation has one). Even though this won't eliminate the horrendous levels of bureaucratic overhead caused by competition between HMOs -- our health care system is *terrible* compared to the rest of the world's in terms of administrative efficiency and actually getting people served, whatever you think of the fancy-pants medical technology we can afford that they can't -- it'll at least get people treatment who need to be treated, rather than having deathly sick people dying in the streets (do you know how many people are wandering America uninsured right now? 41 million plus.)

Other than with that health care thing, Kerry's not really much for nationalizing anything. (Regulation is not the same as nationalizing industries, and our industry became world-dominating *after* we got strong regulation bureaus like the FDA, not before.) Yes, he's for not privatizing Social Security, but that's an argument for the status quo, that, despite its problems, nonetheless seems to be doing better for us than what's happened in countries like Chile where privatization tanked and put retirees in the poorhouse. (And that's not bringing up how we'd *pay* for privatization -- where's the money going to come from to pay for this generation of retirees who we promised checks to, when this generation's taxpayers aren't subsidizing them anymore but putting their payrollt axes in private accounts?)
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #226 on: October 15, 2004, 03:54:56 pm »

Everything made perfect sense to me right up until you said this:

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In any case, if you do a similar study on Bush, he's by far the most conservative president we've had in a helluva long time -- definitely more than his dad, probably more than Reagan, and you have to go back to Coolidge to find someone who can compete with him before that.

I think it might be a good idea to digress for a moment and define terms; namely "Liberal" vs. "Conservative".  Wikipedia has some excellent articles on the nature of the terms, but they are a bit lengthy and do not seem to address vernacular usage (although they are a fascinating read to anyone of a slightly wonkish persuasion).

In service of my point, the current administration has advocated:
  • Fiscal irresponsibility (via massive deficit spending)
  • The establishment of huge government bureaucracy (Department of Homeland Security)
  • Lifting constitutional restrictions that would safeguard individual liberties (the effective elimination of 4th amendment search and seizure restrictions via the USA PATRIOT Act)[/i]
  • Unprecendented levels of Federal government control over state affairs (via the DHS)
  • Altering the U.S. Constitution to specifically deny rights to people (Gay Marriage Amendment)
That reads to me like a stereotypical "liberal's" wet dream wish-list, yet modern "conservatives" love this stuff, ostensibly because it's "their team" scoring all the points.  Or have I missed out, and "conservative" is merely a latter-day codeword for "evangelical christian", much like "welfare mother" was a codeword for "african-american" (or, more accurately in my opinion, "filthy nigger") in the 1990s?  I'm quite willing to believe that, as the labels don't make any objective sense to me anymore using their classical definitions.

What are, say, the three core beliefs that make someone a "conservative", and conversely, what makes someone a "liberal"?  And, if your beliefs put you at odds with the presidential candiates stated and/or demonstrated policies, what is it that's keeping you from "jumping sides" and voting for the other guy?  Hmm, perhaps this merits its own topic.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #227 on: October 16, 2004, 04:51:41 am »

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Yes, I would honestly expect Bush to at least be able to drop the gas prices down to nice friendly level what with all the environment stomping and Middle East war mongering.

Right...  So you want to actually drop the enviromental standards and build more refinaries?  THAT is what is needed to lower the price.  Environmentalists blocking their construction and modernization are directly responsible for the rising gas/oil prices.  Good job.

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Expect another irrelevant war or two if Bush wins, forcing a draft.

Just like all of Clinton's wars caused a draft.  Wait...  They didn't.  And our troops are still there.  Where are the Democrats bitching about the wars Clinton got involved in.  Including the little fact that a certain Democratic General tried to get US troops to attack Russian paratroopers at a Serbian airport, which could have very well forced a war with Russia.

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Howard Dean and Ted Kennedy are less liberal than Kerry? Even with the little I know about the other two, I doubt it.
His record proves otherwise.  But you're right.  How can you tell as he changes positions biweekly?

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That oil would last us a month at worst, six months at best. And then the equipment would stay there, killing off vegetation and starving the caribou, destroying the tourist trade for generations after the oil had run out (if the impact on the human economy is all you care about).

Where they want to drill is near the far north of Alaska.  There are VERY few things living there.  It's tundra.  I doubt many tourists head that far up.  You also don't know exactly how much oil's hidden up there.  How about drilling and truly finding out? Smiley

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In an extremely biased way, you have stated the difference between liberal and conservative. Bush isn't a true conservative. Sure he taxes like one, but he spends like a democrat. Who's going to get rid of the huge deficit he made doing that? Him? The next asshole neo-con in line? I doubt it.

And with all the spending that Kerry's planning?  He certainly won't help it.  Unless you count the large tax increases he'll enact to counteract his spending, crippling the economy.

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And by the way, you really are an idiot by referring to Alaska as "barren wasteland"

Nice to resort to name calling.  However, where they want to drill is pretty damn barren.  While the reserve does cover a large part of very rich land, that's not where they want to drill.

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And no, neither candidate said a damn thing about the draft. For God's sakes, the draft is not going to happen

Tell that to the Kerry-Edwards campaign.

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Wait, why are liberals biased and conservatives not?

When did I say that?

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If you'd been paying attention, you'd know Kerry was only talking about making available a government-funded opt-in HMO, not government seizure of all private-sector hospitals and health services and integration into a single-payer health-care system (which I would actually be in favor of, given that every other First World nation has one). Even though this won't eliminate the horrendous levels of bureaucratic overhead caused by competition between HMOs -- our health care system is *terrible* compared to the rest of the world's in terms of administrative efficiency and actually getting people served, whatever you think of the fancy-pants medical technology we can afford that they can't -- it'll at least get people treatment who need to be treated, rather than having deathly sick people dying in the streets (do you know how many people are wandering America uninsured right now? 41 million plus.)

Why would you be in favor of it?  The burecratic nonsense is WORSE in those countries.  In many Western nations, it can take weeks or even months to get to see a doctor!  I know Canadians who come to the US to see doctors and go back home to buy the damned drugs.

Now for the list:

   * Fiscal irresponsibility (via massive deficit spending) [Which virtually every President has done since FDR]
   * The establishment of huge government bureaucracy (Department of Homeland Security) [Which is an attempt to STREAMLINE the current government bodies]
   * Lifting constitutional restrictions that would safeguard individual liberties (the effective elimination of 4th amendment search and seizure restrictions via the USA PATRIOT Act)[/i] [State of war changes many things.  Look at the American concentration...  Sorry.  Detainment camps during WW2]
   * Unprecendented levels of Federal government control over state affairs (via the DHS) [Like what Lincoln, a liberal, was doing during the Civil War?  Arresting entire ELECTED legislative bodies so they  couldn't oppose the Union?]
   * Altering the U.S. Constitution to specifically deny rights to people (Gay Marriage Amendment) [Protecting tradition.  A very conservative thing to do]
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #228 on: October 16, 2004, 06:57:12 am »

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Right...  So you want to actually drop the enviromental standards and build more refinaries?  THAT is what is needed to lower the price.  Environmentalists blocking their construction and modernization are directly responsible for the rising gas/oil prices.  Good job.


Um, no. Even by the most generous estimates the ANWR oil is very small potatoes. The real big sources of oil are and continue to be overseas Middle East oil and even ANWR oil won't really allow us to compete with them. So the *primary* reason for oil prices still being high is politics -- OPEC's desire to maintain their power, plus the inefficiencies of the oil industry in actual oil-rich non-OPEC countries outside the US like Venezuela, and our general slowness to do anything about the political messes in Africa that keep us from getting the oil there (which would be the surest way of hitting back at OPEC).

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Just like all of Clinton's wars caused a draft.  Wait...  They didn't.  And our troops are still there.  Where are the Democrats bitching about the wars Clinton got involved in.  Including the little fact that a certain Democratic General tried to get US troops to attack Russian paratroopers at a Serbian airport, which could have very well forced a war with Russia.


Generals, unlike presidents, are not elected and are therefore outside the control of the party apparatus, so whether a general calls himself a Democrat or Republican isn't that relevant to their decisions. Especially when you're talking about something that is clearly an individual stupid mistake and not a matter of Democratic Party policy.

And FWIW, I join you in repudiating the conspiracy theories that say Bush will launch a draft. That said, the war in Iraq is *immensely* more draining on our armed forces than the war in Kosovo was; we've had an intense occupation of a good-size small country against an organized insurgency that's actually got fortified positions in two whole cities now. Huge number of reserves are in, 9 out of 10 of the active-duty divisions have been called up -- compare that to Kosovo, where all the true military action was air-based and following that we merely contributed to a UN peacekeeping mission in a tiny province. Just count the number dead in each war and you'll see there's a massive difference of scale.

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Howard Dean and Ted Kennedy are less liberal than Kerry? Even with the little I know about the other two, I doubt it.
His record proves otherwise.  But you're right.  How can you tell as he changes positions biweekly?


You know, this is the weird thing about the Republican campaign. First they've accused Kerry of being a flip-flopper and constantly shifting his positions from left to right as the wind blows. Now they're nailing him for being *consistent*, for being, by their analysis, so amazingly and incredibly consistent that he's the pillar of the left wing in the Senate. You really can't have it both ways.

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That oil would last us a month at worst, six months at best. And then the equipment would stay there, killing off vegetation and starving the caribou, destroying the tourist trade for generations after the oil had run out (if the impact on the human economy is all you care about).

Where they want to drill is near the far north of Alaska.  There are VERY few things living there.  It's tundra.  I doubt many tourists head that far up.  You also don't know exactly how much oil's hidden up there.  How about drilling and truly finding out? Smiley


Is it okay for me to gig up your backyard for treasure as long as I confine it to the corner that no one walks through? You won't notice all my digging equipment or the huge amount of dirt I rip up or the exhaust my machines blast into the air, I promise. And even if all the experts say there's no gold there, you never know unless you try.

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In an extremely biased way, you have stated the difference between liberal and conservative. Bush isn't a true conservative. Sure he taxes like one, but he spends like a democrat. Who's going to get rid of the huge deficit he made doing that? Him? The next asshole neo-con in line? I doubt it.

And with all the spending that Kerry's planning?  He certainly won't help it.  Unless you count the large tax increases he'll enact to counteract his spending, crippling the economy.


News flash: Bush's tax cuts for very wealthy people are *enormous* compared to his tax cuts for the vast majority of the population. The very rich don't tend to allow their wealth to "trickle down", contrary to Mr. Reagan's logic -- quite the opposite, in fact. If they allowed their wealth to trickle down they would not be very rich. The very rich tend to store their wealth in long-term savings and investments which keep money concentrated in certain sectors of the economy rather than circulating, *slowing* growth.

To stimulate growth you want to give money to a very large number of people, preferably people who have a high propensity to spend money -- that is, the middle and lower classes. Not only will there be lots of them, each with separate consumption needs, they'll probably spend that money quickly, putting it back into the economy to increase consumption and further growth. Even better, you can take money from rich people where it's not doing much good and give it to people who are a drain on society -- illiterate people without skills scraping from job to job -- and give them the support they need to become productive memebrs of the workforce. All of those do a lot more to grow the economy than a few billionaires swelling their kids' trust funds.

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And by the way, you really are an idiot by referring to Alaska as "barren wasteland"[

Nice to resort to name calling.  However, where they want to drill is pretty damn barren.  While the reserve does cover a large part of very rich land, that's not where they want to drill.


Perhaps you should try making points without using ALL CAPS and such a derogatory tone, then. In any case, they haven't specified where they want to drill; the proposed bill gives them pretty big powers to scout around for wherever they think the drilling will be profitable. They just tell voters they don't think they'll have to drill in the wildlife-rich areas to please them, but if they drill anywhere within the protected area they'll be polluting and damaging the ecosystem, since animals move through and plants grow in even the areas where there's not that much visible activity. The middle of the street outside my house is empty most of the time -- that doesn't mean it has no effect on my neighborhood if I start piling garbage out there. (Hence the decision to protect that whole specific area -- again, Congress didn't just draw a square on the map at a whim.)

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And no, neither candidate said a damn thing about the draft. For God's sakes, the draft is not going to happen

Tell that to the Kerry-Edwards campaign.


Show me one place where Kerry or Edwards or one of their spokespeople has said anything that says they're in favor of a draft. Barring you having psychic powers over Kerry and Edwards, no, you don't have any evidence (and the right-wing bloggers and commentators you're probably getting this from don't have psychic powers either, much as they act like they do).

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Wait, why are liberals biased and conservatives not?

When did I say that?


"How do you have the gall to claim he's not biased?  Everything he does is biased.  At least Bush TRIES to give the people what they want."

Tell me one meaningful way in which Kerry is "biased" that Bush is not. It doesn't mean anything to say they're "biased" -- they're biased by their own friggin' opinions on right and wrong that make them liberal or conservative. They're *supposed* to be "biased".

If you mean that the *information* they make their decisions based on is biased, I should point out that Bush has the most ideologically unified set of advisors in quite some time -- have you ever seen him take serious advice from a Democrat or even a moderate Republican? (Colin Powell's as close as you get, and Bush overrides Powell way more often than Powell has any visible effect on Bush.) Kerry, at least, has shown himself open to listening to the other side -- note that he *did* give Bush the benefit of the doubt and authorize him to go to war if Bush thought it was necessary. Either way, though, both of them have their opinions and we should judge them on whether their opinions are right or wrong, not based on where some authority thinks the "center" of American politics ought to be.

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Why would you be in favor of it?  The burecratic nonsense is WORSE in those countries.  In many Western nations, it can take weeks or even months to get to see a doctor!  I know Canadians who come to the US to see doctors and go back home to buy the damned drugs.


...And I know Americans who have no health insurance and would probably just be sick and end up going to the ER if they got a bad disease. Which one is worse?

In both situations, keep in mind, people go to the doctor for non-essential things, and expect to be treated more and more thoroughly for an ever-increasing list of ailments. People in America compensate for this by paying extra money for health plans that cover more stuff -- single-user plans compensate by making those with less serious problems wait more time.

I think both are fair, except that single-user plans have a bottom limit -- everyone *will* get some form of treatment sometime -- while Americans are content to let certain people fall outside the system completely. I think that's unacceptable. The Europeans and Canadians seem to think so too, given that though some may complain about government bureaucracy most of them aren't mounting campaigns to re-privatize the system. And you should note that the *total amount of money spent* (public or private) in other countries is a lot lower than what we spend in the US on health care. We *waste* tons of money paying HMOs to shuffle around papers and surprise us with exemptions on our insurance. Maybe if you're really wealthy *you've* never been overcharged or denied essential services that you then had to pay through the noise for by your HMO, but that's not what most of us experience.

In any case, you're talking about something irrelevant. Kerry's *not proposing* a single-user plan. He wants to create an opt-in government HMO (not true health plan) for Americans. That might create some redistribution of resources within our health care system -- the fact that everyone could get *some* health care paid for by taxes might push up prices at the top, for instance, unless regulation kept the HMOs from doing so by forcing them to trim their margins -- but it would still allow you to have scalability in health care, to pay for really nice health care if you could afford it, to systematize one group of hospitals into one health plan to avoid the bureaucracy of super-centralized single-player systems, and so on. It's not as effective a solution as I'd like, but it solves the big problem -- 40 million uninsured people walking around -- without creating many more problems, so I like it.

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Now for the list:

   * Fiscal irresponsibility (via massive deficit spending) [Which virtually every President has done since FDR]


Mmm... no. FDR was kind of massive for his time. But the post-FDR presidents never really pushed it far beyond FDR's level, and in the Kennedy-Johnson-Nixon era they actually pushed it a little back.

Reagan was the one who pushed deficit spending to truly *massive* proportions -- four or five times the level of FDR, in real terms. Then the deficit slowly shrank under Bush Sr. and shrank a *lot* under Clinton, even at the very beginning of Clinton's term -- and remember it was at the end of Clinton's term that we had our first surplus since Coolidge.

Whoever you want to give the credit to, Clinton could have easily prevented it from happening by jacking up spending and cutting taxes -- getting *rid* of surpluses is really easy, after all. Bush Jr. did it within his first year, and at the end of his term we're at our biggest deficit in *history* -- 1.5 times that of Reagan's deepest deficit.

Yeah, Democrats aren't guiltless when it comes to deficit spending, but the two worst deficit spenders in history *by far* are the two Republican icons, Reagan and Bush, and Bush holds the title record by a long way.

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   * The establishment of huge government bureaucracy (Department of Homeland Security) [Which is an attempt to STREAMLINE the current government bodies]


A failed attempt.You have to realize that even though bureaucratic reshuffling that's meant to streamline things *in the end* creates huge amounts of bureaucracy *now*. You have to be very careful about how you go about it, because huge amounts of restructuring in any bureaucracy -- a government, a business -- will create tons of red tape -- Who's whose supervisor when and for how long? Who gets moved to which office? Which regulations from the old office override which ones from the new office? -- and sometimes just make things worse and never get better, as lots of information and rules get lost in the big confusing shuffle.

In this case, the places where DHS influence has been strongest -- its acquisition of the INS, for example -- have left those agencies a muddled mess, where regulations are determined by fiat because no one knows the precise procedures for re-establishing the chian of command. Our borders might be more secure now, but it sure doesn't seem like it; the impact of things like illegal immigration seems to actually be increasing. And the main security holes the DHS was meant to fix -- "streamlining" the FBI and CIA to collect data more efficiently -- never happened. The FBI and CIA leadership refuse to work together, and the records aren't in much better state now than they were before. The DHS may be a great symbol of America's redefining itself post-9/11 -- that was its main selling point, and I won't fault it for that -- but as an actual bureaucratic instrument, it's a mess. Ask anyone who actually keeps up on these things and isn't actively campaigning for Bush.

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   * Lifting constitutional restrictions that would safeguard individual liberties (the effective elimination of 4th amendment search and seizure restrictions via the USA PATRIOT Act)[/i] [State of war changes many things.  Look at the American concentration...  Sorry.  Detainment camps during WW2]


And... er... you're defending this as a good thing? People have choices to make, you know. Just because there's pressure to do certain things during wartime doesn't mean we have to do them. Particularly when we've learned that they were *bad decisions*.

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  * Unprecendented levels of Federal government control over state affairs (via the DHS) [Like what Lincoln, a liberal, was doing during the Civil War?  Arresting entire ELECTED legislative bodies so they  couldn't oppose the Union?]


Lincoln was a Republican, dude. The Republicans like to brag about it. I have no idea why you're calling him a "liberal", unless you're trying to claim that the word "liberal" applies to every bad thing ever done in history. The left wing and right wing as we know them didn't exist back then.

Anyways, Lincoln *was* facing a full-fledged Civil War, you know. Said legislative bodies contained many people who actively opposed the United States and wished to see it at least partly dissolved as a governmental union of states, the definition of treason. Today's situation hardly compares -- Ann Coulter's rhetoric aside, the fact that Democrats disagree with the way Bush is handling the War on Terror does not make them traitors who are seeking the country's destruction.

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   * Altering the U.S. Constitution to specifically deny rights to people (Gay Marriage Amendment) [Protecting tradition.  A very conservative thing to do]


I actually agree. There's a big difference between "conservative" and "libertarian", and though conservatives try to define themselves as libertarians sometimes, especially to young people -- claiming conservatives are always for a smaller, less intrusive government -- that's not true. They often do increase government power when they see it as the only way of keeping the country in line with their image of what a "traditional" America looks like -- the bedrock foundation of being "conservative". Hence the union of people who don't particularly want the government to help out poor people  ('cause ending poverty and the need for ceaseless economic competition changes America's face) with people who do want to give the government broad powers to stop people from doing stuff they've been doing a long time ('cause America's face shouldn't include drug users, pornographers, abortion doctors or homosexual families).
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #229 on: October 17, 2004, 01:51:46 pm »

Lincoln WAS a liberal.  He was also a despot.  No, I'm not fond of the man.

As for the detainment camps, those were ordered by the hero of the Democrats, FDR.  Those were all our citizens.  Bush gets bitched at for detaining people arrested in warzones and with suspected ties to terrorists.  Imagine if he arrested everyone of Arab descent or Muslim faith.  Could you imagine the fallout from that?

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Show me one place where Kerry or Edwards or one of their spokespeople has said anything that says they're in favor of a draft. Barring you having psychic powers over Kerry and Edwards, no, you don't have any evidence (and the right-wing bloggers and commentators you're probably getting this from don't have psychic powers either, much as they act like they do).

Never said THEY claim to be in favor of it.  They do, however, claim Bush will push it through if he's elected.  

As for the caps, it's merely a replacement of the bold command.  

Hmm.  4am.  Need sleep.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #230 on: October 17, 2004, 03:40:47 pm »

I think you are taking way too seriously all their political speeches. Of course every president says "I will make sure that this, this and this will happen if you elect me as the president."  but the truth is that they are unable, if not unwilling to actually do anything about it. It is the same in all countries. What counts in my opinion, is that the one I'm voting for is a good man. I don't know anything about Kerry, I just know that Bush is lower than dirt, so personally I'd like to see someone else in charge.

There was a recent survey in Finland which stated that in a few years, Finnish people have started hating the United States even more than they hate Russia. And that's something, considering our history.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #231 on: October 17, 2004, 11:25:48 pm »

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What counts in my opinion, is that the one I'm voting for is a good man. I don't know anything about Kerry, I just know that Bush is lower than dirt, so personally I'd like to see someone else in charge.


All politicians are lower then dirt. And that also is true for all countries.
What matters in my opinion, is to be sure that the man I'm voting for is able to make the country function properly.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #232 on: October 18, 2004, 07:03:11 am »

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Lincoln WAS a liberal.  He was also a despot.  No, I'm not fond of the man.


Lincoln was only a "liberal" in the most naive sense of the word, in that he pushed for a new policy that granted more rights to people who had been traditionally oppressed. He bears little resemblance to what we would call a "liberal" today, except among simplistic thinkers who equate "liberal" with "increased government power" and "conservative" with "decreased government power" (which not only goes against the intuitive meaning of the two terms but also gives us absurdities as saying Hitler and Mussolini were "liberals" and anarcho-socialist squatters in New York who want to burn down the White House are "conservatives".)

I agree he overstepped constitutional bounds a lot. That may make him a despot in your eyes. On the other hand, I think the secession of North Carolina was a much, much, *MUCH* bigger threat to the country than the 9/11 attack or WMDs in Iraq could possibly be, and that American slavery and the whole damned Southern aristocracy was a much greater evil that we had a much greater moral imperative to destroy than anything about Saddam Hussein's oppressive regime. (I'll accept that the Taliban were probably more evil, though their evil was not carried out on as wide a scale.)

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As for the detainment camps, those were ordered by the hero of the Democrats, FDR.  Those were all our citizens.  Bush gets bitched at for detaining people arrested in warzones and with suspected ties to terrorists.  Imagine if he arrested everyone of Arab descent or Muslim faith.  Could you imagine the fallout from that?


Just a factual clear-up: Various exclusion acts had been passed before that prevented Japanese immigrants from becoming naturalized citizens (though these weren't much more different from the other restrictive laws of that time that made becoming naturalized much more difficult for members of nations not already well represented in America). So all of the Issei (immigrants) in the camps were resident aliens. The Nisei, the children, were citizens, though most of them were only just reaching the age of majority and were under their parents' authority at the time.

The total size of the Japanese-American population at the time was much smaller than that of the population of all Muslims and all Middle-Eastern-looking people in America. Perhaps if Middle Eastern people were a tiny group, all living in the same regions of the same cities, that had only started immigrating here a generation ago, it *would* be possible for us to have detainment camps for them.

But thankfully I do think we've come a long way as a nation since then, and moreover that 9/11 didn't throw us nearly as off-balance as Pearl Harbor did. Even so, just because what we're doing isn't as bad doesn't mean it's not bad. Just because Jim Crow laws were more tolerable for black people than chattel slavery doesn't mean it was right for America to sit back and allow Southern blacks to live in segregation. And right now we do have some pretty nasty systems in place that harass Muslim Americans who have no direct implication in crime -- no-fly and danger lists that simplistically target anyone with a Muslim-sounding name who goes on an aircraft, for instance, or enforced interrogation and registration of whole swathes of Muslim youths within a single community with no discrimination for actual terrorist links.

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Never said THEY claim to be in favor of it.  They do, however, claim Bush will push it through if he's elected.  

As for the caps, it's merely a replacement of the bold command.  


Amended, then. Kerry and Edwards haven't, however, been the ones floating the rumor about Bush's secret bill to create a draft that he has hidden for after the election. Edwards did make a remark that I think was regrettable about how people might expect a draft if Bush continued his current policies, though I still think the more likely result will be that Bush will find his policies untenable and pull out of Iraq, leaving it in ruins. (The main thing is that to keep doing what we're doing in Iraq the way we've been doing it, we have to pour soldiers upon soldiers into the area to constantly hold down violence. And it's not easy to keep finding volunteers in such a situation.)
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #233 on: October 18, 2004, 08:11:02 am »

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What counts in my opinion, is that the one I'm voting for is a good man. I don't know anything about Kerry, I just know that Bush is lower than dirt, so personally I'd like to see someone else in charge.


That is the most dangerous idea of all, you would elect a man whose ordinates hated him to a point where he had to be relocated far from Vietnam to the Coast of California as opposed to a man of character who has proven he has the ability to lead.

And lets disprove the biggest liberal-left-wing lie of them all "Bush is an idiot" he's far from stupid, in comparision to Kerry,who complained that the terror-alert system (which is color-coded) is too complicated(green good, red bad difficult concept Huh). Kerry would bring the war on terror to a screeching halt, why two conflicting ideals.
1. Wrong war, wrong place, wrong time.
2.Requires a united coalition of forces.

If you harp about #1 what kind of lunatic leader would comitt any kind or miltary aide to #2?

Finally one of Kerry's statements offended me "In New York(city) one out every two African-American Males are unemployed." As a native New Yorker I know this to be untrue, when I pass through Jamiaca, Queens I don't see people on the street, and I frenquently pass through at 3 or 4 in the morning I would see illegal acts or non-legit jobs taking place if, any of that statement is true a majority of them are working "off-the books."

NOTE: I must apologize for my horendous writing(errm.. typing) as written english is my fatal flaw.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #234 on: October 18, 2004, 08:57:05 am »

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That is the most dangerous idea of all, you would elect a man whose ordinates hated him to a point where he had to be relocated far from Vietnam to the Coast of California as opposed to a man of character who has proven he has the ability to lead.

And lets disprove the biggest liberal-left-wing lie of them all "Bush is an idiot" he's far from stupid, in comparision to Kerry,who complained that the terror-alert system (which is color-coded) is too complicated(green good, red bad difficult concept Huh). Kerry would bring the war on terror to a screeching halt, why two conflicting ideals.
1. Wrong war, wrong place, wrong time.
2.Requires a united coalition of forces.

If you harp about #1 what kind of lunatic leader would comitt any kind or miltary aide to #2?

Finally one of Kerry's statements offended me "In New York(city) one out every two African-American Males are unemployed." As a native New Yorker I know this to be untrue, when I pass through Jamiaca, Queens I don't see people on the street, and I frenquently pass through at 3 or 4 in the morning I would see illegal acts or non-legit jobs taking place if, any of that statement is true a majority of them are working "off-the books."

NOTE: I must apologize for my horendous writing(errm.. typing) as written english is my fatal flaw.


Terminator, can you please just let Kaiser--who makes a few very good points--argue the pro-Bush side from now on? I don't even mean that as an insult really, even I tend to keep to the sidelines since Art is more knowledgable and patient than I.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #235 on: October 18, 2004, 09:26:14 am »

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That is the most dangerous idea of all, you would elect a man whose ordinates hated him to a point where he had to be relocated far from Vietnam to the Coast of California as opposed to a man of character who has proven he has the ability to lead.


First: None of Kerry's subordinates, superiors or peers expressed any protests about him during the war, or in the time immediately afterwards when he started becoming famous. Most of the people who actually served *with* Kerry during the war still refer to him as a hero, AFAIK *one* of his subordinates is with the Swift Boat Vets, the rest being scattered sailors from units that served with Kerry's, none of whom seemed particularly interested in talking about it till this election became a big deal.

Sure, there might've been genuine personal frictions at that time, as I expect there certainly would be in as stressful a situation as war. But the fact that it's taken this long for them to say anything tells me that it wasn't that big in the beginning; it's just that Vietnam vets, like anyone else, can get sucked into politics wars and start feeling the need to say what they can to affect an election. I don't trust myself to be accurate if they ask me to characterize one of my friends in college, even a really good friend, 20 years from now, especially if that friend's a presidential candidate for a party I seriously disagree with.

Second: This happened *thirty years ago*; it's not going to be a good representation of what the man is like now. Do we want to compare John Kerry thirty years ago with George W. Bush thirty years ago (drinking and goofing off and by his own admission making a huge mess of his life)?

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And lets disprove the biggest liberal-left-wing lie of them all "Bush is an idiot" he's far from stupid, in comparision to Kerry,who complained that the terror-alert system (which is color-coded) is too complicated(green good, red bad difficult concept Huh). Kerry would bring the war on terror to a screeching halt, why two conflicting ideals.
1. Wrong war, wrong place, wrong time.
2.Requires a united coalition of forces.

If you harp about #1 what kind of lunatic leader would comitt any kind or miltary aide to #2?


You know, John Kerry's position on this is exactly the same as *my* position on this, before I heard anything John Kerry had to say about it. It does make sense; we needed a united coalition of forces *first* to determine whether there were weapons, through an armed UN inspections program (kept under international scrutiny to prevent the suspicion or, hell, the reality of US intelligence tampering). A full-fledged invasion *before* inspectors had been given a chance, and before a real alliance had been put together to get ready for failed inspections, *was* the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time and would have been even if WMDs had actually been in Iraq. There's a list of priorities you go through in situations like this, and you do a low-priority check of potential, long-term threats like Iraq before you draw resources away from your high-priority conflict with a *known* sponsor of an attack that *already happened* (the Taliban).

Also, it's not the idea of a blue-to-red scale that doesn't make sense about the alert scale. It's the gradations *from* green to red -- what the hell exactly constitutes a shift from "yellow" to "orange" alert? We've never actually been told. What would a "green alert" or "blue alert" look like anyway, given that we've never been out of yellow or orange? Are we saying we can't go on blue alert until the world is in some sort of crime-free utopia? In that case, isn't it useless to have blue be an actual color, and doesn't it seem like the DHS is creating a sort of artificial scale to make us more scared about our current situation than we ought to be, given that we've probably been on "yellow alert" for our entire history?

You really haven't been paying attention if you haven't noticed the ways even pro-Bush people have been mocking the color alert system. It's vague and annoying; it's an excuse for the government to get us all worked up about an "orange alert" and never have to actually be straight with us about what particular security threats it's actually tracking.

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Finally one of Kerry's statements offended me "In New York(city) one out every two African-American Males are unemployed." As a native New Yorker I know this to be untrue, when I pass through Jamiaca, Queens I don't see people on the street, and I frenquently pass through at 3 or 4 in the morning I would see illegal acts or non-legit jobs taking place if, any of that statement is true a majority of them are working "off-the books."

NOTE: I must apologize for my horendous writing(errm.. typing) as written english is my fatal flaw.


Poor spelling, grammar and punctuation is less of a problem than weakly formulated logical arguments. In this case, your impression based on what you personally happen to notice on the street in the small slice of the city you walk through does not have the same weight as a survey or poll. It barely has any weight at all.

And why do you assume that every unemployed black person, or even the majority of unemployed black people, must be literally homeless on the streets surviving on a life of crime? Statistics show most of the unemployed can be accounted for living as dependents on others, at least temporarily -- many of these "high-risk" young black males who can't get jobs are dependent on their parents or their girlfriends or wives for support. They're usually not continuously unemployed, either -- they just tend to get short-term jobs that don't last long or part-time jobs that don't count as being "employed" on a survey. Crime is one problem you get from unemployment, but it's not the major problem -- most people don't become street criminals or find off-the-books jobs, just have mouths to feed that drag down the standard of living of their families.

Also, of course, even criminals like drug dealers are usually not so desperate that they have to meet on street corners to conduct business, despite what movies show. Cops are often cruising around at 3-4 a.m. too, you know.
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #236 on: November 02, 2004, 07:43:49 pm »

It's been reported that there were voting machines here in New York(city) that have been found to have hundreds of votes(per machine) allready on them before the election(unspecifyed for whom). The Republician party is appealing for this machines to be impounded. It is unlikely the republicians are responsible since their support here is unbearably low.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2004, 07:45:25 pm by Terminator » Logged

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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #237 on: November 02, 2004, 08:07:11 pm »

Please, for the love of GOD, lock this thread. It's OVER!!!
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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #238 on: November 02, 2004, 08:38:14 pm »

Over?  But, we haven't even had the first legal challenge filed yet!

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Re: The John Kerry/George W. Bush thread
« Reply #239 on: November 02, 2004, 08:51:27 pm »

Terminator: Wouldn't those just be absentee ballots or leftover data from the previous election? It's possible that both parties will try to cheat, but I just can't see democrats cheating in New York. Why bother?

Update: As of election night, it looks like G.W. has won. I'd say I was "horrified", but Kerry wasn't really the greatest candidate. So I'm something just below horrified. And rioting is really immature. On a bright side, another round of Bush with even less restraint should hopefully prove to everyone what he's really like. That is, either "not as bad as we spun him to be" or "OMG HE JUST DROVE US STRAIGHT TO HELL WE'RE DYING!!"
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