October 15th 2004 Vodkapundit, Idiocy, and Indecision 2004
I’ve done my best to keep politics out of Monkey Robot. Anyone who spends any time at all watching the news or perusing the Internet have probably had their share of political rhetoric slammed down their throats (or ears and eyes, rather). Especially after watching three debates (four if you include the vice presidential debate in that tally) and reading countless news articles, I am ready for Election Day to roll around so I can go out to cast my vote. However, I came across an entry by Stephen Green on Vodkapundit that infuriated me to the point where I felt the need to post a rebuttal on Monkey Robot (which naturally is the first place people will look for political criticism).
In case you missed that first link, I’ll begin by directing you to Green’s article again. You can read his article for yourself, but to summarize, Mr. Green details in this entry that he is going to vote strictly Republican in the next election due to the fact that Democrats don’t deserve to win because of election “shenanigans.” While I can respect any intelligent decision, Mr. Green’s leaves me with a sour taste in my mouth. First of all, Mr. Green’s logic and reasoning has more holes in it than a block of Swiss cheese. Secondly, Mr. Green’s foolish ideals and ethics (or lack thereof) not only violate his own personal ideas, but are bad for the very country he insists he is attempting to defend.
Many of Mr. Green’s arguments are, on the face, quite absurd. For example, he writes, “I could mention…Gore’s ballot shenanigans in Florida.” What ballot shenanigans? Let’s look at the facts. What is known is that in several independent vote recounts, Gore did in fact win Florida by several votes. What is known is that many Florida voters—specifically, black Democrats—were disenfranchised in the last election by Republican election officials (and this disenfranchisement appears to be happening again). Furthermore, it was the Republican Party who took the election results to the US Supreme Court. Yes, you heard correctly—the same party that preaches time and time again the importance of state’s rights, had a decision by a state supreme court overturned by the federal Supreme Court. Mr. Green is correct on one point—there were shenanigans in Florida in the 2000 Presidential Election. But he’s accused the wrong side of perpetrating them.
Mr. Green goes on to make other absurd accusations:
Or the Democrats’ successful call to bring election observers into this country. Bring them in from where, Venezuela? Hey, no big deal sullying the reputation of the world’s oldest continuously-functioning democracy, just so long as we can make the Republicans look bad, right?
First of all, I find it a bit ethnocentric of Stephen Green to automatically believe that the United States is above the sort of vote tampering that goes on in other countries. As history has shown (especially in the last presidential election), even Americans are not above such “shenanigans.” We wouldn’t need these elections inspectors if all parties played by the rules when it comes to voting.
Stephen Green’s beliefs are clearly shaded by how he grew up. As he admits, “I was raised in a very Republican family. The first election I could vote in was 1988, and I voted straight-ticket Republican.” Mr. Green admits that he was in error: “But only the one time. I grew up—I learned that my own convictions were more important than party affiliation. I learned that my own estimation of individual candidates was more important than whether they had a D or an R next to their names.” That’s all well and good, but apparently Mr. Green is quick (much like the politicians he rails against in his essay) to drop those convictions at the first sign that they violate his party’s ethics.
But for the first time in 16 years, I’m going to vote Republican straight down the line. If I have to punish a couple of local Democrats I’m fond of, then so be it, but I have to try to get a point across: The national Democratic Party is bad for this country.
Bad, you say? Well, that may be so. The Democrats are politicians, just like anyone else. But let’s look at the last four years, and see if the Republican Party is any better:
In four short years, George Bush turned the biggest budget surplus in American history into the biggest budget deficit in American history. What’s more, the last two years in a row, his administration has had record-breaking budget deficits. That’s right—in 2003 he set a record, and he broke that record again in 2004. The US is now only $4 billion away from its borrowing limit—a limit that will have to be raised by Congress before they break for the end of the year.
The Bush administration has involved the United States in not one, but two foreign wars, amounting to casualties of 1092 dead and 7532 wounded in Iraq alone! And for what? Is the world any more secure? The answer to that question is a resounding no—terrorism has only increased since Iraq was invaded.
The Republicans are quick to note Clinton’s lies, the worst of which seems to be “I did not have sex with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky.” Yes, Clinton lied. Yes, he was a horrible person because he had an extramarital affair. But isn’t the lie “Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction,” a lie which cost the lives of over a thousand US combat soldiers, a little bit worse? If that’s not enough, add “Iraq had direct links to al-Quaida” on top of that. Numerous Congressional reports since the start of the Iraq war has concluded that Saddam Hussein was not developing weapons of mass destruction—in fact, his operations were being scaled back. Other reports show that Iraq had no direct links to Osama bin Laden. Hmm…perhaps Bush confused Iraq with Saudi Arabia and Iran?
The Bush administration is one of the most homophobic political groups in recent years, going so far as to suggest the passage of a Constitutional amendment barring gay marriage. With so much else going on in the United States—and the world—right now, why focus on this? Oh, that’s right—the Republicans need to make this into a hot-button political issue to draw attention away from their horrendous record in other domestic and foreign affairs.
The Constitution specifically outlines a separation of church and state in American politics—a separation which the Bush administration typically ignores. President Bush needs to remember that, while it’s all well and good that he is a Christian, not everyone in American is—and some resent his push for Christian values in politics.
A word of advice: “trickle-down economics” don’t work. Let’s get some financial help for the poor and working middle class, and get out of bed with the major corporations (such as Enron, whose embattled CEO, Kenneth Lay, is one of Bush’s biggest campaign contributors). Furthermore, let’s stop enacting legislation that encourages corporate rape of the environment. Not giving coal-fired power plants tax breaks would be a good start.
Bush doesn’t keep his campaign promises. For example, he promised to renew the assault weapons ban in 2000—and that ban recently expired. Where’s the logic behind that? Let’s fight terrorists by letting terrorists buy AR15 assault rifles in our country? It’s time you detached your lips Charleton Heston’s ass, Mr. Bush.
The Bush administration has systematically destroyed America’s already weak credibility and prestige in the world. He violated the ABM treaty with Russia by building an unnecessary missile shield that is not only incredibly expensive, but works no better than it did in the early 1980s. He has gone against UN resolutions in attacking a sovereign nation and in doing so, seriously weakened our relations with our allies, including France and Germany (but not Poland, as Mr. Bush is quick to point out).
I could, of course, go on and on and on, but I’m sure you, the casual Internet reader, probably does not have time to read all the reasons why we need Bush out of office. I’m sure eight are quite enough to convince you that it’s time for a chance. It’s time to get our current corrupt leadership out of office and put in someone who might restore honor and dignity to the White House—and to America.