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The results of applying rational thinking to political problems

Cost of the War in Iraq
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War on Drugs: Wasted Resources

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Amazing paradox: Alice Cooper weighs in

Hardly your typical conservative, rock star Alice Cooper comments on the recent trend of Bush-bashing among other artists:
"If you're listening to a rock star in order to get your information on who to vote for, you're a bigger moron than they are. Why are we rock stars? Because we're morons. We sleep all day, we play music at night and very rarely do we sit around reading the Washington Journal."

Thanks for clearing that up. I didn't know musicians made a career out of making music.
"Besides, when I read the list of people who are supporting Kerry, if I wasn't already a Bush supporter, I would have immediately switched. Linda Ronstadt? Don Henley? Geez, that's a good reason right there to vote for Bush."

Linda Ronstadt -- understandable. But...whoa! Don Henley, of the Eagles? You've gone too far. Then again, Cooper said we shouldn't listen to rock stars for advice, so perhaps his words will go unheeded. Did he just call himself a moron intelligently? Amazing paradox.


I don't think it would be fair to simply give my views and stop. After all, we all share the same country, and we aren't enemies. In fact, I agree with the push for a flat tax and an end to abortion.

In any case, we've already heard from the Dems, and now the Republican voice should be heard before drawing any conclusions about election issues. INCITE is tracking the events.

Monday, August 30, 2004

The Ten Commandments according to Clinton

Bill Clinton appeared at a church, discussing how the GOP is the "people of the Nine Commandments." Frankly, if they're a people of nine commandments, they're doing a good job. When did Clinton become a moral authority, anyway? Apparently, it is possible to attain the status of Moses without having his faith -- simply replace the word "morals" with "popularity." That seems to be how one gains a following in modern times.

Here are the Ten Commandments, according to Captain Sleaze Clinton himself:


The Ten Commandments of Bill Clinton

1. Money and fame are God, thou shalt not have other gods before them.

2. Thou shalt not take the name of money or fame in vain.

3. Remember to keep holy the Election Day.

4. Honor thy mansion and rich Hollywood friends.

5. Thou shalt not kill a Democrat's political career.

6. Thou shalt not raise illegal campaign money unless it is for yourself.

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery with someone who has an STD.

8. Thou shalt not bear false witness when not appearing in court.

9. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife if she is ugly.

10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's goods unless he is richer than thou.


Just because I'm a Democrat doesn't mean I can't point out how Bill Clinton has the morals of a snake and should restrict his speaking to political policy.


Fausta of the Bad Hair Blog has similar thoughts.

Free pass?

Andrew Sullivan has returned from his month-long hiatus to find this. Apparently, since Kerry isn't a born-again evangelist, he's not entitled to forget his mistakes. Who suddenly made Bush a moral authority?

So Kerry is of lesser moral standing because he kept his faith the whole time, or has gone through a similar experience as a Catholic? Utter bullshit. Beginning with Clinton, it has been established that moral values have little effect on a man's ability to run the country. Even after the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the man didn't suffer a drop in approval. In fact, those were the times when the government managed to turn a budget surplus. Somebody has to stop these people from running wild, turning Republicans into crazed fundamentalists. Sadly, this kind of ancient anti-Catholic mindset is experiencing a revival.

In America, nobody should receive a free pass for being an newly enlightened fool. Accountability breeds responsibility, which in turn breeds better leaders.

New project

Here's something I will definitely be following.

Blog Contest

The Washington Post is featuring a contest for political blogs. This being a political blog, I found it quite relevant.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

The dangers of too much secrecy

(Thanks to White Rose)

1.Secrecy breeds mistrust.

It's a natural human reaction. What isn't known for sure could possibly be a lie. Look at what Kerry's attempts to keep his war records private has done to him.

2. Secrecy is expensive.

Last year, the amount spent on securing classified documents was pegged at $6.5 billion, a huge increase from 2001 spending. Why is this an issue? Two words:

Budget Deficit

3. Secrecy is...well, secret.

Bush's desire for increased secrecy is causing communication problems.

Mounting evidence that Iraq is being mishandled

What is the meaning of this? After wasting our resources and risking our troops' lives, NOW they want a peace agreement?

Is it war or peace?

What is going on with the so-called "spread of democracy?" The actions of Iraqi police aren't helping Bush's case for freedom.

Is it freedom or tyrrany?

Damn you, censorship!

Thanks to fears that all soldiers go into war with their heads up their asses, we've lost a valuable firsthand account of the war in Iraq.

Thanks to the Religious Police who punish anyone who isn't like them, we've lost a valuable firsthand account of the Saudi government's actions.

Thanks to campaign reform, we're gradually losing our free speech, and perhaps a candidate.

Sacrifice on the home front

This is one of those times when you need to cast aside your arguments on the war in Iraq and remember the sacrifices made. One such sacrifice is being made right here at home, in the U.S., by military spouses.

Let's not forget these people.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Bipartisan thinking

I've been seeing a few jokes based on Kerry's exaggerated claims of who "served together." On the Kerry-Edwards blog, a commenter notes:

"How can there be 250 Swiftboat veterans supporting the ad? Did they have bleachers on the delta or something so people could watch? The swiftboats hold somewhere about 5 to 7 people. There were 5 boats. Yup, that works out."

Let's be fair.

Stolen Honor preview

Stolen Honor is trying to do just that -- steal your honorable vote. Based on the sample clips (link thanks to Wizbang) it appears to be nothing but a series of interviews with men who hold a personal grudge against Vietnam protesters. They also mention Jane Fonda. How does that discredit anyone besides...well, Jane Fonda? Besides, documentaries like these that attempt to use Kerry against himself are the very reason he won't release his military records. I have a sneaking suspicion that these people would manipulate even the official record to see Kerry booted out of the election. The interviews showcase arguments that are tentative at best.

Clip #1

Quotes from protesters were being played on loudspeakers to the American P.O.W.'s in Vietnam.

So what? The North Vietnamese were using the protesters' words out-of-context as propaganda. Likewise, I could quote the Bible to support Satan. Does that mean the Bible was written by the devil? No.

Check Kerry's voting record to see if he supports our troops.

This is unfair to Kerry. Check Bush's record to see if he supports our troops and get back to me. I took a look at both men's actions.

A good leader admits to his mistakes and leads us in another direction.

So why does Bush keep running into a brick wall with his environmental policy? Some say that all he has to do is drop the drilling of the ANWR, and it would be passed. Why does Bush continue with his bad economic policy, which flies in the face of the facts?

Better yet, the Vietnam War was in the hands of four U.S. presidents. How did they respond?
  • Eisenhower, during the rush to stop the spread of communism, signed a treaty with the South Vietnamese pledging military support.
  • JFK received a letter from the South Vietnamese president requesting assistance. As a result of the treaty, his hands were tied. He sent troops.
  • LBJ believed in the mission and kept it going.
  • Nixon came up with this half-baked idea of "peace with dignity," in which we would continue the attack as we retreated. Sounds quite indecisive to me.

Such is the nature of politics. If you admit to your mistakes, you lose votes. Tell me, have we ever had a president who was able to change his course of action in mid-blunder? Kerry admitted to his mistakes in Vietnam, and protested the war. Now he's being demonized for it. Will the fickle attempts to discredit him ever stop?

Clip #2

Nixon was honored and feared for keeping his word.

Which word? He said we need to keep attacking, but he also wanted to get the troops out.

The Vietnam War was an example of the president upholding a treaty.

Fine -- JFK's hands were tied. But did LBJ or Nixon decide that the war was becoming a problem and exit? No.

Clip #3

The interrogator was using statements from the antiwar protesters to say that we need to be punished. If we unilaterally withdrew from Vietnam, they would've killed us.

Wouldn't part of withdrawing be the rescuing of the P.O.W.'s?

If Kerry witnessed the supposed "war crimes," why didn't he stop them?

Kerry admitted to being involved. He saw the error after he came home. My question is not "why," but HOW was he supposed to stop them?

If you listen to Kerry long enough, you'll hear both sides of every issue.

If you listen to Bush long enough, you'll hear both sides as well. He campaigned in 2000 as a "peace president." Now look at where we stand. He now campaigns as a "war president." Looks like we've found Waffles' evil twin.


Besides, take a look at the poll on the movie's homepage. Isn't a poll meant to be an impartial response mechanism? A one-sided poll is a brazen display of manipulation, which is obviously the intent of its creators. And everyone thought Michael Moore was bad...

Come to grips with the facts

Enough of the lies. Swift Boat Veterans for Truth is a Bush smear campaign.

Just connect the dots.

If you agree, sign the petition.

The census doesn't lie

Kerry, in his latest press release, sheds some light on problems I've had with Bush's economic policy.

Perspectives: A vote for Kerry prevents bipartisan stupidity

Spoons explains why a conservative can be against Bush:

"Got that? A conservative with reservations about a Repubican President who supports affirmative action, who wants the government to restrict political speech, who wants to open our borders and give amnesty to illegal aliens, who wants to pass restrictive gun laws, who resists arming pilots, who surrenders to Democrats on judicial appointments, who embraces liberal junk evirovoodo on the
myth of global warming, who lets Ted Kennedy write his Education bill, who spends more than any Democrat President we've ever had, who proposes and passes the largest entitlement expansion in the history of the Republic.... Need I go

And any conservative upset that Bush is taking the liberal position on affirmative action political speech illegal immigration gun control arming pilots judicial appointments global warming education spending entitlements and free denounced as a "purist." Whatever...

As for the all-purpose "but there's a war on" defense of Bush, how much does that buy him? Are you willing for it to be illegal for you to criticize the President? Are you willing to give up on the First Amendment -- and don't kid yourself, that's exactly what Bush is trying to accomplish with his threatened lawsuit against the Swiftboat Veterans -- because you believe Bush might be better in the War? And what about that, anyway? Do we really think Bush is going to be that much better? Hell, he barely went into Iraq this time, and did so only after dicking around with the U.N. so long that all of Saddam's WMDs probably ended up in Syria. Do you think Bush is going to take on Iran in a second term? With half the country already thinking he's a warmonger and not believing what he says about threats, is Bush really going to pull the trigger on Iran? Could he even get the votesin Congress? Don't make me larf. Hell, Bush is already out there campaigning and promising, "I want to be the peace president. The next four years will be peaceful years!" Or when Bush explains, "For a while, we were marching to war; now, we're marching to peace!" Hell, he's still trying to negotiate with Moqtada al-Sadr -- and he's killing people today. Bush had had his moments, sure, but he'd have to be a whole fucking lot better at the War on [Some] Terror (he only opposes Palestinian terrorism during alternate weeks) for me to put up with his other shit.

I know, I know, "But Kerry will be worse than Bush on most of the issues you care about, and the War on Terror." True enough. But he's a Democrat. He's supposed to be wrong about everything. Bush is the leader of the Republican Party. If he leads that party to the wrong position on everything, then both of our parties will be out to screw us. We'll have true bipartisan idiocy. Disastrous.

Accusing the opposing ideology as lethal to liberty sounds a bit self-righteous and perhaps even dangerous, but he has a point. Going along with the "checks and balances" theme, neither Democrats nor Republicans are complete liberals or conservatives. The two-party system has its own built-in protection from extremism. Their views seem to be split into two categories: social and economic. Democrats believe in liberal economic policy but conservative social policy. Republicans favor a more loosely regulated economy but a liberal enforcement of moral behavior. However, with Bush supporting liberal economic policy, he allows Hillary Clinton-style liberalism to flourish. More on why a Republican should vote for Kerry here.

Aside from political theorizing, take a look at W.'s previous campaign promises:

  • In 2000, George W. Bush promised to provide affordable health insurance to every single American. Currently, 44% of Americans are uninsured.
  • In 2000, George W. Bush promised to fully fund the No Child Left Behind Act. Now he's left the act behind with only 35% of its proposed budget.
  • In 2000, George W. Bush promised to protect unborn fetuses by outlawing partial-birth abortions. This never happened, even when Congress gained a Republican majority. A bill banning partial-birth abortions was signed in 2003 (see comments for link). Nevermind.
  • In 2000, George W. Bush promised to end stem-cell research because of its moral implications. It's going on today with remarkable benefits.
  • In 2000, George W. Bush promised to protect the sanctity of marriage as an act between a man and a woman. When he went too far and tried to amend the Constitution, Bush was immediately shot down.
  • In 2000, George W. Bush campaigned as a "peace president," stating that "we cannont be the world's policemen." We now have troops throughout the Middle East watching for terrorism and spreading flawed democracy, because that became the popular thing to do after 9/11. If that isn't opportunism, I don't know what is.

How do we know he's telling the truth now? Doesn't this bear a frightening resemblance to Republican ads against Kerry?

There's what Bush says...and then there's what Bush does.

Kerry in 2004.


Some of the arguments I made are the same ones I had in 2000, and they needed to be updated. It serves as a reminder to follow current events better. Thanks to Spoons for pointing out some things I missed.

The null argument

Wonder why major media outlets won't cover the SwiftVets controversy? Well, wonder no more. The problem is that neither side of the argument is completely legitimate.

Kerry's statements about what he did during the Vietnam War match official records. However, the SwiftVets aren't actually attacking him. According to a letter addressed to Senator Kerry, they just want him to release these records.

Kerry, it's up to you now: Fill out the 180 form and get it over with. The sooner, the better, even if there's hell to pay, and you're exposed as a liar. We need honesty and accountability restored to Washington.

Until then, remember -- nobody "gives a rat's ass about what he did in Vietnam." It's about exposing an opportunist, and both candidates fit the bill. Look at the events this way:
  • Kerry protests the Vietnam War.
  • Kerry is drafted, serves in Vietnam on a Navy swiftboat.
  • Kerry requests early leave to become a politician.
  • Kerry is honorably discharged, protests the war again.
  • Kerry pretends to throw medals away in D.C. protest, only to hang them on his wall later.
  • Kerry the senator makes peace negotiations counter to the government's intentions.
  • Kerry, despite a strong peacetime record and obvious liberal bias, campaigns on the issues of national security, war in Iraq, and his questionable service in the U.S. Navy.
  • Kerry ignores his duties to the Senate while on the campaign trail, but makes bold promises for what he will do as president.

Now for Bush's history, in similar fashion:

  • Bush goes to college, fails to get a deferment from the draft.
  • Bush joins the National Guard in TX, where he serves with the elite.
  • Bush requests transfer, which is not approved for a year (the AWOL incident).
  • Bush, without orders from the National Guard, leaves to campaign for a fellow Republican.
  • Bush finally is transferred to a unit in CO, in which he is not required to train or even report for duty.
  • Bush begins a failed business career in the oil industry. Eventually, he will lump all of the failed companies into a single disaster.
  • Bush forms alleged ties with the Saudi Royal Family to attract new oil investors.
  • Bush's failed S&L business heavily fined for catering to criminals.
  • Bush owns baseball's Texas Rangers, failing to do anything to boost profits.
  • Bush becomes governor of TX, authorizes a record amount of executions, promises in presidential campaign to bring health insurance to every single American and fully fund education, two things which we have yet to witness.
  • Bush also presses the banning of stem-cell research and abortion, both of which remain legal.
  • Bush gives the tax cuts he promised, while the economy suffers a recession.
  • Bush remains at a photo-op to preserve his image -- while the nation is under attack.
  • Bush delays the hunt for the 9/11 culprits by nearly two months, then attempts to "liberate" Afghanistan in the process.
  • Bush, with tentative information, makes a case for war in nearby Iraq.
  • Bush fails to complete the war on time, and we still have troops in both countries.
  • Bush continues to press the "War on Terror" and the "War on Drugs" to distract from his shortcomings.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to spot who isn't an opportunist.

(Hint: It sure isn't either one of these guys.)

UPDATE: Logic and our legal system advise us to dismiss the SwiftVets' charges.

Kerry's account matches the official records. The burden of proof remains on the accusers. If said accusers cannot prove their story, then the case should be dismissed.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Terrorism update: They're getting desperate

Racial profiling alleged in Muslim arrest (via LGF)

The Jihadis are having a hard time justifying their actions these days. Paragraph #1 tells it all:

"The oldest daughter of a man described as a high-ranking Hamas operative said Wednesday that police used racial profiling when officers stopped her family’s sport utility vehicle while her mother made a home video of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge."

Or was it because she is the daughter of a Hamas operative taking pictures of a terrorist target? Did it ever occur to her that police can identify you by your license plate?


Political "playground battle" rages on

What is the reasoning behind this?

Kerry calls for a halt to the attacks on his service (acceptable), but then he sends his minions out on his bad PR attacks (what he accused Bush of doing).

John Kerry, are you losing your mind?!?!

I, for one, have followed suit in his pledge to stop the smearing, but now I am seriously outraged. The man who was going to be America's positive message is now sending something to the effect of "Hell is on the way." The way he has handled this crisis with more crap-laden photo-ops, rather than brushing off the attacks by debunking the myths, has struck a nerve, not to mention the fact that five-month-old fetuses (the ones that are involved in partial-birth abortion) can go on to live healthy lives.

Kerry may be receiving a letter from me soon. I'll keep you posted if I decide to go through with it. In the meantime, INCITE has some laugh-your-ass-off posts about the appearance at Bush's TX ranch. needs to live up to its name

Move the hell on, already! Many a person is complaining about the recent wave of anti-Kerry ads, but there has not been much attention has been given to For years, they have fueled the "rabid liberal socialist" stereotype with anti-Bush and anti-Republican ads. While well-meaning, their mission is not helping my efforts to restore thought and reason (that thing that separates us from monkeys) to political discourse.

Bad foreign relations blood

Here is an example of why I'm not going to go to extremes and compare Bush to Hitler. Remember the analogy, "a vote for Kerry is a vote for al-Qaeda," back when they reportedly wanted W. out of office? If that is true, then "irrational hatred for Bush is support for military dictators."

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Media dominance of the election

Many liberals are resorting to arguments like "Bush lied," "Bush caused 9/11," "Bush should be impeached," etc., but without reason or supporting evidence. I refuse to go down that road. I believe that W. is a fellow man, with whom I happen to disagree, who has his own thoughts on our problems that are possible solutions. So where is that man?

Thanks to the obviously liberal media, finding the man behind the photo-ops is becoming a rather difficult task as of late. I'd love to point out some of Bush's strengths along with his weaknesses and give better information, but I simply don't have time to sift through every single news article ever written. My hope is that people will eventually recognize the press's hunger for conflict and stop the madness, redirecting discussion back toward where it was four years ago -- education, healthcare, Social Security, foreign policy, taxes, and everything else that actually applies to the job of a U.S. president.

This is an open call for anyone willing to help to point me toward news that portrays our current president in a positive light so I can cover both sides of each issue. I have a hard time believing that putting George W. Bush in office for another four years will spell doomsday.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004


New raging liberal moonbat theory, c/o Janet Jackson, has gone from "Bush lied" to "Bush used Janet's boob to distract us from Iraq."

Enough already!

I will no longer comment on Kerry's or Bush's war records.

Bush has had the same war record when he ran in 2000. I'll be damned if anyone should find a legitimate reason to bring it up now. Besides, he released his records. Anyone can find the truth for himself.

Kerry's campaign is being consumed by the SwiftVets controversy. He challenged Bush to discuss the issues, and Bush came back with an ad attacking his SIC attendance record. Then Bush made a blanket denouncement of 527's, hardly an apology to Kerry for the damage. Besides, a statement released by the SwiftVets indicated that they will continue their attacks regardless.

Once Bob Dole suddenly decided to become involved again, I began to wonder about the magnitude of this entire controversy. What's the deal? I think I established earlier that Kerry's story regarding his Purple Heart medals checks out. Besides, how can you say a man who still carries shrapnel in his leg and suffers from partial hearing loss didn't make a sacrifice?

These are my final comments on the issue, no matter how many more times it surfaces. The press is following this immature, cheap-shot battle only for the ratings, and that is the only reason it will continue. What I need is more information about what's going on NOW.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

The Iraq war, no matter how much you agree or disagree, must go on

Osama's bodyguard speaks

Would the extreme left please stop arguing against the war that has already begun now? The goal is now to finish what has been started without creating an international disaster. The for / against stuff needs to stop so we can end this conflict cleanly, without allowing al-Qaeda and fellow Jihadists to flourish.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

The Iraqi paradox continues

Iraqis enjoy their freedom, but they continue to be upset with how it was won. One instance is where the Iraqi soccer team denounces Bush's use of them in a political ad.

Further proof of Kerry's thoughts that the war was acceptable but mishandled.

Reasons John Kerry has my support

First, I'd like to mention that the so-called "facts" being brought out by Swift Boat Veterans for Truth conflict with official records, and most of Kerry's story (excluding the Christmas in Cambodia lie) appears to check out. Also, the men behind these ads, despite their disclaimer, might as well wave a banner with the B-C '04 logo on it. In fact, Kerry's seemingly outrageous claim that Bush is supporting the SBVFT guys' attacks has some substance to it.

Michelle Malkin has found more stories on that.

Now, I know people out there are voting "against Bush," but don't actually support Kerry. This believing in the "wasted vote" for a third-party candidate, is perhaps the major cause for our two-party system. I, however, will not do such a thing. My vote goes with a person with whom I can agree. That man, for me, really is John Kerry. Three reasons why:

1. Kerry favors environmental protection. As a both a lifetime asthma sufferer sick of air pollution and a fisherman frustrated with the increasing amount of polluted waters, I support his work, especially his signing a letter to the EPA, asking for stronger action regarding mecury cleanup.

2. Kerry favors a decrease in oil dependency. I agree with him on all aspects of this issue, especially the vote to push the production of hydrogen-powered vehicles.

3. Kerry opposes increased funding to the "War on Drugs." This could be the topic of its own writing, but in short, I'd be glad to see my tax dollars spent elsewhere.

As for Kerry's poor attendance at Senate Intelligence Committee hearings, there is no doubt that he missed at least 76% of them. The open ones, at least. The attacks are off the mark -- they fail to consider the hearings that are not open to the public. The best thing for Kerry to do right now would be to ask the head of the SIC to release the attendance records for the closed hearings to set the record straight.

The truth: there is no reliable record for us to use.

Therefore, unless we can see the attendance records for the closed-door meetings, and prove that Kerry did not receive information from them, this is not a very credible attack.

"Thank goodness Iraq is a quagmire"

Here's an interesting thought on the war in Iraq -- the "flypaper hypothesis" :
"...the U.S. hangs out its flypaper far away from home, and also as far from Israel as possible, to collect as many as possible of the world's movable Jihadis in a place where the U.S. has installed the equipment to kill them."

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Alan Keyes is nuts

I'm sure you all knew this already, but just in case: Keyes supports slave reparations

As if we didn't have enough spiteful people running around saying society owes them something without a politician saying it.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Defending John Kerry

Jay Tea at Wizbang has a rundown on his thoughts. I agree -- a man fighting a war shouldn't be accused of crimes if he's trying to defend himself. This line reflects a theme that's been brought up more than once here:

"Now, I'd really, REALLY like to put Vietnam and Bush's National Guard
service behind us, and focus on issues and more recent accomplishments."

Again I say, back to the issues, please. Speaking of issues, I'd like to point out the challenge:
"I hereby challenge Kerry's supporters to cite three major accomplishments of John Kerry's from the last 20 years. If ANYONE can point out a few positive things Kerry has done since getting to the elected, I'd be eternally grateful.

Bonus points will be awarded to those who come up with the most plausible explanation why Kerry's missed 83% of all roll call votes in the Senate and 75% of all public hearings of the Intelligence Committee over the last year isn't more compelling evidence of his being "AWOL" from his duties as a Senator than were ever presented in regards to Bush's National Guard service."

Information will be forthcoming by the end of the week.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Christmas in Cambodia -- my final thoughts

Just a thought:

The U.S. government, especially in the military, runs a mission of secrecy. The feds have been known to hide experiments, such as in this case, often at the risk of human lives, to preserve their missions.

So, what is the likelihood that Kerry really was in Cambodia, but he had to write a letter home from "Vietnam's most inland unit" so the rest of American never found out, and the case was handled internally, complete with cover story?

It seems just as plausible as calling Kerry a pathological liar. He told that story WAY too many times for one not to be suspicious.

I'm hoping this one blows over, like the AWOL Bush incident.

It's about damn time

Bush announces troop realignment (via INCITE)

Newsflash: The Cold War ended only...oh, about 10-15 years ago.

Seems to me that the Dems are stuck in attack mode, even after the "positive messages" at the DNC. After they were embarassed by questioning the timing of the terror alerts, I can't really place blame on anyone.

Bush really is doing the right thing. Doing the right thing is always good, even if for the wrong reasons.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

No surprise Kerry isn't talking

Perhaps the media isn't being a friendly medium. Partisan news stories like these two and this one are becoming quite a problem.

Rest assured, however, that Kerry is running away with the electoral vote.

Party unity?

This may be a problem for the upcoming RNC, and will ultimately serve as a reminder for us all to be tolerant of others' beliefs.

Iraqis losing $30 million a day

If I didn't have to hear news like this about the mess Iraq has become, the ongoing war would seem much more justifiable.

So which one is it?

Lately, I've heard a lot -- and agreed with -- claims that Kerry needs to reveal more information about his platform. But he isn't alone, and this shouldn't be used as Bush support material. Why?

Bush and Cheney are having a communication breakdown, too.

Faulty enhanced passports slated to be issued next spring anyway

The Washington Post reports that the State Department has decided to carry on an error-prone project.

You have to be kidding me! There is no way that this could work as-is. Imagine this possiblity: while trying to verify the identity of someone who was a victim of a mistake, a real terrorist slips through the cracks. Or look at it from a more practical standpoint:

"Facial recognition isn't going to do it for us at large scale...If
there's a 10 percent error rate with 300 people on a 747, that's a

Newsflash: When something is a problem, you fix it.

Saturday, August 14, 2004

Blogging the war

Fear and Loathing in Iraq

The salute: Why anyone who uses it as support for Bush is nuts

A picture really is worth a thousand words. Maybe an entire campaign, even.

Shocking news about our president?

Bush using drugs to control depression, erratic behavior

Don't shoot the messenger. I didn't write that headline. All I can say is: here is your "leader." If Kerry is unfit for office, what does that make Bush?

I don't find "keep those motherfuckers away from me" to be consistent with family values, either.


This is an unconfirmed report. Don't believe everything you hear.

Gun control: hitting your target

I'm moderate enough to realize that more gun control isn't the answer. Besides, it does nothing for the ones who obtain firearms illegally.

Translating Kerry's "politician-speak"

From OTB -- Would Kerry vote for Iraq War?

Presenting: clear-cut answers from John Kerry

Well, not really. (Surprised?) Actually it's what he should've said, in plain English. At least this is more of a challenge than the last Slate article I mentioned here.

I admit, Kerry's language is very cryptic. I spent nearly an hour and a half reading and re-reading that article to decode the candidate's statements alone. Then I read the analysis. It begins like this:
"Last Friday, President Bush challenged Sen. John Kerry: "My opponent hasn't answered the question of whether, knowing what we know now, he would have supported going into Iraq." On Monday, pressed by a reporter to answer Bush, Kerry said, "Yes, I would have voted for the authority. I believe it was the right authority for a president to have." Bush argues that this is yet another Kerry flip-flop and that Kerry now endorses Bush's war. At a campaign rally on Tuesday, Bush asserted,
'My opponent has found a new nuance. He now agrees it was the right decision to go into Iraq. After months of questioning my motives and even my credibility, Senator Kerry now agrees with me that even though we have not found the stockpile of weapons we believed were there, knowing everything we know today, he would have voted to go into Iraq and remove Saddam Hussein from power.' "
What's wrong with this picture? Kerry did not change his mind. He voted for the war as a senator, and now he is defending his vote. Kerry never questioned whether we should go to war; he questioned how the war was handled. W. still has a difficult time with this concept. Why should he fault Kerry when the problem is that he [Bush] just isn't listening?

The article keeps goes on with:

"The answer, if you look closely at Kerry's statements over the past three years, is no. But Kerry refuses to make this clear, so let's go to the videotape..."

The link goes to a press release from Kerry's National Security Advisor:

" 'Mr. President, knowing what you know now, do you still believe that you made no mistakes in how you took this country to war? Do you really have no regrets about sending many of our troops into battle without body armor to save their lives? Do you believe it was a mistake to invade Iraq without a plan to win the peace? Do you wish you had done things differently so our troops and the
American people wouldn’t have to bear the burden in Iraq almost alone?'

'The issue has never been whether we were right to hold Saddam accountable, the issue is that we went to war without our allies, without properly equipping our troops and without a plan to win the peace. It’s time for George W. Bush to come clean with the American people about his Iraq policy.' ”

Translated: "We needed to go to war, but I would've handled the war much differently."

I don't know how much better you can do aside from risking political suicide or bringing back the partisan mudslinging. This is what I meant earlier by "attention to detail." Kerry is careful to answer questions completely, not a straight "yes" or "no." It's what we all want to hear, but is it appropriate?

Besides, the first question is flawed. Kerry didn't send troops to war without body armor. The issue was how the troops were to be funded. I thought we were over the political ad over which nearly everyone cried foul. Besides, the mere accusation of "Kerry sent the troops to war without armor" is ludicrous. The decision was made by a Congressional vote, not Kerry alone. It's like attributing our economic problems to Bush alone. His plans could've been shot down by Congress, but they weren't. So it's partly Congress' fault for passing them. The blame game is the beginnings of the fighting that has so often marred the political process and damaged our image of both candidates, and ultimately, politics in general. I think this is part of the reason we have so many apathetic citizens who refuse to vote. Let's end this self-destructive game.

I do, however, agree with the conclusion drawn here:

"The first significant clip shows Kerry on The O'Reilly Factor on Dec. 11, 2001. 'We ought to put the heat on Saddam Hussein,' he says. Kerry adds that when U.N. weapons inspector Richard Butler provided evidence that inspections should continue, 'I criticized the Clinton administration for backing off of the inspections.'

Summary: Kerry wants pressure and inspections.

Translated: "We needed to let the U.N. weapons inspectors continue their work."

Continuing, the next clip is also agreeable:

"The next significant clip shows Kerry on Hardball on Feb. 5, 2002. The host, Chris Matthews, asks Kerry whether Iraq 'can be reduced to a diplomatic problem—can we get this guy to accept inspections of those weapons of mass destruction potentially and get past a possible war with him?' Kerry answers: 'Outside chance, Chris. Could it be done? The answer is yes. He would view himself only as buying time and playing a game, in my judgment. Do we have to go through that process?The answer is yes.'

Summary: Kerry doubts Iraq would comply with inspections, but he thinks
we have to go through the process of trying."

Translated: "I doubt we can resolve the situation in Iraq by simply sending inspectors over there. However, we need to give peace a chance."

Next up is Kerry's first clear endorsement of the war:

"Stephanopoulos' question, edited out of the video, was, 'On March 19, President Bush ordered Gen. Tommy Franks to execute the invasion of Iraq. Was that the right decision at the right time?' Kerry takes the question in two parts: No to the timing ('I would have preferred if we had given diplomacy a greater opportunity'), yes to the 'decision to disarm.' But in his final sentence, Kerry conveys that his agreement with Bush on the decision is more important than their disagreement on the timing: 'When the president made the decision, I supported him, and I support the fact that we did disarm [Saddam].'

This appears to be the first time Kerry endorses the war as Bush conducted it."

No, it doesn't. If Kerry endorsed the war as Bush conducted it, he would've agreed on the timing as well. He also makes no mention of how he would've disarmed Saddam.

Translated: "I support the Bush administration's disarming of Saddam Hussein. However, we could have given diplomacy a greater opportunity."

That mistake is why the rest of the article goes downhill, accusing Kerry of inconsistency and emphasizing the parts of his views that apply to the right or the left whenever necessary.

Kerry was guilty of no more than being aware of his audience and trying to win more votes, as any elected official should. (Keep in mind that the main goal of any campaign is to win.) He tells no lies, and makes known his complete thoughts, expressing all of their complexities. The only mistake the presidential hopeful makes is not translating these thoughts into something to which we can all relate and understand.

Had Kerry actually spoken in plain English, he might have had more support. Now only the people who take the time to decode his statements can really understand him. Just like a wealthy elitist to place himself above everyone. If one of the two presidential candidates could step down, speak plain English, AND not rely on the wealthy for campaign donations, the choice would be so much easier. But then it wouldn't be any fun to watch.

How long have we had a liberal media?

Forgotten Internees of World War II

Michelle Malkin reminds us that in the fight to end internment camps forever, we have lost sight of what really happened. Europeans were held, too.

Homeland security: opening the borders to the south wide, sending troops to Iraq, and talking like we're getting tough

Call me a cynic. Even though I support Kerry, I still have little faith in our future. He can say "hope is on the way" until he's blue in the face, and I won't believe it. The reason I can stick with Kerry is that I am unsatisfied with the direction in which we're headed now, and you can be 100% sure that we get no change if we leave the same guy in office.

Bush has also fallen victim to the campaign incompetence bug. As Kerry insists on bringing up Vietnam, Bush insists on bringing up homeland security. The problem: our homeland isn't quite secure.

This has become more of a circus than a presidential election.

How not to campaign for president
(Kerry's first bona fide flip-flop)

What is wrong with the two major presidential candidates this year? Bush goes liberal and convinces people that he has a plan for illegal aliens, but ruins the logic so badly that it no longer makes sense. Kerry goes neo-con and harps on the War on Terror and Vietnam nearly as much as the government. It's no wonder that both look like complete idiots.

What's worse is that John Kerry may have just self-destructed. Remember the "Band of Brothers" ads, the salute, and the Swiftboat vets who followed him around? Now they're suddenly his enemies. Why?

"Because they're not puppets."


That's the sound of Kerry's credibility being flushed down the toilet. Now the rest of his appearances are going to be harshly criticized as a manipulation for votes, damaging his ability to reach voters. This is without the media throwing a wrench in things.

What a waste of potential. The fact that Kerry is still leading means one of the following:

1. The general public agrees that Kerry should quit bringing up Vietnam, find no relevance to his policy, and subsequently ignore the attacks.

2. Bush is doing such a terrible job that Kerry still looks better.

3. The same logic that makes people support Bush after he made a mess of the Middle East and damaged the economy has infected Kerry supporters as well, making it a battle of morons, decided by morons.

Who came up with the genius idea that the people should choose candidates directly, regardless of competence and relevance to the party platform? That is why we keep fielding total fools.

Breaking news: veggies and exercise are good for you

Get a load of this one (via INCITE):
"Americans need to spend more time working out and less time chowing

That's the conclusion of a federal advisory panel looking at ways to
get people to adopt healthier eating and exercise habits."

We needed a federal advisory panel to say that? Ladies and gentlemen, your tax dollars at work.

Sometimes I think government waste is as much to blame for the deficit as the Bush administration.

Retail is now a factor in campaigns

Shop the Vote 2004

Costco = Kerry
Wal-Mart = Bush

Funny how I shop at Wal-Mart.

Still searching for intelligent life in the universe

Logic and politics seem to be the Odd Couple of society. We need them both, but they never agree. Take this story for instance. Bush is attempting to steal Kerry voters with a plan to help illegal immigrants work inside the U.S. legitimately for 3-6 years. Kerry supports a massive effort to make illegal aliens legal.

Newsflash: they broke the law!

Illegal aliens are just that -- illegal. What do you do when somebody does something illegal? You dole out an appropriate punishment. What is the punishment for illegal entry? Deportation. It's that simple.

Once again, we find our two presidential candidates in a cartoon-like battle of stupidity:

1. How can Kerry let illegal immigrants who have unfairly benefitted from our tax dollars for years become citizens without punishment?

2. Did I just see Bush being a liberal loony? What makes him think that illegal immigrants will suddenly appear for his program, knowing that they could be deported when it ends?

3. What would these men have to say about letting murderers or others who break the law go free for a while and returning them to jail later on? Oh, wait...that already happened. Think "Willie Horton."

Because of Bush's blatant disregard for logic, my vote remains with Kerry.

Understanding foreign symbols

This is why reporters should do their homework before they write:

"V isn't for peace in a palestinian's hand. It means

Of course, this is coming from Canada.

Invisible economics

Not all aspects of economic policy are visible to the individual. Phelps links to two writings reminding us to consider the broader consequences of government actions.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Will the real John Kerry please stand up?

I'd like to see John Edwards try to energize this.

I will continue to maintain that John Kerry does not flip-flop nearly often enough for it to be a trademark, and George W. Bush tends to do the same thing, but I have realized that most of the information we're getting is more anti-Bush than pro-Kerry. After reading this entry, I stopped and thought to myself, "Why am I voting for Kerry?" The main reasons were things like "he's a Democrat," "Bush screwed up the economy," "Bush mishandled Iraq," etc., with no immediate facts coming to mind, and most of them beginning with the word "Bush." And those were the thoughts on Kerry. While I favor John Kerry's view of complexities in problems, as opposed to Bush demanding a black-and-white answer for everything, attacking Kerry as a figure that cannot be trusted, it's not enough. When deciding your country's future, you need facts.

In fact, it turns out that the "Christmas in Cambodia" story was your run-of-the-mill fish tale -- except popularized and spun out of control. Kerry never left Vietnam except for a few transportation missions. No gunfire, no enemy. Glenn Reynolds brings up the problem with this. I don't think either candidate should be banking on military service at this point.

First and foremost, both candidates have problems with military service during the Vietnam War. Kerry has "Christmas in Cambodia," while Bush has "AWOL for a year." Both can be proven to be utter political disasters. In addition, Kerry, while complaining about partisan politics and going for the positive accidentally opened the door to nonpartisan mudslinging by banking on his honorable service during the Vietnam War. If he had left it as "I served in Vietnam" and stopped, he could've downplayed the current character assaults as unfair attacks that need to end. However, this was not the case. As soon as Kerry made his military service a front-page issue, it became another one of his claims, like his plan for the economy, or how we can expect him to handle Iraq. It now requires questioning, verification, and ultimately attacks pointing out the falsehoods. As much as I wish the media would quit making a big deal out of these things, the truth is that Kerry is making the headlines, not the news outlets. He's the one who needs to quit bringing up Vietnam.

The voice of reason should be begging you, "Kerry has to stand for something. He can't win the election on Bush hatred alone." Or can he? According to recent polls, Kerry has a substantial lead over Bush with regards to the electoral vote.

He does have to stand for something. The problem is that he doesn't publicize what that something is. Sick of blind support, I took on the mission of figuring out what exactly Sen. Kerry's position is on major issues. Here is a good collection. Also, don't forget that a vote for Kerry is also a vote for his running mate, John Edwards. John Kerry does indeed have a clear platform. The problem is that he isn't telling the voters, making him rather mysterious and less trusted.

There are several deciding factors on who can be the more trustworthy candidate:

1. Decisiveness

Both candidates are equally indecisive. Kerry has complex views on issues that require a straightforward answer. Rather than summarizing his conclusions, Kerry states the entire complexity -- it's like reading a properly written objective news piece that includes both sides of every issue.

On the other hand, Bush has been known to change his mind on things as well. For instance, was No Child Left Behind ever funded? Or has every American found affordable health insurance? No.

2. Leadership

Bush has served as commander-in-chief of the military rather well. He is not afraid of the criticism; I respect his ability to take a stand for what he decides, even when I disagree. However, one thing that really is "seared into my memory" is how W. handled the 9/11 attacks. When your advisors tell you America is under attack, you don't freeze up and finish a photo-op! Why did the hunt for Osama bin Laden begin nearly two weeks later? Why did we only have an investigation a few months ago, after giving in to the demands of 9/11 victims' families, instead of immediately afterward to straighten out our mistakes? These questions have gone largely unanswered, and they are hardly signs of good leadership.

Kerry's protests immediately following the Vietnam War may not have struck a chord with the mainstream, but he did what he felt was right. Leadership at its finest. Too bad he missed the point that in Vietnam, nobody knew who the enemy really was. Bad move on accusing the military of war crimes.

3. Strength of Policy

Bush hasn't done too well on Iraq, the economy, education, the healthcare crisis, or the environment. Iraq has become his personal Vietnam -- the leader is already out of power, and a definition of the enemy cannot be made clear. The number of jobs lost to outsourcing has yet to be recovered. He failed to keep his promises on education and health insurance.

Kerry doesn't seem to be making a big deal out of healthcare itself, even though finding affordable health insurance is becoming increasingly difficult. This is a problem. He does, however, appear to have the winning solution to lowering prescription drug coverage.1 As far as the economy, the solution to outsourcing sounds too liberal at first, but if you look at the seriousness of losing jobs to foreign countries, it doesn't seem so bad. Furthermore, an extreme solution is better than none at all. Bush asserts that outsourcing is not a problem and the economy is improving, taking a laissez-faire approach. Bush's weakness is that laissez-faire economics has already failed time and again. Market forces don't give people health insurance or education. I see it as a disguise for economic inaction.

4. Attention to Detail

Perhaps the most essential character trait of all, the candidate who has the ability to see beyond his own perspective, making sweeping decisions from an executive post without ignoring the consequences. Neither candidate has shown me this ability yet. Kerry and his complexities come closer to this, however, than Bush's constant demands for a black-and-white vision of any action.

I think it has been established that two people can look at the same set of figures and come to radically different conclusions. That is simply human nature. We all come from different backgrounds and have different life experiences, so of course our opinons will differ. This is fine. I respect opposing viewpoints that are well-reasoned. What bothers me are the blatantly partisan attacks. I will have none of the "Bush lied" or "Kerry has no platform." John Kerry does have a platform. It's the only way any reasonable politician can survive. Remember that Kerry has been in the game since the 1970's. If any presidential candidate has ever lacked a clear platform, it would be Ross Perot. Kerry's problem is his PR. The possibility that he has a chance to improve our country is being overshadowed by his weaknesses.

When it's all said and done, both candidates have turned the 2004 election into a battle of stupidity. Frankly, I'm not surprised that a large number of Americans shy away from the voting booth or that a vast majority of foreigners hate the U.S. with a passion. What the election will come down to is this: whoever screws up less wins. Given that Bush has been given a four-year head start and still can't find a strong edge over Kerry, I see Kerry as the better candidate.

End Note:

1. I have already established in a previous post that "Kerry has the winning plan" does not mean the same as "Kerry won my vote with his plan." I am pointing out that a poll conducted by CNN showed that the majority of senior citizens buying prescription medication agree with his policy. I have some reservations about returning prescription drugs to America simply because Canada has cheaper medication. A more logical solution would be to stop the drugs from being exported in the first place.

The kick is up...wide left!

The NYT could do better. I'm starting to believe that poll claiming a 5 to 1 liberal media. Why? Misdirected outrage over tax cuts. It's a cut-and-dry case. If the wealthy pay 1/3 of the taxes, they'll get 1/3 of the tax cuts. Logic.

That's the wrong argument. Commenter Pilgrim gets it right and shares my view on a flat tax.

Foreign policy for dummies

Jay Tea of Wizbang has an excellent analogy to how governments need to handle foreign affairs.


The last two posts were off-the-cuff commentary, involving little research and a large amount of (confused) opinion. They have been edited so as to point out the mistakes. I apologize for any misleading that these mistakes may have caused.

The other "f-word"

Given the widespread knowledge of politicians' extramarital affairs,1 Why is the media scrambling for this story? I've got two words for you (and the first one begins with an "f"):

fun·da·men·tal·ism (fnd-mntl-zm) n.

A usually religious movement or point of view characterized by a return to fundamental principles, by rigid adherence to those principles, and often by intolerance of other views and opposition to secularism.

ho·mo·pho·bi·a (hoh-moh-foh-bee-ah) n.

Prejudice against (fear or dislike of) homosexual people and homosexuality

Didn't see that one coming, did you?

I favor the concept of equal opportunity outrage.

Stop laughing. I'm dead serious. Extramarital affairs are simply wrong, even from a secular standpoint. When you promise to marry someone, you take a vow stating that you will remain faithful to your spouse. If you lie and break that vow, you are the scum of the earth. It doesn't matter whether the third party involved is male or female.

*But it does matter if you do something shockingly illegal with an illicit relationship.* [See comments]

(Source: Wizbang)


1. I'd just like to point out that the disgusting trend of extramarital affairs in politics has sunk low enough to support businesses that specialize in organizing this betrayal. Just look at the search results to which I linked.

Does Moore owe an apology? *YES HE DOES!!!*

No. Not unless having an opinion and citing the source is a crime. In that case, I'm guilty, too. I hereby apologize to anyone who was offended by my linking to their site in order to prove that I'm a reasonably intelligent individual who doesn't fabricate information.

This makes three [non] is one of the more serious issues that are being used to both manipulate your vote and discredit a man who simply disagrees with the current U.S. leadership in two days. And that's just in the limited reading I've done myself. I can only imagine what else is being passed around out there in blog land.

Let's start with the simple fact that Michael Moore has a legitimate opinion, and more people need to respect this. Remember my backing of Fahrenheit: 9/11 earlier? Looks like I'm not the only one who respects other people's perspectives. I just wish Moore would quit ripping off other people's work and find an original title to something. That, and his message was a bit condescending. However poorly delivered, though, the message is credible.

FurtherMoore, the headline in question did run in the Pentagraph. A quick and easy site search [scroll to bottom] cleared that up. About the date -- Moore most likely changed it to avoid copyright violations. All he did was change a "5" to a "19." It had no bearing on the story itself whatsoever. Unfortunately, the article in question was a letter to the editor, not a news article, and he didn't have to change the date. [See comments]

Michael Moore did not lie or commit any crime. Anyone using this story for political gain owes him an apology.

Side Note:

I just think that several items would precede this in determining your vote. A manipulation of a few seconds of video was below my radar at first, and it still ranks low in factors that determine my political views. I figured that by now everyone already knows that Moore isn't anywhere near moderate and will predictably express an extremely liberal viewpoint.

(Source: Moore Truth)

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Free trade

I don't think sex for votes comes up in economic policy very often. I guess as a dedicated liberal, I should be lauding the progress, saying that even sluts can use their strengths to make their voices heard without being arrested.

Guess what? I'm not doing that. This is ridiculous. Besides, I can see many Republicans signing the pledges and voting for Bush anyway. Sex sells, but it doesn't tell you not to lie.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Ruling by fear

Graz has perhaps one of the most shocking examples of how the Bush administration is going overboard on homeland security.

Amid all the controversy, however, is the American soldier, simply following orders and trying to serve his country. Excellent tribute.

To be or not to be: No WMD's in Iraq?

Britain, despite U.S. denial, approves the latest disclosure that there have been no WMD's in Iraq since 1991. I wouldn't jump right out and scream "Bush lied!" if I were you, though, because Britain also brought us the yellowcake rumor. There is enough other evidence to strike down the premises for war.

Prescription drug coverage: Kerry gets it right

Kerry favors allowing people to buy imported prescription drugs from Canada. According to CNN, he has the winning plan.

A flip that doesn't flop

Bush: Kerry troop stance threatens Iraq mission

As any public appearance made by President Bush, a few mistakes loom in his off-the-cuff answers at an "Ask Bush" event. Here's an interesting quote:

"The mission is not going to be completed as quickly as possible if the enemy thinks we're going to removing a substantial number of troops in six months."

If the enemy thinks we're removing a substantial amount of troops when all we do is replace them with foreign troops, it could work as a diversionary tactic in our favor. And that is exactly what Kerry intends to do: replace, not remove. Contrary to popular belief, these two words mean different things. If Kerry can deal with other countries more maturely than the current "you're either for us or against us" attitude, we may have increased support. Nobody needs a failed Iraq.

Bravo, Reuters, for publishing this rebuttal:

"Kerry campaign spokesman Phil Singer accused Bush of distorting the senator's words. Kerry stressed that achieving the goal of fewer U.S. troops would depend on international assistance and greater stability in Iraq, Singer said."

Bush continues by stating that he "won't be seeing mixed signals." He shouldn't be. That's because Kerry, who sees things for the complex nature they are rather than in black-and-white, has a viable solution to the situation in Iraq that would ease the burden the U.S. bears without leaving a failed Iraq behind. Nobody needs a failed Iraq.

Also overshadowing Bush's attepmts to plug himself as entrepreneur-friendly is his 2002 decision to dump radioactive waste in Yucca Mountain. White House press secretary Scott McClellan defends this move as being based on "science, not politics." I respectfully disagree, believing the opposite to be true.

Reader's Guide, part III

By now you've probably noticed yet the third change in title, from Logic before Laws to Democrat for a Free America. This one is final. I reassessed my political leanings, and I am a liberal who supports John Kerry's bid for the presidency.

1. The title Democrat for a Free America implies nothing except the fact that I am a registered "Democrat", and I am "for a Free America." Nothing about the Bush administration, nothing about the Patriot act, no conspiracy theories comparing Bush to military dictators.

2. I find Sen. John Forbes Kerry to be a more qualified candidate for the presidency than George W. Bush and will express my opinions on news articles accordingly.

3. I still favor the use of logic when making decisions and resent stupidity from anyone, including Democrats. Al Gore and Hillary Clinton piss me off.

Comparing Lies

Where was John Kerry during Christmas 1968?

I'm not sure whether the story checks out, but according to my father's stories from his service in Vietnam, the CIA does employ soldiers as spies, and some missions do involve illegal maneuvers.

I'm going to cut there, partly because the internet is government-monitored. Now for the question that's begging to be asked.

So where was Bush?

Unless you've had your head up your ass for the last three years, you are probably familiar with the AWOL in 1972 problem:

"Then something happened. From May 1, 1972 until April 30, 1973 -- a period of twelve months -- there are no days shown, though Bush should have logged at least thirty-six days service (a weekend per month in addition to two weeks at camp).

I found out that for the first four months of this time period, when Bush was working on the U.S. Senate campaign of Winton Blount in Alabama, that he did not have orders to be at any unit anywhere."

The story doesn't stop there. What did W. do to afterward?

"In this official summary of Bush's military service, I found something that was not mentioned in Bush's records from the National Guard Bureau in Arlington, Virginia. When Bush enlisted his commitment ran until May 26, 1974. This was the separation date shown on all documents as late as October 1973, when Bush was transferred to the inactive reserves at Denver, Colorado. But the date of final separation shown on the official summary from Denver, is November 21, 1974. The ARPC had tacked an extra six months on to Bush's commitment.

Bush may have finally "made-up" his missed days. But he did so not by attending drills -- in fact he never attended drills again after he enrolled at Harvard. Instead, he had his name added to the roster of a paper unit in Denver, Colorado, a paper unit where he had no responsibility to show up and do a job."

Bush was working on a campaign when he was supposed to be serving in the National Guard. He then made up for lost time by placing his name on a roster for inactive reserves in CO.

At least we can be sure that Kerry served in Vietnam and that he never once was absent from his duties. To be fair, I will debunk the theory that Kerry was also AWOL from the reserves. Let's start with his request for release from active duty so he could begin his first Senate campaign. Kerry is released in January 1970. He was then transferred to inactive reserve in July 1972. But what happened in between? Kerry was honorably discharged following an inspection of his service record, no extensions, no questions. Apparently he did his duty.

Go ahead Bush supporters, bring up the subject again. You're only helping Kerry.

Considering both candidates' blurry history surrounding military service, this is again one of those issues that should not sway your vote.

This isn't rocket science. It's logic. Back to the issues, please.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Why both Democrats and Republicans work against the case for tort reform

Alan recalls a friend who is suffering undue restrictions due to hospitals' increasing concern over liability and the court's refusal to accept waivers. He encourages support for George W. Bush because of his stance on tort reforms that would rectify the situation, citing John Edwards' trial experience as one possible source for the current problems. Alan then proceeds to mention the fact that the Kerry/Edwards ticket may have accepted illegal campaign funding.

I cannot make the same assertions because this is more of a social argument than a legal one, and Edwards is willing to return money that is deemed illegitimate.

How is tort reform not a legal argument? The problem is not the laws. The problem is the people abusing them for personal gain. Edwards is to blame in a few cases, but he is not alone. He is part of a nationwide movement toward a more litigious culture. Placing Edwards under the "greedy trial lawyer" stereotype accomplishes nothing. It only draws attention away from the real issue: supposed supporters of tort reform continue to exacerbate the problem.

Lawyers don't sue people; people sue people.

Furthermore, the Bush administration clearly does not act in favor of patients' rights. Supporting Bush would decrease the lawsuits, but it would cause Alan's friend more problems regarding his situation.

This is a complex issue, requiring a balance between individuals' rights and corporate liability. I feel that in the struggle between the individual and the company, the individual needs more assistance financially. However, we should have limits on how much financial assistance the individual receives so that we don't cause corporations to go broke.

Given the problems with both parties on this issue, it shouldn't be a top factor in determining your vote at all.

Friday, August 06, 2004

Only in the alternate world of liberal moonbattery...or when Bush tries his hand at public speaking

I swear to you that I did not edit this in any fashion:

Bush Insists His Administration Seeking 'new Ways to Harm Our Country'

Softening the blow of fascism

Sometimes people are glaringly intolerant of intolerance. One example is the American-initiated U.N. effort to reform Shari'a law. College students can participate for 3 credits.

The fact that students are entrusted with international law aside, what is being blatantly overlooked is the fact that Shari'a law can't be softened. It clearly calls for death to traitors and preaches the supremacy of Islam. I agree with V-man of Southern Watch that this is tantamount to taking the sting out of Mein Kampf.

Fiscal Irresponsibility

The headline explains it all:

White House Projects Highest Deficit Ever

(Source: Waste Blog)

Thursday, August 05, 2004

The electoral vote: Bad news for Bush

I'm not too concerned with the latest polls showing Kerry getting a "bounce" or falling behind Bush. What counts is where the people voting for Kerry or Bush live. Going by the electoral vote, which shows that Kerry continues to show a strong albeit slightly smaller lead.

Right now, Kerry has enough electoral votes to become president. This doesn't bode well for the Bush administration. This is a poor showing for an incumbent.

Kerry gets his share of bad press. Ever wonder where the dirt on Bush went?

Via Andy's Intestinal Bloggage, I read this article, which reports that Bush requires attendees of his rallies to sign a legally binding agreement to be his supporters.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Good idea, bad timing

Candidate Bush has decided to use old information in his latest terror alert. This could have resulted from one of the following possible strategies:

  • Bush has kept the information without acting on it.
  • Bush is desperate for campaign fodder, so he is trying to prove his concern for the war on terror.
  • Bush is being briefed by his advisors, who are using scaremongering to keep their power.
  • Bush is using fear to keep voters on his side.
  • Bush is telling his advisors to help him get re-elected but not offering any suggestions besides hollering and the usual liberal-bashing, so they simply resort to dictator-like strategies, including the unnecessary use of fear, to keep voters on his side, and Bush agrees to this because it seems to be working and giving him confidence.

All of these scenarios give a rather bleak outlook for the current administration. Unfortunately, like the media, the first four give W. too much credit. I doubt he is intelligent enough to make decisions like these on his own. This leaves the last scenario, which, shocking as it may be, is most likely to be true.

I am appalled by the levels to which our commander-in-chief will sink simply for an advantage in the polls. Let's see, the terror alerts were for New York City, Wall Street, and...Newark, NJ? What?! Newark? Because Prudential is there? Out of the hundreds of financial institutions, why would the terrorists pick Prudential? Necessary fear indeed. Also suspicious is how these alerts for mostly NY are happening just weeks before the RNC in -- you guessed it -- NY!

Apparently, Ridge is defending the three-year-old information by stating that "it's about confidence in government." Or fear, perhaps? The alerts were also suspiciously timed so as to benefit the U.S. Treasury and inflate oil prices.

On the bright side, it isn't working well.


Tomorrowist cites this article as the reason for the terror alert. The timing ("a few weeks" later, according to the NYT) is questionable, but the terror alerts do indeed have a certain amount of credibility to them. We can rule out scaremongering as a motive.

UPDATE #2: While we're on the subject of false alarms...

After further examination, the aforementioned terror alerts were justified. They came from the capture of a known al-Qaeda operative in Pakistan. The timing, suspicious as it is, appears to be coincidence.

It appears that I have accidentally hopped onto the Bush-bashing bandwagon for a bit. Like I have said before, and say to myself again, let's focus on the issues that matter, rather than turning national security into political football.