Monday, November 01, 2004

Endoresment II

This voter will be casting a ballot tomorrow for a Presidential candidate, a Senate candidate and a House of Representatives candidate. All but the house candidates are for members of the non-incumbent party. While I can’t think of a reason to defend votes for Barack Obama over Alan Keyes, and for Mark Kirk over Ihaveno Ideawhom, I do have reasons to vote for John Kerry.

They are not the reasons you’d think.

If you are one of those Bush supporters that thinks George Bush is a messenger from God. That he can do no wrong. That John Kerry didn’t deserve his medals and won’t defend this country. If you are one of those, stop reading now. If you are a Kerry supporter who thinks that the 2000 election was stolen. That there was no reason to invade Iraq. That there should be a draft to make “the rich kids” fight. Stop reading now.

However, if you have concerns about fiscal sanity. About competence in fighting a war. About playing with the constitution for political reasons. And about executives taking responsibility, I’m going to try to appeal to logic.

“Saddam Hussein is a threat to our nation. September the 11th changed the strategic thinking, at least, as far as I was concerned, for how to protect our country. My job is to protect the American people. It used to be that we could think that you could contain a person like Saddam Hussein, that oceans would protect us from his type of terror. September the 11th should say to the American people that we're now a battlefield, that weapons of mass destruction in the hands of a terrorist organization could be deployed here at home.

So, therefore, I think the threat is real. And so do a lot of other people in my government. And since I believe the threat is real, and since my most important job is to protect the security of the American people, that's precisely what we'll do.

Our demands are that Saddam Hussein disarm. We hope he does. We have worked with the international community to convince him to disarm. If he doesn't disarm, we'll disarm him.”

- George Bush, March 6, 2003

I believed in the War on Iraq. I also believed that Saddam was supporting terrorists by shipping oil illegally through Syria (source: Wall Street Journal – “Iraq Shipping Large Crude Cargoes, Violating U.N. Rules”, Feb 21. 2003). Syria then sold the oil and financed terrorists operating in Israel that killed Israeli and US citizens. I believed that either of these were reason enough for the war.

The first case panned out not to be true. The second case was never made by the administration. Still, that’s not reason enough to change course. Right?

But then we see that there aren’t enough troops committed. This is not a new criticism. I had the opportunity to eat lunch with Rep. Rahm Emanuel back in March, 2003, right after the war started. He sat next to me and told me that there weren’t enough troops deployed then. The war plan from this administration was flawed from day 1. That’s reason enough to change course.

Now, I have a degree in economics. I believe that active fiscal policy is slightly less effective at managing an economy than Dusty Baker is at controlling team outbursts. I believe in free tade and a balanced budget. This administration has given away the farm to the farmers. Given drugs to seniors in a program they don’t like and that is too expensive. Given protectionist tariffs to the steel industry that cost more jobs than it saved. And run up a deficit that will cost us all somewhere between $30 billion and $65 billion in additional taxes, just in interest costs, every year. That’s plenty of reason to change course, especially with the rest of the reasons.

So why John Kerry? Is he any better?

I have no idea.

What I do know is that this country works best when the government does nothing and business does its business. In 1998, the economy rolled when Congress investigated Monicagate and did little else.

Not a coincidence in my book.

John Kerry represents divided government. That’s a plus. I urge you to vote for gridlock. For divided government. If you can’t vote for Kerry, then vote for a democrat for congress and senate where you live.

But most of all, vote. No more Floridas.

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