Wednesday, October 13, 2004

More Politics

It rained all day yesterday, the first time (I think) since I've been here. All in all, it wasn't a big deal because it was a steady, light rain and I spent most of the day inside studying.

To continue the theme, I have several more comments about the politics of the day.

1. One reader suggests that the Dems are the problem because they are "the other guys" and not a great choice. While that is certaintly true at the moment, I'm not so harsh on the Dems. They're still reeling from the stunning losses of 02 and their leadership is not great. Bill Clinton was a great political leader (with one giant weakness - big girls), but the nature of his presidency left a bad taste in the DNCs mouth. The other problem the Dems have is that they've given up the most important issues that distinguish themselves from the GOP - Gun control, Death Penalty, Abortion, just to name a few. They do still pay lip service on abortion, but they rarely defend it on the national level. Gun control is almost never talked about, and these days, most Dems support the death penalty.

2. The Dems don't engage in the same type (or as bad) dirty tricks:

a) Voter Registration Fraud - According to an investigative report by the CBS affliliate in Las Vegas, thousands of newly registered voters are unlikely to be able to vote because they registered as Democrats. The firm involved was hired by the GOP and "lost" or discarded the Dems that registered. Read it here. It's also happening in South Dakota.

b) Using airwaves for political message under the pretext of "documentary" - Some may have heard of the Sinclair Broadcasting Group's plan to air a "documentary" produced by the Swift Boat people. Sinclair controls 1/4 of the nation's TV affiliates - so that's a huge market. There would be no problem if the Swift Boat people were buying the air time, but they're not. Instead, the republican head of the company is ordering everyone to play it as if it was "news" or even remotely accurate. To put this in context, the group that produced this "documentary" also produced a film defending The Reverend Moon (a crazy fuck). The current FCC Chairman, an unsavory sort - just ask Howard Stern - has written a letter to Sinclair stating that this move violates the public trust since the airways are public property.

3. Both sides play it "loose with the truth", but the GOP side is worse, in my opinion. They intentionally take things out of context, they just flat out ignore that the situation in Iraq is getting worse, every report that is critical of the occupation they flatly state proves their claim that the war was necessary, and they are incredibly anti-democratic in that when former power players in Iraq (like Paul Bremer) state that the US never had enough troops on the ground, the admin forces him to recant (partially - he stuck to his guns, which I thought was admirable).

I really think that the "difficult" choice that Americans are facing are the result of two problems:

1. John Kerry's inability to connect with voters on important issues like economic policy.
2. The GOP's incredibly dirty assault on Kerry and his record. I have no problem with the flip flop strategy - I don't agree that he's a flip flopper, but it's a legit strategy. I do have a tremendous problem with lying to the American people in a desperate attempt to secure a second term for the least common denominator.


Blogger Eric said...

Oh, and lastly, to whomever criticized your positions on Bush as being overly harsh, how is that possible? I mean unless you use a standard similar to how fucked can the US and the World get in as short a time as possible, I cant really see what he has managed to accomplish that is impressive or even noteworthy.

9:12 AM  

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