Monthly Archives: May 2008

Bush, McCain, & Hoover

The economic policies of the Bush Administration are not unprecedented. Like Ronald Reagan before him, and John McCain should he succeed him, George W. Bush is dismantling the government put in place by Presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, James Earl Carter, and William Jefferson Clinton.

I expect my government to plan for the future and regulate corporate behavior the way I expect it to secure the borders, protect the air, water, and natural resources, and provide protection from muggers, rapists, and other criminals. As a thinking, voting, and tax paying citizen, I demand it. However, Bush, and McCain, like Herbert Hoover, believe that “Rugged Individualism” means not “one nation under God” but “every man for himself” and that government interference in the economy is “socialism.” Hoover stood tall on the campaign trail in 1928, saying “Our country has become the land of opportunity … not merely because of the wealth of its resources and industry, but because of freedom of initiative and enterprise.”

Unfortunately however, the reality of that Republican Administration fell short of ideal when the excesses of the non-regulated 1920’s created the Great Depression. Hoover, personally unaffected by the Depression, until unemployed in 1933, stood rigid and wooden, a slave to his beliefs and misconceptions, unwilling and unable to help his fellow citizens.

Similarly, Bush stood idly by in the face of Hurricane Katrina, impotent, unable to do anything but pat Michael Brown, his well-connected friend, the head of FEMA, on the back and say ‘Heck of a job’. He ignored the intelligence on bin Laden and Al Queda before Sept. 11, and has sinced mired our brave armed forces in a civil war in Iraq. He does nothing to spur the development of Clean Energy – Solar, Wind, Geothermal, Marine Current, etc., choosing instead to beg the Saudis to produce more oil.

We Americans, in the midst of The Great Depression, knew better than elect a laissez-faire Republicanista to the White House in 1932. Will we know better today?

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Multiculturalism is not the issue

This was published in the Asbury Park Press, on line, and in the Asbury Park Press Community Reporter, Thursday, May 22, 2008.

LETTER OF THE WEEK: Parker’s column on presidency lacked logic

Kathleen Parker is wrong in her May 15 commentary, ” “Full-bloodedness’ making difference in presidential choice,” in the Asbury Park Press. I see three problems, none of which is “multiculturalism.”

First, the competition is tough. There are 800 million people in India and 1.3 billion in China. Not all of them are smart, not all of them are aggressive and not all of them are tough. We are outnumbered 7 to 1. They don’t all have to be smart, aggressive and tough, but enough of them are.

Second, we’ve become a nation of welfare queens. We drive our 10 mpg SUVs to the mall where we borrow money to buy junk that doesn’t last, junk we are convinced we need, junk that is built by the people from whom we borrow the money, junk for which we’ll be paying long after it’s thrown into the landfills.

We got soft. We’re not all that smart, tough or aggressive anymore.

Third, we trapped our soldiers in a quagmire in the crossfire of a civil war in Iraq. We toppled an evil dictator but our leaders didn’t see that in his place would arise a power struggle. This has cost 4,000 American lives, 30,000 arms, hands or legs and $500 billion to $1 trillion, with no end in sight.

I don’t know if stupidity, arrogance and incompetance are impeachable, but they should be.

We need to return to our roots, to what president Theodore Roosevelt called “actual life” and “the strenuous life.” As he said in Chicago on April 10, 1899, “No country can long endure if its foundations are not laid deep in the material prosperity which comes from thrift, from business energy and enterprise, from hard, unsparing effort in the fields of industrial activity; but neither was any nation ever yet truly great if it relied upon material prosperity alone.”

Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln and John Kennedy were great leaders of a great nation.

John McCain would lead a nation that looks like him — old, weak, and tired.

Hillary Clinton would lead a nation that was once bright, beautiful and optimistic, that remains ambitious, but has become bitter and disillusioned.

Barack Obama will lead a nation that dares to be bold, that dares to be great.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized