City of Roses
Well, with all true respect, Balladeer, I'm here to "swagger" like Bush likewise did last night and say Bush is not the right man for this job another four years by saying, "Look at his record these past four years!"
Bush is going to become the first president since Herbert Hoover in 1932 to have a net loss in job creation during a term. Not ONE job has been created in net gain! Bush uses the recession, September 11th and the war in Iraq as excuses. Well, we've been through World War II. Vietnam. The Korean war. The Gulf War. The Cold War. And in every single one of these difficult times, somehow we're STILL capable of at least having a net gain in job creation, from the era of Franklin D. Roosevelt to the era of Bill Clinton. We're 821,000 jobs in the hole since Bush took office, and Bush won't have enough time to replace them all by the end of this term.
Bush's environmental record is arguably the WORST in American history. It certainly is agreed the worst by many in the Environmental Protection Agency. Over 200 environmental laws have been rolled back. New autism, ADD and cancer cases are on the rise. Three times the level of mercury is being released into the atmosphere from power plants. Premature deaths caused from pollution by coal-burning power plants have risen to 24,000. As much as 16% of women of child-bearing agenow, in fact, have blood mercury levels such that their fetuses may experience mercury levels in the womb at levels higher than what the EPA considers safe. The Bush Administration has even exempted the Tongass National Forest from the Roadless Area Conservation Rule, allowing commerical logging in previously "roadless" wilderness areas. Nine million acres that make up one of the largest forests in North America is endangered because of this, and 100-year sequoias are being cut down in the Sequoia National Monument. Being a great lover and believer of the environment, I can go on and on about his terrifying environmental record.
But, of course, the most serious woe of Bush's record these past four years is his war in Iraq.
We have spent over $120 billion in Iraq, fighting a senseless, immoral war that has only incited more terrorism, polarized this nation and seperated the peoples of Iraq.
The CIA, Rumsfeld, and Blair all have something in common here. They admit there are no stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, the thesis that the Bush Administration used in taking us to war. On top of that, there is no clear connection between Saddam and 9/11.
Now Bush is defending this war simply on the belief that Saddam was a bad guy. That's it!!!
This $87 billion alone our government has spent for Iraq could have went to so many other things. It’s approximately nine times what the government spends on Special Education. Ten times what the government spends on environmental protections. Seven times what the government spends on Title I for low income schools. Eight times the total given in Pell Grants for college tuition. And...frankly...87 times what the government spends on after school programs.
And what do we get out of this? Over a thousand of our young men and women have been killed. Tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians as well. Thousands more with life-afflicting injuries. Men coming home with uranium contamination and their wives giving birth to children missing fingers, toes and sometimes full hands or feet. Members of the municipal council of Basra have reportedly been holding talks with officials in the provinces of Missan and Dhiqar to set up their own autonomous states from Iraq.
And on top of that, the violence continues to rise each month. In September, we had a total of 2,368 attacks occur across Iraq in the past thirty days. 2,368!!! Rumsfeld has even admitted in a radio interview that the violence in Iraq has gotten worse and even expects it to get even more worse in approaching the elections in Iraq come January. Personally, it pains me deeply, as if 2,368 incidents weren’t already enough, to imagine even more occur this month. In November. In December.
The fact is, over half of Americans believe America is heading in the wrong direction. EVERY poll says that. What that tells me is that a majority of Americans already feel like giving Bush the one-way fare ticket back to Crawford, Texas, but have just been waiting for Kerry to make his case. And seeing how Kerry has earned a big bounce from winning that first debate, it is clear Kerry may have set it out.
I look back on Kerry’s record, and acknowledge he certainly isn’t the man with the perfect attendance record, in fact among those further from it. But I find voting against many weapons systems and such in twenty years rather modest compared to the troubling record of Bush these past four years, That’s a fifth of the time we’re comparing to Kerry here, and though a little less than half are truly with Kerry, over half are unhappy with what this administration has done.
If anything, I hope Kerry critiques Bush’s domestic record these past four years on the economy, environment, health care, etc. with more force than he did in St. Louis. That’s what I hope to see at Arizona State this Wednesday!
"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20