First, props to the lark' for shamelessly using her webfame to sucker people into reading my senseless trash. Nothing says friendship like....
Regarding the philosophy of politics in the U S of A: (I promise I'll abstain from talking about this stuff for a week after this post)
I find it hilarious that in the states', the word "liberal" is a swear word, and people have actually succeeded in creating a mass paranoia tied to the creation of labels that identify someone as such.
It's the exact opposite in Canada. When our imperfect Liberal Party wanted to get re-elected, they drummed up the image of the right-wing nut-job Conservative party, and managed to scare half the undecided voters of Canada into voting for them instead of letting the Conservatives in to office. Incidentally, I thought it was a pretty cheap way to go, and it should have cost them the election, but it didn't.
I just thought it would be interesting to point out.
I think it also speaks to the fundamental differences between Canada and the United States, and to the reason that most Canadians are hoping and praying that you folks will turf Bush. We're a 'liberal' leaning centrist country. Uh-oh. I guess that means that since we are closer to embodying the values of that evil John Kerry than that of St. Bush, we would clearly have massive deficits, be victims of multiple terror attacks resulting from weak leadership, have an inefficient and pathetic health care system, a poorly educated society, and have a ridiculously high crime rate.
Oops. We don't. One of the best health care systems in the world (public at that), one of the best education systems in the world, respect from most of the world as peacekeepers, BUDGET SURPLUSSES, a much lower crime rate than the USA, etc..... (believe it or not, I'm not trying to toot my country's horn, I'm just trying to point out that liberal stereo-types are pretty flawed at the core, and yes, I know, the US is bigger than us and the leader of the free world, but that doesn't mean that they can't still learn a thing or two from others)
All of these successes were delivered under the umbrella of a predominantly LIBERAL ideology and government. Hell, the name of the party is the same as their location on the political fence. It's a miracle that we haven't become a haven for terrorists or something. What's my point? To paraphrase Kerry, labels only work if you're trying to scare the electorate into voting for you. Bush has, in his term, achieved the same budgetary results that he is certain only liberals can do. That's just one example. Yes, yes, I know that 911 played a big part in it, but that's my central point. The Bush administration uses 911 as a scape-goat on one end, and then turns around and parades it as a symbol of their war-time prowess (which isn't really that great), and the existing Republicans and uninformed/undecided/fear mongered voters lap it up and declare him re-electable. Amazing how they try to have it both ways. The Bush boosters of the world have consistently ignored his very real errors and gaffes and tragic mistakes, and instead have focused on.... oh my.... Kerry's voting record. Has it ever occurred to them that if the man's voting record has changed over the years, that it doesn't automatically make it a bad thing?
Bush pre-empts half his speeches with "The world changed after 9-11" Fair enough, but if the world changes, shouldn't the way people react to that world, and vote in that world also change? In general, I don't run my life the same way as I did ten years ago. I still have some core principles that guide me, but I don't mindlessly apply the same techniques to different problems. I change and adapt as needed. A good chunk of GW's current administration served under his father, and applies a disturbing number of similar principles to the current administration. The doctrine of pre-emption is not new here, folks, it has been used by the US for decades (a good portion of South America, for example). All that the current crew has done is taken preemption, and applied it to a very different environment. No wonder it's not working.
The bottom line is this: If I had done my job in the last four years the way that Bush had done his job, I would have been fired, and the dude down the hall who had made a few errors for the last twenty years, BUT LEARNED FROM THEM, would have been quickly shuffled into my place.
Whew. I'm done for now. Looking forward to some more worthy philosophical discourse, part of which will be facillitated by the lark.
- ▼ 2004 (20)