Tuesday, September 30, 2008
I waited until I could watch the debate and do some thinking before sharing my thoughts on the presidential race. While I don't consider myself highly educated in politics (I am married to Hans), I do have opinions on the current issues.
Before you start reading this, I should let you know where I stand so, if you hate the things I say, you can find another blog to read. :) I'm a liberal person. I think health care should be universal. I believe in gay rights and support gay marriage. I try every day to be more aware of the environment. I think global warming is a serious, human-created issue. I believe offshore drilling is an atrocity, that dumping 90,000 tons of drilling fluid and metal cuttings into the ocean PER OIL RIG is a sin. I also believe in stricter gun laws, the separation of church and state and the rights of women to choose. I think "Pro-life Feminist" is an oxymoron. I am against capital punishment and uneducated preemptive military action.
First, the debate. I was highly disappointed in both parties. Politicians are very good at saying a lot about nothing. They are well-practiced in the art of question-avoidance. This debate was supposed to be all about foreign policy and the war in Iraq, and instead half of the time was taken up in tax banter. Now, I know that the United States' current economic crisis is a HUGE matter, and not to be handled lightly. But I was ready to hear about the war, and frankly, I was disappointed in Jim Lehrer (a journalist I grew up watching with my father) for diverting the topic to money in his first question.
Once we got past all of the raised-taxes, lowered-taxes, pork-barrel spending, earmarking, subprime lending, free market vs. governmental regulations talk, most of which went over my head (maybe I should be reading along on Hans' online economics course), there was only a short time for the candidates to discuss the things that matter to me: health care and foreign policy. While Obama mentioned our needing a fixed-healthcare system, McCain didn't touch that one with a ten-foot pole. I don't think his medicare subsidies are the answer. I live in a country right now with socialized medicine and it works enormously better than anything I've ever experienced in the world of private health care. I also liked Obama's comment on making college more affordable, though I believe the arts to be every bit as important as math and science.
And finally, foreign policy. The only thing we learned from this is that McCain would have us send MORE troops to Iraq, and Obama can't stop talking about how we never should have gone to Iraq in the first place (Naturally, Obama, but how are YOU going to fix it?). Obama believes non-preconditioned dialogues with world leaders will improve diplomacy in our foreign relations. I agree. We shouldn't say "I'm not going to talk to you unless you agree, right now, to do what I ask you to do." McCain believes a league of democracies will put the pressure on Iran to cooperate, but he excludes non-democacy-run countries such as Russia and China in that league. Hmmm, those are pretty big, important countries to not include in your little club, McCain....
After the Eve Ensler essay, I decided to learn more about Ms. Palin. She is accused of calling for censorship in her local public library, which would have me ranting and railing, were it true. She is "reported to have said" that a certain book, Daddy's Roommate, "shouldn't be in the library," but she never wrote a formal request to have the book removed. Darn. And I SO wanted to accuse her of book-banning too!! Oh, and by the way, Daddy's Roommate is a children's book about the children of lesbian and gay parents, and I've added it to my "to read" list. Just goes to show what censorship can do!
And the wolves. Yeeshk. She signed a policy that allows the hunting of wolves from helicopters, and even offered a bounty of $150 per wolf killed. Are. You. KIDDING ME?!?!?! Her intention was to increase the moose population with this "predator control program." Funny enough, do you know what one of her favorite pasttimes is? You got it, moose hunting!! So DIE WOLVES, DIE! How DARE you take all of the good game!
Here is the rest of the list of her record:
Lifetime member of the NRA
Supports capital punishment
Opposes same-sex marriage
Supports denying state health benefits to same-sex couples
Pro-life, including cases of rape and incest (which McCain disagrees with, oddly)
Member of "Feminists for Life" (the oxymoron)
Wants to remove polar bears AND beluga whales from threatened species list
Supports drilling and building of pipelines in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
Says global warming isn't man-made, but later said "We gotta do something about it!"
Supports preemptive military action
All in all, Sarah Palin is for everything I am against, and against everything I am for. So, Eve Ensler, I applaud you.