Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Political Thoughts

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.


Rick said...

yeah, she's a b-tch. Anyways, i love the wolf on the front, cause that basically describes me...Lone wolf....that's me. I can't line up with either of those guys. Obama has lost alot of support, I think, because he is so wishy-washy - he hasn't said smack about doing ANYTHING of substance (this is wrong and that is wrong - - the current administration messed up here and here and here.) He hasn't given one real bit of actual substance to his call for change.

Because I'm every bit as liberal as you, I'm obvously not in bed with McCain and his little lady, so I'm going to look at the third party candidates. Its become my conviction that if we are to end the endless line of sucky "yes-ma'ams" that the parties line up for the presidental race, we need to dethrone the two parties. get some fresh, NEW ideas on the table. Obviously Johnny Mac or Obama will be the next president, but if we all show our lack of support by going third party, maybe we will open some doors for four years from now.

Maria said...

Disclaimer: Lots of cuss words.

In Obama's defense... he is one of the few Congressmen who voted against the war in Iraq.

McCain is experienced....Obama brings ingenuity...

I'm not sure which one has the answers.

What I do know is that I've been to Iraq (as well as Rwanda, Haiti, Cuba, and Bosnia) and it is Americans who are ignorant.

Who the fuck thought we could walk into the Cradle of Civilization and influence their society?

It is true; Iraqi's are "less civilized" by Western standards. They aren't as "sophisticated" or "polished"...what they are is wise. Just as the Bosnians and the Africans. We couldn't hold a candle to their struggles or their triumph.

Back to our issue...

I prefer "less experienced".
I'd like to see someone go out on a limb for peace...the environment...domestic policy...

The fact that Pakistan elected a female Prime Minister twenty years ago is absolutely telling.

Pakistan...the country that most (educated) Americans would characterize as "fundamental" in their "backwards" society and religious actually 20 years ahead the United States in ACCEPTANCE.

Tolerance: the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.

This is the word Sarah Palin repeatedly used in her debate. I hate this word in the context of rights.

Tolerance? As if we are making exceptions for THEM. Are you fucking serious? So a homosexual or a Jew isn't the same as you and I? Made of some foreign substance?

I will say that after 16 years of seeing the world (thru the Military's eyes)...Americans are as about as backward as they come.

I live in Hawaii. I enjoy the ethnic and cultural diversity. I chose to raise my children here for many reasons, the biggest of which is the UNDERSTANDING, ACCEPTANCE, and ENCULTURATION all of the wonderful diversity Hawaii has to offer.

I believe Barrack Obama knows something about that as well.