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Posts Tagged ‘iraq’


Whatever happened to the national goals of a Strong National Defense, Fiscal Responsibility, Energy Independence, Free Market Solutions, and Individual Liberty? Why have we moved 180 degrees from this goal — a goal that made this country great?

National Defense

Over the past eight years we have worn down and, as of the latest poll of military morale, demoralized our once superb fighting force. We have had two long wars fought with politician oversight, mostly not to win, but to avoid losing. Why are we repeating mistakes of prior wars? We seem to use a calculator and a checkbook to measure our commitment to a fight, rather than providing an all out commitment to win rapidly and decisively.

In an effort to avoid drawing out the Afghan war further, our President, is considering a plan to wind down this conflict and either fight a small scale war or leave entirely. His personally appointed Afghan Commander has provided the President with a plan to win the war, but needs a greater commitment from the White House – a commitment that the White House appears unwilling to make. What the White House, and the many others, who decry that the Afghan war grinds on interminably fail to grasp simple plan. The plan is that similar to the strategy of World War II, where the Pacific Theater was fought as a holding action until the European Theater was won, we have fought a holding action in Afghanistan while we won the Iraqi war.

Our President needs to understand that the reason we went into Afghanistan was that the Taliban were allowing Al Qaeda to move freely, train freely, and constitute a large fighting and terror delivery force. Pulling out of Afghanistan or downsizing the war will embolden the Taliban and re-constitute a powerful al Qaeda. Pulling out now will waste the lives of those who have fallen and the sacrifice of those who suffered injury and permanent handicap fighting that holding action so that we could win in Iraq and then take on Afghanistan to win.

Fiscal Responsibility

Under George Bush and a mostly Republican Congress this nation experienced wild spending. Government intervention via a supposed oversight with a manipulated Community Reinvestment Act, allowed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to light the time fuse for a mortgage meltdown.

Now, Barack Obama and the Democrat Congress have shown the Republicans just what irrational and fiscally unconscionable spending can be. The Democrat spending in the name of stimulus has been off the charts. Unfortunately, the stimulus bill is only stimulating local governments to continue spending, and providing the Congress with the ability to funnel funds to pet, non-stimulating projects—few long term sustainable jobs have been created. Thus the unemployment rate has crossed the 10% threshold, when it was not supposed to go above 8%. We were told that the fiscal situation had reached a crisis of economic collapse and that the stimulus had to be passed quickly and fully to prevent this. Then we were told that no one could foresee just how bad the crisis was. What is worse than a national economic collapse? This failed stimulus and out of control unemployment rate has forced the administration to count “saved” jobs – a measure that simply cannot be realistically counted.

Energy Independence

The Department of Energy was created to find an alternative to gasoline in the Carter Administration—we see how well that went, yet we are still funding a $70+ billion department filled with bureaucracy.

While we sit on an abundance of oil and natural gas, we are pushing a green energy platform that has no hope of meeting the immense power needs of this country in the next ten years. Last year, we produced a little more than 2% of our energy from wind and solar. We have abandoned nuclear power – a source for clean energy, with albeit a disposal problem – yet European nations, and especially France have embraced nuclear. We are seeking to cripple this nation’s resource of cheap energy with Cap and “Tax” — sorry, Cap and Trade. According to CBS News, this effort will raise each family’s home energy bill by $1,761.

This tax will also affect business and everything you consume, by raising prices on just about all good and services originating in this country. This will be a cascading tax. The tax on a tax will have a cascading effect and will hamper small business’ ability to create jobs—these are the folks who generally create about 70% of the jobs in this country. What is absolutely dumbfounding about this effort is that the U.N.’s climate projection models which equated the increase in CO2 with a corresponding increase in earth’s temperature have been proven wrong with actual data. (Jeffrey Ball, Wall Street Journal, Monday, November 2, 2009)

On the matter of this insane backbreaking energy restriction on our economic growth, at a time when we need economic growth to pay down our gargantuan, out of this world debt, I can only assume we have gone mad.

Free Market Solutions

In just about a year, reaching back into the Bush administration, we apparently decided that government knows better that the individual. Government of the people, by the people, and for the people, has become government by and of the elected to the people not for the people — a dangerous change.

We have seen how bond holders suffered a lapse of the rule of law in the way bankruptcies were adjudicated, with unions actually being placed first in line above bond holders. We have seen how executives are being capped on earnings. Yes, there may have been abuses, but the government need not be and should not be the arbiter of how much someone in the private sector can make. Rather the shareholders should have been given more power to control the Boards of these “run a muck” companies, and to control the compensation of the top executives.

We have seen how our government has taken ownership of, and is managing private enterprise companies, like General Motors. Enough! Government can’t manage government, yet win at private enterprise. There is enough corruption in Congress today to greatly overshadow the “greedy” corporate executives, who we have been told are the scourge of the earth and the source of all our problems, by our corrupt government in Washington. For starters, just think about those sweetheart mortgage deals to Chris Dodd and others.

Individual Liberty

The 2,000 page House Bill (H.R. 3962) and the even bigger Senate Bill are supposed to provide health care for those who are uninsured, yet they do not. Too many uninsureds remain uninsured, despite the bills. The final bill will have a front loaded tax revenue stream and a back load delivery date, and it will still costs nearly a Trillion dollars. These bills severely infringe on individual rights and liberty. These bills require individuals to purchase health care insurance or be subject to fines and even jail time.  One taxes small business and both will lead to a single payer universal health care system run by the government.

Why don’t we just buy health insurance for the uninsured – it would be substantially cheaper. These 2,000 page bills are really not intended to provide health insurance for the uninsured. If they did only intend to insure the uninsured, they would only need to be 100 or so pages. Instead the Democrats hide their true agenda behind 2,000 pages wherein they control of our lives and our bodies. Remember how hard the Democrats fought and continmue to fight to allow a woman a choice over her body— “reproductive rights”.  Why then do the Democrats now wish to control every other part of our bodies?

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MSNBC’s debate last evening focused on three themes. The health insurance debate, of which there is little difference between the plans of Senators Clinton and Obama, non-issue oriented questions of both moderators, and how NAFTA is ruining Ohio. First, the loss of jobs in Ohio is tied to the extensive use of technology in manufacturing, and the worldwide competitiveness of a multitude of manufacturing nations and our governments failure to prepare us to compete in a fierce worldwide trade market. It has little to do with Canada, whose manufacturing industry is on the decline, and Mexico which is responsible for only 11% of our imports – these two nations are NAFTA. Do you think one moderator or candidate might have pointed out the trade problem distinction – if the candidates did not know the distinction, then find new candidates, because neither is ready to be President?

Beyond this apparent gaff, I can tell you I have had about enough of debate questions designed to incite. I would hope that moderators would refrain from asking – How do you feel about your opponent’s attacks on you? The moderators clearly either don’t want to do fact checked follow-up questions or are just not knowledgeable enough to do these necessary questions. I need to be fair and point out that the overall news media in general, not just MSNBC, has not served this nation well with the choice of moderators for most of the debates. They seem more inclined to talk feelings, attack ads, and gotcha quotes. Often the political leaning of the moderator falls out all over their desk like a spilled can of red paint. It is noticed. Does anyone with a brain really care what these media types think and how they lean politically?

Why can’t we have a debate where tough questions are asked that test the knowledge, readiness to lead, the judgment of the candidate, and the enterprise to work through the political mine field to achieve a goal? Why does it appear that questions are tailored for the candidate, either to make them look poorly or to make them look presidential – okay, we might know the answer to that question? Of course, the positions of the candidates need to be learned; however, these positions are usually on their web site or in their campaign handouts or can be found in their opponent’s attack ads.

One moderator, last night, did make an attempt at asking the same hypothetical question to each candidate, but the question had a predictable answer before it was asked. It had something to do with – if Iraq asked us to leave, would we leave. Duh! What candidate, in their right mind, after the U.S. has recognized Iraq as a sovereign nation, would say – no we will stay anyway. Of course they would say – yes we will leave. This is the best this highly trained moderator could come up with?

Perhaps each candidate should be asked different questions, perhaps placed in envelopes chosen at random by each candidate. The moderator points out that these are tough question with no easy answers.

  1. The moderator opens the envelope and then asks the hypothetical but realistic question: Senator, as President, you have pulled out of Iraq, Iran has filled the void in Iraq and has now taken control of the Strait of Hormuz. It now controls 60% of the world’s oil exports. Iran is refusing oil shipments to the United States. How do you respond to this threat?
  2. The moderator opens the next envelope, selected by the next candidate, and asks: Three years from now, Iran hits Israel with a low yield nuclear tipped missile, 10,000 are dead, and Israel is mobilizing to go to nuclear war with Iran. How do you respond to this crisis?

These questions are realistic, the solutions are cloudy, but the depth of a candidate’s response to the question will tell us a whole lot about the candidate. When will we start to ask tough questions of these candidates? The media today is not providing any help in picking candidates. The media is more fixated on what Bill Cunningham said, who released the goofy picture of Senator Obama, or printing a story on page one that there is rumor and suspicion that Senator McCain may have possibly had an affair with a lobbyist and possibly or perhaps could have done favors on behalf of that lobbyist, like send a letter to the FCC asking a government agency only to make a decision – not how to make the decision. What are they teaching in journalism school – Tabloid 101?

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