Posts Tagged ‘politics’

Is Obama a militarist, a peacenik, or a political waffler and difference-splitter?

June 25, 2011

Distrust of the President, and of the government in general, divides our society, emboldens our enemies, and diminishes the effectiveness of our Armed Forces. We owe our elected leaders more respect than that.

President Obama’s Afghanistan drawdown announcement has drawn fire from the left and from the right. He was pilloried on Fox News, on MSNBC, and on CNN, and even ridiculed on The Daily Show after he announced that the U.S. would withdraw 10,000 troops by the end of 2011, another 23,000 by “next summer,” with continuing reductions through 2014.

To the right, the President is recklessly ignoring the advice of his military professionals who know what’s needed. To the left, he’s mindlessly sticking to a hopeless and pointless strategy. To both sides he’s sacrificed principle for politics.

But has he? Is there any chance that his decision was based on what he thought best? If we Americans trusted him we’d give him that much. But we don’t, at least not much: the latest Gallup poll says that just 35% of Americans say they have a “great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the Presidency; 36% have very little confidence or none at all.

But we do trust the military: 78% of us say they have a “great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence. I’d guess the numbers are even higher on the right. But what happens when the military supports the President? Ah, then it’s a different story. (more…)

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California voters can strike a blow for moderation in politics by passing Proposition 14 in Tuesday’s primary election

June 6, 2010

Do you think President Bush knew about the 9/11 attack in advance, but allowed it to happen in order to advance his and Vice President Cheney’s secret pro-big oil agenda? If so you’re not alone. You and many other Democrats are the people that Democratic candidates target in primary elections. Congratulations.

Do you think President Obama was born in Kenya and is secretly a Muslim, striving to outlaw pork and introduce socialism in America? You and many other Republicans are the people that Republican candidates target in primary elections. Congratulations.

Are you sick about American political life being controlled by wild-eyed extremists. You and many other moderates are the people that California ballot Proposition 14 targets. You have a chance to turn politics back to the people who are trying to solve America’s problems without demonizing members of the other party.

Proposition 14 would change California’s primary election process. It would end separate primaries for each party and make all candidates run in a single primary, with the two candidates receiving the greatest number of votes moving on to the general election ballot regardless of party preference.

This would have a profound effect on the outcomes because candidates would necessarily try to appeal to independent voters and members of the other party, in addition to voters of their own party. (more…)