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Archive for Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Democratic farce

January 31, 2007

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To the editor:

The Bush administration insists the goal of its war in Iraq is to spread democracy to the Middle East. In our midterm elections, the majority of American voters strongly differed with the administration's policy by overwhelmingly voting against the war, an example of exercising our democratic process.

Rather than follow the mandate of voters, President Bush deliberately disregarded the will of the American people and instead is sending 22,000 additional troops to Iraq.

Is this what "democracy" in America is defined as, where a president can summarily defy the decisions of voters and unilaterally place himself above the law of the land in unashamed defiance and contempt of the democratic process to do what he pleases? Is this our message to the world?

Americans, it appears, today have as much control over President Bush as the Iranians have over President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the North Koreans over Kim Jong Il, men who have seized power and set themselves up as demigods. How are we any better if we permit this to happen in America to us?

If Americans accept Mr. Bush's actions, then we have lost democracy; we will have become a farce, a mockery of the democratic free system we once embraced as a shining example for the world to emulate. Is this the reason America went to war? Is this what our military men and women are dying for in Iraq? Is this who we, the people, have finally become?

Curtis D. Bennett,

Lawrence

Comments

ksmoderate 7 years, 10 months ago

This one's kinda sticky. On one hand, I'm personally appalled by this administration's disregard for personal privacy (domestic wiretaps, removal of habeas corpus, reading our mail, checking our library records, and god knows what else that's unamerican). On the other hand, let's all look back to the Revolutionary War, and see what Washington was up against (the Congress and the American people, to an extent). There is a historical basis for giving the prez command of the military and relegating the people's voice (Congress) to an advisory role.

Curtiss 7 years, 10 months ago

W is an unelected idiot, a liar, and a chuckling murderer.

I hope this clears up any confusion about this subject.

Mkh 7 years, 10 months ago

Sorry Curtis but we lost "democracy" a long time ago. This administration has pushed us farther and farther away from our Constitution than we've ever been before. But unfortunately this is only the beginning, in the near future "democracy" and "sovereignty" will be considered ancient termonology. This will be due to the ever expanding Global Free Market, in terms of non-democratic institutions such as the WTO, FTAA, IMF, etc. This is not just a "Republican" or "neo-con" plan either, the Elitist Democrats (like the Clintons) are just as much involved.

You are incorrect to assume that we are trying to "spread democracy" abroad. That is not our intention at all, it is just a catch phrase used when we mean Global Trade Insitutions. That is what we are attempting to spread abroad, the expansion of multi-national corporations in the global market place.

The ironic thing is that is the far-far libertarian-American loving Right and the far-far tree-hugging Left that are coming Together United to try and stop these non-democratic global institutions from permanately destroying our democracy and our sovereignty.

imastinker 7 years, 10 months ago

You guys can impeach Bush and put a Democratic president in, but even none of them is stupid enough to cut tail and run. They talk big, but it's the wrong thing to do. They know it too, but it doesn't look good to be agreeing with Bush right now.

We have to get out of there, but just leaving will allow the extremists access to all kinds of recources and make it ten times worse than it has ever been.

W was elected. Have a problem with the voting process? Take that up with the founding fathers. They thought the public wasn't intelligent tnough to leave voting power directly in their hands. Come to think of it....they may have been a pretty insightful bunch.

Jackalope 7 years, 10 months ago

"Willful ignorance," "blindly following" and "bought into W's lies."

I hope this clears up any confusion about this subject.

Richard Heckler 7 years, 10 months ago

As for the real costs of the war, they could hardly be clearer. Targeted for cutbacks in federal money are virtually all social programs--Medicare and Medicaid, food stamps, housing, job training and child care, education and student loans, environmental protection, public transportation, science research, even veterans' benefits and school funding for children of military personnel.

Jeffrey Garten, dean of the Yale School of Management and former economic and foreign policy official in the Nixon, Ford, Carter, and Clinton administrations, warns that the increases in spending on war and homeland security are "aggravating an already acute fiscal problem, eroding economic vitality" and creating "the kind of politically paralyzing guns-or-butter debate that characterized the Vietnam era."

The direct impact of the war on the economy gives us more guns and less social butter, a constructive outcome for the right wing oligarchy now ruling this country.

More juicy details: http://www.zmag.org/Sustainers/Content/

Even as Iraq verges on splintering into a sectarian civil war, four big oil companies are on the verge of locking up its massive, profitable reserves, known to everyone in the petroleum industry as "the prize."

http://www.alternet.org/waroniraq/43045/?comments=view&cID=257615&pID=2574112003-04/13du_boff.cfm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/newsnight/4354269.stm

http://news.independent.co.uk/business/news/article2132467.ece

Richard Heckler 7 years, 10 months ago

I just read on a blog that McCain is calling for immediate withdrawal and/or cutting off funds for further troop increases. I am now looking for verification.

Richard Heckler 7 years, 10 months ago

Also Iran has offered to rebuild Iraq. I would rather imagine Saudi Arabia and Syria would also contribute.

Gary Sandell 7 years, 10 months ago

Curtis seems to want a pole taken everytime the President needs to make a decision. The "pole" was taken when the President was elected with a free vote of the people. This vote was done in the same way it has been done since this nation started electing Presidents. The President is elected to make certain decisions for us rather than having to vote on every decision that needs to be made.
When things don't go they way we would like them to go then it seems everyone who do not agree with the decisions want the rules to be changed.
The President has to make decisions based on what he thinks is best for the country at times when you go with the best information that you have available and trust the sources that are supposed to be the experts to give you that information. Being in the position of being a "decision maker" you sometimes have to decide on the side that is not always the most popular. Some, who think everything should be voted on would still be trying to decide if we should go to war against the Nazi's and Japan. Oh wait...No we wouldn't! Because we would have been speaking German now and doing the Goose Step!

imastinker 7 years, 10 months ago

Merrill -

you are changing the subject. THis isn't about the cost of the war. It is simply about the president and the democratic process. Do you want to keep throwing out red herrings or do you want to debate the issues?

mick 7 years, 10 months ago

"It'd be alot easier if we had a dictator, as long as I'm the dictator." George W. Bush. His handlers reinvent the reasons for us being over there whenever it is convenient. They are not interested in "winning" only in dragging this thing out.

imastinker 7 years, 10 months ago

It's a red herring because that's not even the subject of this letter. Merrill is trying to prove his point by drawing on the unpopularity of the iraq war.

The writer is talking about the presidents power and the democratic process. 8 billion dollars is irrelevant. Hiw point would be just as valid or invalid if it was 80 dollars per month or 80 billion dollars per month.

imastinker 7 years, 10 months ago

The president reported that we had information that Iraq had weapons of Mass Destruction.

The most dangerous - or one of them - was a strain of smallpox that was resistant to the vaccine. This came from Moscow, and when the USSR fell, much of this type of thing went into the black market.

This had the possibility to bring the world to it's knees, and kill a significant portion of the worlds population. It is believed that they found the freezers it was held in, but the smallpox is believed to have been incinerated or sold.

Read "The demon in the Freezer." It's actually a very interesting book, and available on audio tape.

imastinker 7 years, 10 months ago

merrill -

what's the deal with Iran? They are now the ideal democracy with which to help replace iraq's government?

Now I've heard it all.

allateup 7 years, 10 months ago

curtiss......"W is an unelected idiot" ???? please explain

Richard Heckler 7 years, 10 months ago

imastinker,

1997 0r 1998 newesweek did a story about Iraq dumping it's WMD's to avoid a Clinton action however Clinton did maintain the no fly zone. This effectvely kept Saddam under our thumb while navy fighters constantly were taking out radar sites and and anti aircarft guns. So Saddam did not have a lot to offer in the way of a threat. No way was the wildman going to be able to wander off and threaten other oil fields again. Saddam was contained much to his disdain. Reagan/Bush made Saddam militarily strong during their tenure.

mick 7 years, 10 months ago

Bush just doesn't care. Here's a joke he has used on numerous occasions, this quote from a Mar 27, 2002 luncheon. "I was campaigning in Chicago one time and a fellow said, would you ever allow for deficit spending, would that ever enter your vocabulary? I said, well, under certain circumstances: only if we're at war or there was a national emergency or there was a recession. Little did I realize we'd draw the trifecta." (laughter)

drewdun 7 years, 10 months ago

rt - you're really on a roll today.

Did you forget your tether to reality again?

Loser.

deec 7 years, 10 months ago

shrub wasn't elected in 2002. He was appointed by the Supreme Court on a close vote. In 2006, Ohio election officials gave him the election, and some officials have gone to jail as a result.

BorderRat 7 years, 10 months ago

Hey deec, if the court, the "hanging chads" and Ohio had gone the other way in those elections, would you still argue that Gore and Kerry had not been elected? I think not. Do you only whine when it suits you?

roundabouts2000 7 years, 10 months ago

Back to the original letter:

The USA is a republic and not a democracy. Once a knucklehead is voted into office they can pretty much do whatever they want. The elected official does not have to follow the will of their constituents or ask for a show of hands. It's doubtful the person will be reelected, but if that is not their priority then watch out.

You may now resume your discussion.

deec 7 years, 10 months ago

Do you only make personal attacks when it suits YOU?

imastinker 7 years, 10 months ago

Hey - all I did was answer the question. The fact is that we are there. Either Saddam outwitted us or our intelligence failed us. Either way - arguing about it now is worse than a complete waste of time. The question needs to be "what do we do now."

We HAVE to do the RIGHT thing. What that is is open to interpretation.

The rest of the discussion is a waste of time.

Gary Sandell 7 years, 10 months ago

All we'll hear about for the next 2 years is "Billary".

drederick_tatum 7 years, 10 months ago

Hoooooooooooold up......

Bush is an idiot, I will not deny that. But last time I checked he wasn't calling for the Jews to be wiped off the planet, or starving our people to death, or turning 11% of America into fenced-in gulags, or trying to summon Jesus by starting a nuclear war.

That would in fact be the people we are fighting, and the reason they are evil and need to be dealt with. Our govermnent may lie about the way we like to rip other countries off, but our enemies DON'T lie about the way their Dear Leaders and Fuhrers want to NUKE OTHER COUNTRIES like Israel, Japan and ourselves. I'm sure when it happens our politicians will immediately try to find out which party's fault it was: the one that lost its balls or the one that never had any to begin with?

ASBESTOS 7 years, 10 months ago

drederick:

"I'm sure when it happens our politicians will immediately try to find out which party's fault it was: the one that lost its balls or the one that never had any to begin with?"

That sums it all up, no matter which side you support.

VERY VERY GOOD post and thought process.

Mkh 7 years, 10 months ago

Our govermnent may lie about the way we like to rip other countries off, but our enemies DON'T lie about the way their Dear Leaders and Fuhrers want to NUKE OTHER COUNTRIES like Israel, Japan and ourselves

Yes...however I hope your not overlooking the way our government DOES lie about wanting to NUKE Other Countries. You can call them 'Dear Leaders' and 'Fuhrers' just as easily.

Interesting you'd should note Japan, especially after all August 6th, 1945 was the launch of the World's first/only nuclear attack, followed three days later by the last atomic attack.

Let us not forget that our "Enemy" Iran is not an Old Enemy, they are infact an Old friend that "went astray". We gave Iran it's first nuclear reactor, we gave even more to Iraq. And of course we have been arming Israel to the Teeth for half a century.

There is NOT a PARTY at Fault, there is a SYSTEM. There is an entire way of thinking and philosphy at Fault. War is not the right means to economic prosperity. There is a Miltary-Industrial Complex that had taken over not only our government, but along with Special Interest Groups has taken away our Economic and Political Liberty. This is the Beast of the Global Market Economy.

Our foreign policy agenda is directly linked to our non-Democratic Global Economic agenda, and Both Dems. and Repubs. are to BLAME.

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