For me this election is about the economy, the short-term and long-term fiscal stability of the United State, and a diverse and secure energy policy. If we do not get a handle on those things, you can forget about all the rest because there won’t be a United States of America anymore. We will soon likely have a country in Chapter 11 with foreign governments helping us “reform” or the World Bank treating us like Haiti. Our AAA bond rating will be downgraded meaning that we will have to pay a higher interest rate on our debt which will overnight increase the trillions in unfunded liabilities that are not being addressed.
More than ever we need a leader that will care more for this country than for his party. After more than a year of pure political torture (and hundreds of millions of wasted dollars – the economy seems good enough for Obama to raise more than $390 million off the backs of the “working people”), this 4 November 2008 we will finally get to vote for president of the United States of America. Our choices: Barack Obama (D) and John McCain (R). Given these choices I wonder why I should even vote for president. I would be better off with a box “None of the Above” or “Can I please have a real choice?”
Why should I vote for Barack Obama?
The main reason to vote for Obama is that after the last 40 years we need something new. Obama is young, energetic, healthy, dashing, and a decent orator with a teleprompter. He would bring life back into the stale politics of old, white men. Obama had it right when he opposed the start of the war in Iraq.
Why I should not vote for Barack Obama?
His main mantra is bringing change to Washington, D.C. Yet his policies are largely the policies of the democratic party. The only change he will bring is who sits in the White House, and thankfully that was going to occur regardless. I do not agree with the majority of his policies. From biofuels to taxes, he comes across as a naïve upstart. After the last 8 years I want a president that I think is smarter than me. Obama is definitely not smarter than I am. He is first and foremost a politician that can give a good prepared speech.
Here are a few reasons I will not be voting for Barack Obama:
- He thinks people that make $250,000 are rich. Really? He would increase taxes on the “rich” and cut taxes on the lower middle class at the same time he is proposing billions in new spending. That does not equate to a balanced budget. We simply cannot afford more deficit spending.
- Like his main rival, his energy policy is too one sided and not diversified. Obama likes biofuels. Any civilization that burns food should be severely punished in my opinion. His policy relies too much on alternatives with no realistic fossil fuel bridge. By the way, we still need oil to make the stuff we use everyday – you know, stuff like plastics, drugs, chemicals, and hundreds of thousands of other everyday items we take for granted.
- He wanted to sell oil out of the strategic reserve to lower gas prices. I suppose he does not understand what strategic means unless he thinks it means pandering.
- He believes climate change should and can be fought. The war on climate change brought to by Al Gore. We have seen how effective the war on poverty, the war on drugs, and the war on terror have been (ergo wasted trillions of dollars for very little to show for it).
- Obama preaches change yet he picks an entrenched career politician, fellow senator Joe Biden, for his vice president. Biden has been in the senate for 36 years. Obama complains that McCain has not made any meaningful changes during his 22 years in congress, yet Obama picks a stale old white man to be his running mate. For all his supposed foreign policy expertise, Biden suggested dividing Iraq up into three countries; that would have had disastrous consequences.
- Obama thinks that a strong economy will strengthen the dollar and lower gas prices except he wants cap-and-trade for carbon dioxide (higher energy prices) and he is silent on debt, a balanced budget, and unfunded liabilities (strength of the dollar). A strong economy needs a secure financial structure and cheap energy…endless do loop begins.
- He thinks it is the government’s responsibility to grow the economy. Here he is wrong again - the government is there is provide a stable and responsible platform from which the economy can grow.
- Obama thinks we should to take to people like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, President of Iran, who has called for wiping Israel off the map. He naively holds the belief that if only we talked to Iran and engaged them they would not be so belligerent. Looking back at history I see now how effective Chamberlain was in preventing WWII by talking to Hitler.
- For all his talk about reaching across the aisle, there is very little evidence of it. We need someone that will get past the Karl Rove divisive political game. I do not see Obama rising above typical Washington, D.C. politics despite all his "talk".
- Then there are all of his personal entanglements with unrepentant domestic terrorists and racist preachers. Given his quick and convenient disassociation with these people that have supposedly formed him as a man one wonders what he really believes in.
I look at the Obama platform and I see BIG GOVERNMENT. I see us moving closer to socialism where we tax the crap out of everyone and “fairly redistribute” wealth; I see this country digging itself deeper and deeper into debt with yet more failed government and more debt that our children and grandchildren should not be on the hook for. The net result of his platform is that the government will take care of us from cradle to grave. That is fine for hazardous waste management but not for the future of this country.
Why should I vote for John McCain?
He is the maverick. He is a straight talker and calls it as he sees it. He is a fighter and a survivor. Instead of giving up in Iraq he supported the surge (it appears to have been the right move, but the jury is still out on that one). He is saying the right things when it comes to both the democrats and republicans being at fault for the financial crisis. He does not want to bail out any more banks and financial companies. Unlike Obama, he has reached across the aisle, working with Kennedy and Lieberman (of course, we can debate the wisdom of the legislation that came from those pairings). On the face of it, his vice-presidential pick of a reform-minded Sarah Pahlin is refreshing (although her negatives are outweighing her positives). Overall, I believe him more than Obama when it comes to bringing reform (change) to government.
Why should I not vote for John McCain?
Here again, after the last 8 years of Bush I want someone smarter than I am. I want someone with good judgment. There is the stigma that he will be beholden to his party and his party is stuck in the backwoods when it comes to social issues. The republicans also have not shown that they can govern for the people and not for big business.
Here are a few reasons I will not be voting for John McCain:
- McCain is yet another old, white man from the entrenched political establishment. Instead of running a country the guy should be in Florida enjoying retirement. We need a leader that understands the role technology plays in today’s society. I am not sure McCain understands that role. There is also the likelihood that he will die in office during his first term.
- He has stated that we may need 5 more years of budget deficits. We can no longer afford to NOT have a balanced budget. I am not sure he understands the gravity of the situation we are in.
- How can we afford his proposed tax cuts? We are already running a deficit and McCain’s proposals would just increase the deficits. The suggestion of tax cuts increasing revenue just does fly especially when our economy is being hit with this mortgage crisis that is sending it into a tailspin. The bailouts only make the situation more tenuous.
- His vice-presidential pick, Sarah Pahlin, has made statements that worry me. How can I vote for a ticket on which there is a person that would not even allow abortion in the case of rape or incest?
- Although McCain had an interesting pick for vice president, her inexperience and religious right baggage will ultimately be the downfall of the ticket. I have no interest in having another born-again like Bush in the White House.
- McCain’s energy policy is lopsided to the policy of drill here, drill now. We need a balanced approach which only Paris Hilton seems to understand.
- He appears to be a war monger. Just like Obama, he has a naïve approach when it comes to Iran and Islamic fundamentalism. McCain’s policy is at the opposite end of spectrum from Obama’s.
I look at the McCain platform and I see more of the same failed policies of the Bush administration. Our international standing is at all time low and I doubt McCain can help that.
There you have it; all the reasons to simply skip over the presidential part of the ballot on 4 November 2008. Concentrate on the local elections, although to be honest, until we get a true centrist third party what’s the point. The whacked out fringes of the two party system will continue to dictate the worthlessness of the majority of the candidates that we can elect.