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October 23, 2004

Why I voted for the re-election of President Bush

Many of you have asked in the comments sections and such as to why I voted for President Bush. I have finally uploaded a Q&A dialogue that should pretty much answer your questions in regards to this.

You can read it here or click on the extended entry...

As many of you know, and some don't, I sent in an absentee ballot three weeks ago with my vote for President Bush on it. Many have asked me why I am supporting President Bush... his domestic policies are abysmal, and he has supposedly led us into a war at "the wrong place and the wrong time," to put it in the words of John Kerry. So, let me answer some questions that have been asked of me, and I think this will give a good explanation as to why I voted for Bush.

Q: As a self-described "libertarian conservative," how can you vote for a president who has raised federal spending more in two years than Clinton did in eight?

A: I personally believe that President Bush's domestic policies are abysmal. Many of my more conservative friends say that he is actually an economic liberal in conservative Republican dress. However, after a short analysis, I must say that I cannot blame the president for the skyrocketing levels of spending. The primary problem is that President Bush made many promises in the past election, however, without having 60% of the House under the control of the GOP and 60% of the Senate, he cannot push through any of those proposals without compromising with the other side of the isle.

For example: the No Child Left Behind education bill (more on this later). In it are great conservative proposals, such as conducting mandatory testing programs to increase school accountability and voucher programs so that lower income families can get their children out of failing public schools. However, the GOP does not have enough seats in either the House or the Senate to simply pass these proposals, so they had to compromise with the Democrats on the issue. As a result, Congress had to put in a 75% increase in federal education spending in order to pass the bill. Of course, all of this extra spending could have been avoided had President Clinton signed the Balanced Budget Constitutional Amendment when it came to his desk when he was in office...

Currently, the federal budget is $2.4 trillion, up 29% from 2001, or about $69,000 per second. However, I have always felt that the size of the government should be measured based on a comparison with our Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Currently, the federal government consumes 20% of our total GDP of over $12 trillion, and that number is due to decline based on next year's budget projections, bringing it down to 19.8% of GDP. When you compare that to the European economies, where in most countries government spending exceeds 40% of GDP and in some countries, such as France, where it exceeds 50%, you see that we are doing much better as far as spending is concerned than one would think without the comparison.

On this aspect, President Bush can be forgiven, as long as he continues some of the things outlined below...

Q: But isn't much of that new spending related to defense?

A: This is a common Republican fallacy. Yes, President Bush has undertaken a [much needed] increase in defense spending from $282 billion in 2000 (Clinton didn't understand the concept espoused by Robert Heinlein: "The most expensive thing in the world is a second-best military establishment, good but not good enough to win.") to $417 billion in 2004. However, that makes up less than 23% of the total spending increases undertaken between 2000 and 2004.

Most of the increased spending was on non-defense related items, such as [for 2003] a 19.2% increase in the Energy budget, 17.8% in International Affairs, 6.9% in Natural Resources and Environment, 7.9% in Science, Space, and Technology, 4.3% in Agriculture, 16.1% in Transportation, 31.8% in Community and Regional Development, 26.8% in Education, Social Services, Training, and Employment, 36.8% in Health, 10.3% in Income Security, and 29.1% in General Government spending.

Kerry supporters do not want you to see those numbers. If Bush was practicing "Reaganomics," he would have, like Reagan, cut spending in at least 7 of those 11 categories and vetoed numerous bills, which he has not done. In fact, not a single bill passed by Congress has been vetoed by the President.

Reagan must be rolling in his grave... like Reagan, I support cutting non-defense related government spending. However, Kerry supports over $2.1 trillion in new spending! And that's just from campaign promises... imagine how many new increases he will propose once in office!

Q: President Bush is running a huge deficit! How can you support a president running a deficit in excess of 3% of GDP?

A: I've already explained above why spending is out of control, but I think I should make a good point. The greatest and most glorified Democrat, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, ran a deficit in excess of 30% of GDP. In order to reach that point, you'd have to continue the president's current spending policies for about 70 more years under the worst economic circumstances where you see large decrease in productivity, according to The Economist magazine. Democrats who criticize Republicans on this issue should look in the mirror.

Q: You're for a smaller government, so why don't you support John Kerry? As the 1990s demonstrated, a divided government with a Democratic president and a Republican congress will lead to more controlled spending policies.

A. This is correct. However, I shall make only one point concerning this. The 1990s resulted in a defense spending cut in order to balance the budget, because spending on social programs cannot be easily cut, however, defense budgets can. In a time of war when the military is modernizing, this is a very important issue to me.

If this were peacetime, I could possibly support Kerry for this single reason, however not during a period of war.

Q: President Bush's policies are making the U.S. less economically competitive in the world... are they not?

A: The World Economic Forum just rated the United States as the second most competitive economy in the world, contrary to the tall tales Kerry will tell you. However, much remains to be done. President Bush has cut corporate tax rates from the top level of 35% to 32%, in order to counter calls by Kerry to cut it. When countries like Ireland, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Germany, Austria, and Russia have tax rates of 13%, 19%, 16%, 19%, 25%, 25%, and 24%, respectively, we must continue to cut corporate taxes in order to increase our attractiveness to multinational corporations.

Only the Republican Party is willing to continue lowering the corporate tax rate and eventually making it a flat tax. In this instance, the President+6,000 rule comes into play. One must remember that when they vote for a presidential candidate, that candidate will appoint over 6,000 individuals, mostly from their party, to fill various positions within the government. The Republican Party is the only major party that supports flat tax rates, which means it is far more likely that they will appoint corporate tax cutters than the Democrats.

Q: President Bush has consistently opposed immigration reform and securing our southern border! How can you support a candidate that supports amnesty for illegal aliens?

A: It is not true that President Bush supports amnesty for illegal aliens. It is true, however, that Kerry does. I am strongly opposed to illegal immigration and amnesty for illegal aliens. Yes, I agree with Kerry that our government needs to crack down on businesses that illegally employ illegal aliens, however, that's about all that I agree with him about. At the Democratic primary debate earlier this year, Kerry said, "I supported and was prepared to vote for amnesty from 1986. And it is essential to have immigration reform. Anyone who has been in this country for five or six years, who's paid their taxes, who has stayed out of trouble, ought to be able to translate into an American citizenship immediately, not waiting." So, basically, under Kerry's plan anybody who has been here illegally for over five years automatically gets citizenship. No education programs, no cultural assimilation programs, no language programs, no cracking down on illegals crossing the border, etc.

What Bush proposed was a temporary worker program that allows Mexican workers to more easily get the documents necessary to come to the US to work a few months out of the year, and then be required to leave. Of course, the [incorrect] assumption here is that the US needs cheap labor in order to continue to perform well economically. However, the plan got absolutely nowhere because it was opposed by the Republican Party, who labeled it, incorrectly, as an amnesty program.

In fact, whenever the government offers some type of amnesty plan, the border is flooded with illegal aliens who immediately try to get in wanting to get here before an amnesty plan passes. We all know about the various amnesty plans floated by Democratic candidates and senators, plus Bush's temporary worker plan, that were floated in late 2003. To see this flooding in response to these plans in action, look at a quote from a Department of Homeland Security report:

"The U.S. Border Patrol made 135,468 apprehensions along the southwest border during April 2004, an 80 percent increase when compared to April 2003. Voluntary returns [of Mexican nationals to Mexico] conducted by Border Patrol agents increased by 79 percent from a year ago to 125,561. For the first seven months of fiscal year 2004, apprehensions were up 31 percent and voluntary returns were up 28 percent compared to the same period in fiscal year 2003."

And we're not even talking about the estimated 16-20 million illegals that are in the US, according to a recent Time cover story, or the estimates by immigration restrictionist groups, such as FAIR (Federation for American Immigration Reform), who estimate that there are 8-12 million illegals in the US. Something must be done about this...

So, this is where our President+6,000 Rule comes into play. The Democratic Party cannot be trusted on this issue, since almost all of the party supports amnesty programs and more lax immigration laws and border enforcement. However, the Republican Party is supported almost unanimously by immigration restrictionist organizations, and the majority of the party and party supporters support securing the southern border and cracking down on illegal aliens. There is nobody like that in the Democratic Party, and their party base is strongly in support of amnesty for illegal aliens and increased immigration from the south, many for the simple reason that with more minorities in the country, it will be much easier for them to play the race-card and defeat the GOP in elections. Therefore, the Republican Party deserves support on this issue, and any attempts by the president or Congress to support some kind of amnesty program should be challenged within Republican Party ranks.

Q: As a supporter of a "woman's right to choose" whether or not to have an abortion, how can you support a candidate who supports banning abortion?

A: Generally, this is an issue I don't like to discuss, because it's such a hot and emotional topic, especially amongst women. It is true that Bush supports eventually banning abortion entirely, however, this has absolutely no basis on reality. The simple fact is that around 40% of the Republican Party base is pro-choice (the libertarian and moderate conservative wings of the party), and Bush simply cannot muster enough votes in either the House or the Senate to ban abortion, mostly because there are very few people who want to ban it entirely. So, whether or not he supports banning abortion entirely matters little, since he would never be able to pass the legislation necessary if he decided that he wanted to ban it.

Now, I do support a ban on third-trimester abortions, the so-called "partial-birth abortion ban." The reason I supported this is because at around that time, with the proper treatment, the fetus has matured to such a point that it can survive outside the womb. I think that it is morally wrong to destroy it at this point, except in the case where the mother's life is threatened. I also believe that this ban will force prospective mothers to decide to get an abortion earlier, instead of waiting until the last minute to decide. And that's not even mentioning that more than 80% of the American public supports this legislation, so it is a mainstream issue with broad public support.

Generally, I believe that the federal government has absolutely no business as to what a woman does with her body. That's between her and her religion. I generally do not believe that it is a national issue, and believe that it should be up to the states to legislate the laws concerning this subject. And I am opposed to a total ban on abortion and parental notification laws. I am also entirely opposed to calls by the Democratic Party to make abortion free at the point of use, paid for at the expense of the taxpayer.

I do not like discussing this topic.

Q: How can you support voucher programs for schools? That's taking away money from public schools!

A: This argument is extremely easy to counter, however ideologues in the Democratic Party generally smear those who support vouchers including members of their own party, such as Joseph Lieberman. It is a complete and utter lie that vouchers take money "out of our public schools." The duty of our schools is to provide our children with the attention and environment necessary for them to get a good education and when the schools fail to provide that, they have failed their consumers: the taxpayer.

To put it simply, public schools are producers who provide a product and a service: education to our children. By paying with taxes, we are consumers, paying these schools to produce a good end product. When those schools fail our children, we should have the right to take that money out of the public schools and take it and our children to a school where they will produce a better end product, much to the pleasure of us consumers. It is not the government's money that is going to public schools; it is OUR money, and when those public schools FAIL, we should have the right to take that money out and take it to a producer who will provide the better end product. If eventually so much money is being pulled out of that school that the school collapses, so be it. It has failed to provide a good product, and thus deserves to perish.

This is simple market ethics. Suppose the government takes your money and gives the money to a corporation. This corporation, however, does not produce good and long lasting products, and whether you use it or not, you are forced to support this corporation. One day, you have to use this corporation's products, and they fail. However, you can go to the corporation next door that produces far better products that last. However, the government tells you that you must pay for those products out of your own pocket, and you must still pay your money to the government to prop up the corporation producing the bad products, or else it will collapse. How would you feel about that?

By all rights, the corporation producing the bad products should collapse and, generally, in the private sector this is exactly what happens. Why should it be any different when it comes to schools? By introducing this system of choice, it will force schools to develop mechanisms to produce the best products, or else they will, rightly, collapse. This is a very good incentive to perform. If this results in the collapse of the public school system and the complete and total funding of private schools by taxpayer money, so be it.

We spend more money per student on education than every other country in the world, except for two: Switzerland and Austria. Over $7,700 per student. In the United Kingdom, they are privatizing schools left and right. In Sweden, they have the most extensive voucher program in the world. In Sweden, if a private school is performing better than a public school, you can take [most of] that money out of the public school and walk right over and enroll your child in a private school, with almost full public support. Of course, liberals don't want to tell you about such things... we won't even talk about how the Swedes are "privatizing" their social security programs by allowing personal savings accounts; at least not now. If the most extensive [Western] welfare state in the world does it, that should tell you something about how well it works.

Eventually I would like to work towards a system in which schools are not given any money directly. Each child should be given a voucher for a certain amount of money, say $7,500, that can be used only on education. From there, the parents and the child can choose what school they want that child to go to, and they can look into a Consumer Reports like catalog of listings of schools and how well they perform in comparison to others, at which point they can take that voucher over to that school and enroll their child. Then schools would survive based on how well they perform and funding would be controlled entirely by the consumers, not by the government.

The only grouping in the Democratic Party that supports vouchers are the New Democrats headed up by the Democratic Leadership Council and the Progressive Policy Institute. And, at the moment, they represent a very small minority of Democrats. I want pragmatism, not ideology. If a bunch of Swedish socialists can do it, why can't the Democrats? Is it maybe because the Democrats are becoming more socialist than the European socialists, and that the European socialists are becoming more capitalist than the Democrats? Hmmmmm.... I can't help but wonder.

Q: How can you not support Kerry's plan to provide health insurance to those who need it?

A: First of all, I oppose universal health care, for reasons laid out extremely well by other Republicans that a simple Google search on the internet will lead you to. We spend hundreds of billions of dollars each year on Medicare. I personally believe that for that same amount of spending and with the proper reforms, we can ensure that each and every American has health insurance. I generally oppose both party's policies when it comes to healthcare, especially in light of the fact that I personally believe that you can ensure that every American has healthcare without increasing spending, but that's another thought, and plan, entirely.

But people who support his plan ignore something. He promised to pass it, when in reality, he can't. The Republicans control both the House and the Senate, and many Democrats within both also oppose the plan, so the best outcome is that it will be mercilessly crushed liked Hillarycare was in 1994 and will lead to an increased Republican majority in both legislatures. It's a promise that Kerry cannot possibly keep.

Q: But don't you support President Bush's prescription drugs plan that passed through Congress?

A: This is the best example of a policy enacted "at the wrong place and at the wrong time." No, I didn't support it, although I support various measures in it. It's a step towards completely reforming the Medicare system, in my opinion. The part in it that I supported was how it will allow for the creation of tax-deductible Medical Savings Accounts, like they have in Singapore, Japan, and Malaysia, which will lead, hopefully, to more free-market reforms within the actual medical sector.

What I didn't support is the cost of it. Originally estimated to cost $400 billion over 10 years, the cost has ballooned to $550 billion. Of course, in a world of lesser evils, this bill was much better than the proposed Democratic version of the bill, which started at a cost of $800 billion over 10 years and didn't have the provisions for the creation of Medical Savings Accounts.

This is not something we need in a time where we're building huge deficits, so, to put it simply, I think the president's version of the bill was better, but I still oppose both. The Medical Savings Accounts are nice, though.

Q: Kerry supports ratifying the Kyoto global warming treaty. Don't you oppose global warming?

A: The scientific arguments against the Kyoto Treaty are long and tedious, so I won't go into them. However, I will say that this is yet another promise that Kerry cannot keep. Like me, most of the nation and almost all of the government opposes the treaty for the simple reason that the regulatory structure that it imposes will greatly hurt our economy. Both parties oppose it, and it will not be ratified. As evidence for this, on July 5, 1997, the Byrd-Hagel Resolution, with 65 bipartisan sponsors in the Senate, stating that the Senate opposes ratification of the treaty, passed 95-0 in the Senate. Not only that, for those who say that he never flip-flops, Kerry voted for the resolution. It has absolutely no chance of ever being ratified in the US, so it is a non-issue.

Q: Kerry opposes outsourcing and many free-trade provisions. Don't you?

A: Ah, finally, REAL ISSUES! High politics, not this lame domestic crap. Nothing is more interesting than issues regarding national power and survival.

No, I am a firm supporter of free trade. Again, this is long and tedious, so I will defer to Bruce Lindsey's essay, "10 Truths About Trade," in the July 2004 issue of Reason magazine.

On another note, Kerry wants to renegotiate NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement), stop CAFTA (Central American Free Trade Agreement, an addition to NAFTA that includes most of Central America) from being enacted, and renegotiate the FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas, an agreement encompassing every country in the entire Western Hemisphere, from Alaska to Chile). I strongly support the FTAA for geopolitical reasons. First of all, it will open all of Central and South America to American exports, helping them to industrialize and modernize their economies, not to mention cutting costs of production for many consumer products and thus cutting the retail costs. This will raise national GDPs and stem the growth of black market related sectors.

Primarily, however, the creation of the FTAA will create a $17 trillion trade area, which we can use to directly counter the European Union, thus giving us more economic influence both in the Americas and in the world. The US economy already makes up over 35% of total world GDP, and this will make us even more competitive. And that's not even mentioning how much it could help build public support for the US within the hemisphere. Also, it will give us access to more cheap labor, which means it will force China to reform economically in order to maintain their current growth rates, thus promoting a capitalist revolution there. Did I mention it will give us direct access to lots and lots of oil?

And one more thing. Why come to the US when you can get a fairly good job at home? It'll help stem the tide of illegal immigration. It's a wonderful idea, and I don't want Kerry screwing it up.

Q: Kerry supports modernizing the military and increasing troop strength. Don't you support that?

A: Yes, I support modernizing the military and increasing troop strength. However, Kerry has proposed adding two divisions onto the Army. This is a non-issue, since the 2005 defense budget already adds two divisions. As for modernizing the military, it's not as easy at it looks, and Rumsfeld is doing an outstanding job so far, cancelling all kinds of useless programs, such as the Crusader mobile artillery system. Much work remains to be done, but the Republicans own this issue.

As for Kerry supporting increasing the amount of special operations forces that we have, it's easier said than done. However, the military is already doing everything it can. Not just any odd person can become a Navy SEAL or an Airborne Ranger...

Q: But aren't Bush's policies going to result in a need to bring about a draft!?

A: Uh, no. This is a myth propagated by mostly by MTV and Kerry, who want to scare young people into voting for them. The chances of another draft happening is not very likely, especially in the light that in the Army, for example, only about 200,000 of more than 510,000 (the number will soon be increased to 540,000 total) soldiers are deployed. Those extra 310,000 soldiers are being retrained and positions that can more easily be done by civilian contractors are being contracted out. The Army is planning to retrain all soldiers so that first, and before all else, they are infantrymen and know how to use a rifle and fight in combat, like the Marines. This will open hundreds of thousands of soldiers up. With that in mind, the need for a draft is completely unnecessary.

Also, lets not forget that the military is pretty much uniformly opposed to a draft. Draftees simply do not perform as well in combat as fully trained active duty soldiers and always result in higher casualties. We don't need more soldiers. What we need are better trained soldiers and a more efficient military bureaucracy. This rules out a draft.

I might also point out that Kerry supports having all graduating high school students perform a mandatory two years of national service. I don't see how Democrats who are opposed to the draft can support a candidate who supports such a program.

Now, not to be a hypocrite, I must say that I support a program of mandatory national service, however, it is vastly different from anything that any candidate or any party is proposing.

Q: Kerry will rebuild our alliances and that will make us safer.

A: I really don't understand this line of reasoning. According to Kerry, the dozens of countries that support us don't matter, but France does. France, who has worked against the United States for the past 40 years in everything from combating terrorism to managing NATO, does not support this war on terrorism, and probably never will. A change in leadership will not change this fact, especially in the light that France has a huge Muslim population whose birth rates mean they will become a majority in less than 45 years, so they don't want to outrage their Muslim minority. Kerry cites Charles de Gaulle dozens of times in his speeches. Does he forget that in the 1960s, de Gaulle declared that it was aligned with neither the US nor the USSR, and that France's nuclear weapons were pointed at both the US and the USSR? Does he forget that France's prime minister said, "The Iraqi insurgents are our best allies" ? Does he forget that France and Germany have stated over and over again that regardless as to who is president, they will not deploy troops to Iraq? Kerry seems to stop at this and never actually says how he will combat Islamist terrorists. He just says, "I will rebuild our alliances!" There is no reasoning behind it at all.

Not only that, Kerry opposed Bush's military redeployment plan that would create a system allow for our military to mobilize more rapidly and will allow for military people to be with their families more. It would also move our military bases closer to combat areas, allowing for faster deployment times. The military has been wanting to do this for a decade, and Bush has finally decided to do it. Kerry opposes it because he believes it will alienate our allies. How? He doesn't explain that, except he says that we didn't consult with them about it, which is an out and out lie. Everybody knows we're building a huge military base in the Czech Republic and bases in Poland, Bulgaria, and Romania. We'll still have bases in Germany, France, and England, just they will be smaller and will have less personnel stationed there. Also, he opposes it because it will shut down many military bases. What he doesn't understand is that we need to shut down many bases because we don't need them and their upkeep costs are wasting billions upon billions of dollars that can be used for better things.

How can the Army meet its requirements of being able to deploy a brigade anywhere in the world in 96 hours, a division in a week, and four divisions in a month, when Kerry opposes the redeployment plans that would make it possible?

In the redeployment plan, it also shifts the 37,000 US troops that are on the border between North Korea and South Korea further to the south. This is a good idea, since right now all our troops do is serve as a tripwire. With 12,000 North Korean artillery pieces and 1.2 million soldiers just to the north of our forces, the tripwire is nothing but a suicide trap for those 37,000 soldiers. Moving them south is good for our forces there, and puts more responsibility on the South Koreans for their security.

There is one fact about this whole thing: it is just shallow rhetoric that appeal to feeble minded fools who know nothing about diplomacy or national security. I won't even discuss all the flip-flops of Kerry on national security issues. This is already well known, except for those who are such partisans that they don't know what makes a flip or a flop, except for sandals.

Did I mention that for every Kerry supporter in the military, there are four Bush supporters? That should tell you something.

Another aspect of this whole "I will rebuild America's alliances" forgets something very important. Europe's military is between one and two generations behind the US technologically. When we fought in the Balkans together in the 90s, the European militaries did very little of the work for the simple reason that they didn't have the capability to. They couldn't even communicate with US forces because their radios were so old. Having a bunch of extra allies is useless if they can't do anything. By moving much of our forces out of Western Europe, we force them to start spending more on their security and modernizing their militaries, which means they will be much more useful in the future. Right now, the average military spending for Europe is at about 1-2% of GDP, as opposed to about 3.8% for the US. They have been free-riding on us for a long time and now it's time for them to grow up.

Not only that, France and Germany refused to send over any forensics experts to help us unearth the hundreds of thousands of bodies in mass graves in Iraq. Why? Because they think that by unearthing these graves that it may be used against Saddam as evidence and he might be executed. Yes, the current governments of those two countries believe that the life of Saddam Hussein is more important than helping the families of hundreds of thousands of his victims recover their remains and ensure they get a proper burial.

Now, allow me to say a bit about Germany. Germany opposed our war with Iraq because of the current coalition in power, a mixture of Social Democrats and Greens. Their economy is in the pits, and the only way for them to win election last time was for them to run on an anti-American platform that appealed to some of the more leftist individuals. Had they not exploited the circumstances at the moment to electoral advantage, the opposition Christian Democrats and Free Democrats would have won the election, and they would be with us in Iraq at this very moment. In a few years, there will be another election in Germany and if polling data means anything, the Christian Democrats will win by a huge margin. At that point, Germany will become a good ally again.

As for France, their military was chomping at the bit to be deployed to Iraq. So, I don't blame their military, just their government and their bizarre culture.

Q: But isn't America providing 90% of the forces and, as a result, fielding 90% of the casualties?

A: Yes. However, while this sounds good, it ignores history. In the first major UN operation (one of only two UN military interventions, the other being Desert Storm) in Korea, the US provided over 90% of the personnel. And, as a result, we fielded 90% of the casualties. The same goes for Desert Storm and our operations in the Balkans. We always field 85-95% of the military forces when we participate in peacekeeping operations. It's just the responsibility that comes with being the biggest kid on block. You can't change it, and Kerry is delusional and historically ignorant if he thinks he can, especially when nobody else wants to have anything to do with our interventions, as mentioned above.

Q: Kerry would help dismantle Russia's nuclear weapons and conduct the world's largest nuclear counter-proliferation program. How can you oppose that?

A: I oppose it because it has no basis in reality. We have been working with the Russians for years under the auspices of the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program to help Russia dispose of their nuclear weapons. Yes, as Kerry points out, under this current program, supported by Bush, it will still be many years before all of those facilities are completely secured, and says that he can do it faster. But he leaves out something very important to this whole deal: Russian cooperation. Russia has been going slower than expected with their de-armament programs. However, you can't do much to make it go faster. Bush has already signed an agreement with Russia, the largest de-weaponization agreement in history, that would de-militarize over 8,000 nuclear warheads in both Russia and the USA. There is only so much that one can do... you can't force the Russians to go any faster. What does Kerry want to do to make them go faster? Should we invade Russia?

And then we get to the North Korean (DPRK) problem. Kerry wants to negotiate in bilateral negotiations with the DPRK. However, he doesn't understand that you can't do this, because we've already tightened all of the screws on the DPRK that we have. The DPRK would be in a superior negotiating position, and would be able to easily blackmail us. You must involve China, Japan, South Korea, and Russia in on the process, as Bush has done. China sells fuel and food to the DPRK. So does Russia. DPRK nuclear weapons threaten Japan, who is working with the US to develop a missile defense system and if the DPRK becomes more threatening towards Japan, such as firing another missile over Japan like they did a few years ago, they may well start building nuclear weapons. China does not want Japan to have nuclear weapons, for obvious reasons, so that gives China incentive to crack down on the DPRK more. This process goes on and on, and Kerry just doesn't seem to understand it at all. You must have multilateral negotiations with them or else we will not have a position from which to negotiate from. It's not surprising that the DPRK has endorsed Kerry for president in light of these facts.

And then Kerry ignores how Bush's counterproliferation programs are working to disarm Libya of its weapons programs. He considers this to be a fluke.

On the issue of Iran, there is only so much one can do about them, short of supporting rebels to invade them or invading them with our own forces. The possibility exists that Israel will destroy the Iranian nuclear program with air strikes, as well. But one must remember, Iran is between a rock and a hard spot on this. Israel has hundreds of nuclear weapons, which Iran can use as an excuse to build a weapons program. And lets not forget that Pakistan, full of Sunni Muslims who oppose the Shi'ite Muslims of Iran, also has nuclear weapons, much as a result of India getting nuclear weapons, who developed them in response to China building them (the so-called "domino theory," something Kerry and his advisors reject). Also, the possibility exists that Saudi Arabia, who is staunchly anti-Persian, also has nuclear weapons. The reason I think this is because back in the early 1990s they bought two dozen Chinese CSS-2 ballistic missiles. These missiles are too inaccurate for conventional warheads, so their only use would be for nuclear weapons, which leads my to belief that Saudi Arabia has nukes. The European Union is working on engaging Iran in a similar fashion that the Clinton Administration engaged North Korea back in the 1990s, and we all know how that ended up. The North Koreans were lying to us trying to get time to finish their preparations for building a nuke with which to blackmail us later. Very smart move, and the Iranians are doing the same with Europe.

Neither candidate has a good plan, except Kerry supports the European and Clintonian approach, which is scary as hell.

Some of Bush's advisors have the right idea, though: it is highly likely that the Iranian dissidents will become increasingly stronger now that we have Iran boxed in with forces in both Iraq and Afghanistan. This gives us great leverage in our negotiating position with Iran and will allow us to force them to give the dissidents more power. If that fails, Iran has a large Kurdish minority. The Kurds are some of the best fighters in the Middle East, modernist, secular, and very, very pro-US. The Kurds would make great proxies that could bring in weapons to Iran and undermine the government. At that point, it doesn't matter if they have nukes or not, because the dissidents (who have broad public support) and the Kurds will be in power, and both are pro-US. A pro-US Iran with nuclear weapons is acceptable and would increase our negotiating position with various Sunni countries and allow us to check Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

On this issue, Bush is obviously the better of the two.

Q: Like Kerry said, how can we support counterproliferation programs when we're developing our own new bunker buster nukes?

A: Unfortunately, Kerry is incorrect. We are not designing any new, from scratch, weapons. What we are designing is a modification for existing nuclear weapons so that they could be used to destroy heavily fortified underground bunkers that may contain chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons, and they would be extremely useful in taking out the WMDs of countries like North Korea should we get into a conflict with them.

Q: Kerry would fix where Bush has messed up in Iraq. Surely you want that?

A: Kerry's four-point plan for fixing Iraq is identical to what Bush is already doing there. Not only that, Kerry has stated that he is interested in pulling out of Iraq within 6-months of being elected, should he get extra help from the allies who supposedly love him (which he won't). This has emboldened the insurgents, who have stepped up attacks dramatically since he said that. This rhetoric isn't realistic and is dangerous to our military personnel there, who are now being attacked by insurgents much more viciously than before since the insurgents want Kerry to win now. As President Putin of Russia said last week, "Any unbiased observer understands that attacks of international terrorist organizations in Iraq, especially nowadays, are targeted not only and not so much against the international coalition as against President Bush . . . International terrorists have set as their goal inflicting the maximum damage to Bush, to prevent his election to a second term . . . If they succeed in doing that, they will celebrate a victory over America and over the entire anti-terror coalition . . . In that case, this would give an additional impulse to international terrorists and to their activities, and could lead to the spread of terrorism to other parts of the world."

I couldn't have said it better. I need not mention that Kerry has consistently opposed the legislation necessary to get our personnel there the money they need since this has been mentioned a lot on the news and in debates.

Another criticism of Kerry is that Bush did not deploy enough troops there. This is a valid criticism, however, it is wrong for Kerry to bring it up since when he was asked if he would provide more troops if the generals there requested them, he answered that he would not. So, it's a strawman that he has set up and a non-issue. President Bush, on the other hand, said that he would provide those personnel should they be requested. The media doesn't understand that how many troops are there does not matter, since lots of personnel running around just means more targets for the terrorists. What matters are tactics...

Q: Bush has opposed the intelligence reform recommended by the 9/11 Commission, hasn't he?

A: No. Bush has already signed all of the legislation he could into law via executive orders, but at that point the Constitution got in the way and now it is up to Congress to pass the rest of the legislation. There isn't much more the president can do other than wait on Congress to pass it so that he can sign it.

Q: Isn't John Kerry unfit to be commander-in-chief?

A: Yes. What he did in the 1970s, taking part in the Vietnam Veterans Against the War, testifying before the Senate in 1971 (in uniform, no less), and meeting with our North Vietnamese enemy in France, borders on treason. He has not once apologized for what he said and what he did. Even Jane Fonda has apologized, but Kerry seems to think that he is above criticism on this issue. All these anti-Kerry Swift Boat groups want is an apology, and he hasn't so much as even come close to that.

Q: The Democratic Party is stronger on defense now than it has ever been before says the chairman, Terry McAuliffe. Isn't it?

A: No. Michael Moore, the anti-American documentary film maker who made a film saying that we invaded Afghanistan in order to build an oil pipeline, claims that Iraq was something resembling a utopia before the US got there, states that the insurgents in Iraq are akin to George Washington, and states that "there is no terrorist threat," was embraced by the leader of the Democratic minority in the Senate, Tom Daschle. Nancy Pelosi, the leader of the Democratic minority in the House, claims that the best way to fight Islamic terrorists is just like what Kerry wants to do: build alliances. However, she finishes the thought, that Kerry refuses to give further details on, by stating how she would fight the Islamists after she built those alliances: through "education." I kid you not. She said this in November 2002, no less. No wonder the Democrats were crushed in those elections...

And as for Kerry, we all are familiar with the interview with the New York Times Magazine in which he said that Islamist terrorists were, in the 1990s, a "nuisance." Thousands of people died in the 1990s from their attacks. When they came to power in Iran in 1979 (with the support of Jimmy Carter for "human rights" reasons), these "nuisances" killed more people in a week than the previous government had killed in 20 years. These people defeated one of the most powerful armies in the world from the USSR in the 1980s. To think that they were at any point a mere "nuisance" goes to show just how far Kerry is divorced from reality.

Those are the reasons why I voted for the re-election of George W. Bush.

Posted by Arcane at 06:53 PM