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Thread: Does it get any better?

  1. #1
    CustomSarge
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    Does it get any better?

    As an unabashedly staunch fiscal conservative (albeit social liberal), I couldn't have dreamed an outcome as occured. Four more at the top, 4(?) more in the Senate, 6(?) more in the House, and for Thick Sweet Frosting, Mr (obstructionist) Dashelle goes HOME. I'll take flames for this, but (as Billy Pilgrim said) So It Goes.... (for 4+ years).... <<<)))

  2. #2
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    It was the true social liberal that got elected, as well.
    Kent Christensen
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  3. #3
    Miserable Mark MarkF's Avatar
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    AMEN!

    For four years the Dems have acted as if they had the mandate. Now that Bush really does they warn him to compromise. Yeah, right!

  4. #4
    What's that noise...? basketcase's Avatar
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    Sarge ...

    I hate to be the one to break it to ya, but you can end up on the doghouse for instigating a thread like this!

    Rick (I've been in it so often in my life it feels like home) in AL
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    If you insist on exercising a right to burn our flag, first be so kind as to wrap yourself in it and then douse yourself with gasoline just before you strike the match.

  5. #5
    Buzzed and Belligerent gambrinus's Avatar
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    OH NO!!

    Chill... everything will be fine. Really. Go for a nice ride... The sky isn't falling, the boogie man is not going to get you.
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  6. #6
    leave my monkey alone LORAZEPAM's Avatar
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    I hope he addresses issues that arent popular to do in Washington, like getting rid of the IRS, privitizing SSI, and a few others that should be addressed. I don't know about you, but the industry that gets kids on SSI because the parents want the money pisses me off. I want to have the money there when I am an old fart, I dont want it going to someone who is using that system instead of welfare since it's reform.

    I am sure that the millions of visitors to that 5 million acre swamp known as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge will be disappointed to see the wells there. Doesnt it have even more visitors than Yosemite?
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  7. #7
    Buzzed and Belligerent gambrinus's Avatar
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    I don't agree with 100% of what this guy said, but it is a good start...

    Second Term, Second Chance

    Saturday, November 06, 2004

    By Radley Balko
    President Bush is now the first president since his father in 1988 to win the majority of the popular vote. Both houses of Congress are now under Republican control. With this decisive victory, Bush no longer has to fight the ÔÇ£selected, not electedÔÇØ rhetoric of 2000, nor does he have to worry about a divided Senate or his own re-election.
    So what should a second Bush term look like? The president's own campaign promises would be a good place to start. During the campaign, President Bush said heÔÇÖd like to move America more toward an ÔÇ£ownership societyÔÇØÔÇöa society that values individualism, private enterprise, and personal responsibility over state paternalism. He said he trusts the American people more than he trusts Washington when it comes to deciding how best to spend their money.

    Now is the time to prove his commitment to these ideals, because these were not the themes or results of his first termÔÇö which was disastrous in terms of promoting ÔÇ£ownership societyÔÇØ ideals. Bush and the Republican Congress doled out political favors, grew government like no administration in 40 years, and expanded the role of the regulatory state. ItÔÇÖs time to roll back the influence of government in our lives.

    However, should the president make good on his 2004 campaign promises, he could establish for himself a Reaganesque legacy as a president who values freedom, responsibility and civil society over politics, power, and party control.

    HereÔÇÖs what President Bush should do in a second term:

    1. Reform Social Security.
    President Bush promised to push Congress to give Americans ownership over their Social Security taxes in his first term, but backed off when the issue became politically perilous. Reforming Social Security is both a practical issue and a moral one.

    2. Reform the tax code.
    The federal tax code is over 17,000 pages long, and nearly impossible to understand or comply with. The Tax Foundation estimates that by 2007, Americans will spend $350 billion hiring accountants and actuaries and purchasing software, just to comply with federal tax laws.
    President Bush should push for an alternative tax scheme ÔÇô preferably a sales tax. At the very least, he and the Congress should simplify the tax code, end the corporate income tax, and end paycheck withholding. When Americans are forced to write one big check to the IRS each April, itÔÇÖll be much easier to rein in the growth of government.

    3. Make government more transparent.

    The Clinton administration was one of the most secretive in history; the Bush administration has been more secretive still. Huge swaths of government documents previously open to the public now routinely are classified. Government can only be truly accountable to the people when the people know what the government is doing.

    Bush should invite an outside panel of experts to evaluate the way his administration classifies documents, with an eye toward making all but the most sensitive of national security information available to the public.


    4. Free political speech.
    Bush said in his first campaign that he believed efforts to restrict political speech and political donations during federal campaigns violated the First Amendment. He then signed those same restrictions into law. He has now hinted that he may support a ban on advertisements by 527 organizations, too.
    Bush should return to his original instincts. In fact, he should move to deregulate the campaign process. Our government is increasingly prohibiting its citizens from criticizing government officials in the days leading up to Election Day ÔÇô the day when we pass judgment on them.
    Bush should move to repeal campaign finance laws, and allow American citizens to speak freely about our political process, and to use as big a megaphone as they can afford.

    5. Leave sick people alone.
    ItÔÇÖs unlikely, but this could be BushÔÇÖs ÔÇ£Nixon goes to ChinaÔÇØ issue. ItÔÇÖs difficult to understand how a ÔÇ£compassionate conservativeÔÇØ could get so caught up in drug war hysteria that heÔÇÖd deny suffering people the right to seek relief wherever they might find it.
    IÔÇÖm referring specifically to the Justice DepartmentÔÇÖs war on medicinal marijuana and on prescription painkillers.

    BushÔÇÖs drug war credentials could enable him to sell his fellow conservatives on the idea that itÔÇÖs immoral to deny suffering people access to the drugs that might alleviate their symptoms ÔÇö out of allegiance to the drug war.

    6. Sunset every law.
    We have too many laws. Every one of them in some way puts restrictions on our freedom. Forcing Congress to re-vote on each law would both ensure that the laws on the books are up-to-date and appropriate as well as give Congress less time to pass new ones.

    HereÔÇÖs hoping that weÔÇÖll look back and find that President Bush spent his second term using his reelection, control over Congress and the skills and talents of his subordinates in ways that limited the role of government in our lives instead of expanding it, as happened in his first term.


    Radley Balko maintains a Weblog at: www.TheAgitator.com.

  8. #8
    leave my monkey alone LORAZEPAM's Avatar
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    I think we should have to write our tax checks on Nov 1. I bet that would change the campaigns quite a bit, don't you?
    Gale Smith
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  9. #9
    Registered User Bob_M's Avatar
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    Unhappy Does it get any better?

    The one aspect of this thread that rings true is that W was a social liberal (during his partying days) As far as being the best thing since sliced bread to happen to the country I guess that depends on if you like clean air, clean water and unspoiled places. If you have invested for decades into social security, if you are a not a captain of industry or if you resent unreasonable search and seizure then the prospect of another 4 years of Bush may not look so rosey. A victory of 51% to 48% does not really translate to a mandate (unless you are one of the 19% of Americans who think they are in the top 1% of those who get the lion's share of tax cuts).
    We can agree on the best pulse rate for a terrorist (0) and on the fact that BMW makes the best bikes. The rest is open to debate

  10. #10
    CustomSarge
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    Thumbs up As for why

    I can only blame it on giddy excitement. But with control comes responsibility. 3% isn't a whale of a mandate, but better than previous. I just hope he does what he promised on SSI, IRS & others, but stay out of ANWR. This term holds the potential to move forward instead of wrangle. If this gets me in the doghouse, I can take it. <<<)))

  11. #11
    Route 66 Missouri gstom's Avatar
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    Color me Cynical

    Color me cynical but I think that in 18 months when the new presidential campaign fires up, the same problems will be being discussed. Both parties and their candidates are far more concerned with getting elected for election's sake than they are interested in making the tough decisions that are needed to actually solve the problems faced by the country.

  12. #12
    Buzzed and Belligerent gambrinus's Avatar
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    I would sincerly ask anyone who apposses drilling in ANWR to not fall under the spell of the hyper-militant econut crowd. Remember the cries of "the world will come to an end and all the animals will die" when they built the pipeline? None of it came to pass. There have been spills, there have been accidents, but the animals are a bit more resilent than we like to admit. Why is it that the people of Alaska are in favor of the drilling? Do you know that the area of proposed drilling is only a minute fraction of the area of ANWR? Did you know that ANWR is bigger than Mass, NewJersey, Hawaii, Conn and Delaware..COMBINED?!? The area of drilling is minute. As a percentage I've heard it described as comparable to a postage stamp on a basketball court... Hardly the clearcut, death and destruction that the enviro-nuts would like you to believe.

    RW

  13. #13
    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    Originally posted by gambrinus
    Why is it that the people of Alaska are in favor of the drilling?
    Maybe because nearly the entire population of Alaska is nowhere near the place? Maybe because the people of Alaska get paid (off) for having oil drilling in their state? Just like the Indian tribes get paid for having casinos on their land.

    Do you know that the area of proposed drilling is only a minute fraction of the area of ANWR?
    But it happens to be in the flat plains where the migratory herds travel.

    Did you know that ANWR is bigger than Mass, NewJersey, Hawaii, Conn and Delaware..COMBINED?!?
    Hmmm, sounds smaller than San Bernardino county. I think you forgot Rhode Island while you were at it.

    If we're going to talk numbers, do you realize that the likely amount of oil available in ANWR represents less than 1% of the oil we import? And that even if we started drilling last year, it wouldn't reach that kind of output for another decade? It will have essentially zero effect on oil prices and availability.

    If the Feds would instead ratchet up the CAFE standards just a bit, we could save far more oil than ANWR could ever produce, and thereby really become far less dependent on our "friends", the Saudis.

    If you're more inclined to market solutions, creating a carbon trading market would do the same thing. That would actually be better, because it would also encompass coal burning.

    Yes, once again, the devil is in the details, but nobody cares much about details. Pesky little things.
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  14. #14
    Buzzed and Belligerent gambrinus's Avatar
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    The BIG answer is a combination of savings AND further exploration. The fact remains that ANWR is nothing short of HUGE and the drilling area is very very limited and inhabited only part of the year by caribou.


    RW

  15. #15
    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    Originally posted by gambrinus
    The BIG answer is a combination of savings AND further exploration. The fact remains that ANWR is nothing short of HUGE and the drilling area is very very limited and inhabited only part of the year by caribou.


    RW
    Beg to differ. The big picture is that ANWR is tiny relative to our use and even tinier relative to any of the big producers. It will be very expensive to access and slow to develop. And the area that the oil companies want to intensely develop is exactly where the animals go in the summer.

    We could instead immediately begin reducing oil use by moving the CAFE numbers up by just 2 or 3 mpg, or not touching them but including light trucks into the automobile category.

    Relying on increasing oil usage in the future is a fool's bet anyway. China is suddenly importing huge quantities of it and will be doing so at an increasing rate, which will serve to drive up the competition for oil and therefore, the cost. The sooner we get the oil monkey off our backs, the better our economy will look, and the more free we will be in the world.

    For an example of how to do this, we could much more quickly build wind farms to replace our reliance on oil in areas other than automotive use, again reducing our reliance on imports. (If/when we move to hydrogen as an automotive fuel, this will be even better, because more intermittent winds can be used to create the fuel and store the energy for distribution.)

    The US has a tremendous natural resource in wind (and I'm not just talking about what eminates from Washington DC). It's free to access, and at the current level of development, it's comparable to coal in cost and cheaper than using oil or natural gas.

    And in case you think I'm full of wind, you can see that I've put my money where my mouth is by installing solar panels. (The wind is much too variable where I am.) I haven't paid the utility a dime for power in 3 years, and have essentially a fixed price contract for electricity at just over $0.11/kwh for the next 11 years. After that -- and I think it not unreasonable that the system should run a lot longer as the panels have a 25 year warranty -- my electricity is free.
    --Darryl Richman, forum liaison
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