Tag Archives: Iraq War

“The Will of the People”

The will of the people.”  Sen. John McCain said it yesterday talking about responding to the will of the people and their concerns about jobs, the economy and spending, based on the outcome of the 2010 election.  Of course immediately following that remark he was willing to ignore “the will of the people” and our concerns about two costly wars that were never paid for because “a continued presence in Afghanistan is necessary.”

It is perfectly clear to me that the oft used phrase “the will of the people” is simply Republican code for the will of my supporters and funders.  They are talking about their own people, their own like minded followers.  They have no more concern for the true will of the American people than I have concern for what happens to the contestants on, well, really any reality show on TV.

If the will of the American people was such a concern, why were Republicans so combative with President Barack Obama from 2008 to 2010?  Wasn’t it by the “will of the people” that he was elected?  A majority of Americans think we should stop spending 100-200 billion dollars a year to fight two unwise wars.  Where is the importance of “the will of the people” there?  A majority of the people think the tax should pay a little more in taxes.  Hello, “will of the people?”

This current crop of Republicans leaders doesn’t care about the will of the people.  I’m not even sure they care about the people.  They care about donors, pledges and interest groups.  On the other hand, when Democrats talk about working for the American people they are talking about everybody, including the unemployed factory worker who usually votes Republicans, that homeless guy on the corner who doesn’t vote, the small business owner struggling to get by and the older woman in the Senior high rise who is reminded weekly right now about why she became a Democrat in the 1930s.  It doesn’t matter who “the people” are, because generally Democrats have empathy, compassion and a desire to make life better and easier for all of us, not just some of us. 

Paul Wellstone often said “we all do better when we all do better.”  I want a Republican who thinks that “we all do better when the rich pay less in taxes” to look me in the eye, and honestly tell me that I will do better if the Walton family or the Koch family has another million dollars in their investment portfolio, and can explain to me how that helps me or any one of my neighbors.

The McCain-Huckabee Ticket?

As I watched the Super Tuesday returns coming in last night, I got a little concerned about Mike Huckabee. I’m not afraid of Mike Huckabee becoming president, but I am concerned about the buddy-buddy feeling between Huckabee and McCain. What if McCain picks Mike Huckabee as his running mate? That would be a very strong ticket for the Republicans.

Ronald Reagan was able to pull together the different factions of “conservative” groups. The Gun rights, religious right, pro-lifers and former southern democrats, the personal and property rights people, and smaller government activists into a single conservative movement that has held for 30 years.

But the Tom Delay, Trent Lott, George W. Bush/Dick Cheney triad has severely strained that coalition with uncontrolled spending, increased government size, the elimination of personal freedoms, only token actions for religious conservatives and obviously the poorly planned and horribly executed War in Iraq.

As the presidential race continued and John McCain has looked stronger and stronger, it looked like the coalition might finally splinter.

And it still might, but if McCain and Huckabee teamed up, the two might be the duct tape to hold Reagan’s crumbling coalition together. Together, they might keep the religious right who are very anti-McCain to stick with them for another cycle, and those southerners who are not part of the religious right but have voted Republican for 30 years. Add to that the potential Clinton opposition, and they may be very strong.

I’m not saying, I’m just saying…

Frivolous Lawsuits – Frivolous War

If you ask a “staunch” Republican why we are at war in Iraq, what will he or she say? Originally, it was “to disarm Iraq of ‘weapons of mass destruction,’ to end Saddam Hussein’s support for terrorism, and to free the Iraqi people.” Since two-thirds of that was a lie, now the response is to “honor the fallen by completing the mission.”

Exactly what the mission is, is still in question. Is it to protect America? Is it peace and security in one country among a collection of countries without it? Is it preserving our oil rights? Is it simply to support the new “government”? Regardless, right now, we seem to be fighting most to honor those who have fallen and to make sure America is not attacked again.

I didn’t intend to write about the war, I intended to talk about President Bush’s State of the Union address the other day, but I got to thinking about the speech and hypocrisy. The war was a natural starting point. What bothered me was not the hypocritical request to control spending. Realize this request was coming from the president who signed the 2005, $286 million transportation bill that was nearly 10% earmarks, including among other notable earmarks the “bridge to nowhere.” It was the bill John McCain called the bill a ”monstrosity” and wondered whether it would ever be possible to restore fiscal sanity to Congress.

The thing that got me was this:
“To improve our health care system, we must address one of the prime causes of higher cost, the constant threat that physicians and hospitals will be unfairly sued. (Applause.) Because of excessive litigation, everybody pays more for health care, and many parts of America are losing fine doctors. No one has ever been healed by a frivolous lawsuit. I urge the Congress to pass medical liability reform. (Applause.)”

I don’t like frivolous lawsuits anymore than anybody else. But who determines what is fair and unfair. Is it frivolous when an oxygen tent bursts into flames and burns a 12 hour old baby over 18% of his body with third degree burns?

Something is wrong there. It might be the hospital, or the maker of the machine, or the nurse or the doctor, but something is wrong, and if it is justified to fight on in Iraq to honor the fallen so we can prevent other terrorists from attacking freedom, we can sure as hell honor a newborn burned baby by fighting hard, including financial penalties in the form of a lawsuit to ensure something like this does not happen again!

It is time to leave Iraq…

BAGHDAD, Jan 5 (Reuters) – Two U.S. soldiers were killed and three others wounded along with a civilian interpreter on Dec. 26 when an Iraqi soldier opened fire on them during a joint patrol, the U.S. military said on Saturday.

“The incident occurred as U.S. and Iraqi army soldiers were conducting operations to establish a combat outpost,” U.S. military spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel James Hutton said, adding that two Iraqi soldiers had been taken into custody.

The spokesman’s comments confirmed earlier reports of the incident by two Iraqi Army generals.

It is definitely time to leave!