I know this is a music board, but I'm sitting in NYC on the eve of the republican national convention (which will be here for the rest of the week) so i feel like i have to share some things.
Jules- no hard feelings. I still think kerry could come back from war wiser than when he said 'send me' but if we agree to disagree, all's well. We'll argue about country sometime too, eh?
fiddlechick: in response to your contention that "Bush could argue quite convincingly that he's doing just that - bringing America to her full potiental as the greatest superpower in the world, committed to real improvement of all people of the world. His administration has shown an admirable committment to freedom, democracy and tangible efforts to tackle humanitarian problems." I offer you the following:
(Note: the following is exceprtped from http://www.villagevoice.com/issues/0434/barrett.php which offers up a number of ways Bush has hurt nyc. I've offered the most far-reaching and/or compelling examples here)
*"There are actually 5,879 fewer city cops than in 2000, partly due to the nearly 90 percent Bush cuts in Bill Clinton's COPS programs. Even with the post-9-11 invention of homeland security funding, NYC is getting $61 million less in federal public-safety subsidies than it did before our cops became America's front line. Bush's 2005 budget proposes even more cuts...Of course, should anything catastrophic happen there during convention week, the firefighters whose brothers died on 9-11 will still be communicating on the same, reprogrammed, radios that cost lives three years ago, thanks to a president who refused to pony up the $120 million needed for new ones. Bush has also de-funded the SAFER program even after Congress passed it—blocking NYC from hiring more firefighters—and limited equipment purchases under the FIRE program to a puny cap of $750,000, putting NY's allocation on a par with Poland, Ohio's, with Montana getting $9 per capita for federal firefighter aid and NYC nine cents…In fact, delegates from Cheney's Wyoming, for example, will have reason to be jittery, leaving a state that gets $40 per capita in homeland security funding to visit a state that gets $10, especially since they will have entered a twilight zone on orange alert for the last 1,080 days or so.
*He opposed an extension of the commission's deadline. He deleted its funding altogether from one supplemental budget request and ultimately funded it at one-fourth the cost of Ken Starr's probe of a dress stain. His wholly owned cable network and NY tabloid derided it repeatedly.
*The press, always seeking balance, has apparently decided that if Bill Clinton was out to lunch on Al Qaeda, then Dubya's vacationing vacillation is not news. But Clinton is not seeking four more years. With CIA director George Tenet telling the commission that "the system was blinking red," the White House appears in the report as glazed as it did the first seven minutes after the second plane hit.
*No one will mention the 40 bin Laden articles in Presidential Daily Briefings from January 20 to September 10, 2001; the first day of vacation's August 6 wake-up PDB headline of "Bin Ladin Determined to Strike in U.S.," and the fishing trip that ensued; the failure to even convene a principals' meeting on terrorism until September 4, 2001; the president's uncertainty about whether he ever discussed the August 6 PDB with Justice officials; the acting FBI director's sworn recollection that AG Ashcroft told him he didn't want to hear about the Al Qaeda threats anymore; and the telling testimony of senior counterterrorism staff that they considered resigning during it all to "go public with their concerns."
*Congressman Anthony Weiner has calculated that the administration has shortchanged the city by $2.5 billion through cuts in the five key education programs funded under the Bush schools initiative, No Child Left Behind. NCLB hasn't just hurt the pocketbook, it's also forced traumatic overcrowding by widening parental choice, damaging high-performing schools and emptying low-performing ones…Bush has proposed a $107 million cut in NY's Section 8 housing vouchers. If passed, it will be the first time this voucher program has ever been reduced. The administration is also trying to recapture $50 million in subsidies the city already got. Since Bush took office, the city's housing authority, which is home to one in every 12 NYers, has taken, according to Maloney, Weiner, and other House Democrats, a $175 million drop in federal funding.
*Earlier this month in Geneva, the U.S. reversed Clinton's support of a U.N. agreement banning the production and supply of highly enriched uranium essential to building nukes. Strongly supported by allies like Britain, the fissile material cut-off treaty, as it's called, would've reduced the chances of terror groups acquiring a nuclear capability. In 2001, Bush did the same to scuttle a biological-weapons convention, though 55 nations had signed on after seven years of negotiation. Elisa Harris, who oversaw proliferation issues for Clinton's NSC, said that the Bush administration was sending "a very dangerous message," acting on the neoconservative distrust of any binding restraints on America First policy. "
So to those with different political views than mine, fine. but don't you DARE call Bush a humanitarian, and don't you dare say he's committed to my country when i see every day how he treats my city.
(and i do apologize if this isn't necessarily the place for this, but i've got a long week ahead and i had to vent...)