...I'm okay with being REALITY-based.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003
      ( 10:09 AM )
Speak Truth to Power

That is what this election is going to be about. It's going to be about empowering the citizens of this country to feel that they can indeed have some say in their own democratic government by speaking the truth - the verifiable truth. I am heartened that Gen. Clark has finally made the committment to enter the race. As a Dean supporter, I see this as a positive step because it can only help Democrats to have a field of several GOOD options rather than a field of "who do I NOT want the most?" options, as in primaries past. But another thing that Clark brings to the mix is another voice pronouncing the Truth, another voice speaking out, defying the White House's edict that dissent equals treason. On this auspicious occasion of the primary field widening to 10 prospects, I'm feeling like a little rundown of the current administration's policies vs. their practices.

Middle East Policy: Befriend Arab nations and work with them to "win" the war on "terror" (if you can win a war against a psychological concept).
Middle East Practice: Veto a UN resolution that calls for Israel NOT to expel or murder the president of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, the ruling party of the people of Palestine.

Foreign Policy: Pre-emptive invasion of any country that MIGHT threaten the US with "weapons of mass destruction"
Foreign Practice: Pre-emptively invade countries that would prove profitable to corporate benefactors and ignore or mistreat (or in some cases befriend) rogue countries that actually have nuclear weapons (N. Korea, Pakistan, etc).

Economic Policy: boost the economy and create jobs
Economic Practice: give tax cuts to the wealthy, reduce benefits to veterans, lose almost 3 million jobs in 3 years - oh, and grow the deficit to $500 BILLION.

Education Policy: Leave no Child Behind and help schools
Education Practice: Leave most children behind, cut early Head Start, create unfunded mandates for higher test scores, cut the education budget and promote vouchers instead of repairs and aid to public schools.

Government size management Policy: Make government smaller and more efficient
Government size management Practice: Make government really, really, REALLY big!!!

Here are some others: The Clean Air Act allows more pollution, the Forest Growth Initiative cuts down more old growth forests and the Energy Efficiency Plan calls for destruction of the Alaska National Wildlife Reserve.

What I hope most from the coming debates and primaries is the loudest speaking of Truth that there has ever been. The conservative pundits can whine all they want about "negativity" but frankly, their boss has made all our lives negative. It's a good plan to hammer that home again and again and then introduce the American public to a new and better way to govern: by the people and for the people...not against them. Let the games begin.

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