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10B --The Michigan Daily - New Student Edition - Fall 2004

COMMENTARY

ELECTION

SELECTION

2004

4

DINT

this: 'President Kerry'

VIEWPOINT
Where the Republicans stand

JULY 12, 2004

APRIL 15, 2004

AEL MOMIN

I will say it: John Kerry can win this election. Incon-
clusive polls aside, Kerry has some real advantages on
Bush, not the least of which are his domestic plans and
his running mate. If Kerry manages to shift the focus
of this election away from the endless referendum on
Iraq and the inane "values debate," he can hit Bush
where Bush is weakest: the domestic policy front.
The Bush team has played a smart but risky game. It
has taken flashy issues such
as war and national securi-
ty, and elevated them,
front-and-center. Com-
mander-in-chief George W
Bush has declared war on
terror, liberated the Iraqi
people, made America safer
AP PHOTO and stabilized the world by
deposing a lunatic
with(out) weapons of
mass destruction.
This fixation on
issues, however,
has come at a
cost: Domesti-
7 c a l ly, Bu s h
' hasn't done
impressive. His
sole economic
policy has been
the institution of tax
cuts, his major healthcare initiative has been a prescrip-
tion drug benefit that helps pharmaceuticals more than
either seniors or taxpayers and his flagship education
plan (No Child Left Behind) isn't even adequately fund-
ed. His pet project, a constitutional amendment banning
gay marriage, is lip service to the loony Right. For
Kerry, an opportunity exists to define and promote a
John Kerry agenda that can draw support independent
of the "Anybody-but-Bush" sentiment.
With international policy, Kerry and Bush are at
odds about details. Bush wanted the war in Iraq, Kerry
voted to authorize it. Bush was supportive of the June
28 transfer of power, so was Kerry. Bush doesn't like
evildoers; Kerry shares a similar sentiment, even
though he might refer to them in a more technical
manner as "terrorists." The finely drawn line between
the two is that Kerry wants the cooperation of allies
SAM BUTLER THE SOAPBOX JA

and he thinks he can get it, while Bush wants the coop-
eration of allies and has shown he can't. The Bush for-
eign policy has mired the United States in a horrible
international mess, but Bush thinks he's right and
Kerry has to face reality: pulling out of Iraq unilateral-
ly and immediately would be disastrous. The result,
inevitably, is that both plan to stay in Iraq. With Ralph
Nader launching his ego trip (candidacy), Kerry has to
worry about liberals breaking with the Democrats and
tossing the election to Bush. In the foreign policy
arena, if the best Kerry can do is to adopt a subtle ren-
dition of Bush's policy, he has to define himself else-
where.
Case-in-point: health care. Essentially, Kerry
rescinds Bush's tax cut to all those making over
$200,000 a year. He uses this extra $631 billion over
10 years to fund his health care plan, estimated to cost
a little over $650 billion over the same period. The
income threshold for Medicaid is raised, so many
working-class families become eligible for government
health care, and the government agrees to pay 75 per-
cent of any health care costs in excess $50,000. Paul
Krugman, economics professor at Princeton and
columnist for The New York Times, has argued that the
plan will not only drive down everyone's premiums by
about 10 percent, but also adequately cover millions of
families who make too much to qualify for Medicaid
but not enough to afford private insurance. In his own
words, "This is a truly good idea ... Mr. Kerry's plan
would help far more people than it would hurt." Bush,
by comparison, has yet even to articulate a plan for
providing health care to all.
Potential president Kerry also has a trump card: Sen-
ator John Edwards. Republicans have good reason to
be scared; Cheney vs. Edwards is an unfair fight.
Edwards revels in front of cameras, Cheney dislikes
campaigning. Cheney is associated with Halliburton;
Edwards is associated with the working class. Edwards
has energy; Cheney has heart problems. Already,
Edwards has invigorated the ticket: Kerry has been
seen laughing at recent campaign stops! Republicans
are panicking - Edwards was clearly a good choice.
With the President on the defensive about Sept. 11,
the CIA and the Iraq war, a Democratic victory in
November seems possible. Riding last week's wave of
good press, it is now up to Kerry and Edwards to find
their issues, sell their plans and fight this campaign on

BY STEPHEN MACGUIDWIN
You're George W Bush. You're a 57-year-old father of
twin daughters and husband to Laura, a former librarian and
teacher. You graduated from Yale and Harvard Business
School. You've served your country in the National Guard,
your home state as governor of Texas and have been alcohol-
free for over 10 years now. You even beat out the man who
invented the Internet to become president.
Does this introduction sound familiar? No? Check out yes-
terday's Daily viewpoint for some passe Bush bashing from a
nonstudent and former Daily columnist (The day Saddam's
statue fell, 04/13/04).
I speak on behalf of the entire undecided population of
students when I say, "It's getting old, guys."
Bush isn't Satan, and he's not God. He isn't a liar, murder-
er, cheater, racist, sexist, elitist or any other derogatory term
that these Bush bashers misuse. He is a cowboy, and there's
nothing wrong with that. Rather than waste your time and
insult your intelligence by going Kerry knocking (equivalent
of Bush bashing?), I want to show you all a portion of the
Republican platform. By focusing on four of the top issues
for us students, hopefully you'll see why we Republicans
support the president.
Keep in mind that the average voter does not attend the
University. So please, free your mind for at least the length of
this article.
Taxes - George Bush Sr. said it best, "No new taxes." We
believe that the American people know how to best spend
their money. Both parties agree that economic stimulus
comes from spending, but Republicans believe that taxpayers
and corporations should be the benefactors of the spending.
Tax cuts create new jobs, and improve the quality of life for
all Americans. That money promotes consumer spending,
which creates jobs for factory workers and corporate spend-
ing on new equipment and the operators that they require.
Terrorism - Not in our country, ever again. The United
States is an equal-opportunity terrorism exterminator. If
you're supporting terrorism, we couldn't care less about your
race, religion, ethnicity or gender; we're going to stop you.
We want to feel safe in our own country, as do the citizens of
all countries in the free world. As long as terrorist cells exist,
none of us are safe. At home, we need to give law enforce-
ment the power to quickly react on tips of domestic terrorism
through laws like the PATRIOT Act. Abroad, we believe that
the United States needs to work with other nations (Pakistan,
Afghanistan, even France) to root out their domestic terrorist
networks, and we can't be afraid to intervene when national
governments support terrorism (Iraq).
Iraq - For 15 years, Saddam Hussein stifled U.N.
weapons inspections and refused disclosure of his nuclear

and biological weapons intentions. As Republicans, we sup-
ported the war in Iraq for the threat that Saddam posed to
both the Iraqi and American people. We found a centrifuge
cut to nuclear specifications, missile-precision guidance
hardware, documents that linked the regime with attempts to
procure weapons-grade plutonium and an al-Qaida training
camp in southern Iraq.
We got Hussein, his sons and his regime leaders. The war
in Iraq not only thwarted a volatile regime and ended Sad-
dam's genocide of a half-million Iraqis, but
it persuaded Libya and North
Korea to disclose their
nuclear intentions. Further-
more, we are committed to
instilling a democracy where
there once was only tyranny. n
Education - Teachers
and schools need to be
held responsible for
properly educat-
ing their stu-
dents. National
standards are
essential to
ensure that
American
receives a
quality K-12
education and not AP PHOTO
just a paper degree.
We believe that
all parents should
have the ability to choose their student's school, be it public,
private or in another district. Finally, public education needs
to be better funded by the states, and more affordable for all.
Federal Pell grants made education affordable for collegiate
scholars, but are no substitute for state funding.
Now that you're all well-versed in Republican thought, I
implore each and every one of you to make your own educat-
ed decision about which party to support in the upcoming
elections. I also challenge the Democrats on campus to artic-
ulate their party's stance on these issues and to stop hiding
behind this playground name-calling that is Bush bashing.
The Republican Party has a clear plan and vision for a safer
and better America, and I encourage all of you to support our
president as he makes that vision a reality.

4

4

Momin is an LSA junior and a
member of the Daily's editorial board.

MacGuidwin is an LSA senior and the
president of the College Republicans.

5 2004

r,
(
#J p

How to tell a 10-year-old her president sucks
JOEL HOARD OH YEAH JANUARY 22, 2004

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STEVE COTNER AND JOEL HOARD OmRON PuSsYCA

Great Britain, Australia, Poland and other coun-
tries enforced the demands of the United
Nations, ended the rule of Saddam Hussein and
the people of Iraq are free." He went on to claim
that "From the beginning, America has sought
international support for our operations in
Afghanistan and Iraq, and we have gained much
support." He implies that the efforts in Iraq and
Afghanistan are truly international ones. But this
so-called international coalition is nothing more
than the United States and a handful of toady
countries that are too afraid not to commit troops
to the cause. The president thinks that because
you're young and naive he can trick you into
believing something that's simply not true. Don't
let him.
Sadly the president's crimes go beyond simple
lies. Tuesday night he also outlined several poli-
cies that he claimed were aimed at protecting
children like you, Ashley, when in reality they
only seek to promote his not-so-hidden Christian
agenda. He called for increased funding for
abstinence programs and drug testing in high
schools. Because you will be in high school in a
few short years, let me warn you: He wants only
to invade your privacy and force his beliefs on
you, Ashley. Don't let him.
This next part may be a little confusing to you,
but I will do my best to explain it in such a way
that you can understand. You know how much
your mommy and daddy love each other, right?
They love each other so much that they made a
promise to spend the rest of their lives together.
It is a very special bond that they share. There
are lots of other people who share this special

bond, and sometimes instead of a mommy and a
daddy it's two mommies or two daddies. That
doesn't mean that they don't love each other all
the same. They should be able to promise to
spend the rest of their lives together just as your
mommy and daddy did, right Ashley? Well the
president doesn't think so. He wants to prevent
these people from marrying each other in spite of
their love. With rationale based on archaic
notions of love and marriage, he uses words like
"sanctity of marriage" and "moral tradition" to
try to confuse you into believing that even
though these people love each other very much
they shouldn't be allowed to get married. Don't
let him.
But please don't lose heart, little one. There is
still hope. You asked your president what you can
do to save our country. He replied, "Study hard in
school, listen to your mom or dad, help someone
in need and when you and your friends see a man
or woman in uniform, say, 'thank you.' " It
sounds well and good, but the president's
requests are tantamount to slapping a "God Bless
America" bumper sticker on your mom's minivan
or wearing a "United We Stand" T-shirt. Let me
tell you what the president should have asked you
to do. He should have asked that you tell your
parents to vote for John Kerry or John Edwards
or Howard Dean or Wesley Clark - hell, even a
third party candidate. I beseech you: anyone but
George W. Bush. Otherwise, my dear Ashley,
we're fucked.

Hoard can be reached atj.ho@umich.edu.

'awful' Democratic

ider in '04

Mostly liberal and utterly disgusted, I regis-
tered independent and voted Green in that elec-
tion. As if to prove me right, the party continued
to suck long after Bush swaggered into 1600
Pennsylvania Ave. Sept. 11 happened, and sud-
denly there was this big, ugly bill before Con-
gress called the USA PATRIOT Act (abstract: "If
we pay any attention whatsoever to the Fourth
Amendment, the terrorists have won"). Awful
though they had already shown themselves to be,
I didn't really want to believe that the Democrats
in Congress would let the PATRIOT Act through.
So they'd handed Bush the White House on a sil-
ver platter the previous November - so what?
They were still civil-liberty-lovin' liberals with
spines and scruples, right?
Oh, what a foolish young thing I was. No
more. I've given up what little hope I once had
for the Democratic Party, and seeing its members
cropping un now. after three years of nodding

OCTOBER 7, 2003
them out in approval-roaring droves.
We need Jon Stewart and Eddie Vedder. Yes.
The host of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show"
and the lead singer of Pearl Jam, the greatest
American rock band of all time - it would be
glorious. You think I'm kidding. But come with
me on this one.
As host of "The Daily Show," Stewart's been
cutting Bush down to size on basic cable every
Monday through Friday at 11 p.m. Eastern Stan-
dard Time since day one of the Bush presidency.
And unlike the Democratic "leaders" who so raise
my ire, Stewart didn't bite his tongue when Bush
pre-emptively demonized his detractors. He
repeated that which needed repeating (Bush say-
ing in complete and total earnest that he was "a
follower of American politics" - a clip over-
looked by the likes of CNN) and mocked that
which needed mocking (terror alerts, mass media
spin, etc.). We can trust this guy. And Vedder,

m

J

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