Saturday, October 09, 2004

Johnny On The Spot...but Off the Mark (part 2)

I'll make this one brief.

James Varner to Senator Kerry:

"Senator Kerry, would you be willing to look directly into the camera and, using simple and unequivocal language, give the American people your solemn pledge not to sign any legislation that will increase the tax burden on families earning less than $200,000 a year during your first term?"

Nice. Very nice.

Mr. Varner, I'm sure you plan the next four years of your family's life well in advance and then execute your plan flawlessly, but sensible and responsible people set goals then do their darnedest to achieve them -- sometimes, with mixed results. We can't expect more than that from our leader unless we intend to install a dictator or monarch.

To challenge the Senator to make such a pledge directly into the camera was misguided at best and manipulatively selfish at worst. I hope you and your beer buddies had a good laugh afterwards.

Johnny On The Spot...but Off the Mark (part 1)

A doe-eyed and woefully countenanced Sarah Degenhart posed the following question to Senator Kerry during Presidential Debate #2:

"Senator Kerry, suppose you are speaking with a voter who believed abortion is murder and the voter asked for reassurance that his or her tax dollars would not go to support abortion, what would you say to that person?"


Having been put on the proverbial "spot", the Senator did his politically-correct best to respond honestly without upsetting the pro-life/pro-choice applecart. But in doing so, he may have inadvertently advanced the President's argument that Kerry is a career "waffler".

It shouldn't be that hard to come up with an answer to such questions after all these years. Government should do an excellent job of protecting you from others but it should be up to you to protect you from yourself.

The government was forced into the abortion debate for one simple reason: people are irresponsible. If the only unwanted babies were the result of rapes, I suspect we wouldn't have such divisiveness. We might actually have the resources to deal with all rape pregnancies in a way that we all could agree upon.

But the reality is that rape pregnancies account for such a small portion of the incidences of unwanted pregnancies. Rape victims are the minority in this debate. As a democratic society, we must consider and address any and all unwanted pregnancies, and we must do it in the worst possible way: by addressing the lowest common denominator, which happens to be whether or not the fetus has rights.

So guess who suffers? The woman carrying the fetus.

Unfortunately, no Presidential candidate will stand up in front of his or her potential voters and tell them that they need to be more responsible and stop expecting the government to fix their problems for them.

Wanna Buy Some Wood?

At one point during the Bush-Kerry debate #2, Senator Kerry suggested that even the President can be considered a "small business", as evidenced by nominal payments that Bush has received from a large timber company. President Bush showed his own inability to comprehend basic business principles by donning his trademark "Dopey face" and musing ""I own a timber company? That's news to me."

Then after a pregnant pause in which he slowly walked the stage, mugging to the audience (oh, how adorable you are, Mr. President!) , he asked, "Need some wood?"

That line made me imagine that Bush was considering subdividing the real estate that is his own head and selling it off to the highest bidder.

Many large -- indeed, oftentimes humongous -- businesses create tiny entities which are corporations and LLCs in their own right. The sheer purpose, and a totally legal and ethical one at that, is to allocate and separate funds and resources to a particular function without interfering with any other part of the greater business entity. Each of these individual entities counts as a small business when viewed from the perspective of the state commissions that license them.

The suggestion that President Bush owns one or more of these small businesses and that one of them is receiving dividends or other payments from a timber company should be no surprise to Bush, nor should it be a hard concept for the President of the United States to understand.

...unless his head was made out of wood.