In 2002, congress created legislation commonly called the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. It was designed to respond to the accounting scandals of Enron and other business interests of the time.The legislation established new and increased regulations for all American owned and operated public company boards.
At the time, the Sarbanes-Oxley sponsored Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002 was considered to contain“the most far-reaching reforms of American business practices since the time of Franklin D. Roosevelt.”
Sponsored by Paul Sarbanes, a Maryland Democrat Senator and Ohio Republican Congressman Michael Oxley, the bill passed with bipartisan support and was signed into effect by a Republican President, George W. Bush. So credit and blame lies in the lap of both major parties but now, almost seven years later, the question is does Sarbanes-Oxley deserve more blame than credit.
The political purpose of the bill was achieved. It helped to restore public confidence in the securities markets.
In the wake of the accounting scandal that brought down energy giant Enron, its stock prices plummeted from more than $90.00 a share to less than 50 cents a share and investors lost billions and Enron eventually went bankrupt. In response to the shocking demise of Enron, congress tried to act in a way that would restore investors confidence by trying to insure that the scandalous practices of Enron would not be repeated.
So congress responded to the problem which took care of the political objective. They did something about it. But what did they really do about it?
Regretfully, all they actually did was make themselves look good. They made themselves look like responsible legislators responding to our needs but looks are deceiving because seven years later, Sarbanes-Oxley is proving to be more of a hindrance than a help.
There is little evidence proving that the government entity created by Sarbanes-Oxley to oversee the accounting practices of businesses has been effective. In fact, after Democrats refused to pass legislation that would have changed their own accounting practices which led to the need to bailout FannieMac and FreddieMac, there is even more evidence which indicates that government should be the last entity to be counted on for effective oversight. It is government oversight which required banks and loaning entities such as FannieMae and FreddieMac to enter into high risk loans that could not be paid off. All of which helped to usher in the banking crisis that led the way to our current financial crunch.
It is all an example of government overreaching and innefficiency and innaccuracy.
Initially compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act was projected to cost businesses, that want to go public, about $91 thousand dollars to do so but the actual figure is over $4 million dollars.
This typical government miscalculation has helped to push the start up time for businesses from five years to twelve years and it is adding to the stagnation of a much needed rate of growth for our economy.
At a time when the federal government has spent over $ 1 billion 200 million in the name of economic stimulus, does it really make sense to leave untouched, excessive legislation which is counterproductive to the goals of all that stimulus spending?
When you come down to it, enforcement of Sarbanes-Oxley costs more than it is worth.
That is not to suggest that Sarbanes-Oxley must be scrapped. It must be amended.
Of the eleven sections in the bill, some have merit. Specifically, those sections which hold business executives and owners more accountable. However, no responsible legislative stimulus action can exist without addressing the many other detrimental sections of the bill which are having a debilitating effect on economic growth.
To allow the so-called Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002 to remain as is, during the economic recovery attempts of 2009, is irresponsible and reckless.
In its current form the bill is destroying new job creation, stifling our entrepreneurial spirit and surrendering entrepreneurial innovation to foreign competitors. None of which adds any value to the hundreds of billions of dollars that are intended to grow our economy.
Without changes to the Sarbanes-Oxley legislation, our government is allowing existing legislation to work against all of their current and future economic recovery measures. Without changes to this bill, we are prolonging the economic downturn we are in and putting our economic future on a course that will put us far behind the burgeoning markets and economies of Asia.
A mathematician, an accountant and an economist apply for the same job.
The interviewer calls in the mathematician and asks “What do two plus two equal?” The mathematician replies “Four.” The interviewer asks “Four, exactly?” The mathematician looks at the interviewer incredulously and says “Yes, four, exactly.”
Then the interviewer calls in the accountant and asks the same question “What do two plus two equal?” The accountant says “On average, four – give or take ten percent, but on average, four.”
Then the interviewer calls in the economist and poses the same question “What do two plus two equal?” The economist gets up, locks the door, closes the shade, sits down next to the interviewer and says, “What do you want it to equal”?
There remain only a few hours left in the presidency of George W. Bush. For eight years he has given us his best. There were some low points but there were fewer than the media and liberals would have you believe.
Katrina was a low point but even that, President Bush really can’t take all the blame for himself . But for liberals, President Bush was there scapegoat.
Hurricane Katrina ravaged Mississippi every bit as much as it did Louisiana, yet Mississippi, under the leadership of Republican Governor Haley Barbour, did not encounter the same long duration of recovery or mishandled evacuations that Louisiana did.
Mississippi’s local leaders did not decide to park their buses on low lying surfaces as did New Orleans’ Democrat Mayor, Ray Nagin.
No, Mississippi’s first line of defense in natural disasters, their local governments, the governments closest to the people, came through and were every bit as prepared as they told the federal government that they were. Not so in New Orleans though.
But a liberal bias from the media helped to make Hurricane Katrina President Bush’s fault.
Shortly after the events of Hurricane Katrina many left leaning conspiracy theorists also claimed that Hurricane Katrina and a few of its devastating predecessors were the product of Japan where the Japanese government was inventing a new weapon that increased the intensity of tropical storms into category 5 hurricanes and directed them to land masses that they targeted.
Many of the same people who made this claim gave blame to George Bush. That should tell you something.
Although Katrina may not have been Bush’s fault, the recovery effort in Louisiana does get blamed on him and to a degree that is acceptable. But I guess, on the other side of the coin, the successfully rapid recovery in Mississippi warrants some credit for President Bush?
Putting aside the blame game of Hurricane Katrina, there are two things that when grading this presidency, bring his average down.
The first is his delay in approving the surge that his own Secretary of State urged for a year before he finally accepted it.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had been advocating for more troops in Iraq. It was a strategy called “clear, hold and build”. It was also the same strategy that Senator John McCain called for.
Clear, hold and build was successfully used by Col. H.R. McMaster in the Iraqi city of Tal Afar. The strategy called for door to door operations that cleared insurgents from the city along with an ongoing troop presence in each neighborhood that was cleared. Once this was achieved residents felt secure, and U.S. troops were able to begin rebuilding there. Wherever this strategy was conducted, it worked. The resurgents were gone and our continued presence there, prevented them from returning. As a result, citizens no longer lived in fear and life began to flow unimpeded by terror and violence. To carry out clear, hold and build, more troops were required. But increasing the number of troops was not something the administration wanted to advocate for. Although it was required in order to successfully carry out clear, hold, build the administration was afraid of the reaction to such a call.
The President flinched in this area. It was one of the few instances where he allowed public perception to make him second guess his policy judgment. After Viet Nam, we should have learned that if you are going to enter into a fight, throw everything you have into it from the onset. Otherwise don’t get into the fight.
In the case of Iraq, we held back. Had we went along with the surge from the beginning, we would have avoided the upsurge in violence that led to the waning of support for the war effort.
The other area of deep negative impact on this administration was the financial collapse that brought on the current economic crisis.
President Bush does not get blamed for causing the collapse, but it happened under his watch and it should not have.
The President, through his advisers, should have seen this coming and helped to avoid it.
He should have aggressively turned back some of the policies which led to the overextended loan practices which ultimately tied up loans and the markets.
Many of the policies that brought us to this point were from Bill Clinton’s administration.
Clinton‘s National Homeowners Strategy was a financial scheme that promoted insanely low down payments and coerced lenders into giving mortgage loans to first-time buyers with unstable financing and incomes.
It was a way to increase home ownership. That is an admirable motive but as usual, the liberal mentality, forced government to do that which it should not have done. Essentially, the Clinton era initiatives that forced government action on private sector interests led to the need for government to take over FannieMae and FreddieMac. This is not to say that private sector greed and bad business practices did not add to the wrong minded government policy, it did, but what happened here is that government solutions to one problem, created another . Now, ironically, the government which helped to create this problem is having to solve it
As for George Bush, this all came to a head under his watch. For that he must be blamed.
So we have the recovery effort in Louisiana, delaying the surge in Iraq and not avoiding the economic crises that we are in, all helping to lower the average of this administrations grade.
I have two more things to add though.
One is immigration.
On immigration President Bush was most inept. On this issue his positions were no where near appropriate for the leader of a sovereign nation.
The Presidents refusal to accept that illegal immigrants are participating in illegal conduct that needs to be prosecuted was a horribly blundered policy and it is one that has not helped to solve our border security problem or alleviate the continued problem of illegal immigration.
The other issue I hold against President Bush is his administrations inability to articulate their cause in a way that appealed to the people convincingly.
The administration had been doing quite well in it’s first two years when the voice of the President came from then White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer. Once Ari Fleischer left and Scott McClellan entered the picture, the White House lost any sway with the press or the public.
This President was great with messages when we were in crisis and he had the people’s attention, but in between crisis his message was jumbled and unconvincing. That, for this administration, was half of the battle and after Fleischer left they lost it.
On the upside President Bush has many, much wrongly maligned, initiatives to help bring his grade up.
Their was his “Faith Based Initiative” which allowed government to accept the involvement of religious institutions in helping out. Faith based initiatives were no longer penalized or denied by the federal government because of religion. It was something long over due in America, especially in an America where religion is not to persecuted against.
There was “No Child Left Behind”.
This policy was one which had universal support except for some extremist fringe players and teachers union.. But not willing to give credit where credit was due, liberals charged that President Bush backed out of his No Child Left Behind policy by under funding it.
Truth be told, federal education spending is at record levels so that argument doesn’t swim.
There are many other policies such as the Medicare prescription drug benefit, enacted in 2003. It triggered competition between drug companies and wound up costing less than expected.
The Bush tax policy is also to his credit. He didn’t ask for lips to read on this issue, he simply created no new taxes and when he did not reduce them he held the line on them. I only wish he could have added drastic spending cuts to that.
Another high point in this administration was the appointment of two supreme court justices, one being the chief justice.
The appointments of John Roberts and Sam Alito were remarkably good choices. Neither had any judicial or personal blemishes and neither see the role of the judiciary to be one that makes law but rather interprets it. Add to that their relative youthful ages and the Roberts and Alito appointments to the bench will have a profound on our great nation for decades to come.
The next greatest achievement of the administration was twofold. It involves The War On Terror and Iraq.
Despite charges that Iraq had nothing to do with terrorism, the two are entwined together as violent threats.
Pre-Saddam Hussein Iraq did not send to us the pilots that took nearly 3,000 Americans in one day but it had intentions just as dire.
Saddam did not have any tangible links to 9/11 but he did have links to terrorist, including several who dabbled with Al Quaeda and he did continuously break and defy the cease fire agreement that he signed after the first Gulf War. Combine that with the fact that everyone from Bill Clinton and Al Gore to John Kerry and Ted Kennedy swore that Saddam was a threat and you had every reason in the world to eliminate Saddam Hussein.
After 9/11 George W. Bush realized that we must eliminate threats before they eliminate us and so he took out the threat known as Saddam Hussein. In doing so not is democracy being brought to the Middle East but the power and richness of freedom is being delivered to a people that have long since forgotten what independence offers.
Add to that that you can say what you want, but we no longer have to worry about any threat Saddam intended, and for that I thank the President.
I also Thank him for the second part of this War On Terror effort. Under his watch not another single attack occurred on mainland territory since 9/11.
Now if you want to blame Katrina on Bush because it happened during his watch you must also credit him for there being no more attacks under his watch. And when you think about, more attacks occurred under Bill Clinton then George Bush, so I thank President Bush for that as well.
The final most valuable thing brought to life under President Bush goes back to exactly four years ago.
In his inaugural address , after being sworn in for the second time, President Bush stated:
“America has need of idealism and courage, because we have essential work at home – the unfinished work of American freedom. In a world moving toward liberty, we are determined to show the meaning and promise of liberty.”
He went on to articulate a policy that directed the United States to end tyranny in the world as we know it.
Now some may have seen that as a declaration of war by him but most read it the right way.
He went on to say………“We will persistently clarify the choice before every ruler and every nation: The moral choice between oppression, which is always wrong, and freedom, which is eternally right. America will not pretend that jailed dissidents prefer their chains, or that women welcome humiliation and servitude, or that any human being aspires to live at the mercy of bullies.”
“All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: the United States will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you.:”
The speech has since been forgotten by most but it has not been forgotten by me and hopefully President Barack Obama will also remember it..
In its entirety, the address presented the essence of what it means to be an American and it captured the most important role that America must play in this world as its current, last remaining superpower.
For me it Bush’s second inaugural address was the foundation for our greatest doctrine ever, the doctrine to achieve and true freedom and peace.
When you have the time, click here and read the speech. You will be moved and you will understand our place in this world.
The bottom line…….
President Bush is a good man and was a good President. He will not go down in history ranked along side of Washington or Lincoln nor will he be lumped together with Franklin Pierce or Jimmy Carter.
Ultimately, I believe George W. Bush warrants a B-.
Many on the left will now assault me for giving that grade but I base George Bush’s presidency on the truth of reality not on the lies and distortions that they have spent the last eight years perpetuating and when you add that to the retrospect of history, I believe George W. Bush’s name will slowly rise to its proper placement among American presidents.
That is something that will take time.
As President Bush recently put it, “they’re still debating and writing about how good or bad George Washington was, so I assume the same will happen to me”.
Once upon a time, in a village, a man appeared and announced to the villagers…
… that he would buy monkeys for $10 each.
The villagers seeing that there were many monkeys around, went out to the forest, and started catching them. The man bought thousands at $10 and as supply started to diminish, the villagers stopped their effort.
He further announced that he would now buy at $20. This renewed the efforts of the villagers and they started catching monkeys again.
Soon the supply diminished even further and people started going back to their farms.
The offer increased to $25 each and the supply of monkeys became so little that it was an effort to even see a monkey, let alone catch it!
The man now announced that he would buy monkeys at $50! However, since he had to go to the city on some business, his assistant would now buy on behalf of him.
In the absence of the man, the assistant told the villagers. ‘Look at all these monkeys in the big cage that the man has collected. I will sell them to you at $35 and when the man returns from the city, you can sell them to him for $50 each.’
The villagers rounded up with all their savings and bought all the monkeys.
Then they never saw the man nor his assistant, only monkeys everywhere!
Now you have a better understanding of how the stock market works.
In 1968 the campaign of Hubert Humphrey was the first presidential election to use a television ad attacking the oppositions vice presidential nominee. It was used to make fun of Richard of Nixon’s selection of then Maryland Governor Spiro Agnew.
That election was won by Richard Nixon with 301 electoral votes to 191 electoral votes. Third party candidate, Governor George Wallace won 5 southern states and 46 electoral votes.
The ad on Agnew had little effect.
Today we face a much different electoral map, yet one thing that is not different is the use of Sarah Palin by the opposition in this election. Many private groups have taken it upon themselves to run ads, on behalf of Barack Obama, that focus on Palin.
Governor Palin will Saratize the stale political atmosphere
The great attention on Palin came within days of the boost that her addition to the ticket brought to John McCain’s candidacy. A sort of fear overcame the liberal extremists within the Obama camp and outside of it. They were caught off guard by the selection. They were offended by the presentation of a strong, accomplished woman that was not Hillary Clinton or who married into power.
When she was first announced as McCain’s running mate, the Obamakins stated that her only experience is as a small town mayor. They skipped right over the fact that she is a sitting governor. They immediately wrote off her experience because “some” of it, was rooted in a small town and from their perspective small town America doesn’t matter.
Since than, the left has attacked her family, her education and her religion. They have lied about her decisions and actions and claimed that she banned books that were not even published at the time and that she supported secession from the Union when she simply spoke against secession before groups that did advance that cause.
In other words, the left went nuts. They did not know how to deal with her candidacy and they still don’t.
As the vice presidential debate approaches I am sure that they are still at wits end when it comes to coping with her presence on the stage. They have more lies ready to hit to the stands. They have more distortions that they are ready to perpetuate on the internet and over the airwaves. They have plenty of mud to throw but they have little constructive commentary to replace their mud with.
During the course of the debate, I am confident of one thing, Sarah Palin will be a breath of fresh air in an otherwise stale political environment. I am sure she will provide rational sectors of the electorate, with confidence in her abilities and beyond that she will instill a sense of confidence in her ability to bring about their desire for reform of business as usual, Washington, DC, politics.
You see, Sarah Palin does lack experience. She lacks the experience of Washington, DC and it’s go along to get along mentality. She lacks the experience of putting aside one priority for someone’s political favor. Palin lacks the experience of inaction and double talk. On the other hand she has the experience of standing up to the status quo, eliminating deadweight and defeating obstacles to progress. She has the experience of being able to make government work for the people, not against them.
The left can make all the false charges that they want but the truth of Governor Palin’s record cannot be changed. She has spent her time in public service tackling corruption and standing up to the powers that be, even when they were in her own party. She has developed economic policies that enrichened the pockets of Alaskans, not legislated money out of their pockets.
To the contrary, her debate opponent, Joe Biden, has never once opposed a tax increase, reduced the size of
Biden will use DC doubletalk to poluute the political atmosphere
government or stood up to his party and he is a longtime member of the liberal establishment. He is the type of Washington insider that gets hung up on politics and losses sight of positive progress. Biden is the politician who made the decision to hold a “trial” to determine whether, a decade earlier, Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas had committed the outrages of remarking to Anita Hill that dirt on a can of soda looked like pubic hair. Biden is the man who recently touted that the answer to Iraq’s problem was splitting the sovereign nation up into thirds based upon religious sects.
Just as was the case in the 1968 election, this election will not hinge on the vice presidential candidates or their debate and the left’s attacks on Palin will make even less difference. Most people vote for the President, not the Vice President but what people, especially undecided and independent voters, will walk away with is a sense of which ticket is more suited to change the way Washington works. Change in the sense of reform that will take effect from the top down.
I believe that Sarah Palin will Saratize the stale atmosphere of DC politics and that her common sense talk will prevail over Biden’s DC doubletalk.
And for those of you who want to claim that when it comes to the vice presidency, Sarah Palin does not have enough experience but when it comes to the Presidency, Barack Obama does……..I suggest you take a look at this:
Top 10 Signs Your Presidential Candidate is Under-Qualified
1.- Promises to improve foreign relations with Hawaii.
2.- Runs a series of attack ads against Martin Sheen’s character on “The West Wing”.
3.- His #1 choice to work on his cabinet is “That Bob Vila guy”.
4. – Outstanding record as Governor of Rhode Island nullified by the fact that no one cares.
5. – Got his degree in Political Economics by bribing Sally Struthers with a chocolate donut.
6. – Anybody mentions Washington, he asks, “The state or the DC thingie?”
7. – At the debates, answers every question with a snarled, “You wanna wrestle?”
8. – Vows to put an end to the war in Pokemon and free the Pikachu refugees once and for all
9. – Says the Pledge of Allegiance as quickly as possible, then shouts, “I win!”
10. -On the very first question of the debate, he attempts to use a lifeline.
One will be President. Both need to show us why they should be.
Presidents must provide leadership that leads us away from crisis if they see it coming. If they didn’t see it coming, they must get us through it.
The current financial crisis that our nation is being warned of could have been avoided if we acted on some of the preventive measures that would have averted the recent need for a 700 billion dollar rescue package. Not avoiding it is something that I blame President Bush for. Note, I do not blame him for the problem but I do blame him and the administration for not seeing it coming. I blame him for not heading the advice of others who warned us about the mortgage lending practices which have inevitably threatened every other, major, area of the economy. People like John McCain who in 2005 proposed measures to correct our course and avoid the ice field.
Someone was asleep at the wheel on this one. It was akin to being on duty in the watchtower and still not seeing the iceberg that sunk the Titanic.
I will blame the President for allowing the issue to get to this point and requiring an historic, expensive hurried, solution to what should have been avoided, but I will not blame him for creating the problem that he did not acknowledge until it was too late.
Nat'l Homeoners Strategy led to crisis
This was a problem created, in part, by the Clinton era.
Under the Clinton administration mandates were created that forced FannieMae and FreddieMac to extend high risks loans to low income and minority applicants. Clinton‘s National Homeowners Strategy was a financial scheme that promoted insanely low down payments and coerced lenders into giving mortgage loans to first-time buyers with unstable financing and incomes. It was a way to increase homeownership. That is an admirable motive but as usual,the liberal mentality, forced government to do that which it should not have done. Essentially, the Clinton era initiatives that forced government action on private sector interests led to the need for government to take over FannieMae and FreddieMac. This is not to say that private sector greed and bad business practices did not add to the wrong minded government policy, it did, but what happened here is that government solutions to one problem, created another . Now, ironically, the government which helped to create this problem is having to solve it.
There are many lessons that can be learned from this. Whether you refuse to learn those lessons is up to you but the lessons are there. The left , under Nancy Pelosi, want to point fingers at Republicans and blame the entire problem on their tendencies for deregulation. That could almost be plausible if it was true. Unfortunately for liberals, it is not true. Conservatives are not for no regulation. Conservatives are for less regulations. They are against government regulations such as the Clinton era housing initiatives which forced FannieMae and FreddieMac to enter into high risk loans that should never have had the opportunity to be defaulted on. Republicans are against the type of regulations that prevent reasonable growth of our economy that is based upon sound policy and business practices.
Such was the case in 2005 when John McCain sponsored the Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act which was specifically aimed at reeling in the higher than acceptable risk taking of FannieMae and FreddieMac. It was also designed to reign in many of the shady recording practices that both institutions were conducting.
The Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005 was, as it’s name indicates, a bill of regulatory reform, a bill that would have reformed the regulations which have added to the creation of the current economic crisis. The bill was ignored and denied by Democrats and the Democrat chairmen of the committees responsible for the bill. Congressman Barney frank and senator Chris Dodd did not act on this corrective initiative. Yet today, they join with Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid in blaming Republicans.
Pelosi’s lack of ability to lead has been clear for many years. During the last two years, as Speaker of the House,her lack of leadership has been profound. It lacked the ability to get her own party in line and pass their own liberal initiatives. That is why this is one of history’s least productive congressional legislative
The most unaccomplished Speaker in history
Between President Bush sleeping at the economic wheel and the house Democrat leaders’s lack of ability to accomplish anything, we need a leader to step forward. For me that leadership should come from the next President. It should come from the individual who will be steering our economic ship with whatever the burden of the solution to this crisis is.
Barack Obama and John McCain are incumbent senators. They have a responsibility to live up to in those capacities and they should not use a political campaign as an excuse for avoiding that responsibility.
John McCain was right when last week he suspended normal campaign activity in a stated attempt to deal with the legislative package aimed at rescuing the economy. He was wrong to back away from this original position. In doing so we are back to square one and Nancy Pelosi’s lack of leadership along with that of President Bush and Committee Chairs Dodd and Barney still leaves us crying out for effective leadership.
John McCain is no Nostradamus, but on this issue he has been ahead of the curve and his instincts have been right, at least since 2005 when he proposed measures that would have not allowed things to spiral out of control and bring us to this point. McCain should continue with those instincts and apply them in his capacity as a sitting senator.
Why did he reject the solutions before it baecame a problem?
I understand that neither McCain or Obama sit on the House Financial Services Committee or the Senate Banking, Housing & Urban Affairs Committee, which are the primary committees handling the bailout package. However, their involvement on the issue,along, with their colleagues can interject some much needed initiatives and direction into those committees. To believe that since they are not on the committee, they have nothing to do with it or no ability to influence it is absurd.
If either of these two men have the capacity to lead us that their individual campaigns would have us believe than now is their chance to show it.
Too late now to save the process he helped to sink
Now is the time for them to demonstrate their purported abilities to solve problems and unite people together to properly address our national concerns. If either of these men have the answers to our problems, than now is the time to provide those answers. If the economic dangers we are witnessing are truly a crisis, now is the time to answer their calls to duty.
Get off their high horses and get behind their legislative desks of responsibility. Do not politicize the crisis in stump speeches before adoring supporters in Ohio, Pennsylvania or Colorado. Go to Washington, D.C. and rally the legislative geniuses of Capital Hill together behind appropriate, legitimate legislation that will address the crisis.
I want McCain and Obama to present their rescue packages. A package of legislative measures that:
A. – Produces an acceptable level of fluidity in the credit markets
B. – Prevent the abusive practice of an overextension of risky loans.
C. – Tightens the recording practices of all federal monetary institutions.
D. – Eliminates the Clinton era National Homeownership Strategy policies
E. – Levees a payback with interest on any and all monies invested in bailout packages
F. – Eliminate golden parachutes for executive officers responsible for insolvency
Obama and McCain may not sit on the committees charged with hammering out such a package but they are
Talk is cheap. Action is essential.
charged with the responsibility to create a package that the proper committees must address. Through their leadership they can create a plan that is good enough to garner support and strong enough to rally behind. If they cannot do this than they have no right to comment on the process and use it to advance their candidacies for President.
I want them to demonstrate through deed, not word, how good their abilities are to resolve problems and deal with crisis.
If either McCain or Obama want to demonstrate that they have the ability to accomplish things as President, now is the chance to show it, not just talk about it. The cry for leadership in this crisis is loud and clear and if Obama and/or McCain refuse to answer those cries, than neither one should be asking for the chance to lead our nation for the next four years to come.
Last Wednesday, when McCain embraced the issue and suspended his campaign, he was on track. It was the right thing to do. Since than he has strayed off this track and now we still do not have a rescue package in place. Now, more than ever he needs to get back on track, suspend his campaign and take the lead on the issue. Develop a plan that can win the day and help propel him to the White House.
A campaign is a great forum for ideas to be expressed but a time of crisis is a great forum for leadership to be practiced. McCain and Obama need to practice it now.
A Guide to U.S. Newspapers
1. The Wall Street Journal is read by the people who run the country.
2. The New York Times is read by people who think they run the country.
3. The Washington Post is read by people who think they should run the country.
4. USA Today is read by people who think they ought to run the country but don’t really understand the Washington Post. They do, however like the smog statistics shown in pie charts.
5. The Los Angeles Times is read by people who wouldn’t mind running the country, if they could spare the time, and if they didn’t have to leave L.A. to do it.
6. The Boston Globe is read by people whose parents used to run the country.
7. The New York Daily News is read by people who aren’t too sure who’s running the country, and don’t really care as long as they can get a seat on the train.
8. The New York Post is read by people who don’t care who’s running the country either, as long as they do something really scandalous, preferably while intoxicated.
9. The San Francisco Chronicle is read by people who aren’t sure there is a country, or that anyone is running it; but whoever it is, they oppose all that they stand for. There are occasional exceptions if the leaders are handicapped minority, feministic atheist dwarfs, who also happen to be illegal aliens from ANY country or galaxy as long as they are democrats.
10. The Miami Herald is read by people who are running another country, but need the baseball scores.
After first suggesting that the debate on foreign policy be postponed so that participants can work on the 700 billion dollar economic bailout package, John McCain joined Barack Obama on the stage in Oxford, Mississippi. The suspension of normal campaign activity by McCain’s campaign actually did little to effect the issue that it intended to and it was not a move that was seen through by McCain. The bailout bill has still not been assembled and neither one of the potential White House occupants have influenced the final product that either one of them will have to contend with in 4 months. That is disappointing. And so was this debate.
As someone who did not support McCain during the primary process for the Republican nomination, I am behind him now. Not because I feel he is the very person for the job, but because he is the best alternative we have for the job.
Some may see this as settling but I see it as necessity. A necessity created by the very diverging directions that Obama and McCain offer. Obama’s direction is a far left turn to the economic and foreign affair policies of Jimmy Carter. Not good.
McCain’s direction is a more middle of the road approach. It is an acceptable approach based upon experience and supported by his proven record. Not great, but better than Obama-ology.
I became a bit more enthusiastic with the McCain candidacy after demonstrating what I saw as strong, bold, judgment when he selected Alaska Governor and political reformer Sarah Palin as his running mate.
In this debate I was hoping for McCain to be able to vividly clarify the lines of distinction between him and Obama. I was hoping that he would be able to show that the two have starkly different approaches and that McCain has the experience to advance his offered direction in a more capable and competent way than Obama.
Instead I saw that the two men disagree on certain approaches. That is not news. The nation is quite polarized in their opinions and it will take a lot to change those opinions. So from that perspective this debate accomplished nothing. The same opinions held before the debate, remain that way after the debate.
Generally speaking, McCain did take a few more rounds than Obama. He was able to point out the disparity between Obama’s rhetoric and his voting record. He made it clear that Obama’s approach to winning in Afghanistan hinged on losing in Iraq.
McCain was able to point to experience and accomplishments as a source of support for his leadership, Barack could not.
McCain was able to point out the naiveté and inexperience of Barack Obama on seven separate occasions while on 8 different occasions Barack Obama agreed with the elder statesman, McCain.
So on a point by point technical assessment of the debate, maybe McCain won, but based on the overall results of this match up, it was a draw. Neither candidate was able to make either side of the electorate see the issues in a new light and from a different perspective. Neither candidate changed minds. If you agreed with our mission in Iraq this morning you still agree with it tonight. If you felt that it is wrong to try and grow our economy by over taxing businesses yesterday, you still feel that way today.
I can best sum this debate up with one example which played out during the course of the debate.
John McCain showed a bracelet bearing the name of a serviceman killed in Iraq. He explained that he was given that bracelet by the soldiers mother who asked McCain to wear the bracelet, honor her son and not allow him to have died in vain. It was a demonstration of conviction to finish the job that we started in Iraq.
In response, Barack Obama showed a braclette of a slain Iraqi serviceman given to him by that warrior’s mother. She gave it to Obama to wear in memory of her son and in the hope that he will insure that other mothers will not have to endure the pain that she has suffered.
So there we have it. Two men, two bracelet’s and two differing opinions. Neither one convincingly moved one position over the line more than the other. As a result, Americans have two very symbolic bracelet’s representing two very opposing visions but neither of the men selling those bracelets were able to make one more appealing than the other.
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