2004 Presidential election

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2004 Presidential election

Postby Jonathan » Wed Mar 03, 2004 2:20 am

To kick things off: http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2004/02/26/gay_marriage/index.html

Republicans are pushing gay marriage as the wedge issue that will win them this election. To wit: a majority of Americans oppose gay marriage. Why the fuck this is, I have no goddamn clue. Personally, I'd like to see a candidate with real balls take issues like this and convince the American people that they're wrong. I suppose actions like that are reserved for activists, not politicos, though.

Dealing with the reality of the situation, Kerry needs to get elected. To do so, he must simultaneously shift the focus from gay marriage to real issues and make it so Bush can't make gay marriage the swing vote.

The article is fairly meaty. Here are some choice ideas:

"What's more morally reprehensible?" Darby asks. "To embrace the idea of same-sex unions or to have young men and women dying in the name of some invisible weapons of mass destruction?"


"It should be an inalienable right, guaranteed by our Constitution, to live in a marriage-based society," said Robert Knight, director of the Concerned Women for America's Culture and Family Institute.


"One of the problems the Republican Party has with swing voters is that Republicans are seen as divisive and intolerant," says a prominent Democratic strategist who asked not to be identified. "That's one of the reasons that people who make $100,000 a year and live in the suburbs and whose interests are otherwise aligned with Republicans find themselves voting with the Democrats -- they find the Republicans too intolerant."


"That's the way all the Democrats are," said Focus on the Family's Stanton. "They can't support gay marriage and they can't not support gay marriage, and they're falling all over themselves trying to be consistent."


Bush appears to be in for an uphill fight against a popular incumbent, but then the whispers and the rumors start. Maybe there's a lesbian working for Richards. Maybe she's using state funds to visit her lover. Maybe Richards herself is gay.
...
Bush says nothing about the rumors, but he doesn't have to. The stories are everywhere, and one day a Bush surrogate -- a state senator serving as Bush's East Texas campaign chairman, a guy who just happens to have worked with Rove -- says just enough about the rumors to get the word into the press. Richards' appointments of "avowed homosexuals," he tells a reporter, might be a liability in her campaign for reelection.

Just like that, the allegation is on the record, the rumors become newspaper stories, and Bush becomes governor of Texas.
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Postby Alan » Wed Mar 03, 2004 3:14 am

Yeah it's those far-right conservative religious groups that spread all these rumors and put these issues in the spotlight. Bush can "benefit" from this without getting his hands dirty. These are really despicable tactics.

Personally I can't conceive of why the gay marriage issue is such a big deal. If conservatives don't like the idea of letting gay people "marry", they should at least support giving equal rights to civil unions, such as tax breaks and letting the "spouse" visit their loved one at the hospital when they're ill.

Again, George W proves that he doesn't give a damn about "being a uniter, not a divider", like Kerry very explicitly said in his victory speech. He's willing to take civil rights back 200 steps just to get 4 more years. George W calls himself a wartime president, but he's the worst fucking wartime president anyone could ever be. He has two platforms: national security and gay marriage. Oh yeah, and steroids in professional sports.

WHO THE FUCK CARES??
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Postby Peijen » Fri Mar 05, 2004 4:45 pm

Alan wrote:Personally I can't conceive of why the gay marriage issue is such a big deal. If conservatives don't like the idea of letting gay people "marry", they should at least support giving equal rights to civil unions, such as tax breaks and letting the "spouse" visit their loved one at the hospital when they're ill.


I think bush's bill allows for civil unions, but fuck that let the gay people get married. who the hell give a damn that two people want to hump each other in their butt and want to enjoy some benefit of 'marriage'

I am happy that we are finally nailing some of the big shots from WorldCom and Enron (no thanks to cheney). Now if they would only install my idea of horse whipping dirty politicians (yeah i know that would be everyone).

Also bush is many things but he is certainly not a uniter
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Postby Jonathan » Fri Mar 05, 2004 5:21 pm

The Massachusetts court's opinion of civil unions is that they are separate, but equal. And we all know separate but equal is not cool.
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Postby Peijen » Fri Mar 05, 2004 5:32 pm

Dwindlehop wrote:The Massachusetts court's opinion of civil unions is that they are separate, but equal. And we all know separate but equal is not cool.


that's what I told my co-worker. are gay couple suppose to be considered as 5/8 of a couple?
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Postby Alan » Fri Mar 05, 2004 5:53 pm

I guess the conservatives still consider marriage a religious institution.

But this is obviously no longer true, so I can see why civil unions (separate but equal) are not acceptable. I heard one ridiculous argument on TV by some guy who said that if gay people could get married people would feel that their marriages were meaningless, or something equally stupid.
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Postby Jonathan » Fri Mar 05, 2004 5:57 pm

My wife says that marriage is far more trivialized by reality television marriage stunts like Married By America than it ever could be by gay marriage.

Which is to say that if religious conservatives really were concerned about marriage as an institution, they would be making these kinds of shows their main target. They're not, because this whole gay marriage issue simply a thinly veiled attack on homosexuals.
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Postby Jonathan » Tue Mar 09, 2004 12:10 am

We all know the real issue for the election is the economy. There was an interesting article a week or two ago about economic indicators. Simply put, for the entire 20th century one could safely predict whether the incumbent president was going to win or not based on the economy. The numbers say Bush will likely win. However, the "jobless recovery" is quite unlike any historical precedent. It's entirely possible that we see this election that voter satisfaction isn't tied to economic growth, it's tied to personal perceived security.

Some striking quotes:

While the national numbers get the headlines, it requires a look at the electoral map to estimate whether the jobs data gives Kerry real opportunities to exploit.

Nov. 2 is above all a battle for individual states and their electoral votes. And what’s striking about the state unemployment data is that the states with the highest unemployment are states that Democrat Al Gore carried in 2000, in other words, places where Kerry will likely win.

In the lower 48, the states with the highest unemployment are Michigan and Oregon, each with 7.2 percent unemployment in December, the latest month for which data is available, and Washington state, at 6.8 percent.

If the contest in November is as close as it now seems to be, the targets for Democrats will need to include states that Bush carried in 2000, where the jobs picture is at least a bit better, such as Arizona, Missouri, and Nevada.


The aggregate hours worked dropped in February. Coupled with the likely decline in productivity, this means that the outsized and overblown projections of GDP growth in Q1 are going to have to be revised down. It is a two-quarter miracle economy.

The Bush administration tax incentives for capital spending have a large role to play in this. There is a 50 per cent bonus depreciation allowance for capital expenditure. This is about to expire at the end of this year. Coupled with the low cost of capital, there is greater incentive to incur capital expenditure than to hire labour. In my view, this is playing a key role in the tepid job creation in the US economy.


If Kerry can sidestep the bullshit and tie George Bush's presidency to the "tepid job creation" in the US, that's Kerry's ticket to the White House.
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Postby skanks » Tue Mar 09, 2004 10:57 pm

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Sources: Bureau of Labor Studies; Economic Reports of the President, 2002, 2003 and 2004


Paul Krugman, the Princeton economist, included this graph today in his New York Times column. It exposes the substance of Bush's economic predictions and the effectiveness of tax-cuts as job-creation engine.
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Postby quantus » Wed Mar 10, 2004 4:47 am

Notice the increasing slope of the lines as time goes on...
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Postby Jonathan » Fri Mar 12, 2004 11:33 pm

http://www.usatoday.com/news/politicselections/nation/polls/usatodaypolls.htm

52% for Kerry, 44% for Bush. However, 42% think Kerry will win, 52% think Bush will win. Repeat after me: John Kerry can win this election.
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Postby skanks » Sun Mar 14, 2004 5:17 pm

quantus wrote:Notice the increasing slope of the lines as time goes on...


The Bush administration needed that extra step line so they could forcast having more jobs at the end of Bush's presidency than at the start.
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Postby Jonathan » Thu Mar 18, 2004 12:59 am

http://www.moveon.org/censure/caughtonvideo/

Ever so slightly off topic, but an entertaining video nonetheless. Rumsfeld claims he and Bush never said Saddam was an imminent threat. Reporters quote him as saying that some people say Saddamn is not an imminent threat, but he isn't so sure. They also quote him as saying that Saddam is an immediate threat.

MoveOn thinks Congress should censure the president for lying to Congress and to the American people. Sounds good to me.
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Postby Alan » Thu Mar 18, 2004 2:43 am

<--- Signed the petition.
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Postby Jonathan » Thu Mar 18, 2004 9:45 pm

http://salon.com/opinion/feature/2004/03/17/kerry_military/index.html

Here is an excellent example of why I am not in politics. I would have never thought of this, but now that I read it, it's amazing.

Kerry proposes spending more of the military's money on the soldiers and less of it on missle defense and other programs that do more for defense contracters than for national defense. He proposes a Bill of Rights for military families. He wants to make sure every soldier has a bulletproof vest and pay back the people who bought bulletproof vests by themselves.

This is a good idea and good politics, too.
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Postby skanks » Tue Mar 23, 2004 7:40 am

Richard Clarke, formerly the top-ranking counter-terrorism official for the Bush administration, not only exposes the Bush administration's perverse fixation to go to war with Iraq and that intelligence was manipulated to do so (old news that had already been covered by other insiders including former treasury secretary O'Neil as well as lieutenant colonel Karen Kwiatkowski, and many others -- I should make a list sometime) but Clarke even exposes that Bush had a lackadaisical attitude towards Al Queda despite repeated emphatic warnings and briefings from the Clinton Administration.

So now it looks like their priority was war with Iraq despite warnings about Al Queda, and then Al Queda attacked us and their priority was still going to war with Iraq.

The Bush administration is using the O'Neil counter-attack, labeling Clarke as "outside the loop". In this case it's a real dumb defense. I don't know what conclusions you want the public to draw when you claim the top official for counter-terrorism was "outside of the loop". What "loop"? And why wasn't he in it?

Ugh.

Every dissenting former official this administration has produced (and there's a lot of em) has the same general story. How many does it take before people can connnect the dots?
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Postby Jonathan » Fri Apr 02, 2004 6:05 pm

http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/webfeatures_snapshots_archive_03172004

Here's yet another way of looking at Bush's economy. The number of unemployed college graduates recently surpassed the number of the unemployed high school dropouts.

Even when people are finding jobs, they're finding shitty jobs.
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Postby Peijen » Fri Apr 02, 2004 9:17 pm

•Maryland. The House of Delegates this week approved a bill to permit all unmarried couples to register as life partners, enabling them to make medical decisions for each other. The proposal had strong bipartisan support from legislators who vehemently disagree about gay marriage.


•New Jersey. In January, it became the third state, after California and Hawaii, to pass a domestic-partner law, which grants many rights and benefits enjoyed by married couples. Vermont allows civil unions.


•Georgia. On Wednesday, the state House joined the Senate in agreeing to let voters decide whether to add a gay-marriage ban to the state constitution.


Not sure if this belong here, but what the hell is wrong with Georgia
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Postby Peijen » Tue Apr 06, 2004 6:01 pm

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Postby quantus » Wed Apr 07, 2004 3:24 am

http://blog.johnkerry.com/dbunker/archives/001462.html
Speaking of bad math, let's take a look at this one:
Kerry Blog wrote:John Kerry is offering that change with his economic plan which will create 10 million new jobs

Kerry Blog wrote:Bush-Cheney: Worst Job Creation Record Since Hoover. “The economy has lost 2.2 million payroll jobs since January 2001, giving Bush the worst job creation record of any president since Herbert Hoover. The U.S. economy, to match the White House's jobs forecast, would have to churn out well over 220,000 new jobs each month for the rest of the year, economists say.” Nationally, the economy has lost 2.9 million private sector jobs under Bush-Cheney team. Almost 2.8 million of those are in the manufacturing sector. [Associated Press, 2/11/2004; Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov]

So, 10 million divided by 48 months in office = 208,000 jobs per month to be created which happens to be on average just about as optimistic as Bush's plan. Don't get me wrong here, I don't like Bush, but I don't think we should be listening to just anyone else who steps up to the podium.
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