Democratic Underground

The Antithesis of Compassion
March 30, 2001
by Maren L. Hickton

Bush, while touring the states touting his tax cut recently said, "Any suggestion that people give I'm willing to listen to." But he is not listening. He is mowing through states like Nemesis, bound and determined to get back at the opposition Party for a delayed "victory," that was not to be without influence.

I have more than one suggestion, Mr. Bush: Get in touch with reality. You are sputtering.

Your Fake Tax "Relief" Proposal

Few support your tax "refund" because it is not a refund. It doesn't matter what socioeconomic group gets what percentage in return. All of us, the rich and the less financially fortunate, have saved millions alone with consistently low interest rates for years -- which will increase to rates we have not seen if you get your way. Tax cuts also take money out of a variety of necessary programs, including ones that you proposed yourself, to make America a better place.

By all authorities, your dated economic prospectus jeopardizes a balanced budget, projecting surpluses that do not even exist and, worse, cuts into budgets of existing and truly compassionate plans, such as Social Security and your promise of a prescription drug plan for senior Americans. You promised to leave no child behind, but you are already working to actively legislate cuts in Congress that would do just exactly that.

Quid Pro Quo To Institutions Rather Than Caring For Individuals

You have chosen to invest huge amounts of money in institutions for R&D and other inane programs, rather than using these tax funds to help people who are in immediate need. You have chosen to withhold money from the most basic institutions, our school and extended health care systems, just to promote your tax cut.

Contributing To An Unstable Economy

The boomers, including you, are nearing retirement. Many have taken their savings and invested a portion into the stock market, which has been up and down like a yo-yo largely due to your continual propensity to promote "relief," when relief is not necessary. You obviously do not understand the ramifications of how your negative talk is also affecting the international markets. The last thing that we need right now, is the Social Security funds, or FICA (which is what the "surplus" is), to be squandered.

Negatively Impacting The Manufacturing Industry

If we all were to assume that supply-side economics was the only basis for what is negatively occurring in this country, we would also have to agree that there was a surplus of goods resulting from overproduction. But this is not the case. Businesses were manufacturing based on demand. Any surplus of goods is the result of Americans who are now afraid to take out their wallets to buy anything due to continual bashing of the economy in the promotion of the tax cuts.

Not Paying Attention to the Important High Technology Sector

In all economies, especially our new economy, shakeouts are a reality. But to remove corporate subsidies, to remove the infusion of money into the small business sector, especially critical investment in the technology sector when this sector has contributed to the greater wealth, literally and figuratively, of this nation at the present time, is simply bad policy. Reverting back to sole investment in big brick and mortar business development is not where the world is now. America must be able to compete internationally in the area of high technology and the Internet -- beyond the White House.

Neglecting Small Business, Despite Propaganda To The Contrary

America's largest business base is small businesses. America is about providing individuals with new opportunities to create these new business concepts with incentives to prosper rather than existing in fear that they will be squashed by the big guys with ineffective support, protections and policies. You have ignored "Workplace Rules," ergo the resulting actions will cause more money to big business with health care insurance increases due to related injury than ergonomic upgrades would ever cost them. You underest imate the power and passion of this huge base of single and multiunit operators. I won't bore you with stories, just remember who won in David vs. Goliath.

"Star Wars" Was A Movie

All possibilities regarding your purported missile defense system are largely fictional, yet you discuss how this program will save the world from imagined threats. All your talk about this extremely expensive program is creating a fearful international environment, causing other nations to react negatively, when you are the sole perpetrator of terror at the moment. You have clearly and consistently demonstrated a total disregard for the opinions from other nations, including NATO.

The dismal performance of Patriot during the Gulf War remains a widely under-appreciated reminder that sensors and battle-management systems are the more complex, and less reliable, system elements. Development and testing of ground-based and space-based sensors and their associated battle-management systems may continue, though there is little prospect of realistic testing that would provide high confidence that these crucial components will perform as advertised.

Warmonger, that you seem to be, you also continue to tender your deployment of a national missile defense system, irrespective of the international political consequences, which has been characterized as "a weapon that does not work against a threat that does not exist," with millions of dollars invested in R&D to prove this characterization.

Let me offer a little conjecture of my own, since that seems to be Republican-chic right now: Boeing, a major defense contractor, is moving to Dallas/Ft. Worth with a nice big contract, right? Screw Seattle's work force, even though they are the one of the most significant technological capitals of the world. They didn't vote for you anyway, huh?

I hope you get religion and develop a conscience. Many Republicans with a conscience are sorry they voted for you. I feel sorry for your outstanding cabinet members who are being glaringly silenced. In a couple of shortsighted months, you have independently put forth a variety of damaging proposals that could take the new President two terms or more to undo when you lose in 2004.


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