And Why It Is One Of The Most Terrible Administrations in the History of America:
Update: May 2011 – Hey, if you like my writing, you should check out my new website: Sustainable Diversity with fresh new and more in depth material!
In Part I, I set the stage up for the atmospheric conditions surrounding the Bush Administration when it came in to office. The mindset – The End of History, which is a widely accepted neoconservative concept that America has found the highest form of human government and because of it America will not slump from its superpower position… ever. The group of people that have most of their ideals in effect – The neoconservatives, which have a hypocritical view of foreign policy, morality, and patriotism. The supporters of the movement – The Christian fundamentalists, who praise Jesus Christ above all else. Even when Clinton was in office neoconservative ideals such as The End of History were seemingly factual with the build up to the second Bush administration. Clinton was a strong proponent of America being a global country.
Now, January 20th, 2001 – George W. Bush takes office. And on a whole slew of issues he’s managed to divide and entangle America with seemingly little bother on his own conscience. And these are facts: America IS divided and America IS entangled, and the Bush administration has much to do with it all. So I will take stance with the Bush administration on issue by issue referencing as many sources as I can as I am going to sift through over 150 that will give a clear, concise argument on how poorly this administration has handled itself just in general.
The No Child Left Behind Act:
I am a teacher so it’s no wonder I chose this to start off where the Bush administration is creating problems. While in college I was education on this Act because at the time it had recently been approved by President Bush. The class was on the history of American education and the professor was one of the most respectable and reasonable educators I’ve met. He actually had to write a whole report on the No Child Left Behind Act that was no less than 50 pages and presented it to the federal government on how New York State standards are higher than the federal standards and plea the federal government to allow New York to keep them, he succeeded. In short, he admitted, it was a poorly thought out Act and spoke of many of the problems that are still being discussed today after it has been in effect for some time now.
This is the idea: The federal government gives a certain amount of funds to the public education system in every state in America. The federal government is not just going to give all of the states and schools money without adhering to some standards. The reason behind this is because the federal government wants the students of their country to be within the ideals of benefiting the nation. Having loyal, educated, disciplined citizens is what the federal government wants from the educational system. So to bring this to fruition the federal government decided to implement an Act that holds the schools accountable for not having a 100% (no room for failure) pass rate in every school and if this does not occur within a certain time frame then the schools start to get “sanctions” against them being held more and more accountable for the school’s inability to not create the educated citizens our federal government demands. The government appropriates extra funds for the sanctioned schools depending on how in need the school is.
The problem? Well there are several. First we’ll start with the standards – what standards are the federal government holding the schools to? It demands high-stakes testing be used to tell which schools are doing poorly. However the problem with high-stakes testing is that it’s controversial. The reason it’s controversial is because it’s known that there is a stronger correlation between understanding how to take a standardized test and success on one than being well-versed in a subject but not understanding the perspective of the standardized test. Instead of education this simply leads to “teaching to the test.” As a teacher I can attest to the ambiguity and confusion a standardized test brings to a student, especially one with learning disabilities. Many of the answers and questions hold a lot of assumptions the test-maker assumes the test-taker, a child or teenager, already knows and they are generally arbitrary and confusing. And ultimately high-stakes testing is used to rank different cultures, intelligences, languages and perspectives over a large area – state or national – on a level of superiority to inferiority. Teachers and students like to have ownership over their teaching and learning styles and high stakes testing removes that making it foreign and hard to understand. While the argument goes we can not remove the system because we will not know which students are doing poorly the whole subject is hardly addressed in politics and the 100% pass rate still stands on this controversial system… even though high-stakes doesn’t mean high standards. Severely mentally disabled students as well as students from low income, complex, culturally diverse environments have to pass otherwise the school gets the sanctions pressuring administrators and teachers eventually meaning loss of jobs and school closures if these tests can not be passed by everybody. How are we going to know which schools need help without a single way to judge people? Well the answer is simply don’t judge people in a single way.
The major problem is the audacity the federal government holding so much power in comparison to the amount they fund. Straight from the federal department of education the federal government has never funded even 10% of school funding since 1900. Yet the federal government now wants to be the determiner of how to best assess our students. State and local levels have been the strongest determiner of education in America’s most prosperous century making the federal governments desire to standardize the nation seem unhealthy for the nation especially when articles like the one in the initial paragraph are frequent. Yet Bush has assured this method to live on well after his presidency is gone. Why would the Bush Administration want to try and standardize the nation when it’s proven it doesn’t benefit the education of our country? Because it ranks people and ranking is more important to the Bush administration than actual education… because the federal government removes the ownership of both what is being taught and learned and places it on themselves. This further erodes state powers which the federal government has been chipping away at for centuries, while some have been beneficial, clearly this one is not.
There seems to be two schools of thought when it comes to September 11th. There is the somber, unspeakable, tragedy that does not even dare probe in to questioning the handling of it by the Bush Administration due to the cruelty of the attacks… and then there are the conspiracy theorists. Rarely is the tragedy looked at in any other light. It’s heresy to believe that the federal government did not handle the worst tragedy on American soil in a respectable way. The problem is, according to the highly respected Zogby polls, half of the American people want Congress to probe Bush and Cheney over the 9/11 attacks and over 30% seek immediate impeachment. Knowing that at the time of the attacks Bush had the highest approval rating of any president recorded (over 90%), what could they have done so poorly to get that much of the population to rally behind not only to want them probed, but to have such a large group who had previously approved of him to want to immediately impeach him?
Well there are such cases as Sibel Edmonds, who the ACLU claimed as the most gagged woman in America, in which she asserts that the War on Terror is nothing more than a sham comparing it to arresting only drug dealers and ignoring the drug runners and drug lords. In France a documentary was made about the case and in my opinion it is possible that she could be doing it for reasons of profit or fame because the trailer seems to appeal to emotions rather than reason. However the facts remain that she was definitely hired by the United States government directly after the attacks as an interpreter, she was fired after accusing a colleague of illegal cover-up activities, the government doesn’t explain why they fired her, and the government also forced her to not talk by invoking the “State Secret” rule. These are facts and it certainly raises curiosity at least. To learn more about Sibel Edmonds this person seems to be following what she says pretty well.
But bigger reasons why Bush and Cheney are feeling heat for what they were once seen as our protectors over was probably when the chair and vice-chair of the 9/11 commission was “set up to fail.” Those are their words, the heads of the 9/11 commission! It’s pretty obvious that the Bush administration felt there must have been something to hide if the commission wasn’t allowed to fully probe the investigation. This may once again fall into the neoconservative mindset that to protect our country we have to lie to them in order for people to continue believing in neoconservative ideals. While I am nowhere near suggesting the government set up the attack, I am suggesting our government might have had involvement on some level that they are not proud of, otherwise why all the red tape for the commission? That is a fair question!
And the biggest sin created from the attacks on September 11th was the paralyzing fear the government didn’t attempt to disseminate, but used to their advantage. At a time where we were supposed to show our unity and strength we bought bumper stickers and allowed the federal government to feast on our liberties. Here is a good essay on why things such as 9/11 shouldn’t frighten you in to submission.
Maybe the biggest reason why Bush should be probed over 9/11 is the Iraq War. One of the most common misconceptions about the Iraq War that in some dark corners of America is still used as fact is that the Iraq War was started because it had connections to the 9/11 attacks and they had Weapons of Mass Destruction. In fact Iraq has no connections to 9/11 and has never had Weapons of Mass Destruction. Even two CIA officials are claiming Bush knew all along there were no WMDs there. On top of that the war was illegal under international law. I can not find the words to explain the gross mismanagement within the Bush administration to start an illegal war under false pretenses. Not only were the reasons we went to war wrong, it was not even agreed upon by the rest of the world whom we demanded support from. This undermines the integrity of international institutions and the United States in a very strong way. Why would we go to war when it was illegal under international law? Neoconservatives believe that there should not be a world government and therefore have the belief they do not need international approval before starting a war, even under false pretenses. While it’s understandable why people would not want a world government, Hell, I don’t want a world government, the reasons why the UN put the stops up for this war were justified and the United States is still a major part of the UN.
It’s important to compare the quickness of the impeachment of Clinton over being sexually promiscuous to the inaction on Bush when he started an illegal and unjust war. A war is not a victimless crime like Clinton’s sexual actions, there have been hundreds of thousands that are not allowed to be on this Earth anymore, both innocent Americans wishing to defend their country and Iraqi civilians, who are not going to eat dinner tonight because they do not physically exist anymore. This was done completely on false pretenses by George W. Bush and his administration. Where is the impeachment here? Where is the serious addressing of this situation at the very least? Where is the accountability? There is none – there is only brazen rhetoric about staying the course now. And it is brazen. A poll came out earlier this year on how there have been over 1 million Iraqi civilians murdered, well over 2,000 alone killed in September. Over 3,000 Americans have lost their lives because of the war, even ignoring all the wounded who had to make total life adjustments because of their time in Iraq. And there are even questionable circumstances with what is going on in Iraq, and whether America is even attempting to help the civilian population.
All of these people have died because of Bush and his stubborn and impatient decisions that were not based off of reason nor the good of the American people, but based off of inaccurate assumptions that has cost America not just billions, but over a trillion dollars. That is over $1,000,000,000,000. The Bush administration is not just starting unjustified wars, and that is a fact – the war is unjustifiable under the pretenses in which they began, but they are grossly misspending the American taxpayer’s money. This is a trend I’ll get back to in a different section as the War is not the only place where gross mismanagement of money is occurring. 9 billion dollars goes missing in Iraq and it defaults as unimportant and can get on the list of other gross mismanagements due to being in Iraq. When the cost of the war was only 1/3 what it is currently it was compared to the cost of going to Mars 11 times.
The only response to all this is more or less the message “stay the course.” Unfortunately there is no course. There is no model for a 3rd world country becoming a successful democracy. There are plenty of failures but there is nowhere to be found on this planet a model of bringing a poor, divided country that uses extreme violence into a successful democracy. None. I don’t need any sources for that because there is no source that will refute it, and it is all but certain Iraq is not the exception. But what do we do? We claim we know the way to bring successful democracy in Iraq though there is no serious progress. Even now Turkey is struggling with Iraq and want to invade it themselves. To prove that we know what we’re doing we build the largest budget US embassy in the world in Iraq costing nearly $1 billion. Like the No Child Left Behind Act the Bush administration wants to make sure their ideas are forced upon America for years after he leaves office. Rolling Stone magazine published a big article that just adds to the mountain of credible evidence that there is something sinister going on within the higher levels of government that is swindling taxpayer money. Which closely relates to my next topic:
If there was ever a question in your mind whether George Bush stands up to the stereotype that he’ll help the rich get richer an the poor get poorer look no further than the second richest man in America: Warren Buffet. Now Buffet is an unusual man obviously well attuned to manipulation of money and not the first person I’d trust in giving me a good deal if it came to the choice of him profiting or me, but Buffet made me look at him again when he made a $37 billion donation to charity. And while we all know this will affect his lifestyle not-at-all, it most certainly is more than most putridly rich people are giving. Perhaps with old age comes a conscience because Buffet recently publicly acknowledged that he should pay more taxes, even making a bet with any on the Forbes 400 list that their income tax is less than their secretary’s. As of this writing none of them have accepted the bet while plenty responded to shun him for it.
Without a doubt it is evident that the Bush administration is pandering to corporate interests and not the interests of its citizens. And Iraq seems to be where a lot of these businesses are ending up hence the reason why the US installed their massive embassy in a 3rd world country. One of the corporations that profited largely from the Iraq situation, current and past, is Blackwater. Blackwater has been accused of smuggling arms as well as labeled as “out of control” by a congressional committee. Yet Blackwater has been heavily funded by the United States. So in order to protect both of their reputations they attempted to cover up unnecessary civilian casualties in which Blackwater created. The fact that we could claim the Iraq War was started to eliminate a man who killed innocent civilians and then on the same hand cover up our own civilian casualties is proof in itself we don’t belong there anymore than Saddam. On top of it all Blackwater is part of a draining cost for America considering we already have a military and spent more on it than anyone else in the world.
Blackwater is not the only corporation that has used the United States government for their high profits. The Bush administration enjoys contracting out governmental work on many levels. Oil companies such as Exxon-Mobil have enjoyed record profits under the Bush administration while the American citizen deals with the ever-rising oil price increases. A congressional report came out even deciding the oil companies are getting some pretty sweet deals from the government. I don’t know how anybody can justify giving a good deal to a business that is having record profits and ignoring the squeeze the same industry is putting on the average consumer. Halliburton, a corporation Dick Cheney once served on as an executive as well as a corporation that has billions of dollars of American taxpayers money, has even profited and up and moved away to Dubai when the heat was turned up on ethical practices.
The American government is more and more boldly supporting corporations leaving individual citizens with the same problems. This is an article on how the Supreme Court ruled to suppress the speech of citizens over corporations. Case after case after case corporations are becoming more bold infringing on citizens rights with very little to no repercussions. This is having a negative effect on our liberties which I will touch on shortly. Why is this occurring? An interesting and well thought out opinion by Robert B. Reich (published in the New York Times and served as an adviser for Clinton) believes that this nation is becoming supersaturated with consumers and investors as opposed to citizens. He calls it a turbocharged economy and frets over the danger because of it.
But the biggest corporate joke of the Bush administration has to do with the infamous wiretapping programs they’ve implemented and told telephone companies to comply or face repercussions. It all seriously began when thankfully an AT&T whistleblower came out of the woodwork explaining that what his corporation was doing was illegal spying on Americans. Once it became factual that the United States did indeed demand illegal wiretapping programs there was a quick rush to congress to pass a bill demanding immunity to both telephone companies and Bush administration alike. In fact Bush was brazen enough to insist the immunity of telephone companies and refused to sign a bill if it did not occur.
Many ignorantly argue that September 11th changed the world and that Bush only committed this particular illegal act (because he has done way more than just one) with the interests of American citizens in mind. The problem was Bush began this illegal domestic spying campaign even before September 11th occurred according to a suit against the government. And Qwest would be the corporation to trust in this case as they were one of the only companies that understood the illegality of the program and refused to implement it. Documents have surfaced for this truly patriotic task that the government attempted to retaliate against them for obeying the law. On top of Bush illegally spying on America he appoints an AT&T industry lobbyist as a counselor. Aside from appointing a lobbyist as a counselor seeming ethically wrong the motives behind the move are questionable.
The reason all of this is a problem in the United States, in case it seems quite ordinary practice in much of the world, is because the United States foolishly believed in personal liberties of individuals during its inception. But still the argument of September 11th changing the world comes up and now security is the highest priority in the new millennium. However if security was more important than anything – including personal liberties – then why has the government decided to contract out our security to private companies? The most sensitive information to catch terrorists, much of which the own citizens of the government which pays for its existence aren’t allowed to know, are going to be subcontracted out to a company that has profit as its motivating desire as opposed to security.
The erosion of civil liberties has been a highlight of the Bush administration. Almost every action of the Bush Administration has been to expand executive power and minimize individual liberties. The government has been able to do this by creating an atmosphere of fear in which the citizens of the United States have no choice but to give up their individual liberties. The irony of it all is Bush rallies support for his liberty-removing ideas by declaring the terrorists “hate freedom.” This is one of those times that overt hypocrisy is blinded by fear. “If you see something, say something” is the new mindset of the American citizen even though they have no idea what they’re even looking for wasting multitudes of government time. The “freedom” that Bush claims the terrorists to hate is the exact same freedom he is attempting to remove himself.
The Bush Administration has been attacking the Constitution since the September 11th attacks grabbing more power, breaking down the checks, balances, and freedoms of the United States that was supposed to work towards giving the citizens of this country freedom. This journalist calls George Bush James Madison’s worst nightmare. Naomi Wolf, a feminist becoming more outspoken about the government, claims America is on track to fascism. The ACLU claims the US Constitution is in grave danger. These are not claims to take lightly, what causes these types of allegations on the Bush Administration?
To begin with we’ll start with a terrorist watch list that is rampaging towards one million people. Now the question is – are more people becoming terrorists or is the government broadening the definition of a terrorist? The answer to that isn’t debatable, it isn’t questionable, the truth is the government is expanding who they treat as terrorists. Case after case after case after case after case after case after case after case after case show average American citizens, as diverse as they come (from grandmas to artists to activists to professors), become innocent victims of this intrusion into personal privacy and liberty. For some it ruins their whole life, Americans simply don’t have the time to be bogged down by arbitrary red tape that is supposed to allegedly catch terrorists. If a professor is not allowed to fly or leave the country this is something that could cost him his job, same with a principal of a school… and some have to use their hard earned money and time to fight for their obvious innocence. These people are not questionable terrorists, these are real people who have gotten sucked up in to an overzealous bureaucratic system that has no intention of letting go.
Yet some still ignorantly complain that these freedoms still exist and whatever laws are passed are arbitrary. This is Alberto Gonzales explaining the reason why the United States government is now allowed to unlawfully detain anyone they please, citizen or non. The video sickens the voice of honesty and reason as Gonzales chooses to create foolish lies and look ignorant than give an honest reason. Habeas corpus is not the only thing that has been effected:
This is a negotiated spying bill giving “some” telephone companies immunity to illegally wiretapping people…
this article is about expanded use of US spy satellites…
this is all about the national ID card in the pipe (“papers please”)…
The Protect America Act is about removing judicial and legislative oversight on the executive branch…
this is about loosening the reasons for law enforcement to track you…
this is about wiretapping the internet for the FCC…
and why not one about creating a secretive office to hand out spy satellite pictures with…
and hey, how about our National Intelligence Director asking for eavesdropping power?
And then the Bush Administration determines that in order to make sure nobody’s rights are being violated they will make a “secret court” to figure it out. This is flagrant disregard for the American way of life. And that is an educated agreement across the United States:
The ACLU says when you’re confronted by an FBI agent and you’re not allowed to tell anybody – not a soul on this green Earth – that is unconstitutional…
States are rebelling against the REAL I.D. Act..
There is a bill begging the government to restore rights…
However many will argue that if these things that our elected officials agree to make our country safer then they will back them. The major issue is a lot of these big ideas the government have (and they are big ideas) are inefficiently costly as well as debatable in measurements of safety. They store excessive information on you including reading material and bed size. There are negative repercussions to more surveillance to society as a whole. The national systems the government wants to put in place could create deadlock. Running these operations cost billions of your money.
And still there are those who simply say: I have nothing to hide, so they can repeal all the privacy they want for me. Aside from this being unconstitutional it’s just plain non-thinking, these things came in to effect in the Constitution for a reason. On top of that these systems are very easily opened to be widely abused with no checks and balances. So why then? Why do we do this to ourselves? For one – America has gladly traded education for convenience with the First Amendment Center reporting solid callowness on Americans knowing what the First Amendment contained.
The best rally against our own idleness, believe it or not, aired on Conservative Fox News by a man named Judge Napolitano.
So what is the Bush Administrations response to all this encroachment on privacy? They change the definition of privacy. It’s just that simple.
Torture as well as, but not limited to, other non-citizen treatment:
Our own apathy is not just hurting ourselves, but it is hurting those not from the United States just as much, if not more. This is just one British opinion of his time spent in America. But that is the stuff Americans deal with every day. Non-Americans all across the world have been abducted by the American government, illegally detained, and are tortured relatively often. Now that is a harsh accusation to make – but it is invariably true. Guantanamo is a perfect example with already knowing they aren’t granted habeas corpus from the video above with Gonzales mind-bogglingly explaining away truths. This means that one can be accused of being a terrorist and it’s equivalent to being guilty of being a terrorist. Unfortunately there is a huge distinction between the two and America has always claimed to give the accused a chance to defend his innocence. Because as we all know accusations does not equal guilt. Look towards Arthur Miller’s classic The Crucible for a lesson in that idea. Because of this knowledge that we do not have to treat these accused terrorists like humans articles such as “Doctors decry Guantanamo Treatment” arise. Not only that but when someone stops treating humans like humans that is when someone is in the act of dehumanizing. It can start on a lighter level like removing habeas corpus or limits with attorneys, but eventually when that someone has enough control over the one they are dehumanizing it will always lead to torture. Waterboarding is one popular method that has made the news a lot because it’s used by the US government and it is an extreme form of torture that is meant to simulate drowning. Have you ever almost drowned? I have and I promise you I would have told anybody anything to make it have stopped.
Torture is morally incorrect to the American culture, and I’d dare say even the human race. It has always been our duty to do our best to make sure everybody is treated as a human, that is the point of the Constitution. Yes it’s true there have been gross injustices under America in the past but it does not mean the Constitution supported those things, the Constitution is a pretty fair document considering it is arguably the oldest constitution in the world in one of the youngest countries in the world. There must be something of significance to have upheld for so long that united all groups of people and has allowed minorities to vote. So is something like waterboarding torture? Internationally it is recognized as such, and I understand the neoconservative ideal to not want a world government to tell them what is what, but with torture that sounds like something people can universally agree on. Even so we have had one of our own assistant attorney generals experience waterboarding himself and called it illegal, and then apparently was forced out of his position. What does Bush say? Bush, the man who never experienced it, says interrogation methods like waterboarding are not torture. So great, internationally and domestically it’s known as torture, and a country always priding itself on human rights, decides it needs to be tougher than the global free-and-fair definition of torture? Why? How is this even near acceptable? Your tax money, from your pocket, is going to fund a torturer and allow a lie to be spread that it is not torturing.
Then there is the argument: What if torturing someone as despicable as an Al-Qaeda member can save hundreds or thousands of innocent lives? This is a bogus argument because while being tortured you are willing to tell your torturer anything, that does not limit it only to the truth. All an Al-Qaeda member needs do is lie to buy some time before the attack occurs. And all this is under the assumption there will ever be a situation where that is even likely to occur.
Still don’t believe that torture will make you say anything, even lies? Meet Maher Arar, a victim of extraordinary rendition, a term the government uses to extradite accused terrorists without any evidence on them and torture them. Arar is just one of many victims of extraordinary rendition, but if he’s a terrorist, then what’s the problem right? Wrong. Arar is not a terrorist even though he is still on the American terrorist watch list and is even now not allowed in America. Arar was taken to Syria and tortured even though he is a benign Canadian software engineer. Because of no habeas corpus Arar never got a chance to prove his innocence. And when the United States finally realized their mistake they dropped him back off in Canada. The Canadian government even issued an apology to Arar and had someone resign over the instance. The U.S. response? Nothing. Kept on a terrorist watch list, no acknowledgment of his innocence, no apology issued. When all of this was addressed by Senator Patrick Laehy Gonzales avoided the topic completely and it was buried under the table once again. The fact that he never actually says anything is a huge clue as to him being a puppet as opposed to a leader or decider. While being tortured in Syria under American orders he confessed to all sorts of acts he didn’t commit. This information was then taken by American intelligence as a level of fact, then it had to be checked out, then it had to be realized he was lying just to appease the torturer… no wonder why we have to fund such a large intelligence service when they expect tortured information to be accurate information.
Even the threat of torture gets some people to tell radical lies. This is such in the case of Abdallah Higazy, an Egyptian having the unfortunate circumstance of visiting New York City during the 9/11 attacks. An article noticing a small but very relevant change in a statement of a lawsuit provides us with clues as to how our FBI handled the situation when confronting an alleged terrorist: they threaten to torture his family. What happens when the court realized how it made them look? They removed it but not before quite a few people got a glimpse of it to prove it actually happened. Higazy quickly confessed to having connections to September 11th but was later dismissed when the object they connected him to with it, was not actually even his. This is another example of where habeas corpus could’ve straightened things out more fairly with less inhumanity.
Khaled El-Masri, another victim of renditioning, was stolen away from his family for 5 months and was tortured by the U.S. in Afghanistan over a mistaken identity. Then our court system refuses to hear the case of a man that our tax dollars help torture. How grossly inefficient and pandering is a Supreme Court to deny an innocent, tortured victim some justice.
Lastly there are some who still will be ignorant enough to not care about such severely unacceptable acts so long as they don’t apply to citizens. But they do – innocent US citizens, even one that was loyal enough to serve in the military, have been incorrectly imprisoned and tortured. There is absolutely no honest justification for these acts that do not ride the definition of despicable. The United States is supposed to have more moral integrity than that. However the Bush Administration continues to secretly support torture.
The audacity for the Bush Administration to set their sights on Iran after the Iraq debacle and with few funds must be for a serious reason, right? My personal opinion is – not exactly. Everyone in America should know the reasons why the Bush Administration wants to go to war with Iran, with Cheney, the ex-industrial military CEO, pushing the idea the hardest. Iran wants to use nuclear energy and while every claim by Iran is that it is not going to be used for weapons, our government just doesn’t buy it. Our government believes that their nuclear energy is going to be used for nuclear weapons. The problem is Iran is only swearing to use it for power plants. There are different ways to harness the power of nuclear energy and if one has a nuclear power plant it does not necessarily know how to make nuclear weapons. That point, however, is moot to the Bush Administration – no nuclear energy, no nuclear weapons, no nuclear. period. And – if they do not comply – the Bush Administration ensures the planet that over our dead country Iran will not have Nuclear energy. Then the Bush Administration went as far as imposing sanctions on Iran over some accusations that seem to use the same speculation as used in Iraq.
The point is the United States is serious about going to war with Iran and they are doing it on the same card they played when they wanted to go to war with Iraq. The benevolence card. The purpose is because if Iran attains any nuclear capabilities it will quickly turn in to Iran having nuclear weapons and robust claims that they will attack, with nuclear weapons, Israel or Europe. We are doing this for the world’s good, not for our own, yet there is no war-mongering in Europe and while I’m certain there are factions within the Israeli government that support the war, it is the US who is war-mongering the most over Iran’s actions.
But the very serious question to ask is: after Iraq, does America, especially the Bush Administration, have the right to declare war on a country and in a region that does not affect them at all? If it will affect Israel and Europe why are not Israel and Europe the leaders of whatever needs to happen against Iran? Because even if we imagine the worst – Iran gets nuclear weapons (and I agree that is not good, but any country having nuclear weapons is not good) they do not have the capabilities to launch them to American soil, nor has Iran made any claim in the desire to do so. Without even being able to have the Iraq situation under control – awash in scandals and innocent deaths and it was also another country that did not affect America in the slightest- the Bush Administration wants to attack Iran right before it leaves office, leaving the successor deeply entrenched in two middle-eastern conflicts. This has driven some people to go as far as call Bush psychotic for even considering the idea, and I have to agree. It sounds like sociopath thinking to me. Especially because the Bush Administration makes no acknowledgment that Iran is cooperating with agencies involved in these kinds of things in every way that they can.
On top of the severe issues this will call for America, Iran is no Iraq. Iran, despite their Islamic fundamentalist leaders, is actually a pretty progressive Islamic country. In what way? I personally know somebody who lives in the United States but has visited Iran multiple times and the government is not strict on many of the things Westerners condemn about Islamic regimes… in fact the United States, surprisingly, is a popular country among the citizens of Iran. I remember telling her it must be the last country in the world where the citizens look up to the United States. Western culture has influenced the Iranian culture heavily and the government does not oppress most citizens for breaking traditional Islamic fundamentalism. My friend, who does not dress overly conservative for her views in America, was more modestly dressed than most women her age there. Also after September 11th Iran was the only middle eastern country that held a candlelight vigil in mourning for the actions of the extremists. All Muslims are not the same and Iran happens to have the highest density of Shiite Muslims in the world, the terrorists of September 11th were Sunni Arabs. Iranians are also not Arabs. Iran is also a functional country, with a healthy economy and approval for government, and even having one of the largest stand-by military in the world (Nov 11th article).
Yet the Bush Administration claims there are factions of the Iranian government that are terrorists, thwarting attempts in Iraq. It’s interesting enough then that Iran claims the very same thing, that the United States is supporting terrorism within Iran. Not possible, right? Terrorist supporters will say anything to take the spotlight off themselves… and such is the case with the United States. The United States has supported terrorism in other countries in which the government was not obedient to the United States desires. During the Reagan Administration, a highly respected administration for many of the men making current decisions, a man named Joseph Savimbi, an Angolan rebel, was invited to the White House and was presented to the American public as a “champion of democracy.” The truth is he was a ruthless warlord that was attacking a corrupt government. The same book continues in saying “One of the paradoxes of the Angolan conflict was that Cuban forces were given the task of defending American-owned oil installations from attacks by American-backed rebels.” This is a fact: America profits from war by being both the attacker and the attacked and, as seen here, has happened before. The United States has no problem supporting tyrants so long as they are obedient to U.S. desires. One of the worst tyrants in African history was Mobutu Sese Seko (a man who will get an entry of his own) and HW Bush claimed him to be a valued friend, for his aid to democracy? No. He made no serious attempt at it. It was for his obedience. Christian leaders such as Pat Robertson ignored Mobutu’s severe human rights violations and rallied to allow Mobutu to have a visa to the US when the State Department refused it… most likely having something to do with the diamond mines that Mobutu let him control.
There is no benevolence from the United States when it desires something, there is only obedience. And while I agree Iran should not have nuclear weapons, as should you, this is something the global community needs to work on together with those most directly affected taking the biggest initiatives to handle it. Otherwise it is simply the United States making petty demands for petty gains (and devastating losses). It is not far-fetched for the United States to support terrorism in Iran and for those of you who are willing to accept the argument “two wrongs DO make a right” check the saying again.
Though I have already mentioned numerous fiscal irresponsibilities that have occurred under the Bush administration, such as the costliest US embassy in the world and billions missing in Iraq, that unfortunately is not the only toll of the Bush administration. Because of the excess spending on “Homeland security” and the Iraq situation, as well as giving oil companies and the rich deals it has taken an expense on the country as a whole. Things like a $1.6 billion budget for propaganda have helped the Bush Administration to plunder all of the funds it has to date. The executive office of the president has taken more money from the American people than any other executive branch in the history of the country. The nation’s top accountant has been preaching financial reform because of the unsustainable spending by our government, but he can not afford the billions of dollars to promote the truth that the Bush Administration can afford to promote their agenda. But whether or not he can afford to popularize his message it does not mean what he says is false – he is doing his job accurately and is stunned by the amount of irresponsible spending. This is a great chart that puts America’s costs in to perspective.
Because of fiscal irresponsibility the American dollar is in decline. It is currently at a 15-year-low and is only dropping further with Canadian currency well above American now. This is a problem for the same reason after World War I it was a problem for Germany to pay off the entire debt helping create the Great Depression. There was too much money in circulation and that means the money is too easy to get ahold of making it worth less. When American money becomes worth less and does not buy things as easily as other currencies countries consider dropping the currency which would end up making the common American dollar worth even less as less people accept it as currency. The issues really hurting America such as the housing bubble and the arbitrary gas price increases are ignored or dealt with in a way so the same people who have been benefiting all along will continue to benefit.
Because of Bush’s ties to big business he praised outsourcing of American jobs. This allowed corporations to forgo tariffs, human rights, and environmental protection as many poorer countries ignore those things for the desire to profit. China was one of the biggest welcomers of outsourcing as most things are now made in China that are sold in the United States. China has a terrible human and environmental rights record (again – another entry will be dedicated entirely to this) but because they are willing to make things cheap for America the fact that they are communist and treat people and the environment poorly are ignored while countries like Cuba (also communist) are scorned for not being as obedient. But China isn’t as obedient as they seem, now America has become dependent on Chinese products making the United States vulnerable to Chinese demands.
Because Bush praised American jobs going overseas, benefiting the rich, and overspending on war, propaganda, and questionable security 1 in 10 Americans live in poverty according to the US Census Bureau and cities such as New Orleans and Detroit are dying.
All signs point to corruption. The above links are irrefutable evidence that the Bush Administration and the people it puts in to power, and even the people it has looked up to in its past, have no issue becoming corrupt. Most people see the changes the government have made since 9/11 have been changes for the worse. Voters are unhappy with Bush and the Congress for its inaction to stop him. Americans simply want change from the current government.
Why? For starters only the Bush Administration would get a legitimate headline proclaiming: Bush administration awash in scandals from Forbes. The article, since disappeared from Forbes website, touches upon:
– the neoconservative Paul Wolfowitz who was giving his girlfriend high paying jobs and World Bank money (money for the desperate!) unjustly
– Matteo Fontana who was put in charge of federal student loans but owned over 100k in a student loan company himself
– Julie MacDonald who had no biology background, was in charge of Fish and Wildlife Service but leaked internal information to private groups and overrode scientists on how to protect endangered species
– Philip Cooney, who was a former oil executive lobbyist admitted editing government reports eliminating or downplaying facts correlating greenhouse gasses and global warming
– Darleen Druyun, who leased tankers from Boeing for $23 billion even though a Pentagon report showed them unnecessary, after getting out of prison Boeing hired her
– Scooter Libby, who was the first high-level white house official to be indicted for over 100 years
– Jack Abramoff, who defrauded American Indian tribes and corrupted other public officials in collaboration with White House aide, David H. Safavian, and deputy interior secretary J. Steven Griles.
Loyalty above competence has been the hallmark of the Bush Administration. Bush even had the audacity to try and appoint Harriet Miers as a judge of the Supreme Court of the United States even though she had never served as a judge a day in her life. Bush and his administration have attempted to usurp the American government from the moment he took office vying for more executive power and secrecy removing the checks and balance system that has worked for so long within our government.
Bush has managed to do this in various ways. One way is by making a benign bill pass through Congress and allowing his friends to change it before he signs it. Another way is to sign a bill in to action but let Congress know that he has no intentions of following it himself because his administration is above the law. Another way is to circumvent congress to get what he wants. Yet another way is to have cronies underneath him ask him ethically wrong questions. And of course there is allowing federal agencies to have dictator-styled press releases. Another great way of suppressing opposition is to make whistleblowers unsafe. And of course there is the famous tell-your-friends-if-they-want to-keep-their-job they will suppress intelligence disclosures. And when things get tough friends of Bush anonymously come to his rescue by blocking a bill that would unseal many of the president’s corrupt tactics.
Time and time again federal agencies aren’t held accountable for their gross negligence. According to Walter Mondale, Jimmy Carter’s vice president, Dick Cheney has been actively helping Bush expand executive privilege which he asserts is “stepping over the line.” Yes, even a whole book has been written about Cheney’s inner-workings for his desire for power in the White House, yet almost nobody in Congress rallies behind the resolution to impeach Cheney.
How does the executive branch get away with such perversion of the U.S. Constitution? Their favorite way is through puppets. One of my favorite puppets was Scott Jennings when he was interrogated by Congress on illegally firing disloyal government officials. He pleaded executive privilege even to the point of describing what his position was knowing full well by not saying anything he would be protected. This is Bush telling Congress that his administration answers to nobody, not even his own government. But my absolute favorite puppet of the administration would have to Alberto Gonzales as the Bush Administration brought him in, used him to cover for their illegal work and implement more illegal actions, and then allowed him to be removed. It was Gonzales who had to explain to the Senate committee how the Bush Administration illegally ignored the Constitution by disallowing habeas corpus and only getting the repercussion of being told he doesn’t have any common sense. It was Gonzales who had to rein back the committee when they pounced on him for the Administration illegally abducting Arar, the innocent Canadian, and being tortured subduing Leahy to wait for answers when cameras and press are away. In fact the whole time Gonzales was in office he was defending and blocking scandal after scandal by the Bush Administration. So when Gonzales was finally forced from office due to the incompetence of handling his position in his place the Bush Administration carefully selected another puppet for replacement – another puppet that condones torture.
So there it is. There’s my proof. This is why the Bush Administration is one of the most terrible administrations in the history of America. Did I address everything? No. I have plenty more to say about this administration, but I will bite my tongue and stick with the things that are most obviously wrong. All of the sources I used are verifiable to a large degree and while some of them might not be 100% perfect the corruption, the favoritism, the demanded loyalty, the spite for diversity, the fiscal irresponsibility, the pandering to the rich, the torture, the illegal abductions, the loss of rights, and a host of other things are. To defend the Bush Administration now would be to spit on the American Constitution and everything it stands for. If you support the Bush Administration in their endeavors please move to any number of countries that demand regime loyalty to actual freedom and progress. As I said before – I do not like to call things terrible unless the shoe verifiably fits, and no shoe has fit this great since Cinderella and her glass slipper.
So what do we do about it? In my next entry I will go over the 2008 Presidential Candidates and explain who will bring the change Americans desire.