A former colleague of mine issues this statement to all those concerned:
One of my great disappintments was that Barry Goldwater was too early on the scene, and that he might have done much better in the 80's or even today. I continue to believe that Richard Nixon was one of the best presidents this country has ever had. I admired Reagan tremendously.
I wll never vote again for George Bush. I will give as much money as I can to Kerry and will vote for him.
Bush has wrecked the economy and is working had at wrecking the world political structure -- which, while I actually see the underlying logic of the policy framework, has been botched mightily by arrogant and provincisl attitudes. The sucking up to the religious right is more obnoxious than ever. The callous disregard and abuse of civil liberties is outrageous. And Bush has shown himself to be as fundamentally dishonest as Clinton.
Barry Goldwater must be spinning in his grave over how low the Republican party has sunk.
Well, I can beat that. I used to be a Democrat who thought Reagan was a moron. My god, Cowboy Ronnie was wrecking the economy and alienating our allies. Why, he was overturning the entire geopolitical structure because of some provincial paranoia about the Commies! And what about those televangelists! Ed Meese! Ollie North and the secret thought police!!
But funny things were happening back then.
Interest rates declined even as the deficit rose. Our allies deployed our cruise missiles and the Soviets pulled theirs back. Next thing you know, ordinary people are streaming out of the worker's paradise just to buy bananas.
At home not only was the Constitution intact but crime was peaking, unwed births peaking, drug use peaking, pathologies that had been glorified in the sixties and had made the seventies so miserable were at last peaking.
Lots of people like me saw that we had been wrong in some fundamental way about the state of the world. Others learned nothing.
John Kerry was somewhere near the center of every major political debate in this country in the past 30 years but what did he learn?
He learned that Vietnam was an ignoble mistake that exaggerated the threat of Communism. And there are about 3 million fewer South Vietnamese, Cambodians, Laotians left to contradict him. Those lucky enough left in flimsy boats or were "re-educated."
He boasts of having opposing "Reagan's illegal wars in Central America," even thought those indigenous insurgencies led directly to the peace and democracy that the region enjoys today.
He opposed missile defense, military force restructuring, weapons modernization, the First Gulf War and supported just about every international treaty and obligation that would have constrained our ability to project power in defense of our national interests.
As for economics, he seems to repeat the usual Democratic slogans about "good jobs" and "working families" with all the enthusiasm of a man who has a good job for life and whose family will never need to work.
Thank God George Bush seems to have learned something entirely different in the past 30 years. Hell, he may have learned them in the last 30 months . . . I don’t care as long as he learned the lessons.
Like the world is not a "community" but a jungle.
That Americans are not hated, they're envied . . . infidels are hated.
That our values are not provincial, they are universal.
And extending those values is not imperialism, it's liberation.
Bush is not afraid to call attention to uncomfortable truths that polite people would prefer to ignore.
That France may not share our interests.
That the United Nations does not necessarily confer legitimacy.
That medieval Islamic intolerance should not be tolerated by truly liberal societies.
That our public school system is an unaccountable enterprise that traps disadvantaged children in ignorance and poverty.
That NASCAR racing is a fuck of a lot more popular and exciting than basketball.
That every dimwitted blowhard like my buddy and every eligible man, woman, and child in New York could vote for John Kerry and it would still add up to 3 fewer electoral college votes than Texas.
I plan to vote for George Bush as many times as I possibly can. New Yorkers might as well just stay home.
And as for John Kerry's populist credentials, I have just three words -- Swiss Boarding School.