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  1.    #1  
    I'm a swing voter. I'm not a republican and I'm not a democrat. I vote for some democrats and some republicans every year.

    My reaction to this years State of the Union was this: Nice ideas. What the heck you been doing for the past 6 years?

    He's had a Republican Congress for a while and if he couldn't accomplish much then, how is he going to accomplish anything now?

    If he wanted to battle earmarks why didn't he do it then?

    All these ideas of his seem oddly timed.

    What did everyone else think of his speech?
  2. vw2002's Avatar
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    #2  
    I think he made some convincing points, and like you said, offered nice ideas, many of which were offered in previous state of the union addresses.

    It sounds great george, but why haven't we executed?

    I do give credit to the fact that we have thwarted many of the planned attacks on US soil. Those are tremendous accomplishments.

    I also see that we have to take the attack to the enemies.

    But I do believe the war has been mismanaged.

    1) outrageous corruption within the iraqi government as well as within the iraqi "military". Maliki is playing us like a fiddle, sitting back spending our money " in the name of military improvement" Much of our money is being squandered not spent wisely.

    2) Failure to anticipate the involvement if hostile neighboring countries in the war, and the inability to choke them off.

    3) cleaning areas like fallujah of insurgents only to leave and watch them flood in again.

    I want to believe there has been progress made in iraq, but I can't help but think there has been an incredible amount of military effort and progress wasted due to mismanagement and lack of foresight.

    I sympathize with bush in the fact that we have to defeat them through cooperation with moderates in the region, but I am angry at the fact that so much of our efforts there have been wasted by his inability to modify strategists as well as the strategies sooner.

    Bush has been given two terms. The republicans were given the privilege of the house majority, and what the hell was accomplished?

    Health care reform? laws to FORCE improved gas consumption standards? Social security? elimination of the farce that is our educational system? absolutely none of these were addressed adequately in my estimation.

    the only accomplishment I can see is a war and some tax relief - I think that's it.

    I think President's heart is in the right place, he wants to establish stability in the middle east while standing steadfast against our enemies, but I just feel in some areas he has fallen short.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  3. #3  
    When the Repubs were in control, they pushed some Repub policies. When the Dems were in power, likewise.

    It is a different ballgame now. He now has to work with a Dem Congress. For there to be anything positive accomplished by either side, they all have to work together. Earmarks is one issue they can both tackle. It will show the people back home they care about the average Joe's tax dollar. We will see if the Dems want to work on such things, or if they want to be partisan obstructionists on every issue.

    As an independant, you are very powerful and in the catbird seat. More and more people are unaffilliated and can sway an election either way. Both parties try to woo you.

    Yet, also... as an independant you may feel powerless and not listened to at all. You can't vote in primaries to choose who will run in the general election, and you are by definition part of an independant and unorganized lot. Some lean right, some lean left, so the wooing of the parties seems futile.

    It is an interesting dillema in American politics that the most powerful group are also the least powerful. If a politician is staunch pro some issue, they will get gobs of volunteers and funding for those pro that issue. If they are against that issue, the other side will send them people and money. If they are "Middle of the Road", they do not get the support of either extreame, and the other people in the Middle are not organized and committed to them either.

    We have the worst form of government, except all others!
    "Everybody Palm!"

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    #4  
    by the way, I meant to say the elevation or improvement, not elimination, of our educational system from the embarrassing mediocrity that it is overall.

    we used to be the among the best in the world regarding quality of education, from the elementary level on up.

    Now there is so much "dumbing down" in the standards which we once held high in our schools it has become obvious that we are falling further and further behind other nations in this regard.

    We are still falling behind China, india, and japan educationally and I don't believe I've seen anything accomplished by this administration to try and thwart this trend.
    I gotta have more cowbell
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    #5  
    duanedude, you make great points. Its true we ensure that next to nothing gets done under this type of government structure. Its truly unfortunate.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  6. #6  
    Well, it is not due to a lack of funding... Education gets a trememdous amount of money from the budget, and they want more and more all the time. Just once I'd like to see the educational establishment (or you could say any group at the public dole) tell legislators "We don't need any more money, we just need to better handle the money we have". Like that will ever happen, for any issue?!

    "Everybody Palm!"

    Palm III/IIIC, Palm Vx, Verizon: Treo 650, Centro, Pre+.
    Leo killed my future Pre 3 & Opal, dagnabitt!
    Should I buy a Handspring Visor instead?
    Got a Pre2! "It eats iPhones for Breakfast"!
  7. #7  
    I think of it like a pendulum, swinging to the right or left.
    When the country is to the right, things get done, the left responds, and it goes the other way after a while... and vice versa. It's when it isn't swinging one way or the other that everything stops and no movement takes place.
    "Everybody Palm!"

    Palm III/IIIC, Palm Vx, Verizon: Treo 650, Centro, Pre+.
    Leo killed my future Pre 3 & Opal, dagnabitt!
    Should I buy a Handspring Visor instead?
    Got a Pre2! "It eats iPhones for Breakfast"!
  8. #8  
    I don't really disagree with any of the comments here so far. I would add a couple other positives and negatives:

    Positives:
    • The economy is certainly better than it was handed to the Bush Admin.
    • Housing has been all but a boom.
    • Unemployment not a huge concern at the moment.
    • Oil is below $50 a barrel


    Negatives:
    • One HUGE negative for me with the Bush Admin since day one is illegal immigration. There has been nothing done to focus on businesses employing them. Nothing done to help enforce the laws of imigration.
    • Border protection. This can be tied to the last point but is a seperate issue on it's own. This is a huge concern with national security. This includes ports, borders north and south, etc....
    Last edited by HobbesIsReal; 01/24/2007 at 12:27 AM.
  9. vw2002's Avatar
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    #9  
    Again, good points, duanedude.
    I particularly agree with your comments on educational funding.
    There is plenty of money being contributed, but it doesn't appear to have been spent wisely in a consistent basis.. Maybe we have the wrong people directing its use in certain school systems, I don't know, but for whatever reason, we are falling FAR behind, embarrassingly so. I think the problem begins with not keeping standards high - not making students have to strive work hard for excellence. We are instead dumbing the system down, or bringing it down to meet the mediocrity or to allow for it in many schools. This is just wrong. while it's the easy solution, we will pay dearly for it later.
    .
    I gotta have more cowbell
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    #10  
    Hobbes, the illegal immigration crisis in our country has me absolutely furious. No question about it.

    If there's one issue bush has failed undisputedly with, THAT is it.

    Under his watch, we have seen more illegals flood into this country uncontrolled than in any other administration I can remember, and when I heard that our health premiums were rising in large part because these people werent paying their bills..I had enough with bush.

    These illegals are flooding in and exploiting us, arrogantly so, while nothing is being done whatsoever to keep them accountable for themselves..

    what's more, they are having us pay their way through here while slandering us as "gringos" as they do so. Many are ungrateful and presumptuous. I've no more patience for them.

    Enough.

    the US is not the united states of or for latin america!!!
    I gotta have more cowbell
  11.    #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by HobbesIsReal View Post
    There has been nothing done to focus on businesses employing them. Nothing done to help enforce the laws of imigration.
    Just so people know.

    I read an article in the WSJ about a company named Swift that was raided by the Federal government and a large part of it's workforce was deported.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB116658081538455303.html

    Here's an excerpt.

    "Since 1986, federal law has required all employees to fill out an I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification form. The form says in big, bold letters that it's up to the employee to produce one of 10 acceptable documents -- a passport, driver's license or Social Security card, for example -- to establish identity and employment eligibility. If an employer asks for more identification, it can be sued. That happened to Swift four years ago when the company asked Hispanic job applicants to provide extra proof of their legal status. The company was fined $200,000 for employment discrimination."

    The main point of the article, which is somewhat illustrated in the above quote is that our government doesn't provide any tools or guidelines besides the I-9 form. All an illegal immigrant has to do is provide one of the ten forms that are either illegal or stolen and the employer isn't left with much they can do about it. The government needs to provide some method of verifying that these people are who they say they are.

    In the article, the government actually audited swift and took the I-9 forms of persons determined to be illegal. Swift wanted to fire these people, but the government said they couldn't and that they needed to keep them on so the government could raid Swift's business on a random day and deport the illegals. This cost Swift a ton of money, because instead of orderly firing the people, they got raided one random day and lost a huge percentage of their work force.

    The government needs to provide a mechanism to verify workplace eligibility or provide some system for companies to verify workplace eligibility before we can put immigration on the shoulders of our businesses.
  12. #12  
    I thought the "response" was done well. It hihlighted what I see as a significant distinction between Dems and Reps--focus on parity. Senator Webb talked about measuring the economy from the base not the apex. I thought that was a good approach for evaluation. However all of his following comments talked about the lack of parity (wealth "sharing", pay ratio between CIO and "average joe"...) rather than lack of adequate living. The presence of poor people is not an indicator of lack of overall economic strength. We will always have poor people. And, it is most appropriate for those with to assist those without, by helping meet their daily needs. But as an economic indicator, the proper assessment of the poor is the realization that the poor in this nation live better than most of the world's population.
  13. #13  
    155: There is a big difference between businesses who do all they can with what they have available to them to make sure that their employees are legal and those who do not.

    It is something totally different when a company doesn't follow the rules, pay illegal employees under the table, etc.... These are the companies that I was referring to.
    Last edited by HobbesIsReal; 01/24/2007 at 12:10 PM.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim View Post
    And, it is most appropriate for those with to assist those without, by helping meet their daily needs...
    Which, I might add, is something that gets done most effectively without government interference.
  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by HobbesIsReal View Post
    • One HUGE negative for me with the Bush Admin since day one is illegal immigration. There has been nothing done to focus on businesses employing them. Nothing done to help enforce the laws of imigration.
    • Border protection. This can be tied to the last point but is a seperate issue on it's own. This is a huge concern with national security. This includes ports, borders north and south, etc....
    Oh, but didn't you hear? Bush said "without amnesty"! I might be excited if I thought he was doing anything but blowing smoke. With regard to our borders, I see nothing but status quo from both sides of the political spectrum. Republicans who try to do anything are labeled racists and Democrats who try to do anything are labeled isolationists.
  16. vw2002's Avatar
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    #16  
    Infuriating. All this racism sensitivity crap, while THEY call us gringos as they flood our country. . Yeah, that's great.

    The parties need to cross the aisle already and do what's necessary to keep them out of here, for God's sake. I could care less what labels are thrown around. Tough cookies.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by hoovs View Post
    Which, I might add, is something that gets done most effectively without government interference.
    For sure. In fact, I would offer that government involvement is not only ineffeicient and inefective itselt, but likewise it detracts from the overall availability of resources, as average citizens tend to abdicate, feeling that the government has it covered. As opposed to charitable giving, the thought is "I have contributed by paying my taxes."

    So, not only do assisted individuals develop an entitlement attitude (take no responsibility for changing their circumstances), the "haves" develop a let the government do it attitude--the combination of which contributes to a perpetual state of unmet need.

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