Charlie Reese writes for the Orlando Sentinel. He's a Conservative
Republican who is anti-abortion, anti-tax-and-spend, loudly critical of
legislation by the judiciary, doesn't think much of multiculturalism or
secularism, has suggested Clinton "turned the Oval Office into a
whorehouse," thinks Ronald Reagan is the greatest thing to come down the
pike since canned beer, and voted for Bush in the last election.
So, take a look at his article
Vote For A Man, Not A Puppet
Orlando Sentinel, Charlie Reese
Americans should realize that if they vote for President Bush's re-election,
they are really voting for the architects of war - Dick Cheney, Donald
Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz and the rest of that cabal of neoconservative
ideologues and their corporate backers.
I have sadly come to the conclusion that President Bush is merely a
frontman, an empty suit, who is manipulated by the people in his
administration. Bush has the most dangerously simplistic view of the world
of any president in my memory.
It's no wonder the president avoids press conferences like the plague. Take
away his cue cards and he can barely talk. Americans should be embarrassed
that an Arab king (Abdullah of Jordan) spoke more fluently and articulately
in English than our own president at their joint press conference recently.
John Kerry is at least an educated man, well-read, who knows how to think
and who knows that the world is a great deal more complex than Bush's
comic-book world of American heroes and foreign evildoers. It's unfortunate
that in our poorly educated country, Kerry's very intelligence and refusal
to adopt simplistic slogans might doom his presidential election efforts.
But Thomas Jefferson said it well, as he did so often, when he observed that
people who expect to be ignorant and free expect what never was and never
People who think of themselves as conservatives will really display their
stupidity, as I did in the last election, by voting for Bush. Bush is as far
from being a conservative as you can get. Well, he fooled me once, but he
won't fool me twice.
It is not at all conservative to balloon government spending, to vastly
increase the power of government, to show contempt for the Constitution and
the rule of law, or to tell people that foreign outsourcing of American jobs
is good for them, that giant fiscal and trade deficits don't matter, and
that people should not know what their government is doing. Bush is the most
prone-to-classify, the most secretive president in the 20th century. His
administration leans dangerously toward the authoritarian.
It's no wonder that the Justice Department has convicted a few
Arab-Americans of supporting terrorism. What would you do if you found
yourself arrested and a federal prosecutor whispers in your ear that either
you can plea-bargain this or the president will designate you an enemy
combatant and you'll be held incommunicado for the duration?
This election really is important, not only for domestic reasons, but
because Bush's foreign policy has been a dangerous disaster. He's almost
restarted the Cold War with Russia and the nuclear arms race. America is not
only hated in the Middle East, but it has few friends anywhere in the world
thanks to the arrogance and ineptness of the Bush administration. Don't
forget, a scientific poll of Europeans found us, Israel, North Korea and
Iran as the greatest threats to world peace.
I will swallow a lot of petty policy differences with Kerry to get a man in
the White House with brains enough not to blow up the world and us with it.
Go to Kerry's Web site (www.johnkerry.com) and read some of the magazine
profiles on him. You'll find that there is a great deal more to Kerry than
the GOP attack dogs would have you believe.
Besides, it would be fun to have a president who plays hockey, windsurfs,
ride motorcycles, plays the guitar, writes poetry and speaks French. It
would be good to have a man in the White House who has killed people face to
face. Killing people has a sobering effect on a man and dispels all
illusions about war.
copyright 2004 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.