Thursday, October 21, 2004

Moose Returns from His Elba

The Moose emerges from a long hibernation feeling somewhat akin to a mosquito in a nudist colony – so many targets of opportunity and so little time!

There will be plenty of time for the Moose to rant. When that happens, the Moose warns that he will occasionally offend partisans of both the donkey and the elephant. That is why he is the Moose and neither of those other creatures – although he does have a distinct affinity for the New Donkey, which is also a marvelous blog – newdonkey.com.

But for his first post the Moose would like to take the high road. Well, not entirely.

The Moose spelled out why he is opting for Kerry in the latest issue of Blueprint. In short, the Moose believes that W. is not serious about the war against terrorism. That’s right. If Bush thought the war was so important, he would have given it a higher priority than say, crass and craven political gain.

Instead, after a brief period of time following 9/11, Bush returned to politics as usual which meant rewarding his wealthy donors with tax cuts. After all, Rangers and Pioneers have to eat! Those precious dollars should have gone to expanding the military and hardening the homeland. But, even more troubling, Bush took a united country, and re-opened the divisions of 9/10. The Moose wrote,

“As the 2002 election approached, Bush had a choice. He could have valued national unity over partisan gain. He could have opted for national greatness over political cravenness. Instead, he chose to conduct a cynical and unprincipled campaign that harkened back to the 2000 South Carolina primary and consequently divided the country. After first opposing the Department of Homeland Security, he reversed course by supporting it and brandishing the proposal as a weapon against Democrats who opposed a minor labor provision.”

Subsequent to the 2002 campaign, the Bushies have further divided the country with their hubris, arrogance, incompetence and mendacity and Rovian scorched earth political campaign.

But, enough of the high road!

The Moose believes that the first challenge of a Kerry Presidency is to bring the country together. That will be no easy task. It remains to be seen whether his administration will be more willing to break with its ideological base than a Bush team that has been slavishly loyal to its corporate paymasters. The lefties will wail and the righties will grumble. But, in order to govern in a closely divided country, President Kerry must cut the Gordian knot.

Always seeking the positive, the Moose offers President-elect Kerry (granted that title has not yet been achieved) some suggestions.

  1. Construct a cabinet of national unity. Name Republicans to positions of prominence (and that does not mean HUD or Transportation).

  2. Focus on legislative issues that have bi-partisan support and span the ideological divide such as drug importation, patient’s bill of rights and restraining congressional spending. The President should announce the formation of a Commission to End Corporate Welfare As We Know It (CECWAWKI).

  3. Advance a bold reform agenda. Create bi-partisan working groups to offer the Administration ideas to reform the military, entitlements, the tax code and the health care system. Restrain federal spending by declaring war on appropriations earmarks and reform the budget process. Promote efforts at the state level for non-partisan redistricting and open primaries to de-polarize the political process. These ideas must be truly bi-partisan and the Administration’s charge is to think outside the box to reform these programs.

  4. Challenge Americans, particularly young Americans, to “enlist in causes greater than their self-interest.” Make clear to the American people that JFK’s challenge to the America in the cold war “Ask not…” is applicable in the war against terror. Perhaps, also create a national security trust fund that will come from rolling back tax cuts for the very wealth. Expand Americorps, the Peace Corps and the short-term military enlistment option.
The Moose believes that we have a war to win against terrorist enemies that seek to destroy us. National unity is job number one. And for the new President, uniting the country should come before petty partisanship.
-- Posted at 9:15 AM | Link to this post | Email this post