Campaign 2004, Uncategorized

Bush Achieves Goal In Spite of Criticism

President George W. Bush has received an unprecedented amount of criticism, and yet he won re-election handily.  How’d that happen?

A majority of Americans do not share his application of Christian traditions to a millennial vision of US mission; a majority of Americans believe that, while government cannot solve all social problems, it can give important direction, which contrasts sharply with Bush’s strong anti-government stance.

The Bush campaign put less emphasis on reasons to vote for him than on attempts to stimulate feelings based on his tough talk and reputation for decisiveness.  As a result, many voters for Bush will likely get four years of policies they don’t want….  Read whole essay here….

Campaign 2004, Uncategorized

Saving Lt. Kerry: An Open Letter to the Candidate

Democratic candidate John Kerry has let the Republicans define his campaign by putting so much emphasis on the Democratic Senator’s service during the Vietnam War.  Republicans controlling the rhetorical agenda indeed….

Simply reporting for duty, former Lt. Kerry, is not enough.  Your history is interesting and impressive, but the country needs to decide about our recent history and our paths to the immediate future.  You need to tell your story about the problems that the Bush presidency has created and what you would have done—and what you will do—differently.

Rather than just telling us we need a better president, show us with stories that plant your positives on each of Bush’s negatives.  A better president would have made use of broad world sympathy after 9-11 to build a coalition and marginalize the terrorists—would have let inspectors do their work in Iraq to get the facts about weapons program—would have prevented lawlessness, looting, and prison abuse which have bred antagonism throughout the Middle East.

Dear Senator Kerry, don’t just tell us how bad Bush has been; the public already senses that; show us what you’ve got.  A better president starts with a better story….  Read whole essay here….

Campaign 2004

GOP Convention Grazed Issues

The Republican Presidential Nominating Convention presented a party with more moderation than its own policies embody.  The convention dusted off the “compassionate conservatism” slogan of Bush’s 2000 campaign even though there has been little attention to these words or these goals over the last four years.

The heart of the Republican Party includes policies for prayer and pro-life that will involve a large role for the federal government, and endorsement of a go-it-alone foreign policy that shows a flip-flopping from then-Governor George W. Bush’s 2000 campaign promise to avoid nation building.

The Republicans have every right to their policy positions and to organization of their convention as they see fit.  Voters, however, should be aware that what they have seen at the convention is not what they will get with President Bush….  Read whole essay here….