LET’S COMPARE, ISSUE BY ISSUE
By James Turnage
I’m going to try to look at this election factually. I’m sure 50% of you who just saw the word ‘factually’ will not read this article, you’ll just turn on your television and watch FOX ‘NEWS’. I’ve listened and listened to both the Democrats and Republicans. Most of what I hear is plainly “hot air”. But here’s what I’ve heard from both sides on the issues, not their political ads which are filled with half-truths or blatant lies. This may answer the idiotic question “are you better off than you were four years ago”.
Number one issue; Unemployment.
The Democratic side: When President Obama took office, the United States was losing hundreds of thousands of jobs monthly. No one could possibly claim that we are creating enough jobs now. I am in the group that has given up looking for work. Corporations are not offering enough good jobs. The jobs I might possibly get would actually create more problems than they would fix. But jobs are being created, and, hopefully, there will be more in the years to come, and the people who control the money will stop sending it overseas and invest in America.
The Republican side: I hear Romney and Ryan telling us their priority will be creating hundreds of thousands of jobs every month. They will put everyone back to work who wants a job. But they haven’t told me how. The only solution I have heard is the same old policy of every failed Republican president since Reagan, “trickle-down economics”. The facts are that this does not work. The wealthy simply invest or hoard their money, they do not create new industry. They prefer to send jobs overseas so they make larger profits.
Second Issue; Entitlement Programs.
The Democratic side: Social Security, and Medicare are good programs. In his or her lifetime, the average American taxpayer will not receive reimbursements from these programs equal to the amount of money deducted from their paychecks throughout their working lives. I believe as our founding fathers did, that we should not pay taxes to the federal government at all. Taxes should be paid to the states, and the states to the federal government. But income tax is a law, unfair as it might be. So if I have to pay money to the federal government, I should receive some benefit from it other than a standing military, (which our forefathers were also against).
The Republican side: Entitlements cost too much money. They are too expensive to maintain in their present form. Social Security recipients should be forced to wait until age 70 to receive benefits. Medicare benefits should have limits. Vouchers should be given to them, with a maximum amount they could spend yearly.
The Democratic side: Education is the future of our country. America has always led the world in innovation and creativity. We are now 14th in levels of higher education. Both the best new companies and the best new jobs will go elsewhere if education is not THE priority of our nation. Costs must be reduced, and student loans must be reasonable. Our youth is our future.
The Republican side: Ask your parents to loan you money for your education.
Fourth, Women’s rights:
The Democratic side: Women have fought for 50 years to be treated equally in the United States. They achieved many goals such as a right to choose medical treatment based on how it would affect their own bodies. Planned Parenthood has saved thousands of lives of women who receive low income and have received counseling and tests to insure their reproductive health. President Obama signed a law forcing business to give women equal pay for the same job performed by their male counterparts, the Lilly Ledbetter Act.
The Republican side:
“Planned Parenthood, we’re going to get rid of that.” If we elect Romney, it won’t matter if a woman is a victim of rape or incest, she will NOT be allowed to have an abortion. Women will become third class citizens once again.
The Democratic position:
We must reduce unnecessary defense spending. Billions of dollars are wasted annually on programs that fail, or are simply unnecessary. We have bases in 36 countries, and most serve no purpose. Modern warfare does not support hundreds of thousands of ground forces, or naval ships that cannot be deployed in a timely fashion. And our troops need to be brought home from wars that cost us lives and money, and have achieved no purpose.
The Republican side:
They hold the party line that has existed since Eisenhower; increase military spending. They created the slogan, “War is good business”.
So, are we better off now than four years ago? Not as much as I’d like to see, but we are better. The problems Mr. Obama inherited from his predecessor were monumental. To think we could solve all of those problems in three and a half years is not only illogical, it’s ludicrous.
If the Republican side would offer concrete ideas as to how they would make it all miraculously better in one year, as they claim, I would love to hear them. I might even agree with some or all of them. Talk is cheap. If you haven’t walked the walk, then you’re not allowed to make claims you can’t back up.