United States Lags Far Behind Nearly Every Nation in the World

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Courtesy of NATO (Flickr CC0)

In every study about the quality of life for its people, the United States lags far behind nearly every nation in the world of developed countries. The United States is the only major country without universal healthcare. For the vast majority of our nation’s people, furthering our education by attending a college or university is unaffordable. Childcare costs have escalated beyond the ability to pay for most parents, reaching numbers equal to their mortgage payments.

In 1952, Republicans encouraged everyone to vote. Seventy years later their primary effort to win elections is focused on voter suppression. This says a lot about how unfit their candidates have become. Like the 1950s, white supremacists have become stronger. Domestic, white terrorism is now the greatest danger to the American people. Gun violence has become a national crisis.

Over the last several years there have been more mass shootings than days on the calendar. The government is dysfunctional. Right-wing politicians, known as the “party of no,” refuse to deliberate and compromise with Democrats. A former sitting president who committed treason when he organized a coup on January 6, 2021, remains free to further divide the nation.

Courtesy of Thomas Hawk (Flickr CC0)

During the eight years of President Obama’s administration, many had hope that the nation would become what it claims to be. Many dared to believe that people would finally be placed onto a level of greater importance than corporate profits, gun rights, and spending nearly a trillion dollars every year preparing for the next war: which America will lose. As with the 2016 election, they were wrong.

In the first two years of his illegitimate presidency, Trump destroyed nearly every advancement made by his predecessors over the previous 60 years. He did not do it alone. Those who call themselves “Republicans” abandoned what was left of their integrity and principles and supported every effort by Trump to destroy democracy in America once and for all.

As Trump followed instructions from his handler, Vladimir Putin, the “Russo-American Party” obeyed the orange bully defiling the White House.

One must ask themselves: “Was I naive in my younger years? Was the Grand Old Party the same as it is today? Were they just better at hiding their beliefs in racism and bigotry?” As a lifelong Independent, the author prays that he is wrong. He voted for several of them prior to 2000.

He remembers 13 presidents in his lifetime, beginning with Dwight D. Eisenhower. He was born while Harry Truman was in office, but was too young to remember much about him. He remembers watching Eisenhower’s second convention when he was 10 years old. I became “hooked on politics.” There have been six Democrats and seven Republicans leading our nation while he watched and learned over 66 years. If he had to rate each of them, the highest grade a Democrat would receive would be a “B+.” Those would be given to John F. Kennedy, Bill Clinton, and Barrack Obama. For Republicans, the highest grade would be a “B.” That grade would be for Eisenhower, and Richard Nixon: yes, Nixon. His accomplishments for the nation were remarkable, but his crimes prevent him from a higher grade.

Three Republicans would receive an “F:” Gerald Ford, George W. Bush, and Donald Trump, for obvious reasons. Ronald Reagan would deserve a “C-,” and George H.W. Bush a “C.” Reagan’s domestic policies were destructive. Bush was simply “there.” With the exception of the “Americans with Disabilities Act,” he accomplished little for the nation’s people.

Two of the remaining Democrats, Lyndon Johnson and Jimmy Carter, would each receive a “C.” The good and the bad were balanced for both. It is too early to rate Joe Biden, but so far, he is above average.

Why is that important? It demonstrates that politics has replaced “doing the right thing” in most situations. The fact that out of 13 presidents, not one deserved an “A” is very disappointing.

Only two presidents in history deserved an “A” in my opinion: Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Lincoln’s intelligence and courage to always do the right thing for his country and our nation’s people, allow him to stand high above all but one of 45 others. FDR was “the people’s president.” He worked tirelessly for the average American, and although he was reluctant to enter WWII, he prepared our nation for the inevitability of that day, December 7, 1941.

We, the American people can do better. This begins with local and state governments, up to the highest office in the land. We can make greater efforts to do our jobs and choose better people to serve all Americans.

Of the 13 presidents, the author remembers, one was a former general, four were state governors, seven served in the federal government, and one was a failed businessman.

Yes, Karen, anyone can become the President of the United States of America.

Op-ed by James Turnage


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Newsweek: Mike Pence Outlines His Top Priorities Ahead of Potential 2024 Bid; by DARRAGH ROCHE

Top and Featured Image Courtesy of NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

Inline Image Courtesy of Thomas Hawk’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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