Friday, April 23, 2004

Why You Don't Want W Back

Rush Limbaugh used to start his show by making fun of Robert Reich's short physical stature, but to my knowledge, Reich never returned with a personal attack of his own. Reich didn't have to because he is a class act with a whole lot more brain power than Limbaugh ever hoped to have. See for yourself Reich's ability to concisely and clearly make his arguments:

by Robert B. Reich

Musings about a second Bush term typically assume four years of the
same right-wing policies we've had to date. But it'd likely be far worse.
So far, the Bush administration has had to govern with the expectation of facing
American voters again in 2004. But suppose George W. Bush wins a second term.

The constraint of a re-election contest will be gone. Knowing that voters
can no longer turn them out, and this will be their last shot at remaking
America, the radical conservatives will be unleashed.

…the only thing that's stopped the Bushies from storming into Iran and North Korea is the upcoming election. If Bush is re-elected, "(Dick) Cheney and (Donald) Rumsfeld are out of the box," he said. "They'll take Bush's re-election as a mandate to wage the 'war of terror' everywhere and anywhere.

The second term's defense team will be even harder line than the
current one. Colin Powell will go. Condoleezza Rice will take over at the State
Department. Rumsfeld will consolidate power as the president's national-security
advisor. Paul Wolfowitz will run the Defense Department.

Bush will seek to push "Patriot II" through Congress, giving the Justice Department
and the FBI powers to inspect mail, and examine personal medical records,
insurance claims, and bank accounts.

Economic policy, meanwhile, will be… for deficits to continue to balloon until Wall Street demands large spending cuts as a condition for holding down long-term interest rates… In consequence, Bush will slash all domestic spending outside of defense. He will also argue that Social Security cannot be maintained in its present form, and will push for legislation to transform it into private accounts…

Meanwhile, the few shards of regulation still protecting the environment and the safety of American workers will be eliminated.

Justice Sandra Day O'Connor will surely step down from the Supreme
Court, possibly joined by at least one other Jurist, opening the way for the
white House to nominate a series of right-wing justices.

Finally, the Federal Communications Commission will allow three or
four giant media empires -- all tightly connected by the Republican Party -- to consolidate their ownership over all television and radio broadcasting. Nothing is more dangerous to a republic than fanatics unconstrained by democratic politics. Yet in a second term of this administration, that's exactly what we'll have.

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