Wednesday, October 31, 2007

distraction politics

i didn't watch the democratic debate last night. but, i was reading a recap...and i've got to hand it to Joe Biden for one of the best political one-liners i've heard in a while. he was discussing Rudy Giuliani, and stated:

"There's only three things he mentions in a sentence: a noun and a verb and 9/11. I mean, there's nothing else."

zing.

in all seriousness, though...i'm really hoping voters in 2008 don't fall for the "vote republican or the terrorists will win" idea, or "vote republican or else you're betraying all the hard work americans have done to pull together and fight terror after 9/11." i was hoping that would be the case in 2004, although there was no such luck there. yes, we have a distinct interest in preventing further terrorist attacks. but, curtailing civil liberties and fighting a war that only increases anti-american sentiment and risks soldiers' lives is not the way to achieve that goal...and that is the approach the republicans have taken.

furthermore, 9/11 is by far the only issue that's important to the american populace. it hasn't been the only issue since those first few days after the attack, when all that was on anyone's mind was wondering what had happened, who was responsible, and how to prevent it from happening again. that last consideration, preventing further attacks, is still an issue. but, so is education. so is health care. so are a million other things that voters should not be distracted away from by the mere invocation of 9/11.

this isn't intended as a diatribe against voting republican. this is intended as a diatribe against using 9/11 as a single issue or a pervasive theme in a campaign. i'm against single-issue campaigns as a rule, since governing a nation requires knowledge of the multitude of issues, and for the participants in government to have well-reasoned positions on the whole gamut of issues. using such an emotional, hot-button issue as a distraction tactic insults what i can only hope is the intelligence of most people, and belittles the rest of the spectrum of issues.

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