|December 9, 2004|
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
After the 2000 election it was easy to blame George W. Bush. It was he and his campaign that successfully used the courts to deny hundreds of Floridians their right to have their votes matter. It was his campaign that ignored the concept of states' rights and the democratic process in order to ensure the conservatives on the United States Supreme Court could decide the election in his favor. After the 2004 election I blame the American public—assuming, for the moment, the results are accurate; specifically those who voted for him and those who would have voted for someone else had they elected to exercise a minimal amount of civic responsibility. Why did so many people vote against, or not vote for, their own self-interests and against the best interests of the rest of the world?
Of the approximately 115 million people who voted, 18.8 million Bush supporters felt terrorism was the most important issue. Nearly 19 million people apparently believe that we are safer under Bush than we would be under a President Kerry. Did those people read the 9/11 Commission's report? Did those people read the Senate Intelligence Committee's report? Did those people remember who was in charge on September 11, 2001 and how the administration spent the past three years making excuses for their failures and diverting attention and resources from fighting our real enemies? Who mailed the anthrax and ricin? Where are Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar? As long as they and members of al-Qaeda run free, we are in danger. As long as we continue to invade and occupy Muslim countries, we are in danger. Because of the Bush administration's policies and actions our enemies are still on the loose and growing in numbers. America is more vulnerable now and in the future.
8.9 million Bush sycophants thought the most important consideration was honesty/trustworthiness. This statistic is perhaps the most baffling. The number of lies uttered by this president and members of his administration is overwhelming. Weapons of mass destruction? The relationship between Saddam and bin Laden? The cost of the war? Seeking uranium from Niger? Who would benefit from tax cuts? Hiding the prescription drug cost data before the Congressional vote? Suppressing mercury poisoning evidence? Editing findings in environmental reports to conform to political ideology? The list goes on. There is a shameful record of hiding facts, distorting evidence, and outright lying to the American people and to the world community. How can anyone trust such a pattern of dishonesty?
20.2 million Bush voters felt moral values was most important. Certainly there is nothing moral about sending some 1,200 American soldiers to their deaths on distortions and lies. Certainly there is no morality in doing nothing while hundreds of thousands of people are exterminated in Darfur. Certainly it is immoral to ignore the millions of people who do not have access to affordable health care, to make policies that damage the environment for all inhabitants of the Earth, to put the interests of drug companies over the health of our fellow human beings. "Moral values" is really code for religious opposition to abortion, stem-cell research, and gay marriage. Why are over 20 million people more concerned about cells in a dish than they are about those who are already born and ill, or those who cannot afford to feed and clothe themselves? Why are over 20 million people more threatened by two people in love than the deterioration of our environment, our economy, and our reputation around the world? Why are over 20 million people more concerned about denying a woman's right to choose over our freedom from government intrusion? This administration and its supporters are morally bankrupt.
The Program on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland released a study on October 21, 2004. The following numbers represent what Bush supporters accept as truth:
42 percent of Bush supporters continue to believe that Iraq had WMDs just prior to the war. 25 percent think Iraq had a major WMD program just prior to the war. 56 percent believe that most experts say Iraq had WMDs just prior to the war. 20 percent somehow believe that Iraq was directly involved in the 9/11 attacks. 55 percent continue to think that Iraq gave al-Qaeda substantial support. Unbelievably, 56 percent of Bush supporters believe the 9/11 Commission reported a direct connection between Saddam and 9/11 or that Saddam substantially supported al-Qaeda. More than a quarter of Bush supporters believe that the majority of the rest of the world supported the Iraq invasion. 57 percent think the majority of the rest of the world preferred that Bush were elected. 72 percent erroneously believe Bush supports participation in a land mines treaty. 69 percent think Bush supports a nuclear test ban treaty. 54 percent believe Bush supports participation in the International Criminal Court. 51 percent think Bush supports participation in the Kyoto treaty.
All of these Bush supporters are wrong. According to the PIPA, "It is clear that supporters of the president are more likely to have misperceptions than those who oppose him."
By my calculations, about 48 million American voters have their heads up their collective ass; they are woefully ignorant and/or shamelessly duplicitous. Unless these people are all idiots, they would have voted for someone else if they were really interested in dealing with terrorism, in a honest/trustworthy leader, and in moral values. If these people were truly informed, they purposefully turned a blind eye to what Bush is really all about for other reasons. Pretending to support honesty and moral values is as empty as the pockets of the millions of people who have lost jobs because of Bush's failed economic policies. Dooming Americans to an unsafe future for financial gain, for sanctimonious gratification, for a distaste of those who are not in the majority is more of a threat than any Muslim extremist could pose.
By the way, 725,000 Bush voters thought intelligence was the most important factor for choosing this president. They should be committed.
I firmly believe that these extremist, selfish, and ignorant voters do not represent the rest of America. It is up to the sane among us to combat this threat to our democracy. The neo-conservative religious hypocrites must be stopped now. It would be immoral to allow them to continue.
Robin Stone, Ph.D.
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
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