Sunday, September 07, 2008

voter education

I was fairly certain that I was only going to vote for McCain if he ran with Jindal. Now, that isn't to say that I would vote for Obama (or Hillary had she been the Democratic choice), I just figured I'd sit out this election. Well, it turns out I just can't do that. I keep thinking about how important it is to vote, and have a political opinion, and I decided that I needed to get some knowledge about Senator McCain, Governor Palin, and the whole lot of Repubs. So, this weekend I started my research. I have not yet done much to educate myself about Palin, but I am sure I'll get to her. For now I've just been reading up on McCain and Obama, and I've tried to be fairly objective and open minded (I know that sounds like I'm trying to be open-minded for Obama, but I have to force myself to do that with McCain as well, as he has some qualities that I will have to learn to live with), so as not to miss something important about either candidate.

Now, for a lot of the issues I agree with McCain's stance. He is pro-life except in the cases of rape, incest and the life of the mother, which is great, and seems to be looking toward the overturning of Roe v Wade. I won't go into a ton of details here, as I am fairly certain most of my readers are not fans of pro-life stuff, which is fine, but I am in agreement with McCain on the abortion issue. He is a bit lame though in his stand on sex ed and conception issues, which is a drag, but until I run for the presidency I don't expect a Republican to be a staunch supporter of those issues.

McCain is definitely aware of global warming and environmental issues from what I've read, and is a supporter of off-shore drilling and self-relaince for future energy, but his thoughts on how to get there leave a lot to be desired. His goals don't seem as clear or as bold as Obama's, but he is a proponent of nuclear energy, which is nice.

With health care McCain is proposing a credit. Now, I have to admit, I'm not as concerned with health care as I should be, and so this one holds less weight with me, but still, I am much more in favor of the tax credit than I am with the idea of federal involvement in health care that Obama is proposing. It is ridiculous in my opinion, to think that employers should be forced to pay health care or fund a national health care plan. It is expensive and shouldn't be put on the shoulders of american business.

Okay, now to the hardest of all issues: Iraq. I have very strong feelings about war, and it has always been the part of the Republican policies that I just can't seem to agree with. while I understand and agree that Iraq needs help to get to a self-governing place, there are too many people dying, and too much money being spent, and no clear answer as to when we can get out. It looks like McCain wants to have most of our troops out by 2013, but that's soooooo far away.

So, that's what I've got so far. Also, I'd like to say this: while I am a Republican, and I like to support my party, there is no reason that the Republican blogging community should be such jerks about Michelle Obama. They have been mean, slanderous and downright infuriating in things they've written about her and it shows a tremendous lack of professionalism, not to mention a lack of human decency. Michelle is not running, Barack is, and it is not right to make her seem like anything other than a woman supporting her husband. The Democrats haven't been even close to that harsh on Cindy, and a lot can be said for that. Anyway, its just a side note.


anna said...

well put, sara

Adam said...

I'm glad you're working to educate yourself on this stuff. Keep slogging.

Adam said...

Also, don't forget to read up on all 12 of California's ballot measures.

edluv said...

he's also pro-death penalty, which in my opinion is a bit inconsistent with the term pro-life.

why are you for nuclear energy?

Scott & Malisa Johnson said...

Then there are those of us who side with different parties depending on the issue. I am totally one of these. I guess regardless of how we register, there are so many issues to consider that it makes it impossible to find a candidate who sides with me on every issue.

Uncle Skip said...

Then there are those who are independents, but register as either Democrats or Republicans. If I thought that either party really cared about me as something other than a potential contributor, I might consider....
What appeals most to me about your post is that you aren't making up your mind because of a single issue.

Adam said...

Sara's no single issue voter. If she was, she'd be a Democrat because they're trying to get rid of all the guns. =P

Gye Greene said...

Commendable that you're trying to vote based on facts and positions, rather than just party line: most folks don't bother doing the research.

On abortion, I consider myself displeased with either party's position. I've yet to hear of anyone's stance on abortion that is internally consistent with itself.

For example, if the argument is to carry a baby to term, despite the possible adverse effects on the mother -- then the fetus is equally important, no matter HOW it was conceived (e.g. rape, incest). Not the kid's fault.

That is, it's not logically consistent: either abortion is permissible, or it ain't.

Thus, saying "except for rape and incest" is a political cop-out.

In my assessment, anyhow.

(A nasty topic of conversation: possibly the most divisive possible -- maybe even trumps religion?)

Good point about Michelle Obama. When Palin's daughter's pregnancy issue came up, and some reporters asked Barack Obama for his opinion, I thought it showed class that he said, ''Hey -- family is off-limits.''


Gye Greene said...

Oh: Y'all should consider moving to Australia. We have several viable ''third-parties'' -- both on the liberal and the conservative side of things. A broader pallette from which to choose.


aunt sharon said...

i know fundamentally where i stand, but once in a while i have to wonder if i'm really a 'republicrat' or a 'demoblican'. i do know that i try to live my life in such a way that, when my feet hit the floor each morning, Satan shudders and says "oh sh*#, she's awake!"

anna said...

lol, aunt sharon!

and not that i want to debate, nor am i pro-death penalty, but i really don't think it is inconsistent to be pro death penalty and pro-life. a fetus is innocent, a murderer is not.

timidvenus said...

well, ed, i think nuclear energy is a good alternative to oil energy. maybe part of it comes from my love for physics, or from my love for fermi, but i think that when america decided to use nuclear energy we just kinda half-assed it. we didnt do a good job educating the general public on the benefits, and instead just sort of let everyone be in the dark about it, and fear a nuclear accident instead of being shown what nuclear energy can do for us as a viable energy source.

adam- guns kill people

gye- good point with the palin comment about her daughters baby. thats exactly what im talking about.

aunt sharon- rotflmao (ask uncle skip what that means, if you dont know)

anna- i agree with you, and also, dont agree with the death penalty. but see, ed, the death penalty kills a LOT less people each year than abortion, and so i dont really concern myself with it. and partly i think i dont concern myself with it because yes, the folks on death row are murderers, and i cant be bothered to save them all. i dont think its right, but it seems less wrong than fetus killing.

Anonymous said...

ed can be a bit of a hater.

Gye Greene said...

Death penalty: The problem with it is that (1) studies have shown that it really **doesn't** have a deterrent effect, and (2) more importantly, there's about a 1%-3% "whoops; sorry" rate (i.e. wrongful conviction). Mostly for po' folk who have to use public defenders.

Life imprisonment, you can release 'em after 20 years and say "My bad." After execution... well, we're not at that point in medical science, yet. ;)


Adam said...

Sara - So do knives, cars, and piano wire.

Uncle Skip said...

Yeah, and a whole lot of other things too.
And everyone seems to forget that it was the Chinese who invented gunpowder. They have been trying to take over the world like almost forever. We have to be really on guard to watch out for the next sneaky move they make.

Adam said...

Well played Skip, well played.

Uncle Skip said...

Has anyone noticed that the Chinese keep changing their capitol city too. They're really subtle about it though. The haven't relocated it. They just change the name: Peking --> Peiping --> Beijing.

Carrie said...

I think Beijing and Peking are just different English pronunciations of the same Chinese name which means "Northern Capital".

Palin scares me. Even though I dont agree with her views on abortion, I respect that view (except for the non-admission of rape and incest), but not in terms of government control. I also think anyone who doesnt believe in contraception is a nut job (even the Chinese know that one). And then there's the whole book banning discussion....Crazy.

edluv said...

so, it's alright to kill adults (war, death penalty, economic policies that starve nations as well as people) and be pro-life, as long as i say that aborting a fetus isn't aborted.

or, to say it another way, pro-life only applies to the womb (with or without exceptions)?

edluv said...

as for nuke energy, i've been curious about the issue. there have been proposals to build one in the greater fresno area, so it's gotten a decent amount of coverage in the area. i've tried to read some of the info, but am frustrated by the "experts" on both sides that say it is either safe or unsafe.

so, i'd like to see much more utilization of greener tech that we're much more sure isn't possibly going to destroy our environment, such as solar & wind. (which both candidates support)

sara, what do you think about mccain's insistence that we will immediately begin to drill for oil (i don't remember if he was talking everywhere in the u.s., anwar, or just offshore)? and how about that drill baby drill chant at the convention?

Adam said...

See Ed, that's why the issue should be reframed as pro-choice/anti-choice. Then people don't have to make those sorts of equivocations.

Or, people can just hold contradictory stances on things because really, nothing is black and white. Who needs internal consistency?

timidvenus said...

ed- i dont think its right to kill anyone, im just picking my battles, and the pro-life battle is more important than the anti-death penalty one.

also, i didint watch the convention, but yes, from what i understand mccain is a proponent of immediate off-shore drilling, which i think is fine. i understand that more oil is not a long term solution, but i do think it would be helpful.

adam- im fine with being labeled anti-choice. is that supposed to be insulting? i cant really tell from your tone of type.

Uncle Skip said...

"I think Beijing and Peking are just different English pronunciations of the same Chinese name which means "Northern Capital"."
Of course they are and my tongue is planted firmly in my cheek.


What I see here are a number of issues which are more about individual choices, opinions... whatever.
What we have to really look at is whether or not we want the government... any government making those decisions for us.
Personally, I'd rather make a decision to do something and have people think I'm an a**h*l*, than make a decision and have the government throw me in jail because there's some kind of law against it.
No, I'm not advocating anarchy either. Yes, we need laws, but we sure don't need a central government trying to micromanage every individual's life.
We're already seeing how the state and feds have gutted the locals mandates that preclude almost all discretionary spending. Slowly but certainly other aspects of local "control" are slowly being eroded.
Yes, some centralization is necessary, but not in everything we do. The worst of it is that the state and the fed are playing can you top this and it's the individual who bears the consequences.

Carrie said...

Skip, you were right about the city having its name changed many times though.

And PS - I am with you on letting people think I am a jerk for whatever personal decisions I make - as long as I retain the right to make those decisions.