Monday, June 11, 2007

Let's Talk Domestic Issues

Today's issue has to do with four domestic issues that are getting very little discussion time in the Presidential debates. So I did some research on the issues, and have graded 10 candidates, 5 Republicans, 5 Democratics based on my proposed solutions in each category. Please visit for yourself to find more information.

Across the board, citizens believe that they are taxed too much with an often confusing set of tax laws, seemingly set up to confuse them into paying more than their necessary share. Even John Kerry has said, "[When citizens] have to hire another party to prepare their returns, something is not right". Poll after poll nationwide, over the last 4 years, have shown taht nearly all citizens agree that the legislators should focus on spending restraint rather than raising taxes to address budget shortages.

Solution: Presidential candidates should promise to reduce government spending across the board, eliminate dead federal programs, cut beauracracies in the federal government, and cut taxes or support a simpler tax structure for the citizen.
When asked about the key problems with the education system, most will repsond "Funding". But it can be shown that a large percent of each stat'es budget goes solely to education. (Federal funding is less tahn 5%, but currently state's are responsible for their own education funding). The problem with funding is NOT the amount, rather the USE of the money. When so much money stalls iat the administration level, never making it to the classroom or to special education programs, therein lies the problem. As well, there is a problem with the structure of authoritiy in schools. Once upon a time, the teacher ruled the classroom... but this is less and less acurate. Teachers are losing authority, and thusly respect, in the classroom which leads to an increase in classroom disruptions.
Solution: Presidential candidates should have a solid track record on education, and the political will to enact sweeping education reform. They should support a financial restructure, as well as reforming the education system with a sweeping Educators Authority Reform.
Most concerns about healthcare come from high prices of basic care or lack of affordable insurance. Healthcare, I beleive, is a basic right...BUT I beleive that HEALTH is a personal responsibility. The US spends 17% of the GDP on healthcare, where the highest European country spends is no more than 11%. If we reduce our NEED for excessive healthcare, thus reducing the spending across the board to the European levels, the US could afford to pay off the entire national debt in less than 5 years. How do we accomplish this? By taking personal responsibility in your health.Lose the unhelathy weight, get regular exercise, eat healthier, and be healthier! As a society, we need to turn off the TV and turn on the walkman (or iPod), turn off the video games and pick up a frisbee... stop looking to the healthcare system as a reactive helath plan, rather start looking to yourself for a proactive helath plan.

Solution: A presidential candidate must recognize the need for better health across the board, not just reactive health care. They must support healthy living reforms that focus on personal health.

Rising gas prices, electricity costs, pollution, war... it is all too much! Energy independence has been a talking point for over 30 years, yet no effective or drastic changes have been made. Great Job Lobbyists! You have one-upped us once again! And look where you have gotten us... cars are no more fuel efficient than my mid 80's Toyota (I get about 38mpg), and we are no closer to independence.
Solution: The presidential candidate MUST come out strong on energy independence! We need a sweeping and radical energy plan that will take the money out of the middle east, out of big oil, and clean up the mess the world has gotten itself into. Secondly, we need to take a more personal approach by changing our own habits...Flourescent bulbs, push mowers, adjusting the thermostat a bit...
And now, how do the candidates compare on these issues? You may be very surpised! Remember that I am grading based on these issues alone, with no prejudices based on political leanings or other involvements.

You will see that the positions of the main candidates serves to maintain the current condition, with very little drastic change.

To get anything ACTUALLY accomplished in the next 4-8 years, it is essential that we look to leaders who have sweeping reform plans, across the board. At this point we should be throwing our support behind candidates who have the big ideas, not the big names.

Remember, don't just for change, vote for positive change!

God Bless!

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