Sunday, February 24, 2008

Height of hypocrisy

The Mexican-American border dispute has reached a new height of hypocrisy. Arizona passed a law, that took effect on the New Year, which punishes employers who knowingly hire workers without valid legal documents to work in the US. In response, a delegation of nine state legislators from Sonora was in Tucson saying that Arizona's new employer sanctions law will have a devastating effect on the Mexican state.

For Mexican officials to point their fingers across the border without acknowledging their own responsibility in this economic situation is not only hypocritical but also arrogant. Their first duty is to create an economic infrastructure in Mexico which would give the Mexican people a decent standard of living. But Mexico, as my friend so aptly put it, is a kleptocratic oligarchy. That would mean the Mexican elite would have to stop hoarding all of Mexico's vast wealth for themselves and invest it instead in their people and their country's future. If they did that, the Mexican people would not want to come to the US in the first place.

America owes the same duty to her people that Mexico owes to hers. That includes maximizing the opportunity of employment for American people. Arizona's move could only serve to reduce the rate of unemployment in the state. The Arizona people should be proud of this legislation, regardless of Mexico's response.

Everyone thought there were WMDs

President George W. Bush has repeatedly maintained that everyone thought there were WMDs in Iraq before he invaded her. But even back in 2005, I wasn't the only one connecting the dots to discover there was widespread disagreement before the invasion regarding the existence of the supposed WMDs. The arms inspectors were already coming up empty-handed in their inspections for WMDs in Iraq around the 2003 New Year.

A recent study found that Bush made 232 false statements about Iraq and former leader Saddam Hussein's possessing weapons of mass destruction, and 28 false statements about Iraq's links to al Qaeda. Conducted by the Center for Public Integrity and its affiliated group, the Fund for Independence in Journalism, the study states unequivocally that, following 9/11, President Bush and seven top officials of his administration waged a carefully orchestrated campaign of misinformation about the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

The study was based on a searchable database compiled of primary sources, such as official government transcripts and speeches, and secondary sources -- mainly quotes from major media organizations. It found that president Bush and his top seven aides publicly made 935 false statements about the security risk posed by Iraq in the two years following September 11, 2001. The study concluded, "In short, the Bush administration led the nation to war on the basis of erroneous information that it methodically propagated and that culminated in military action against Iraq on March 19, 2003."

It was not important to Bush what the intelligence community thought or even what he thought, it was important to Bush that the American people believed Iraq had WMDs. To make them believe this without any evidence by conducting a campaign of deceit should be grounds for impeachment.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Federal budget deficit

President Bush is touting his plan to eliminate the budget deficit by 2012. Sure, he'll have to cut many programs to do so, but Bush wants to keep America focused on the end result in 2012.

Why does Bush stay focused on 2012? Perhaps because he'd prefer America doesn't know about what his budget will do in the next fiscal year. Under his plan, the budget deficit will increase almost 150% to $400-billion.

That's just shy of the record $413-billion deficit Bush racked up in 2004. Nonetheless, it seems that with such a substantial increase over last fiscal year, the budget deficit is heading in the wrong direction. With a record like this, how can anyone take the GOP presidential candidates seriously when they talk about the "tax and spend" Democrats?