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Bush Fear

Conservatives use fear to keep the populace complacent and submissive so they can stay in power. “You might want some of those liberal programs,” they say, “but when it comes down to it, isn’t safety more important?” Sound familiar? But I’m not talking about the Republicans. I’m talking about the Democrats.

When Nader ran, Democrats told us that if we voted for him and got Bush elected, we would be consigned to a world where “women start dying of back-alley abortions, […] national parks become oil fields, […] we return to the ‘good old days’ of Reagan-style national debt, [] our public schools crumble, [and] any notion of corporate environmental responsibility flies out the window.”

Well, uh, I guess they’re looking pretty foolish now. Abortions have only been curtailed slightly, most of our national parks are doing pretty well, our deficit is large but not unfixable, our public schools still stand (improved according to some), and Bush has continued to improve the environment.

What would the country look like under timid Gore? Well, 9/11 probably wouldn’t have happened so we wouldn’t be in Afghanistan or Iraq, but over all, it wouldn’t be that much different (especially with a Republican Congress).

The fact is, this country is so liberal that Bush isn’t that bad. Even when Bush hasn’t improved things, he’s had to pretend he was trying (No Child Left Behind, Healthy Forests, Clear Skies Initiative, etc.). Now I’m not saying I’d vote for him, but you have to ask yourself, if the alternative is four years of treading water, isn’t it worth risiking Bush’s minor losses for a chance at real change?

How about a world where special interests don’t control the government, we take the war on poverty seriously, workers all make a living wage, we eliminate corporate crime, we take care of our children, we start actually using renewable energy, we eliminate homelessness and highway congestion, and we democratize the media?

Isn’t that worth risking something for?

posted January 16, 2004 11:25 AM (Politics) #

This is an older version of the article. Please read the latest copy.

Aaron Swartz (