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What This Election Is About

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Message Lawrence Fiarman
It's not just the war in Iraq. It's not just about meager progress fighting terrorists in Afghanistan amid a resurgence of the Taliban. It's not only about creating a new fertile breeding ground in Iraq for another wave of terrorists. It's not only about creating yet another reason for the Middle East to hate us. It's not solely about wearing down the magnificent American fighting forces so that top generals warn about our state of readiness. It's not about top generals finally, finally speaking out that top Bush administration officials have ignored and continue to ignore sage military advice that took a generation of generals a lifetime to develop.

That's what the Republicans want it to be about. That's what they are running on. That's why the President every day talks about his war, 9/11 and the terrorists. That's the territory on which he can win. His traditional territory is terror. He's fighting the battle on familiar ground.

But it's also about a Congressional majority that sells laws for money. It's about a leadership style in Congress that prefers to take meaningless votes on bills that make them look good to their base, bills such as flag burning, Terry Shivo, the Pledge of Allegiance, and prayers in public schools.

It's also about a Congressional majority not able to compromise or make progress on important issues that voters expect, such as border security, immigration policy, exporting jobs overseas, livable wages, and affordable health care.

It's also about a Congressional majority that votes in lockstep with the White House without using their own judgment. Voting with the party strategists rather than with the sentiment of their constituents is not the definition of democracy the Founding Fathers had in mind.

It's also about an administration of incompetence in everything except hard nose politics. This is an administration that thought they were "doing a heckuva job" on hurricane relief when everyone knew better. It's about a feebly managed military that couldn't get the proper equipment to our beloved soldiers on the battlefield so the public started sending bullet proof vests themselves.

It's about spirit, too. It's about the proper spirit of America -- the uplifting, motivating, can do, sunny days America has always stood for, and will again once we lift ourselves out of these dark, dreary days lacking insight, lacking inspiration.

This election is about seeking the proven, the experienced, and the competent for a change. It's about seeking candidates who treat voters with respect not disdain. It's about seeking candidates, at all levels, who represent our views, not their own ideology.

This election must be about seeking leaders who exemplify the strengths that come from being American, not the weaknesses that afflict all mankind. It's about choosing leaders to guard the heritage of America, and ones who are mindful of what that actually is.

Don't forget what this election is about. Don't be tricked into thinking it's about what George W. Bush and the Republican strategists want you to think it's about. It's about much more.

And it's about time the Democrats start saying what it's really about. Lest darkness and incompetence prevail.
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Lawrence Fiarman is a freelance writer and former columnist for the local newspaper in his midwestern hometown.
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