Midnight Rantings

Tired rantings in a tired world.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Comparing the Two Parties Cont.

I know that it's been over six weeks since my last post. I have been extremely busy both at work and at home. My original intention was to compare the various people trying to get elected for president. My last post dealt with Bush v. Kerry. Below is my rantings on Bush v. Badnarik.

Well, last time I looked at the differences between Bush and Kerry. Although
Bush and I agreed ~50% of the time, Kerry and I never agreed. Does
this
mean I should vote for a candidate I agree with only 50% of the time?
Isn't
there a better choice for the leadership of the free world? Maybe.

I
have always considered myself libertarian/conservative.
Unfortunately, the
modern Republican Party looks more like the Democratic
Party and vice-versa.
Let's focus on "third party candidates." Today, I am
focusing on George Bush versus Michael
Badnarik
. Let's begin.

Trade-
Badnarik wants to end tariffs
and
institute free trade to usher in peace and freedom. He points to
government
restrictions and bureaucratic red tape as hampering trade.
Bush really does
not address this specifically. However, he has
instituted tariffs and policies
that are not free trade, steel tariff and
Chinese import tariffs.
My
assessment is that Badnarik is a little
naive. Yes, free trade would be a
wonderful thing. Unfortunately, we are not
playing on a level field. Other
countries do tack on tariffs on imports.
Therefore, we should have free trade
with only countries willing to have free
trade with us.
Score:
Bush 0.5
Badnarik 0.5

National
Security-
Badnarik favors withdrawing the
troops from Iraq. He would
like us to become much less intrusive in other
countries. If elected, we
would return to the ideal of trading with countries but
not getting involved.
Bush actively sees our role as dispensers of freedom.
The US should
actively help others gain the blessings of freedom we have.
My
assessment is that Badnarik sounds nice but may no longer be practical. We are hated in some corners of the world for various reasons: jealousy, affluence, attitudes, etc.
Score:
Bush 1.5 Badnarik 1.0


Healthcare-
Badnarik wants
to decrease red tape and
thereby decrease costs of healthcare. By
reducing hurdles to new
medicines, they would have a lower price tag.
By reducing paperwork for
physicians, doctors could more with less.
Less office overhead will mean
the physician still gets his/her net income
without seeing more patients or
charging more per patient.
Bush overseen
a huge entitlement expansion in the
Medicare drug benefit. He wants to
use the tax code to encourage people to
buy health insurance. He wants
to expand Medicare coverage and make sure
people do not lose any
benefits.
My assessment is that Bush's plan has
little to like for
fiscal conservatives. He does nothing to change
healthcare costs. His plan is like a band-aid, pun
intended.
Badnarik seems to want to get to the root of the problem.
Although his
ideas may not work, at least they seem reasonable. Bush wants
to
rehash old "fixes."
Score:
Bush 1.5 Badnarik 2.0

By going to the candidate's website, these issues are about all I
can directly compare.

As you can see, I did not get far. I found it hard to directly compare each candidate's platforms. Also, with the Libertarian philosophy in general, I have become less enthusiastic. Although I still think Bush has traded our financial future for short term gains, I cannot endorse any candidate, who would not actively fight against our enemies. The Libertarian Party's philosophy of staying out of the world's politics sounds nice, but this philosophy gave rise to Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc. As someone who believes this country is a beacon for what is good and right in the world, I must say we must remain engaged. There is no way we can ever go back to the days of isolationism. Therefore, I must reject the Libertarian Party.

Having said all of that, I am no fan of the Republican Party. I believe the Republican and Democrats are different sides of the same coin. However, this still has not solved my quandary of who to vote for this November. I am still labeling myself as an independent, undecided. Many have actively hoped for a Kerry win, because of gridlock in the government. This is atractive, but I shudder to think how a staunch liberal would run the executive branch.