While listening to a lot of radio this evening concerning the Iowa caucus, it got me to thinking of my New Year's resolution to do everything within my power to assist in getting President Bush removed from office. One main way I hope to accomplish this is through the power of the written word via this journal, the hopefully inspire discussion, thought, and discourse. So, humor me.
For this entry, just some anecdotal things to consider about our Presidential history of the past quarter century (since Nixon).
Every president since Nixon, who has presided during hard economic times has not been re-elected. Ford and Carter had to deal with brutal inflation and Middle East oil emargos. Bush Sr. had the recession and S&L debacle to contend with. Only Reagan and Clinton presided over our country during relatively propserous times, Clinton moreso than Reagan. At present we have the highest unemployment rate in 12 years and a floundering stock market. Bush, the Sequel, did not commit the sins of his father by raising taxes, and in fact, has given the population not one, but two tax cuts. Yet the economy is still in no better shape than it was 4 years ago. Americans have proven time and time again that, with concern to the presidency, the economy is everything.
On the other hand, the four states with the most electoral votes to give are all seated by Republican governors (California, Texas, Florida, and New York).
Of the presidential hopefuls, we really only need concern ourselves with the Democratic party. While I believe that a third party will eventually supplant the Republican Party, this is not the year for that to happen. Casting your vote for a third party candidate in this election will only weaken the possibility of a Democratic contender seating the White House. Who does this leave us with? I like Clark, however, unless something drastic happens during the early stages of the primaries, he will have withdrawn before the primary process is over. Sharpton is too fruity and I have serious doubts that the American populace will ever elect a reverend to the office of president. Kerry and Gephardt are both proven losers at this race and, along with Edwards, Lieberman, and Kucinich have one major flaw - they are all congressmen. Consider that only one of the past five presidents were congressmen (Bush Sr.), the other four, former Governors. I reckon this is because, as a legislator, one has a voting record which can be attacked by one's opponent. Governor's do not have this weakness. And let's be real, we're not ready for a president named Dennis (unless it's Dennis Miller.)
Which leaves us with Howard Dean. Granted Dean has issues. As a northeastern Democrat can he carry the South? Will his mouth get him into more trouble than he can stand? It'll be interesting to see. But of everyone in the fray, I see Dean has someone who will stand in stark contrast to Bush. Bush is a made man, made by Carl Rove. Every word out of his mouth is carefully tailored and spun. Dean on the other hand is outspoken and thinks quick on his feet, and often times, doesn't even think at all.
Dean's brash, devil-may-care attitude will energize a lot of people who find the entire political process boring, drab, and stuffy. This presidential election is going come down to a fire being lit under people's asses to come out and pull the lever, and the cause for removing Bush can only be strengthened by a candidate who can do that. In addition to the tradiional liberal vote (women, blacks, and gays) Dean will appeal in particular to young voters, who may be on the fence on wheter or not voting is even something they're going to do in the first place. I don't think is Dean so unstable that he is unfit to be the President, I think that he just has a tendancy to make an off-the-cuff remark from time to time, something that makes him human and refreshing.
So, as of the moment, I'm throwing my support behind Howard Dean. As I've stated, my main concern is to get Bush out of office. I'm willing to give Howard Dean four years in the White House to do that, and give him a chance to prove to me that he deserved the office rather than the other way around. If this is what it takes to get Bush from office, so be it.