1. Al Gore would be in charge. On September 11, he would have stopped
reading his children's book and
flown directly back to the White House - not meandering through Louisiana and Nebraska because his
Vice President wanted to keep him away from the meetings where crisis decisions were being made.
Al Gore would be calling the shots.
2. Al Gore would be making important decisions by drawing on a lifetime
of foreign policy experience.
Al Gore would not need on-the-job training and daily tutorials from his National Security Advisor, in
between naps and jogs on the treadmill. Al Gore would also be making wiser decisions. He would not
trade off long-term dangers - like turning a blind eye to nuclear proliferation in Pakistan and India,
which could lead to a nuclear war - for short-term gains.
3. Al Gore would be a proud Commander-in-Chief, not someone hiding his
shameful military record. Al Gore
volunteered for the Army during the Vietnam War, and served his full tour of duty, including six months in
Vietnam. George W. Bush used his family connections to become a pilot in the Texas Air National Guard, and
after $1 million in training, flew for only 2 years before mysteriously being grounded - and going AWOL.
4. Al Gore would be speaking to the American people. He would not have
waited for two days to properly
address the nation. He would not have read platitudes off a TelePrompTer. He would not have hid behind Ari
Fleischer. He would not have waited a month for a prime time press conference to repeat those platitudes
in response to a half-dozen questions. He would have spoken intelligently and thoughtfully about the problems
America faces. He would have answered as many questions as Americans wanted to ask.
He would be like Rudy Giuliani - only better.
5. Al Gore would be truly uniting the nation. He would not be abusing
the unprecedent national unity to promote
an unpopular far-right ideological agenda - missile defense, fast track trade authority, and oil drilling in the Arctic
National Wildlife Refuge. He would focus exclusively on the enormous challenge facing the nation, and stand up
to any member of his party who tried to undermine national unity for ideological purposes.
6. Al Gore would not be waging class warfare from above. He would not
be sending the children of working
families to fight and die, while passing unconscionable tax giveaways to the rich. He would be fighting for full
unemployment benefits for the millions affected by the recession, which is not only the correct moral policy
- but also the wise economic policy. He would support an appropriate short-term stimulus, but not a tax
giveaway that would devastate the federal budget for a decade.
7. Al Gore would be addressing the big issue which underlies this war
- namely, American dependence on
Middle East oil. The Bush-Cheney administration represents the big oil companies, and has put its full power
behind the cause of maintaining - not reducing - U.S. dependency on oil and fossil fuels. Al Gore would be
fighting for higher auto fuel economy standards and more energy efficient appliances, not blocking them as
the Bush-Cheney administration is doing.
8. Al Gore would not be publicly battling with Israel. With the help
of Joe Lieberman, Gore would be working
constructively with Israel to improve Israel's security while making progress towards a Palestinian state that would
not threaten Israel. Gore would not be holding back on criticising terrorist-coddling countries like Saudi Arabia,
which have allowed millions of dollars to flow to Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda.
9. Al Gore would be truly able to champion the principles that America
is fighting for - freedom and democracy.
George W. Bush cannot speak about Democracy without lying, because he didn't win the Presidency. Rather, Bush
stole the Presidency by preventing 175,000 votes from being counted, with the help of his brother Jeb, his campaign
co-chair Katherine Harris and a partisan Republican majority of the Supreme Court. Al Gore won the election
nationally by 540,000, and if Florida's own laws on ballot counting had been followed, Gore won Florida as well.
10. Al Gore would not be flip-flopping on key policies relating to fighting
terrorism. Gore also supports
"nation-building," which Bush acknowledges will eventually be necessary in Afghanistan - but wants to foist off
onto the United Nations. Also, the Gore Commission called for increased airline security, including making baggage
screeners into dedicated public servants like police and firefighters, rather than minimum-wage temps. George W. Bush
remains unwilling to stand up to the right wing of his party, which vehemently opposes expanding the federal workforce, regardless of the cost to American security.
In fact, a strong case can be made that Al Gore might have even PREVENTED the terrorist attack on September 11.
1. President Gore might have strengthened airline security, following
the advice of his own commission's report on
that topic. This might have prevented terrorists with boxcutters from boarding the planes in the first place,
or from gaining access to the cockpits.
2. President Gore might have implemented the report of the U.S. Commission
on National Security/21st Century,
better known as Hart-Rudman Commission, rather than asking Dick Cheney to duplicate its work.
3. President Gore might have paid closer attention to the warnings received
from foreign intelligence
sources. President Gore would not have been on a month's vacation while such warnings were stacking up.
4. President Gore might have implemented tougher money laundering rules
that would have detected the payments
between Al Qaeda and the hijackers.
5. President Gore might have lessend foreign anger at the U.S. by endorsing
treaties on the environment,
weapons, and money laundering, rather than sabotaging them. He might have found a way for the U.S. to engage
the world at the U.N. Conference on Racism, rather than boycotting it.
6. President Gore might have lessened anger among Arabs and Muslims
by continuing President Clinton's
vigorous efforts for peace between Israel and the Palestinians, and might even have reached a final agreement.
So let's ask the question:
Are YOU glad that George W. Bush is in the White House, rather than Al Gore?