What I Believe

(First, congratulations to Erin on her new TV. She saw it yesterday whilst we were browsing various stores and decided to buy it. So this morning I went with her in my new X5 — with the skanky iDrive system but otherwise wonderful — to move it back to her house. I must say, after we set it up, I am insanely jealous. Though 2″ smaller than my TV it is way better. WAY better. We then went to CompUSA for an HDMI cable and Ikea for a stand. We built the stand, hooked up her new PS3 for Blu-ray operation, and had a grand ole’ time.)

So, I was thinking these past few days if I would be a good president or not. Mostly not, because I don’t suffer fools gladly and most politicians are fools. Then again Churchill was a great prime minister, and he didn’t suffer fools at all. As president you have to be able to work with idiots (or in the case of our current president, he IS the idiot). I suppose being elected dictator for life would have some appeal, though I don’t see it happening.

I’d never get elected. Not so much skeletons in my closet, because my life is pretty boring when it comes to stuff like that, but more along the lines of when a reporter asked a question, I’d answer it. You know questions on gun control, immigration, death penalty, abortion, and so on. No proper politician ever actually answers the question with a position. I would.

I thought it would be fun to actually do that here:

Gun Control. The constitution of the USA grants the right to bear arms. I support that right. The constitution was written when there were rifles and small single chamber handguns. There were no AK-47s. I do not support the right to own an AK-47 or any automatic or semi-automatic gun. I do think you must reach the age of majority to own one. And I think you need a license and to have it registered.

Abortion. I wish Barbara Bush had one. However, I believe that is something for the lady and man involved to discuss. It is not the concern of the government.

Gay Marriage. All for it. Why shouldn’t gay people have the right to the same misery straight people have? Who cares? If you love someone and want to ruin it by getting married, why is it the business of the government? The government doesn’t belong in private lives.

Drinking Age. 18. Voting Age. 18. If you’re old enough to die for your country, you are old enough to drink and vote. Preferably you will vote before you drink.

Criminals. By committing a felony, you lose most of your rights. But once you’ve paid the price, why can’t you get them back? Why is anyone even discussing this?

Welfare. Welfare is for people who can’t work because of a disability. Welfare is not for people with 3 or more kids. I suppose we must grandfather existing people in, but if you have a third child, you are banned from welfare. Unless of course, you work for a year, then you have 120 days to find a new job. Fair is fair. If you pay in, you get out.

Unemployment. If there’s a job that meets your skill set and it’s listed with the unemployment office, you may not collect. You go get the job. If you’re not working, no job is beneath your dignity. (Exceptions for religious reasons are allowed. For example, nobody reasonably would expect a Jew or Muslim to work in a pork factory.)

Religion. I see no reason people can’t participate. However, the Constitution requires separation of church and State. It will be reinforced and enforced.

Age of Consent. Sixteen. Go ahead, prove you’re an adult. Give us all a good laugh. But really, go on. Once you’re sixteen you’re on your own. Of course, this is also the age at which your parents can run your ass out on the street if you don’t want to follow their rules as stupid as you feel they may be. With great power comes great responsibility.

Smoking. Banned in public. What you do behind closed doors is up to you. You are also prohibited from Medicare and Medicaid if you smoke. Smoking is a choice. Choices have consequences.

Presidential Veto. Line-item veto. This will kill pork-barrel politics. This must be done.

Immigration. If you can support yourself, and can prove it, then you’re welcome. If you can’t, you’re not. Every country requires some basic skills and knowledge such as working understand of the local language and customs and history and heritage. This will be the same for the USA.

Death Penalty. I was for it for many years. Now I am opposed except for an allowance for High Treason (for which, in a previous post, I nominated George Bush). I am opposed because study after study proves it doesn’t work. It costs more to kill someone than keep them in jail without parole. I also think allowing the victim (or family thereof if necessary) thirty minutes alone in a room with the person who wronged them — at their option of course — does not constitute cruel and unusual punishment. It’s fair play.

I also favour taxing the gas companies for profits in excess of a certain percentage of income. You remember the windfall profit tax? Good idea, but not properly implemented. There’s a solution and I’d come up with one. I’d repeal the Patriot Act. It violates every freedom this country stands for and the fact the people in this country accept it as a good thing proves just how stupid the masses are. Yes, that means you.

Income tax. Yes. Flat taxes are unfair to the poor. However, a modified version with certain exemptions would certainly work. If you earn below poverty level, your tax is $1 per year. This means everyone files. If you earn more than that, probably a flat 15% until your income is double the national average when it goes up to 20%. Or some scale like that. Deductions for education and medical expenses allowed. One wishes to encourage those habits because in the long run smart, healthy people cost the government a lot less.

Social Security. Keep it. Can it be fixed? No idea.

National Health Insurance. Yes. The private system will still be available but everyone who is a citizen of the USA will have basic coverage. If you want better coverage, buy your own insurance or pay for it out of your pocket. Not a citizen, that’s most unfortunate, but that’s not our problem. If you are here on a legal work permit, you may buy insurance as part of the national program. But unless you are paying into the system, you cannot get it free.

Education. Our system works pretty good. Some states suck, but that’s the states’ issue. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

National ID card? I’m all for it. Just like a passport, but a card. It’s basically a passport card for use within the USA. And it could be a driver’s license and voter’s ID card. Sure, it’s a little big brother-ish but I’d much rather have one card for everything. I’d fix our money. Every other country has a different colour for each bill. Did you know our money is printed on full colour intaglio printing presses? They just don’t use that feature. Really. I’d ban the $1 bill and consider making the bills different sizes like many countries do. Harder to counterfeit, and easier to tell apart. I’d make the campaigns limited to 90 or 120 days before elections. Everyone would vote on the same day. In alternating years we’d have the democrats on one week and the republicans the following week. We’d switch weeks the following year. This would be for national elections only. States, as always, could do whatever they want.

Speed Limits. That right is returned to the states except on Interstates and US Highways. If the federal government pays, we get to say. If the state pays, they get to say. Federal speed limit in the day 80 and night 65 — reduced to 60 and 55 if raining or snowing or foggy.

Air Travel. 3 ounces? We’ll fix that shit our first day. I’ll give you three damned ounces you stupid-ass bureaucrat. There’s nothing wrong with profiling to prevent terrorism. That two-year-old kid isn’t a security risk. Send him through the metal detector and worry about the 30-year-old guy behind him. Yes, everyone’s a threat but some people are a bigger threat than others. Cars that get less than 15MPG are banned for personal use. For corporate use the reality is there are certain needs, and that number will be lower. Every year the minimum will go up 2mpg. Car companies whose fleets do not have an increasing average fuel economy of 10% per year will be subject to DOUBLE income tax. Cars that have 50mpg or better will be exempt from sales tax. This number will also increase every year. Anyway, that’s a start. So you know.

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