The Commons is a weblog for concerned citizens of southeast Iowa and their friends around the world. It was created to encourage grassroots networking and to share information and ideas which have either been suppressed or drowned out in the mainstream media.

"But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place;' some swearing, some crying for a surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left. I am afeard there are few die well that die in a battle; for how can they charitably dispose of any thing, when blood is their argument? Now, if these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the king that led them to it; whom to disobey were against all proportion of subjection." (Henry V, Act V, Scene 4)

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Bill Kumbier Letter 9/18/04

A recent (September 18) New York Times/CBS News poll shows that many Americans say that John Kerry has not made a case for why he wants to be president and are concerned about Kerry’s ability to handle an international crisis. Even though many of these Americans also think that the country is “heading in the wrong direction” and are “distressed” with President Bush’s handling of the economy, they incline toward Bush.

As a Kerry supporter, I am distressed by the apparent lack of public awareness this poll reflects. I began to pat serious attention to John Kerry during the Iowa caucuses and it took me only a couple days of listening and reading to learn why he wanted to be president, what he would do as president and that he would tackle international crises by engaging the support of America’s traditional allies without weakening our resolve. I know Kerry wants to be president to improve the lives of all Americans, by implementing a detailed health care plan that will make available to all Americans the same health care coverage that our legislators enjoy and a detailed plan for eliminating tax breaks for companies who are “outsourcing” American jobs and by reducing the unconscionable economic and human burdens Bush’s stubborn, go-it-alone war policy has imposed on us.
The poll clearly suggests that Americans simply have bought what the Republicans are selling: vague plans for the future and an image of John Kerry so obviously false that it’s stunning that thinking voters would accept it. I have been privileged to vote in eight presidential elections and I can remember none that entail consequences for Americans as serious as this one. It is more important than ever for voters to be aware, to watch, read and listen critically and inform themselves.

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