What America Means to Me

I share this with you as I posted it on my Stock Investment Blog, Stock Picks Bob’s Advice:

Hello Friends! Thanks so much for stopping by and visiting my blog, Stock Picks Bob’s Advice! I will not give you the usual investment advice warning, because this entry is not about investment advice. It is about my thoughts on politics in America today, a subject I have chosen not to write about in the past. But a subject that I also hold close to my heart and a subject which moves me greatly.

I do not expect most or even many of you to agree with most or any of what I have to say. But as a blogger, it is difficult to always wear my financial hat without sharing with you opinions and ideas about the world as well. Both of my hats fit me well. I welcome your comments and your thoughts on adding such editorial comment to this blog.

It is often assumed that one who is interested in investing and the stock market must necessarily be conservative. This isn’t always the case. It is also possible to care about profits as well as caring about the well-being of employees as well as their bosses. We can also be concerned about the shareholders as well as the profit margin of the corporation. We can care about free cash flow as well as free speech. We can care about the balance sheet as well as balance in our news media. We can care about global markets as well as global warming.

I know that I do.

I love the United States deeply. And yet I am concerned about the direction a few in Washington have been taking her.

America is a nation that has historically been slow to enter wars, but when America goes to war it goes with a vengeance. We certainly have not been a nation to initiate wars; nor should we ever move in that direction. We have been misled by group of men who chose to create the facts to justify their arguments about war. While needing to be firm in the fight over terrorism, we also cannot afford to be nation-building both from the financial and human cost it involves. We have been successful in removing the corrupt leadership in Iraq. Now it is time for us to separate from that nation; turning the reins of power back to the people in that nation.

America is a nation of equals. A democratic dream. A nation of laws. And yet we have leaders who ignore Congress and defy its laws in the name of an expansion of Executive power. This is not an America I recognize. We do not have a royal executive, we have an individual American who is chosen by the people to lead them, not as a monarch, but as a democratically elected President bound to uphold the laws of this land and the Constitution. And yet we now have an executive who defies the role of Congress, obstructs testimony, and loses millions of pertinent emails. We have an Administration that outs CIA agents as a sort of punishment when cooperation isn’t forthcoming in doing their dirty deeds. This isn’t the America I grew up with.

When I was in high school, I read about torture in other countries. I remember the appeals from Amnesty International about, as I recall, torture going on in Central American nations. I learned about the Russian use of Gulags in College when reading Solzhenitsyn. But all of this was about something bad happening by some other country somewhere else.

No longer.

We have a President who believes he can make torture go away if he just defines it that way. Who believes that Extraordinary Rendition is a State Secret and the Supreme Court can’t hear the facts. That Abu Ghraib was an aberration even though the Attorney General called the Geneva Conventions “quaint”. This isn’t the America I understand.

Government isn’t evil. We don’t need to privatize everything because government does it badly. Private contractors have been employed in every aspect of government and these overpaid workers have failed us repeatedly. They have failed us at Walter Reed. They have failed us in Iraq. No, government isn’t evil. It is us. We have government for the people, by the people and of the people. We don’t all need to be shrunk down to the size that we can all be drowned in a bathtub. This isn’t the America I love.

Taxes aren’t evil. Taxes are the things we pay that allow us to have the best government in the world. The best educational system. The best healthcare system. The best military. And the best roads and utilities in the World. This at least was what I understood taxes to be. This government which runs out country literally hates itself. It cuts taxes irresponsibly running up massive deficits and burdening our children for generations to come. This isn’t the America I want to see.

This nation supports science. We support education. We protect the environment. And yet we have leaders in office who undermine scientific investigation, deny the existence of man-caused global warming, censor scientists from talking about Polar Bears, or simply revise global warming reports before taking jobs with Big Oil.

Our no child left behind program undermines instead of supporting public education. The end-game of NCLB is the failure of every school to reach standards that are raised indefinitely, leading to the draining of funds from public schools into non-tested schools of faith. This isn’t what education is about in America.

I could talk longer. But I have said enough. I hope you all are not upset that I have an opinion about the world that we live in. America is a land of possibility. Let us restore leadership to this nation that can dream of the possible and not wallow in the self-hate of the anti-government fanatics.

Cutting taxes without cutting spending is no tax cut at all. ‘There aint no such thing as a free lunch’ I learned in college. Deficits are taxes. Remember that.

And dead people don’t pay taxes. Heirs and Heiresses do. And there is nothing wrong with taxing estates in a redistributive effort. Wealth is not going away in America. No, instead of disappearing, wealth continues to be more and more concentrated among the highest earneers. The poor get poorer and the rich richer. The way it always has been. But not the way it should be in America!

Bring America back to me. Bring back the belief in the future the avoidance of fear, and the confidence to face challenges in the future. America can and will do better. I love it too much to think otherwise.


Bookmark and Share

About Robert Freedland

A concerned American and supporter of Senator John Kerry, I am the author of the blog "John Kerry for President 2008". I am also the author of the stock market investing blog, "Stock Picks Bob's Advice".
Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to What America Means to Me

  1. Bob

    Thank you for this awesome post.

    There’s a somewhat related read here you might find of interest.

  2. Darrell Prows says:

    I’m confident that things can and will start getting better after the next election.

    On the other hand, I’m a bit concerned about the short memory, or limited focus, or whatever, that might bring us back here eventually.

  3. Char Free says:

    So, well said, Doc. I admire your use of the term “global warming,” rather than the milder doublespeak phrase: “climate change.” I admire that you express your view on estate taxes, rather than succumbing to the loaded phrase the newspeak people use: death taxes. Darn right, it’s the heirs who ought to finally pay what their benefactors have NEVER

  4. Char Free says:

    paid, and died owing. Thank you for taking the time to remind people–of whatever party or faith–that it is the U.S.Constitution upon which this country is based–not the rule of men. One correction though–no one in the White House at present was duly elected. And, one must wonder that if a group goes to so much trouble to put their party into office in 2000 and 2004, what makes ya’ think they’re just going to slink away in 2008? Good on ya’