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sparkythefool (profile) wrote,
on 1-22-2005 at 4:00pm
Music: "Lapland" +Ratatat+
Subject: How about 'spreading more freedom' in the USA?
If President Bush really wants to "spread freedom around the world," as he said in his inaugural address, he should start by setting an example right here in the United States, Libertarians say.

"Freedom, like charity, begins at home," said Joseph Seehusen, executive director of the Libertarian Party.

"Unfortunately George Bush has given America a lot more government -- and a lot less freedom -- over the past four years. We're challenging him to change course in his second term and set Americans free."

Bush used the words "free," "freedom" or "liberty" 49 times in his 21-minute speech on Thursday as he laid out an ambitious agenda that includes spreading democracy and freedom "with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world."

Though Bush refrained from targeting particular governments, six "outposts of tyranny" named earlier this week by secretary of state nominee Condoleezza Rice include Belarus, Burma, Cuba, Iran, North Korea and Zimbabwe.

"Yes, setting people in other nations free from dictators is a laudable goal," Seehusen said. "But George Bush wasn't elected President of the World, he was elected president of the United States, and his first obligation is to improve the lives of the American people."

Unfortunately, Americans are less free economically than when Bush was elected in 2000, Libertarians point out.

Over the past four years Bush and the Republican-controlled Congress have teamed up to pass the largest expansion of Medicare in U.S. history, authored the most expensive education bill ever, squandered more than $300 billion on an unnecessary war in Iraq; increased the federal budget to a mind-boggling $2.2 trillion and propelled the national debt to $7.3 trillion, Seehusen noted.

"Every dollar confiscated by politicians is a dollar that Americans can't spend to pay medical bills, to send their child to college or to plan their retirement," he said.

"While military security is vital, economic security is important as well -- and the president can protect it by reducing the crushing burden of government."

Besides, as Iraq demonstrates, toppling a tyrant and establishing democracy in even one nation is extremely difficult, while bringing more freedom to the United States is relatively easy, he noted.

"On November 2, Republicans increased their majority in both the House and Senate, which means Mr. Bush has a huge opportunity to impose his agenda," Seehusen said.

With that in mind, Libertarians are issuing a modest challenge for the "pro-freedom" president's second term:

Eliminate just one major federal program; submit a no-growth budget for the next fiscal year; sell off one piece of federal property and use the money to reduce the national debt; or tear just 100 pages out of the 70,000-page Federal Register.

"Mr. Bush, taking any of those actions would prove to the American people that your passionate inaugural address wasn't just empty rhetoric," Seehusen said.

"After all, if freedom is good enough for people in Belarus, Burma, Cuba, Iran, North Korea and Zimbabwe, it's good enough for people right here in the USA."


Stolen from the Libertarian Party homepage.
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