Jewish World Review Jan. 28, 2004 / 5 Shevat, 5764

Martha Zoller

Martha Zoller
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Consumer Reports

Listen carefully, America | Listening to the Howard Dean speech last night was surreal. As flamboyant as he was last week, he was subdued this week. Just minutes before, Dr. Dean appeared with Brit Hume on The Fox News Channel and said that he would be a candidate that would not make promises that he would not keep. Then during his speech he lists off a dozen expansions of federal programs to make it better for working families.

It's the populist, socialist strain of the Democrat Party. Then I switched around to find the other Democratic candidates and what I found was more of the same. Edwards was trying to mobilize poor people to vote and coming from one of the best trial lawyers in history seems a little disingenuous. Then Kerry was talking about respecting the people in uniform and Lieberman was trying to make his weak fourth place finish into a three way tie for third.

As I listened, it hit me; the Democrats can only campaign by tearing America down. Not one of them mentioned the heroism of September 11th or the tragedy either. They all talked about corporate greed and did not give a single real example. I know, I know — Enron, the evil of all evils. According to this field of candidates, "we should not be afraid of biological weapons in the hands of terrorists, but by G-d, Ken Lay should burn.

Most Americans work for companies that employ 100 employees or less. Many of us are starting businesses and are far removed from the Enrons of the world. We took a hit from the 1999 boom, we were attacked on our own soil in 2001 and we did not go into a recession. I think based on all that, we have done amazingly well in the last few years.

But back to Dr. Dean, he said that he proposes to send kids to college instead of jail. That is the second time he has framed the choice that way. Seems to me there are many choices that will either lead you to college or jail. I do not know too many people for which that is an either/or kind of issue.

Then he said the quota is a code word for race issues and that the President played the race card in the Michigan Affirmative Action case. The President did not play the race card in that case, but in his own administration he has put more people of color in high level positions that any President ever.

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Finally, Dr. Dean talks about how the foreign policy from WWI to 2000 was so great and every body in the world loved us. I feel myself breaking into song. The fact of the matter is that President Bush has had to restore the respect for America that President Clinton squandered. There is so much more, but it's on to South Carolina and Missouri. Which Dr. Dean will we see then?

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JWR contributor Martha Zoller is a radio talk show host in Georgia. Comment by clicking here.

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© 2004, Martha Zoller