Monday, October 13, 2008

DIGG THIS --> An Open Letter To The 2008 U.S. Presidential Election Winner

As we head into the home stretch of the 2008 U.S. Presidential race, the rhetoric and promises we've been hearing about the last 2 years will soon fade. They will give way to the climax of victory. It will be at least 100 days before we get any real statement from the new administration, and we will undoubtedly get more empty promises. With that in mind, I'd like to give them some specific things to think about, and shape their decisions.

1. Government and Business need to be friends. Anyone who has or has had a business knows that government at all levels is their enemy. Be it taxes or regulations, government is a thorn in the side of every business. It's no wonder that businesses try to find every imaginable loophole in the laws. Take a look at Japan for instance. Government and business work together to better the economy, and even have long term plans. Hint, Hint, and I'm not talking about strengthening the lobbyist relationships.

2. NO MORE BAILOUTS! I mean, are you gonna come help me when my web business going belly up? I think not, so stop doing it for those huge corporations where the CEO has stolen hundreds of millions of dollars. Let the free market take care of itself. Punish the perpetrators. That's what the EU is going to do.

3. We need long term plans to end our fossil fuel dependence. For now, all we've done is curb our driving habits, and maybe purchased something more fuel efficient. But that's temporary. We need to go at this from as many angles as possible.

---First, we have to maximize our use of alternative energy. There should be wind towers EVERYWHERE, my electric company should be beating down my door to put them up on my land, and everywhere else possible.

There should be power units lining our rivers to harness the power of the waterways.

Homeowners should be compensated for installing solar technology or building homes (or other buildings) with solar technology.

The big oil companies need to shift their focus to finding alternative energy technology.

---Second, we need to stop using taxpayer money to build and improve roads, unless it improves mass transit. We should be building rail infrastructure, everywhere. Ever been to Europe? you can take the train or bus to practically anywhere, or within a few blocks. We seem to only think about that in major cities. I live just 30 miles from the nations capital, but mass transit is largely inadequate in my area. Worse yet, they have no plans, short or long term, to change or improve it. This is bad news for the hundreds of thousands of commuters that must trek the highways into and around the nations capital each day to work. In fact, it's a crime if you ask me.

---Third. This is where government and business need to work together The U.S. Automakers need to redirect their focus to alternative fuel vehicles. We need to transition, not just offer options. They need to stop worrying about creating a new line of fossil fuel vehicles each year, stop retooling their assembly lines for them, and stop marketing them altogether. Alternative fuel vehicles sold in 2010 should be the norm, not the exception.

---Lastly, set a date to outlaw the internal combustion engine for private transportation, say 2025 or so. This will FORCE the world to change.

4. I liked Ross Perot's idea of eliminating the tax code, throw it away. If everyone, including big businesses, paid a flat 10% tax on their disposable income, we'd have plenty of money to run the government and provide the services we expect the government to provide. (Perot advocated 13% I believe). Just think about how simple that would make filing taxes, none of those complicated forms, and ambiguous tax codes to sift through. And it would be so much simpler for the government to plan and budget because they would have a much better handle on how much money will be coming in.

5. We have to start making friends on this planet. We have this habit of going around the world and bloodying the noses of anyone we think may have had a part in terrorism. While I'm for the block bully being taken down, we have not gained many friends along the way. The U.S. has alienated itself over the last 8 years. Even our allies are backing away from us, as they know that no country is off the radar. Now we have a presidential candidate that would all a new cold war to start with Russia.

Listen, take a literary note from Hollywood. There have been many movies and television series about a "post-war", post-apocalyptic America. Inevitably, peace and longevity are only achieved after we are able to break down the barriers and develop a meaningful dialogue with the enemy. OK, in some cases we had to destroy an alien race, but we're not dealing with that here. I think we should NOT be afraid to sit down with our sworn enemies and talk about peaceful co-existence. This planet is not getting any bigger, and we're all running out of places to hide. Compromise, tolerance, and mutual respect are all we need.

John Crawford

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