Tomorrow night, the first debate between John McCain and Barack Obama is scheduled to take place. Whether or not is happens as scheduled is up in the air.
The Christian Science Monitor has proposed fifteen questions for the two large party presidential candidates.
Well, as I am constitutionally qualified to president, I think I'll answer the questions:
1. When horrific war crimes or a humanitarian crisis occurs in another country, should the United States intervene – even if the United Nations refuses to approve? What would be your threshold for such a crisis to justify US military action? Unless there are legitimate concerns and issues regarding the United States, economically or militarily, there is no humanitarian or war crime crisis that would prompt me to intervene. The United States has for far too long been the default rescuer of foreign government and/or their citizens. America has been castigated and pilloried for "not doing enough" when the blood of our sons has long ago soaked into foreign soil. I will address the United Nations in a following question.
By the way, on my watch, the United States military will never, ever be used as a guarantor of an international "Meals on Wheels" or any other type program such as was witnessed in Somalia. This is strictly under the purview of the United Nations
2. Some experts contend that the US should address the security fears of Iran, Russia, North Korea, and China in order to prevent these countries from becoming threats to others. Do you agree with this approach? First of all I'd ask: which "experts" have said this? It appears that the concerns of these countries have little to do with "security fears" and have more to do with "ideological expansion". Iran's President and the ruling imams seems hell bent (a term I specifically use) on introducing the 12th Imam. Russia pines for the days of the Grand Soviet and seems quite willing to use energy to extract tribute from Europe and become a world arbiter at the minimum. North Korea is run by a despot who is willing to starve his own citizens to accomplish his own ends. China, make no mistake about it, is a police state that uses a form of capitalism to threaten a region then a hemisphere. It would appear that the United States and many other countries should be the one that have legitimate security concerns.
3. What are the three most important steps to achieve American energy security?
1. The government, especially Congress, accepts its limits under Article 1 section 8 and the 10th Amendment. In other words, it gets out of the way. 2. Drill here. 3. Drill now. I would also reduce any and all taxes on revenue from new domestic oil production by at least 75% for any and all new wells brought in in the next two years, 50% for any new oil wells brought in the next 3 years. I'd issue tax credits, not tax deductions for all investments in new wells for the next 10 years. All restrictions on off shore drilling within 50 miles of the shoreline will be eliminated. Lawsuits against oil companies will be severely restricted. Clean coal technology will be fast tracked. Ethanol subsidies will be eliminated. As will all CAFE standards. Nuclear power stations will also be fast tracked.
4. Would you compel Americans to adopt standards on carbon emissions even if China and India do not take similar actions? Absolutely not.
5. And why do you prefer a cap-and-trade system to reduce greenhouse gases when that approach has not worked in Europe – whereas a carbon tax in Sweden did help lower greenhouse-gas emissions? I don't. It would appear that you don't know me well enough, or the lack of science behind the fraud called "climate change" or "global warming" or whatever you're calling it today, or you wouldn't have even thought of asking me that question.
6. If US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan largely ends during your first term, how would you then change the American military based on your reading of its potential roles? My concern since that horrible day in September 2001 has been the changing nature of the threats that face the United States. And it appears that the left, especially in Congress have dramatically failed in every and all respects to realize that change and address it. The United States military is made up of the finest men and women in the world. Period. It is the military that ensures that the left can complain about what a miserable place they believe America to be. I have friends who are members of the Band of Brothers. And they hold the modern day troopers and air assault soldiers in the highest regard. That being said, the military faces a dual mission: they must be prepared to fight asymmetrical assaults by radical terrorists all the while being prepared to fight the 21st century version of conventional war in the near future. I believe that certain nations and governments encourage and support asymmetrical assaults against the United States to keep us off balance while planning more conventional conflict. A case in point is the arrival of Russian ships of the line to participate in joint military exercises with the government of Venezuela. This represents a direct threat to the United States sea lanes where we import so much of our oil. This is just one example of why drilling for domestic oil is vital to the United States.
7. The international community has helped reduce extreme poverty by almost half a billion people since 1990. What would you do to reduce poverty in other countries, especially in Africa, in addition to what President Bush has already done? I'm very curious as to how you arrived at that conclusion. What's your evidence? If I may, I'd like to direct you to the United States efforts to reduce poverty via the failed programs of "The Great Society" and their expansion. Those programs have wasted $1,000,000,000,000's of dollars and yet we have the same percentage of poor that we did in 1965 when these programs went into effect. So, it would appear that poverty is not defined by the absence of money. It also appears that poverty is not cured by throwing money at poor people. Anecdotally some lottery winners who have won millions have lost it all with years. So, money is not the problem. The best and proper thing for governments to do is to protect liberties that allow people to exercise their talents and to fully reap and keep the fruit of the labor and enterprise.As far as foreign aid: I will not send American's hard earned money to foreign governments where most of that money goes into the pockets of tyrants and bureaucrats.
8. Every president who has tried to solve the Palestinian question has failed. How would your approach be different? Your question presupposes that there is a solution to the "Palestinian Question". All the evidence over decades points to the fact that the Palestinians are incapable of self-government. It also leads one to rationally conclude that the Palestinians have only one answer in mind: the complete destruction of Israel and the Jews.The Israelis have given up much in compromise and have received Katusha rockets and murder bombers in return. Let me ask you a question: The Palestinians, in direct contradiction to their rhetoric, want the Israelis dead. The Israelis don't want to die. Where is the middle ground or compromise between those two positions?
9. Is it possible to greatly reduce illegal immigration from Mexico by helping improve the quality of life in that country? How would you do that? To answer the first part of your question- it's possible IF and WHEN the MEXICAN government improves the quality of life in ITS country. In case you haven't notice and in direct refutation of La Raza's philosophy, Mexico is a sovereign nation. To help Mexico along those lines, I propose an impenetrable wall along our southern border to keep the labor pool of Mexicans in Mexico. The people that are leaving Mexico are obviously risk takers and are exactly the type of person that Mexico needs to keep. No need to thank me Presidente Calderon. More than happy to do it.
10. Name three things the United Nations does well.
A.The UN wastes money, and more of it, than any other international organization.
B. If you need an international scandal that may include raping children, keeping horrific tyrants in power or completely abandoning its mission, the United Nations is the go to entity.
C. The United Nations has no equal when it comes to sharply worded and completely ineffective resolutions.
I could go on but in the interest of time,and you only asked for three, I'll stop here.
11. Does the US have a special role in the world as the guardian of international security and as the indispensable leader of the world community? I've answered this in previous questions.
12. Both of you support Georgia and Ukraine joining NATO, making them allies. Are the American people ready to jeopardize their soldiers in defense of these countries if they are attacked? I support this only, and I mean ONLY with the full and equal inclusion of all NATO members. This will reflect the implementation of my policy as outlined in my answer to questions 2,3 and 6. I will never engage in another failed NATO incursion such as Bosnia where the combined military efforts of Great Britain, Germany, Denmark and France by themselves were so completely inadequate on their own that they could not address this pitifully small problem without the inclusion of the American Air Force. Never!
13. What steps would you take to open foreign markets now closed to US goods, to allow export of products and services that the US does well? First off is to rid American enterprise of all illegal and unConstitutional encumberances. To name just a few: OSHA, EEOC, Sarbanes-Oxley. I will also aggressively press Congress to totally eliminate the Karl Marx induced inheritance tax. The United States governement will not have the IRS be the first person who talks to a grieving family after the undertaker. The inheritance tax is unconscienable at any level! I will aggressively press Congress to reduce the Capital Gains tax to zero. I will also aggressively press Congress to reduce the corporate tax to zero. I would then aggressively press Congress to repeal the 16th Amendment to the Constitution or affix a truly flat tax whereby every citizen of the United States pays roughly the same tax per citizen. This will free Americans to profitably exercise their talents either directly or via investments. It will free up Americans to compete in the world market. Should a country decide to erect barriers to trade, my Cabinet will explore an appropriate response. However, the government will remove itself as a barrier to the great American engine of enterprise.
14. Roughly what proportion of US resources should go toward helping and protecting other nations compared with the resources that are needed to build up America? Little if any. The United States is always willing to fully and truly partner with others as long as it is beneficial to and in the interests of the United States. That's what the idea of "partnering" is.
15. Twenty years ago, Islamic terrorism was a sleeper issue. Some people warned about it, but few paid much attention to it. Same thing for climate change. In your opinion, what is today's sleeper issue? A sleeper issue is not and certainly was not "climate change". Nice try trying to sneak that one into the conversation. Again, my concern is the many faceted threat posed by the lack of aggressively exploiting our own oil resources, the failure of Congress to be able in any way to perceive a crisis long before it kicks down the door and the rise of state sponsored expansion of ideology across a wide range of venues.