A bold new vision for America

Someone running for President ought to have some pretty lofty goals for where he wants to take the country if he wants to inspire people and get their commitment.

The single most important thing for a candidate is to get a kitchen cabinet set of advisors who have direct access to you and will tell you things you don't want to hear.

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a presidential candidate who was both bold and visionary? A candidate who believes that America can do better? Here’s what such a candidate might sound like:

Overall vision. I have a vision of an America where the air is clean, where energy is cheap, where everyone has healthcare. I have a vision of making our educational system the best on the planet. I have a vision of an America that is loved by other countries, not hated. An America that is welcomed, rather than feared. An America that is so loved abroad that the terrorists can’t find anyone to join them. We can do this. We have the most powerful resource in the world at our disposal: the talents, expertise, and ingenuity of the American people. Under my administration, we will tap that power and we will put in place sensible public policies, policies in the public interest, not the special interests, to achieve our goals of energy independence, universal healthcare, the best educational system in the world, and peace throughout the planet.

On Iraq. Invading Iraq was a mistake. There were no weapons of mass destruction. To have invaded a sovereign country without solid evidence of a threat is inexcusable. That will never ever happen under my administration. When our country made the decision to invade Iraq, we never had any solid evidence of a threat; we had only speculation. In this country, we don’t put people in jail for a crime unless there are 12 jurors who unanimously agree that the person is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Our standard for going to war in Iraq was “suspicion” of possessing dangerous weapons. That is absurd. The standard for going to war must be much higher than that of putting someone in jail, not much lower. The evidence must be clear and convincing to all nations.. And the longer we stay in Iraq, the more terrorism we will foster. It is the US who is exacerbating the war on terror. The more we raise the stakes, the worse the problem gets. It is time to pull out of Iraq and let the Iraqis be free. It is best that other nations help them if they need help from abroad. We should not be so full of ourselves that we should believe that we are the ONLY nation that can help Iraq. In fact, we’re just about the worst possible nation to help Iraq due to the mistake we made in invading Iraq. Our presence in Iraq is the best recruiting tool that the terrorists have. It’s time to take that away from them.

On terrorism. The best way to combat terrorism is to stop pissing everybody people off. Our foreign policy is so bad today that even our own allies are pissed off. So why should we be surprised that others are not pissed off as well? Under my administration, peace, trust, friendship and collaboration will replace the “war on terrorism.” We will build bridges with other nations and other religions, rather than burning them. We will no longer attempt to force our political system on other nations without their consent. We will pull out of Iraq and give the Iraqi people their freedom. Democracy must be earned by a nation. It cannot be forced upon a nation. The sooner we realize that, the better.

On the energy crisis/foreign oil. We don’t have an energy crisis in this country. Just like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz always had the power to return to Kansas if she just clicked her heels, we have always had the power to end our dependence on foreign oil. We don’t have an energy crisis; what we do have a crisis of political will and a lack of leadership. Under my administration, that will change. Under my administration, we will end our dependence on foreign oil within 10 years. No longer will send ___billion dollars overseas every day to foreign governments. Under my administration, those billions will be paid to Americans not foreigners. We will create millions of jobs for Americans. We will put an end the trade deficit thus boosting our economy in the process. And Americans will pay less for energy in my administration than they have ever paid in the history of this country. And at the same time we will clean up the air. How will we do that? By harnessing the clean, renewable energy resources we have had since the beginning of time; resources that previous administrations have ignored. We have enough wind power in just a few states to supply the energy needs of the entire country, at a price far lower than we are paying today. We have enough solar power in just a single state to power the entire country. This energy, while intermittent, can be stored as H2 and compressed air, and then utilized when needed ensuring a steady, even, reliable clean power source. And by building a national electrical grid, and investing in building our infrastructure for the first time in 50 years, we’ll be able to harness that energy in every state, forever. The sooner we make that investment, the sooner we’ll save money and end our dependence on foreign oil. Instead of incentivizing the production of dirty fossil fuels and incentivizing the purchase of fuel wasting SUVs, we will shift all of those incentives instead to incentivize the purchase of ultra clean, plug-in hybrid vehicles that can run on E85, a fuel that can be grown in America by Americans and on electricity that is produced from wind and solar power. That will drive the price of fuel to $1.50 a gallon and drive the mpg to 100 mpg on the same vehicles that people are driving today. They did it in Brazil. Brazil is completely 100% independent of foreign oil. And they did it in less than 10 years! And by golly, if they can do it in Brazil, we can do it in America. All we lack is a President who will is not afraid to stand up to the oil companies and instead harness our renewable natural resources and the ingenuity of Americans to tackle our tough problems. All we need is a President who will give people the freedom to come up with creative solutions and innovations to move this country ahead. Under my administration, Americans will have that freedom to bring to the market new, cleaner, and cheaper technologies.

On global warming. The biggest problem our nation and our planet faces today is global warming. The consequences of ignoring this problem are too devastating to contemplate. And the sooner we take bold and dramatic steps to address this problem, the easier it will be because every year that we wait, it simply gets harder and more expensive to solve. Under my administration, we will cut our CO2 and other GHG emissions by more than 50% in less than 10 years. And we will encourage and help other countries to do the same. Because the US alone cannot stop global warming. Without the cooperation of other countries, our planet will continue to get hotter and hotter every single year. So it is just as important that other countries cut their GHG emissions by 50% within the next 10 years as it is that we cut our emissions by at least 50%. My administration will work with other countries to achieve that. We will make friends with our allies; a dramatic shift from our current foreign policy of alienenating our allies. We will all work together to solve this problem; a problem that every nation on earth faces. And finally, President Bush was absolutely wrong when he told the American people we can’t afford to limit our emissions; on the contrary, we cannot afford not to. And, in fact, other nations that have switched to clean, renewable energy sources have found that their economy has improved. Fighting global warming is not just the responsible thing to do to secure our own future, but it’s also the best possible economic decision we can make right now for the health of our economy.

On health care. You know, there are plenty of states such as Vermont who have near universal healh care coverage. It’s something we can afford, and something we can do. There is simply no reason that ____ million people in this country do not have health insurance. Under my administration, that will change.

On our place in the world. Things have changed dramatically over the past two decades in the world. In Lester Brown’s book, Plan B 2.0, he talks about the significant global economic changes that have occurred and why a “business as usual” approach will no longer work. I share Brown’s viewpoints and under my administration we will work with other countries on tackling these global problems because if we continue on our business as usual path, our economy and our standard of living will decline and that is unacceptable. My administration is committed to the prosperity of America. But in order that we can prosper, others must proper as well. In negotiation, that’s called a “win-win” scenario. America has a choice. We can win if we help others to win. Or we can all lose. My administration is committed to having America win and other countries to win as well and we will devote the resources necessary to solve the top problems facing us as a planet.

see also: Democratic goals

the stuff below is OLD


Here are some ideas:

  • Foreign policy: Foster a policy based on helping other countries achieve their goals rather than enforcing our values on sovereign nations, i.e., fight terrorism with kindness, not by increasing hostility.
  • Energy independence: Achieve energy independence within 20 years while reducing pollution by 20% from 2000 levels.. Note that the US Senate (and virtually all Democrats) voted in favor of a 10% RPS by 2020.
  • Healthcare: health care coverage for every citizen of the United States within 4 years. They did it in Vermont, we can do it in the other 49 states.
  • Education: ???

Less lofty goals

  • I will reverse every Bush Administration executive order that was anti-environment or anti-consumer or anti-medical research within my first 100 days in office. I will also rescind the executive ban on stem cell research. Medical researchers must be given the freedom to explore cures and for saving lives.
  • I will balance the federal budget every year I am in office
  • I will create 3 million new jobs by 2008
  • I will reduce air, water, and land pollution by at least 10% by 2008 [this number is probably too high. if you like the idea, i can refine it]
  • In my first year in office, I will provide both incentives and funding for our public schools so that they can make changes that are scientifically proven to increase our academic proficiency and reduce the dropout rate. [ Every state will have an opportunity to present a business plan for improving education in their state and a panel of non partisan experts on education reform will allocate federal dollars to well thought out plans that are based on  "best practices" that have already proven to be effective in practice]
  • In my first year in office, I will make America safer by completely reversing our foreign policy; America will offer assistance to countries that invite our help. The goal of my administration will be to increase the number of friends we have, not increase the number of enemies we make.
  • Within my first term in office, we will change the way we fund elections so that people running for office can be judged on their ability to serve the people who elected them, and not on their ability to raise money
  • I promise that I will only raise taxes to balance the budget only if there is no other alternative after reducing government expenses. And I promise that if it is necessary to raise taxes, we will raises taxes first on the wealthiest 10% of Americans will have their taxes restored to pre-Bush days. No one who makes less than $50,000 per year will see any tax increases as long as I'm in office.
  • I will restore the Social Security system so that it is fully funded rather than out of funds in 25 years from now [not sure of the numbers here, but under Bush, the date has moved in by 10 years or so...it's quite astounding]
  • I will reduce our dependence on foreign oil by 10% by 2008. I want to pay $100B a year (?) that we now spend enriching foreign countries (to fund terrorism) into enriching Americans and into creating American jobs and enhancing American technology.

And finally, I promise you, that as President, that I will not go to war against any country unless there is absolutely clear and convincing evidence beyond any reasonable doubt that America is in imminent danger and that there are no other viable peaceful alternatives available to us. Going to war is the most serious decision a President must make, and, unlike our current President, I will not make it based on unreliable evidence.

I also promise I will be consistent in my foreign policy. Unlike our current President, I think it's important to pay more attention to those countries, such a North Korea, who possess nuclear weapons and who have openly threatened to use them than to nations with no WMD who have never threatened the US. I realize that that's a big shift from the current administration and a major difference between President Bush and me; Bush believes in attacking those nations who don't present a threat to us and ignoring those who do. My policy will be the opposite. 

Goal Why this goal is important Key strategies
Out of Iraq Every day innocent American and Iraqi lives are lost due to our presence. We cannot allow that to continue. President Bush called his operation Iraqi Freedom. I think it's time we gave the Iraqi's their freedom and I think it's time we started spending our dollars at home on re-building America and not on re-building Iraq!  Immediately hold elections so that the people of Iraq can choose a representative government that can then take over.

Even better is to immediately ask the UN to step in to set up a 90 day transition plan. The important thing is to take the US and British out of the country. Our mission, to destroy the Iraqi WMD, has been accomplished!

Reverse Bush executive orders President Bush has the worst environmental record in history. He has single handedly re-written hundreds of policies. We need to restore these back to the way they were.  
Reduce pollution Global warming has serious economic consequences if left unchecked. We cannot continue a pattern of increasing pollution every year and not pay the health and safety price. We need to be improving the air and water quality in our nation every year, not making it worse. It's time we tax pollution so that the true economic costs to society are paid by people who pollute. Those taxes, beyond creating an incentive to design more environmentally friendly solutions, will be used on programs to clean up our air, land, and water as well as on funding research into renewable energy sources such as fuel cells, solar energy, and wind power. Isn't it time we started taxing polluters rather than rewarding them?
Balance the budget Someone has to pay off our debt. The larger the debt, the higher our taxes have to be to provide the same level of services. Having a balanced budget will also improve the economy. Reducing government spending, creating a new pollution tax, spending tax dollars in ways that benefit the economy rather than rich people, raising taxes if needed

see also 
10 goals 
Presidential goal ideas