Iíve Decided To Vote For Bush
shoot! Iím aware before even starting that this is not likely to
be a popular column. I risk losing some of whatever readership Iíve
gained by having penned it. I may be called a scalawag and a turncoat
by people I consider friends, people Iím trying to help. All I can
say is, please hear me out! And then exercise your own best judgment.
the past Iíve defended third parties. I tend to believe that both
Patrick J. Buchanan and Harry Browne are highly intelligent, articulate
men whose messages, if anyone actually heard them, would be good
for the country in quite a few (though not quite all) respects.
But it is time to face the music: they wonít win. They wonít
even obtain 5 percent of the popular vote. Buchanan has acquired
$12.5 million in tax money in order to campaign, because of the
Reform Partyís having gained something like 9 percent of the popular
vote four years ago. Iíve seen his television commercials, and can
certify that his and his running mate Ezola Fosterís visits to my
area have been publicized in the local media. While obviously not
given the coverage available to Democrats and Republicans, Buchanan
has not been blacked out; allegations to the contrary are simply
untrue. As for Harry Browne, he is the heir of a political party
that has been around almost 30 years now. There are quite a few
people (almost 16 percent, according to one poll) who have essentially
libertarian views of the world. This is not enough, for a party
and school of thought that is way too intellectual for most public-school
damaged voters today.
are several other folks running on small-party tickets: Howard Phillips
of the Constitution Party, for example, is also quite articulate.
There is Ralph Nader of the hard-left Green Party. There is high-flying
John Hagelin of the Natural Law Party whose biggest claim to fame
is helping undermine the credibility of the Reform Party last summer
in Long Beach, Calif., whatever the ultimate truth may be about
that event. Perhaps there are others. Except for Nader, they arenít
even on most votersí radar screens. I predict that Nader will get
perhaps 2 percent of the popular vote this year and come out ahead
of both Buchanan and Browne who may be doing well to approach 1
is this case? One reason is that by and large, the third parties
are revolutionists. Both Buchanan and Browne, in somewhat different
ways because of somewhat different philosophies, want to overhaul
the status quo in a big way. The latter would make deep cuts
in the federal government at every level, not merely downsizing
a few layers of bureaucracy but getting rid of entire agencies.
The former would proceed with a moral emphasis that would, among
other things, seek to overturn Roe v. Wade. Both would get
the United States out of Nafta and the World Trade Organization.
Both would tell the United Nations to pack its bags and get off
American soil. Both would attempt to take this country back to the
is not that voters openly disagree with this (although some probably
do). It is that most couldnít care less. The majority of voters
like the status quo of the moment. Though nervous
about some of the changes technology has brought about over the
past few years, they are basically happy with the economy. The discontent
that gave us a Republican Congress back in 1994 for the first time
in 40 years just isnít there on a large scale any more. Much of
todayís public believes the government / media pronouncement that
we are in an era of peace and unprecedented prosperity. This may
be because the Washington Empire has been fighting its wars in places
most Americans cannot even find on a map, well away from legitimate
U.S. interests; and because we have created a huge credit bubble
here at home. Both credit spending and taxes are at all-time highs.
Over half of the public believes there really is a surplus. And
while they grouse about taxes, many voters would complain a lot
more if their government freebies abruptly disappeared. For quite
a while now the prevailing mindset has been: sure, cut the size
of government, but donít touch my goodies. With this short-sightedness
firmly in control, nothing can change. Finally, most of our public
school damaged public has never had to learn what is in the Constitution.
Todayís schools are too busy teaching about sex, how to recycle
and how to feel good about ourselves.
it is not as if there has been some kind of direct conspiracy against
the outsiders. However one may cite the Commission on Presidential
Debates as ensuring that only George W. Bush Jr. and Albert Gore
would be seen in their televised performances, in an age increasingly
dominated by the World Wide Web and instant electronic communications,
conspiracies of silence are becoming harder and harder to pull off.
Anyone with a computer, a modem and a minimum of know-how can access
Libertarian websites, or visit Pat Buchananís Buchanan-Reform site,
or subscribe to email lists from which Iíve received dozens of updates
present public is, by and large, too content to be interested. Voters
donít want anyone to rock the boat, economically or politically,
and that, this year, is going to be the bottom line. This is why
the two most carefully orchestrated major party conventions and
campaigns ever have been accepted without significant protest.
so, whether we like or not (and I assure you a hundred times over,
I donít!), we are stuck once again with two viable choices for president:
George W. Bush Jr. and Albert Gore two second-generation politicians
and consummate insiders.
that stark of a choice, I choose Bush Jr., and I donít have as much
trouble making the choice as I thought I would.
isnít that I think Bush Jr. would be a great president or even necessarily
a good one. It is an open question whether he has the fortitude
or strength of character to stand up to the forces of political
correctness that are rapidly taking over. He made us wonder after
the Bob Jones University flap last winter, when he was criticized
by liberals (including the turncoats in his own party) for making
an appearance at an institution with a policy against interracial
dating, a policy since rescinded. Rather than informing us that
Bob Jones University is a private institution, and as such has the
right to establish whatever policies it pleases so long as they
donít interfere with the free choices of those outside, he apologized
for whatever "offense" he had given.
is true, furthermore, that one searches through the Bush agenda
in vain for evidence that he would cut a single federal agency or
program. Proposals to eliminate the U.S. Department of Education,
for example, have fallen by the wayside. But Bush wants to spend
fewer federal dollars than Gore, and his tax cuts would allow those
of us who work for a living to have slightly more control over the
fruits of our labors.
am not sure what kind of Supreme Court Justices Bush Jr. would appoint,
assuming (as seems probable) the next U.S. president will get that
opportunity. He has professed allegiance to Christianity, which
suggests an impulse to overturn Roe v. Wade, but the real
test will come when his feet are in the fire. My guess is, he will
appoint pragmatists rather than conservatives who reject the idea
of a Constitutional "right" to an abortion. This means
that regardless of who wins, Roe v. Wade will still be there
four years from now. The fact that Christian conservatives have
been all but absent from the national conversation this year, including
within the Republican Party, is telling. But it isnít just the Republicans.
Again, much of the public just isnít interested. If there were clamors
for Christian conservative points of view outside of sites on the
World Wide Web, surely we would know it by now. Even Dr. Laura has
found herself having to apologize for having called homosexuality
deviant. Her television show is struggling for survival. This is
the America of 2000.
this case, why vote for Bush? The best reason to vote for Bush is
Al Gore. Frankly, the prospect of a Gore Regime scares the living
Hell out of me! Gore would open up whole new dimensions of statism,
building on the chronic lawlessness and hunger for power that has
characterized the Clinton Regime. And he would do so without the
sexual buffoonery that has distracted Bill Clinton all these years.
I donít see him cheating on Tipper, for example. I canít picture
him receiving oral sex from interns or fondling the staff. Heís
not been accused of having raped any Juanita Broaddricks. What he
lacks in charisma, he makes up for in focus. He made a shrewd move
in choosing as his running mate one of the few Democrats who had
publicly criticized Bill Clintonís behavior. Without the sexual
baggage, Gore would be quite capable of concentrating his full efforts
on consolidating power in the Washington Empire.
more than two years since the summer of 1998, roughly speaking evidence
has been accumulating of what kind of country the United States
could become under a Gore Regime. In the summer of 1998, some may
recall, Gore compared critics of affirmative action to duck hunters
shooting at targets. This was pure libel, of course, but he got
away with it. Gore has always solidly backed race-based preferential
policies. If we are unsure what Bush would do, with Gore there is
absolutely no doubt.
moreover, has said openly that he would select Supreme Court Justices
who believe the "living Constitution" dogma that has propelled
40-plus years of judicial activism. Those who read the Constitution
the way the Framers intended it to be read, whether about gun-ownership,
free speech, freedom of religious expression, etc., would be given
short shrift. Again, we may be unsure what Bush might do, but again
Gore leaves no room for doubt. A Gore Regime would accelerate the
trashing of the Constitution.
is plenty other evidence of the extent to which the country would
take yet another quantum leap leftward under Gore. During his acceptance
speech last summer, Gore laid out one proposed federal program on
top of another: throwing more taxpayer dollars into public schools
($170 billion over a ten year period, he says), more for police
on the streets (suitably federalized, I presume), more for new versions
of Hillarycare, more entitlements, and so on and so on. And we havenít
yet mentioned Goreís natural appeal to radical feminists and homosexuals
who would continue their present course of undermining the U.S.
military, ruining what is left of the universities and trashing
American culture. Under a Gore Regime, political correctness would
have complete carte blanche.
one of Al Goreís less-talked-about schemes would brake the growth
of the Internet-based economy by imposing vast new taxes on Internet-based
businesses. Where taxes are possible, regulatory control soon follows.
In a short period of time, it might not be as easy to access alternative
sources of news and information over the Internet. After all, the
Southern Poverty Law Center has already declared war against so-called
"hate sites" and the organizations behind them. No doubt
these guys and other purveyors of cultural Marxism would thrive
under a Gore Regime.
years of Clinton Regime have taken their toll in a way that actually
helps Gore: he can lie like a rug and get away with it, in a culture
where truth is no longer of interest. When the effort to remove
Clinton from office for lying under oath during Monicagate failed,
the Republicans in Congress basically gave up. They never pursued
the Clinton Regime about the far more dangerous Chinagate. They
are not likely to pursue the steady stream of prevarications and
exaggerations coming from Gore, be they his shadowy denials about
fund-raising (as with the infamous Buddhist Temple) or the more
recent allegations of secret dealings with the Russians.
what worries me is that at least some proponents of Southern nationalism
have shared with me a belief that Gore will win this election, or
even expressed hope that he will. Their assumption is that under
a Gore Regime the attacks on personal liberties and free expression
will get so extreme as to provoke a broad-based reaction that will
fuel the drive for independence.
my friends, is playing a dangerous game that could easily backfire.
First, do we want bad things to happen to this country and
its people, to give us tools we can use to pursue our political
goals? We are better and more honorable than that. But second and
possibly more important: one of the things we should have learned
from Seattle, December 1999, is that the government is quite capable
of finding thugs whose only interest is in breaking things and using
them to discredit legitimate, peaceful protests and movements. Imagine
such a gang turned loose on a League of the South meeting or convention.
All the thugs would have to say is that people were seen entering
the building with the hated Confederate flag on their lapels, that
Confederate flags were prominent inside, and that they were offended.
Neither the government nor any national or local media would come
to our defense, any more than the German national media came to
the defense of Jews whose businesses were destroyed during Krystallnacht.
If anything, we would be accused of having instigated the whole
thing by having kept our politically incorrect symbols. Because
of biased media reporting, the public still wonít perceive
that anything is seriously wrong since the incident didnít affect
them directly. A few such incidents, and independence movements
are in trouble. How many people, with jobs to keep and wives and
children to look out for, will stay involved despite fears for their
safety? How many others will disappear into the woodwork?
things get that bad? I donít know, and Iíve no desire to find out.
The point is, there is no way a Gore Regime could be good for the
South or any other place outside the Washington Empire. Of course,
if Gore wins and a lurch toward centralization ensues (perhaps involving
other issues such as stealth attacks on privacy), it could precipitate
the sort of crisis in which independence movements could flourish.
But Iíd just as soon play the lottery as gamble that way. At present,
almost any group can meet in public, and its members discuss issues
and plan strategy. Under Bush, this will probably not change. Under
Gore, who knows? Do we really want to run the risk?
is true that Gore and Bush agree on a good bit more than the establishment
would have us believe. Both are basically statists and internationalists
who supported, for example, the Clinton Regimeís illegal and immoral
incursions in Kosovo. Neither has addressed problems such as illegal
immigration (as has Buchanan). Bush has not come out and said that
our worst social problem is not racism but illegitimate births.
But Gore is more of a statist and an internationalist than Bush.
The differences between the two are greater than the third parties
would have us believe. This is not a mere choice between Tweedledum
and Tweedledee. Gore is a micro-manager and control freak who would
be obsessed with details. Bush would be more likely to delegate
authority. The latter is far more amenable to local autonomy, and
therefore eventual independence won peacefully.
an example of where Bush wants to come from, I think, let us remember
that one of Bushís more controversial stances was about the Confederate
flag. When pressed for an opinion, he correctly described it as
a South Carolina problem for South Carolinians to solve, not a federal
issue to be decided or opined on in Washington.
on the other hand, was blunt and unequivocal: take it down!
should be remembered when deciding whether to go on supporting a
third party candidate this year, or to "give in" and vote
what is recommended? Take the long perspective. Vote for Bush, and
wait. The time is coming. On one front, over the past ten years,
the country has turned into a moral and cultural sewer, and we are
dangerously close to thought control. On another, the national spending
spree of the 1990s will exact its price; people cannot spend indefinitely
on credit. Basic economic law will put the brakes on the so-called
boom for which the Clinton-Gore crowd desperately wants credit.
We are clearly headed for a crisis of some sort, very possibly on
a timetable which I have discussed elsewhere:
every 70-plus years on the average, this country experiences a crisis.
The last such crisis was precipitated by the Crash of í29. That
was 71 years ago. The one before that came about when South Carolina
signed the Ordinance of Secession, in 1860, 140 years ago. The Constitution
itself emerged from such a crisis in 1787 Ė 213 years ago. Coincidence?
important thing, however, is that voters have to care. They have
to want the sort of changes that would lead back to limited government
and stateís rights. To want this, they have to feel threatened by
the status quo, and withdraw support from it. Despite all
the haranguing, that has not happened this year. It wonít happen
between now and November 7. It is clearly going to take a national
shock of major proportions to awaken the public from its present
stupor. Then, and only then, will a third party have a chance at
winning the kind of sizable and substantial allegiance it must win
before we can take our country back.
though I take no pleasure in saying it, your best bet is to vote
for Bush on November 7. If you absolutely must support a
third party candidate, go for Nader. Most of the 2 percent or so
votes Nader will get would otherwise go to Gore; there are allegations
that in states where the race between Bush and Gore is very close,
Naderís presence could tip the scales in favor of Bush. The other
minor candidates are not going to have any impact. What does matter
is that in the last analysis, with things coming right down to the
wire so far as the future of freedom in this country is concerned,
You Do Not Want Al Gore To Win This Election!!
Yates has a Ph.D in Philosophy and is the author of Civil
Wrongs: What Went Wrong With Affirmative Action
(San Francisco: ICS Press, 1994). A frequent contributor to LewRockwell.com
and The Edgefield Journal,
he lives and freelance writes in Columbia, South Carolina. He is
at work on a new book manuscript, tentatively entitled The
Paradox of Liberty.