I like Labor Day. Labor Day is a holiday with a great concept, that hasn't yet been corrupted by mealy-mouthed, right-wing, false patriots or turned into a vulgar commercial exercise. Sure, there are endless season end and back to school sales, but these are more a coincidence of the calendar than a corruption of the holiday. So far, only the dreaded barbeque industry has managed to directly tap into the holiday itself.
On of the best things about Labor Day is that the workers' movement gets to come out in public and be unapologetically political. This is a holiday where left-wingers are expected to make speeches and we don't have to share the stage. Let's listen to one of those speeches.
Over the last few years, I've thought a lot about why America is heading in the wrong direction. Lost jobs, health care costs through the roof, the surplus gone, our alliances shredded, and our influence challenged. And then the other day, we were driving along the road in our campaign bus, and I saw a sign with a lone "W" leaning up against a post. At first, I was a little confused. But then, it all made sense.
As the president likes to say, there's nothing complicated about it. It does all come down to one letter -- W. George W. Bush. What do you think that W stands for? That W stands for wrong. Wrong choices, wrong direction for America. And this election all comes down to one decision: Do we want four more years of wrong choices, or do we want to move America in a new direction?
The choice in this election couldn't be more clear. Do we want four more years of lost jobs and falling wages ... four more years of rising health care costs ... four more years of raiding Social Security to give tax cuts to the wealthy ... four more years of schools being shortchanged, leaving millions of children behind ... four more years of shipping jobs overseas and replacing them with jobs that pay you less ...four more years of a go-it-alone foreign policy. If you do, then you should vote for George W. Bush.
Of all George Bush's wrong choices, the most catastrophic one is the mess in Iraq. It's not that I would have done one thing differently in Iraq, I would have done everything differently. It was wrong to rush to war without a plan to win the peace. It was wrong not to build a strong international coalition of our allies. And it was wrong to put our young men and women into harm's way without the equipment and body armor protect themselves and get the job done.
At that convention in New York last week, the Bush Administration actually said that outsourcing jobs is good for this nation. That shouldn't be a surprise because that's what they've done for four years, and that's what they want to do for four more years. That's W and that's Wrong. Wrong choices, wrong direction. It's time for a president who will lead America in a new direction.
At that convention in New York last week, George Bush actually promised the American people that after four years of failure, he now had a plan to get health care costs under control. Well, if you weren't suspicious of a plan announced just two months before an election, you got a quick dose of reality the next day. George Bush socked seniors with a 17 percent increase in Medicare. What's right about that? That's the biggest increase in Medicare premiums in the history of the program. Raising Medicare costs -- that's W and that's wrong. Wrong choices, wrong direction. It's time for a president who will lead America in a new direction.
At that convention in New York last week, George Bush said that he actually had a new idea. And you know what it was? The bad, old idea of privatizing social security -- and cutting your benefits. That's W and that's wrong. Wrong choices, wrong direction. It's time for a president who will lead America in a new direction.
On every issue, from Iraq to health care, from jobs to education, W stands for wrong. Wrong choices. Wrong direction. It's time for a president who will lead America in a new direction.
Four years ago, George W. Bush told us he wanted to create an economy where there was "high-paying, high-quality work" for everyone. He now says prosperity has returned and we've turned the corner. Well, that's just plain wrong. Most Americans I've met feel like they've been put in a corner. Prosperity hasn't returned. We've lost jobs. Wages are down. Benefits are down. And George Bush is the first president since Herbert Hoover and the Great Depression to actually lose jobs. That's George W. Bush. Wrong choices, wrong direction. It's time for a president who will America in a new direction.
That might not have been the best speech of the day, but it was probably the most important. And it was a good speech at that. Here's hoping we hear more like this.
I hope your weekend was restful, let's get ignore those polls and get back to work.