Vote Them Out! The Case Against Bush Inc.

In the past four years the Bush/Cheney administration has perpetrated a virtual crime wave – a crime wave targeting most US citizens and much of the planet’s sentient life. Here’s only a partial tally:

1. “Won” 2000 presidential election thanks to brother Jeb Bush, Florida’s governor. Jeb illegally prevented over 90,000 registered voters – mainly low-income African Americans and whites – from voting.

2. Reversed dramatic improvements in air and water quality brought by Federal Clean Water (1977) and Clean Air (1970) Acts.

3. Replaced US budget surplus with record deficit of over $420 billion for FY 2003, the largest reversal in history.

4. Signed tax cut giving average 2003 reduction of $93,000 to millionaires while middle class received a $217 cut per household. Thirty-six percent of households received no tax cut.

5. Used funds earmarked for health care programs for the uninsured, like Medicaid, to help pay for tax cuts.

6. Proposed changes in Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) denying tens of millions of workers overtime pay by reclassifying them.

7. Opposed equal opportunities for girls, women and people of color by attempting to rewrite Title IX and end affirmative action. Ironically, Bush got into Yale and Harvard, not on brains or merit, but as daddy’s “legacy.”

8. Sought massive cuts in funding for vocational education and after-school programs to underwrite vouchers for private schools.

9. Implemented the fraudulently-titled No Child Left Behind Act, focusing on high stakes standardized testing while downplaying arts and multicultural education.

10. Sought to cut $25 billion in veterans’ benefits over the next ten years; proposed $172 million in cuts from education programs for soldiers’ children; ordered Veterans Administration to stop publicizing veterans’ health benefits.

11. Sought Constitutional amendment to outlaw marital status for gay and lesbian couples. Ignored or vehemently opposed gay and lesbian rights issues such as child adoption, spousal benefits and marriages for couples, while sponsoring “faith-based” initiatives in social services and education that funnel funds to churches and organizations teaching homophobia.

12. Presided over faltering economy in which over two million manufacturing jobs were lost since 2001. Bush is the first President in 72 years to preside over a loss of jobs.

13. Reversed years of nuclear caution by pushing the development of new nuclear weapons and the willingness to use them. Promoted doctrine of “pre-emptive warfare” – the US’ “right” to attack other nations at will without an “imminent threat” being present.

14. Rejected germ warfare enforcement protocols…pulled out of Ballistic Missile Treaty…rejected Biological Weapons Convention…failed to sign Land Mine Ban Treaty…continued to manufacture and stockpile nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.

15. Resisted formation of September 11 Commission and sought to cover-up government negligence in 9/11. Exploited 9/11 fear and grief to whip up support for militarism and suppression of domestic civil liberties.

16. Subverted Bill of Rights with USA Patriot Acts, most of which were written and “on the shelf” before 9/11.

17.. Endorsed secret military tribunals, torture, and extra-judicial execution of suspects. Refused to follow Geneva Conventions for Iraqi and Afghan prisoners of war or for Guantanamo ‘detainees’ causing the Supreme Court to weigh in on behalf of the ‘detainees.’

18. Encouraged US Americans to inform on each other. Proposed Terrorism Information and Prevention System (TIPS) for tracking private information.

19. Killed over 3500 Afghans, then abandoned country to warlords, famine, chaos and record opium production. Used cluster bombs to maim Afghan civilians; dropped food packets the same color as unexploded bomblets.

20. Repeatedly lied about Saddam Hussein’s alleged stockpile of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons of mass destruction in order to justify invading Iraq. Horrified world by pre-emptively and almost unilaterally invading Iraq…thereby squandering worldwide sympathy for 9/11 losses.

21. Misled America by linking Saddam to 9/11 and Al Qaida. Squandered US military resources by placing most troops in Iraq rather than Afghanistan, thereby prolonging “war on terror” and subverting effort to capture Osama bin Laden.

22. While sending US youth to die in Iraq and Afghanistan, covered up Bush’s own draft dodging during Viet Nam War. Many other “chicken hawks” in this warlike administration likewise evaded military service.

23. Spending $4 billion a month on war in Iraq, much of this going to US corporate contractors and mercenaries rather than to US troops or to Iraqis to rebuild their country.

24. Awarded over $7 billion in no-bid contracts to Halliburton and subsidiaries while the Vice President continues to receive compensation ($180,000+ a year) from Halliburton.

25. Continues to wage war on victims of Saddam Hussein. By October 2004 it is estimated that over 10,000 Iraqis were killed in the war to “liberate” them. Over 1,100 US deaths and over 10,000 US wounded in Iraq (plus an unrecorded number of casualties among US mercenaries).

26. Set moral climate leading to widespread torture of Iraqis at Abu Ghraib prison by US military personnel, mercenaries, and intelligence agents.

27. Spurned Kyoto Treaty to combat global warming although ratified by over 125 nations. Promotes legislation encouraging energy consumption, discouraging energy conservation, and favoring cronies’ coal, oil and nuclear companies.

28. Under cover of failed “war on drugs” (then, “war on terrorism”) sent Colombia well over $3 billion in mostly military aid for anti-insurgency campaigns and to protect US corporate oil supplies. Supports Congress’ recent doubling of the cap on US troops in Colombia to 800.

29. Continues to fund the US Army’s former School of Americas (now Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation) at Ft. Benning, GA . Since 1946 the SOA/WHINSEC has trained many thousands of Latin American terrorists in uniform.

30. Supported failed coup against democratically-elected president Hugo Chavez in oil-rich Venezuela. Abducted and forced into exile democratically-elected Haitian president Jean Bertrand Aristide, turning his government over to US-supported felons and thugs.

31. Pulled plug on family planning organizations overseas leading to increased insecurity and death for women worldwide.

32. Further inflamed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by inaction, tacit and overt support for Israeli aggression, and public statements endorsing Israel’s claim to keep occupied Palestinian land.

33.Created a backdoor draft by extending tours of duty, recalling the Individual Ready Reserve, putting in place stop/loss measures to prevent soldiers from leaving after their separation date and filling active duty ranks indefinitely with the National Guard and Reserves.

Adapted with permission by Betty Jo Johnson, Ed Kinane and Andy Mager from the Syracuse Cultural Workers’ poster, “Bush/Cheney’s 31 ‘Greatest Accomplishments.’” Footnotes at www.syrculturalworkers.com.