To the Editor:

According to the Oxford dictionary, a mandate is defined as "the authority to carry out a policy or course of action, regarded as given by the electorate to a party or candidate that wins an election."

The overwhelming majority of American voters have now entrusted George W. Bush with the grave responsibility of enacting the policies that energized them to reelect him.

Such a mandate demands the following actions: the establishment of democracy in Iraq by the utter annihilation of the murderous, radical, Muslim jihadists; a constitutional ban on gay marriage; an aggressive military plan that halts the 4,000 illegal aliens that are crossing our borders daily; a preemptive policy that breaks the logjam of conservative judicial nominees stalled by liberal Democrats; the passage of an energy bill that encourages alternative fuel sources and requires oil exploration off shore and in Alaska; a rejection of Roe v. Wade; a complete overhaul of our tax code coupled with the permanent establishment of the Bush tax cuts; and finally, an expansion of the Patriot Act.

Each citizen who exercised his right to vote must complete their responsibility by maintaining a diligent watch that ensures the enactment of this mandate.

Tony Barba


Editor's note: When monkeys fly out our butts.

To the Editor:

It's often been said that countries get the kind of government they deserve. That's not always the case. Iraq and Palestine, for instance, both deserve better than what they've had for most of the past two decades. However, I'm afraid this election is an all-too-true depiction of our country.

Abraham Lincoln said, "You can fool some of the people all the time and all of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time." Karl Rove has made a career with a philosophy of "You only have to fool enough people at election time."

So we're going to get the kind of government that easily fooled voters deserve: one ruled by shortsighted people who make decisions based on convictions that are totally inappropriate to the real issues the country faces.

In his prophetic novel 1984, George Orwell wrote of a government that kept itself in power by creating an endless state of war. He was just 20 years off.

Rich Olcott


The Morals of the Story

To the Editor:

In Doug Logan's letter to the editor (November 4th issue), he inadvertently gave away the essence of his philosophy concerning why Southerners have been voting for Republicans. He states, "Many of us have made certain moral issues a dividing line we simply will not cross."

The key word is "simply." This explains why they like a candidate who speaks with simple words -- one who doesn't do nuance. They prefer a president who, like Logan, puts economics, foreign policy, and social needs on the back burner to attend to the pseudo-issues of abortion and gay marriage. Talk about simple!

If a majority of the electorate believes the president's job has more to do with abortion and gay rights than with economics and foreign policy, then this country is in serious trouble.

You have to appreciate the diabolical brilliance of Karl Rove and company, who correctly discerned that several million "simple" Southerners could be duped into voting their emotions (oops, I mean, morality) instead of the real issues.

Bill Crawford


To the Editor:

The letter from Gary Shelly in the November 4th issue presented an interesting paradox:

While complaining about being hated by Democrats, he spewed forth his hatred of Democrats. The question is this: Is it wrong to hate people because of their political beliefs? Perhaps he should ask Rush Limbaugh.

Republicans are experts at double-talk, as Mr. Shelly demonstrated. He is against gay marriage, but he doesn't hate gays.

We can split hairs over the definition of the word "hate," but relegating those you "don't like" to second-class citizens looks like hate to me. Dicky Cheney said it best when he said, "You can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig."

I am certain Mr. Shelly has no idea what it is to be a second-class citizen. But as a member of a majority, he feels he can deny rights to those he deems inferior. The Republican Party has become a haven for bigots who think they have a right to control other peoples' lives with their beliefs and "values."

Homosexuality, like heterosexuality, is a fact of nature; it is not a moral issue. There is a great moral issue involved here, however, and Mr. Shelly is on the wrong side of it.

Bill Johnson



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