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Top issues of 2007

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by HeinekenMan, Dec 31, 2006.

  1. HeinekenMan

    HeinekenMan Active Member

    Lord knows you can go a lot of ways with this, but I thought it might be nice to throw together a list of key issues facing the country at the dawn of a new year.

    Here's my list, not necessarily in order of importance.

    1. Resolve Iraq fiasco by setting up a plan for Iraq to take control of their own destiny. I predict that chaos will ensue once the U.S. troops leave, and I'm not really sure how to withdraw them. But that's why it's at the top of the list.

    2. Reform education. States have had a few years under No Child Left Behind. I think it's time to re-examine it and determine how to proceed from this point.

    3. Health insurance/health care reform. This hot-button issue seems to have fallen by the wayside. Yet costs are rising for Americans and their employers. The increases in health insurance are staggering. Companies are cutting coverage. Meanwhile, doctors are throwing in the towel due to a huge increase in lawsuits. And the drug companies are somehow raking in tons of cash.

    4. AIDS. Bush never dedicated enough money to the growing pandemic in Africa. It's now spreading to other continents. Here is something killing more people than Saddam's army. And there's not even a Republican Guard to disband. Yet the country isn't giving even one-tenth of the money to AIDS causes as it has given to war causes.

    5. Environmental issues. I don't care what Al Gore said in his movie. The fact is that different scientists have different opinions. It's time to get to the bottom of this to determine exactly what is going on with global warming and how we need to respond. We owe it to our children and grandchildren to take a close look at this issue. I don't know why environmental issues have been dubbed liberal causes, but it's downright ridiculous. We all live here. Certainly, everyone can agree that party politics should be cast aside when the existence of human life on the planet is at stake. It's time to stop allowing energy companies and the industrial sector to write our environmental policy. But we also have to find a way to allow industry to strive.

    6. Poverty. I don't have the numbers in front of me, but there certainly seems to be a growth in the number of poor in the country. That's something that must be explored. I think this probably ties in with a need to put the people back in power. For too long, the country has belonged to corporate America. They are writing our laws and electing our leaders with their fat campaign contributions. We have corporate executives making enough money to buy Cuba from Fidel. Yet lots of people are starving. The Bush Administration handed money to the wealth in the form of tax cuts. But trickle-down economics has proven to be a failure. The economy hasn't grown, only the bank accounts of the wealthy. Meanwhile, the middle class is fading away. I believe in a free market, but I fear a class war in one form or another within a very short time.

    7. Budget deficit. I thought Clinton had erased this, but it's back in a big way. The Chinese economy is growing stronger with each day, and we're in debt to them and other countries. If they cash out of our economy, we're up shit creek. We have to address this now. At the same time, we should take a closer look at the taxes on incoming goods. When I can buy a relatively nice shirt at Wal-Mart for $5, something is wrong. You shouldn't be able to buy more than a pack or two of rags for $5. I'm sure it's not the greatest quality, but I saw one hanging on the rack today during my trip to purchase some bubbly. The trade imbalance is now out of control, and more and more U.S. companies are falling by the wayside every day, as retailers opt to buy overseas and companies opt to produce overseas.

    8. Fuel. This probably ties in with the environment, but it's important enough to be its own issue. We all what happens when we depend on foreign oil. It's time to develop our own technologies and stop subsidizing big oil. The technologies, in a lot of cases, already exist. So it's time that we use them.

    9. I'm running out of things, which I didn't expect. I think a continued focus on fighting terrorism is important enough to make the list. I'm not sure where it falls on the list given that it's a fairly vague category. I think much of our focus needs to be on building alliances with other nations, fostering good will in the world, strengthening our military and adding security features at our borders.

    10. Immigration. We need to resolve this one now. I don't mind immigrants. But it would be nice to go to the grocery store without feeling that I'm in a foreign country. I think it does nobody good when immigrants can't communicate in English. So we need to emphasize teaching English as a second language to immigrants who don't speak the language. This would do much to reduce the drop-out rate at schools where there is a high population of Hispanic students.

    Anyway, that's my list. But I'm probably leaving out some things that are important to me and to you. So feel free to add your own.
  2. CradleRobber

    CradleRobber Active Member

    11. Pretty Ricky's sophomore album, Late Night Special. It drops Jan. 23. :)
  3. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Hmmm. I guess getting my kitchen faucet fixed and a new dishwasher doesn't stand up to that list.
    Oh well.
    Those are MY issues. That and my achin' back and trying to score Jersey Boys tickets.
  4. HeinekenMan

    HeinekenMan Active Member

    Jersey Boys? Is that a sequel to Jersey Girl or is that a follow-up to the Jerky Boys debut?
  5. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    Take away the Iraq War, and that has been the list for a decade.
    And, insert Iraq War, that will be the list for the next decade.
  6. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    You're not serious?
    You need to stop fretting about important issues and get out more.
  7. Idaho

    Idaho Active Member

    I've got a pair of tickets to the Cheetah Girls concert, moddy. If you don't mind taking my 12 year old to the show, the other ticket is all yours.
  8. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    My top issue:
    How many of my coworkers will be "involuntarily" or "voluntarily" separated this year.
  9. spup1122

    spup1122 Guest

    I'm only going to list one because I think you've hit most of them spot on.

    Child welfare..

    There are entirely too many kids who are being put in the social service system and then forgotten until they end up in the hospital after a beating or dead. I think this is a combination of education and health care because I honestly think that a lot of young parents aren't well informed on raising children when they end up having children.

    There have been law suits in several states because case workers didn't even know they were assigned certain kids who had been put in the system and forgotten about. After the law suits things have gotten much better, but there are educational provisions this nation can take.

    There needs to be a more-publicized system with resources for new parents. I know Missouri has a system that includes parenting classes and counseling which also includes paying for doctor's visits for the mother and child until the child is a certain age (I don't remember what that age is). These programs need to be available in every state and for those who partake, parenting classes should be required, IMHO.

    It may sound stupid, but that's an issue I believe will affect our country in the next year. Keeping kids out of the system would mean less cost for the system itself.
  10. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    You get to a certain age -- older than I am, mind you -- and taking a regular dump is your main issue.

    No pun intended.

    My main issue for 2007? Writing more.

    Secondary issue: Acting humble as we grow circulation ... again.
  11. HeinekenMan

    HeinekenMan Active Member

    Actually, I considered adding that one, but I couldn't articulate it. I became a Big Brother last month to do my part. I just had to do something. I almost throw up when I watch the local news these days. CNN.com has a story tonight about a 3-year-old who was on the interstate or some such thing. Apparently, his mom was asleep. They found her still asleep with another toddler eating spaghetti off the floor in what was dubbed a filthy apartment.
  12. spup1122

    spup1122 Guest

    I saw that story, too. I work at a residential care facility for kids in my region who are taken from their parents, usually for neglect. I haven't started reading case files to see what the kids have gone through, but when I do, I'll need a box of Kleenex.
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