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Help Select Questions for Bush and Kerry 1501

Posted by Roblimo
from the the-two-best-major-party-candidates-in-the-whole-country dept.
This is a strange post in that it has 50 comments attached to it already. These are 50 questions for Bush and Kerry selected by non-Slashdot moderators, as explained in our original call for help with the New Voters Project Presidential Youth Debate. At this point, where you come in is not only with extra-insightful moderation of these 50 questions, but with your "many eyes" trying to spot questions these two candidates have answered elsewhere so that the final questions presented to them are not repeats. The first 40 questions are from potential voters aged 18 - 35. The last 10 are from future voters 13 - 17. And that's enough explanation. From here we might as well jump right into the questions...
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Help Select Questions for Bush and Kerry

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  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:43PM (#10368348) Homepage Journal
    President Bush and Senator Kerry, both of you talk a lot about the importance of promoting democracy in other countries. However, I have never heard either of you take on the issue of election reform in our own country. The current presidential system seems to have several shortcomings, including two-party duopoly and the ability to win the Election even after losing the popular vote. This hardly seems democratic. What are your positions on instant-runoff voting and proportional representation? Do you currently, and would you in the future, support any reforms to encourage a greater diversity in our political system?
    • by Salis (52373) <howard...salis@@@gmail...com> on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:12PM (#10369525) Journal
      A better electorate question might ask the candidates how they feel about the usage of paper-less electronic voting machines which have proven vulnerabilities.

      There are many ways to tally the votes (electoral college, proportional electorate by state, etc), but if the votes themselves are vulnerable to fraud then democracy of any type is in peril.

      • no no no no (Score:5, Insightful)

        by snooo53 (663796) * on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:41PM (#10369818) Journal
        You're missing the whole point of the original question here and replacing it with a typical Fox-News/ big media question that is repeated time and time and time again.

        The original poster is talking about a radical reform of our electoral system, not nitpicky details of whether we should use this machine or that machine to tally votes.

        I'm not saying yours isn't a valid question; but it's going to be asked a thousand times by CNN et al. However, you can bet no one at the debates is going to ask a question about a major overhaul of our democratic system like the parent post. This is the perfect forum to ask these tough questions that wont be covered otherwise... I can honestly say I have zero interest in the Bush-Kerry debates on tv, but I would love to hear their answers to half of these questions that were proposed.

    • by yog (19073) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:42PM (#10369823) Homepage Journal
      The electoral college helps protect smaller states from being dominated by larger states. At one time, Americans identified more with their state than with their country; e.g., Thomas Jefferson declared that "I am a Virginian", not an American. The smaller states feared that the large population centers would swamp them and effectively reduce their voice in government. Therefore, the electoral college sometimes allows a candidate to win who did not win the collective majority.

      In 2000, George W. Bush carried 30 states [terrytraub.org], though most of the most populous states did not favor him. This is truly an example of what the electoral college was designed to do.

      These arguments people make today about stealing elections and the unfairness of the system really stem from an ignorance of American history. True, the electoral college system is not perfect and perhaps should be replaced with a simple absolute majority in this age when people no longer identify so strongly with their locales.

      Someone else pointed out that there were several presidents who did not win an absolute majority of the vote, but very few actually lost the popular vote. Clinton did not win an absolute majority [uselectionatlas.org]; more people wanted either GHW Bush or Perot than wanted Clinton by quite a large margin, i.e. about 57% to 43%. However the electoral college gave it to Clinton. Interestingly, no one talks about how unfair it was that Clinton got elected, perhaps because he was lucky enough to preside over a great economic boom that ended just as he was leaving office.

    • by Alsee (515537) on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @12:18AM (#10370142) Homepage
      Having trouble finding the actual questions amongst all the replies?
      CLICK THIS LINK [slashdot.org] for the proper Slashdot sorting to find the questions.

      -
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:49PM (#10368399) Homepage Journal
    In the next four years we will see the appointment of possibly (2) new Supreme Court justices. My question to the candidates is this: I understand that your decision could justifiably change tomorrow, but, if you had to appoint someone to the Supreme Court today - on this very day - who, specifically, would that person be and why?
  • 18-35 #7 DRUG POLICY (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:51PM (#10368414) Homepage Journal
    In the name of America's youth, billions of dollars have been spent on the War on Drugs. While we have seen our economy dwindle, and educational and social spending on the chopping block, our prison population continues to grow, mostly for nonviolent drug offenses. As a member of the so-called "DARE generation", my question is simply, do you find our current drug strategy effective, or is it time to look to alternatives for reform?
    • by ktulu1115 (567549) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:12PM (#10369529)
      Why should 270 million citizens continue to pay $50 billion per year to try to change the habits of 20 million people, considering that this policy has not been able to change those habits in 82 years and at a total cost of nearly one trillion dollars?
  • 18-35 #9 DRUG POLICY (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:54PM (#10368437) Homepage Journal
    I have a question about the HEA drug provision. This provision disqualifies students with drug convictions from receiving financial aid. Black students and lower to middle class students are unfairly targeted, as wealthier students can afford tuition and need not apply for financial aid. Do you feel it is necessary to deny financial aid to a student who already paid for their crime? Are you aware that students with a rape or murder conviction are not exempt from receiving financial aid?
    • by TheMCP (121589) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:45PM (#10369847) Homepage
      Instead of all the two questions here, after the statement I recommend asking "How would you rectify the disparity between persons who have been convicted of drug offenses being barred from receiving financial aid, and persons who have been convicted of rape or murder not being barred from receiving financial aid?"
    • by quantaman (517394) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:49PM (#10369890)
      Combine 9 & 7.

      I feel that 9 is too aggressive suggesting racial motivation and possibly giving the candidate an easy out by challenging the stereotype rather than answering the question. Question 7 as well suffers from a touch of rhetoric, perhaps a combined question would do better.

      In the name of America's youth, billions of dollars have been spent on the War on Drugs. Drug convictions are punished with a disproportionate severity with respect to other crimes. This shows up not only in terms of a rapidly growing prison population but other punishments like the HEA drug provision which deny students with drug convictions from receiving financial aid, a privilege that rapists and murderers are allowed. As a member of the so-called "DARE generation", my question is simply, do you find our current drug strategy effective, or is it time to look to alternatives for reform?

      I'm worried that I didn't quantify the "disproportionate severity" well enough (think they'll get an out arguing that?) and I wouldn't mind incorporating the fact that the HEA drug provision specifically interferes with the ability of the person to rehabilitate but couldn't find an easy way to slip it in there without asking a second question.

      Any improvements?

      btw. technically I am also a member of the "DARE generation" so I'm not an american so I don't know if I can really hijack the question :)
  • 18-35 #10 DRAFT (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:55PM (#10368442) Homepage Journal
    Democratic Congressmen Charles Rangel and Ernest Hollings have been pushing to reinstate and change the draft, Senate 89 and House 163. The two bills call for the drafting of women, and don't allow exemptions for college or only children. The Congressmen are pushing the bill under the claim that too many minorities are fighting for our country (CNN.com, February, 2003). What are the chances of either of you supporting such a drastic change in our drafting process?
    • Re:18-35 #10 DRAFT (Score:5, Insightful)

      by stevesliva (648202) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:22PM (#10369627) Journal
      Interestingly enough, the casualties in Iraq are not necessarily disproportionate by ethnicity... the figures for minorities are close to their portion of the population.

      It's class that's disproportionate.

    • by LostCluster (625375) * on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:40PM (#10369805)
      I seriously doubt either Rangel or Hollings seriously want there to be a draft for the sake of bringing people involuntarily into the armed forces. The armed forces have even been pretty loud in saying they don't want a draft as non-trained people who don't wanna be there is of no use to the skill-based armed forces of today.

      The real reason why they want an all-inclusive draft is nothing makes fence-sitters on a war start to hate it than the possiblity of their family members or themselves being thrown into fight against their will. That's the real point, to force a pull-out of Iraq.
  • 18-35 #11 DRAFT (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:56PM (#10368452) Homepage Journal
    Under what circumstances would you institute a draft to fight the war on terrorism, or institute any other national service (such as the Universal National Service Act) to fight any other war?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @08:57PM (#10368458) Homepage Journal
    In the 1960s, a concerted effort was made, at the behest of Pres. Kennedy, to reach the moon within 10 years, an incredibly ambitious goal that was ultimately achieved. Do you think that, if a similar effort were made to develop alternative fuels, we would be similarly successful, and would you be willing to make this effort? Also, what benefits do you see alternative fuels bringing our nation, with respect to education, environment, security, and foreign policy?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:03PM (#10368508) Homepage Journal
    Having gone to high school in a very conservative area, where parents refused to teach their children proper sex education, I watched 20 of my classmates leave due to teenage pregnancy. Some knew about sex while others had no idea how to get pregnant. What is your opinion on sex education in the classroom and what resources (information, condoms, etc) should be used? Do you believe that teaching abstinence alone is enough to save our children from teen pregnancy and spreading disease?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:26PM (#10368717) Homepage Journal
    The U.S. has been accused of cultural and economic imperialism in the past, and now with the situations in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, we are being accused by people around the world of imposing our will on others with force. How do you respond to that, and what would you do to restore our nation's reputation around the world?
    • by bofkentucky (555107) <bofkentucky@nOSPAm.gmail.com> on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:52PM (#10369916) Homepage Journal
      See Colin Powell's response to questions about American Imperialism

      "We've fought in wars all over the world and never took any more ground than was necessary to bury our dead."
      The free Market takes care of the economic side of imperialism.

      We have neither the need nor the resources to subjugate the world.
    • by upsidedown_duck (788782) on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @01:13AM (#10370485)
      How do you respond to that, and what would you do to restore our nation's reputation around the world?

      Both canidates have already answered this question many times. Bush is in favor of spreading democracy the world over (as if it is as easy as spreading butter). Kerry has said he will push to restore the US' reputation and try to bring Iraq to a close multi-laterally and with the UN. This is one area where the canidates are suprising consistent in their answers.

      I do hope people in other countries see that the USA is pretty divided over these issues (just like many people in their own countries) and that Americans just aren't a big bunch of bozos with grease stains on their shirts. Remember, you can hate us, but only in four-year intervals (you gotta wait and see if you can hate us for the next four).

  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:27PM (#10368727) Homepage Journal
    What do you see as the biggest difference between your approach to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict and the approach of your opponent? What are some specific problems with your opponent's approach?
    • by paulproteus (112149) <slashdot&asheesh,org> on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:17PM (#10369577) Homepage
      It's a good question because it asks for specifics. Bush's policy has always been vague in my mind - he seems to both give Israel a carte blanche yet at the same time push an internationally-backed effective-seeming road map. (Compare his internationalist-sounding approach of a year ago with the current ineptitude surrounding Israel's against-road-map new settlement building.)

      I like the question. I wish the public knew more about each candidate's policies to ask harder questions, but truthfully I don't know either's take on what to do in the conflict. The only danger is that Kerry says, "I'll find out when I get to office," and that Bush says, "Kerry has no position" and then lies about his own position.
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:29PM (#10368740) Homepage Journal
    Whoever sits in the White House on January 21, 2005, will preside over an America that has seen almost 30 years since the passage of the 1975 Metric Conversion Act. In those three decades, delayed enforcement and waivers have stunted the effect of this act on adopting SI as a common standard for Americans. This negatively impacts the U.S.'s competitive stance in the global economy. As President, what would you do to achieve the goals of the 1975 Metric Conversion Act?
  • 18-35 #21 GLBT (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:31PM (#10368753) Homepage Journal
    Why won't the candidates address the difference between civil marriage and religious marriage? Do they recognize the significance that this demarcation holds as a stand against discrimination? Do they realize how their unwillingness to address this issue impacts every aspect of GLBT's (and their families') lives? Are they aware that when political issues call civil rights into question that hate crimes raise exponentially?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:32PM (#10368766) Homepage Journal
    My husband works for a small business, about 20 people maximum, and the insurance the company offers not only would cost over 1/3 of his monthly income, but it would not cover our son due to his 'pre existing condition' (asthma). My question to you is, do either of you plan to make the limitations for assistance higher? Eliminate 'pre-existing conditions,' such as asthma? Make it to where agencies that provide assistance not just look at a monthly income, but look at the monthly outgoing?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:34PM (#10368788) Homepage Journal
    The United States, by invading Iraq, used international support and resources to lead the fight against nuclear weapons. However, no weapons were found in Iraq. How do you think this has hurt or helped our efforts against nuclear proliferation in countries such as Iran and North Korea?
    • by Anonymous Bullard (62082) on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @06:17AM (#10371735) Homepage
      How is the US invasion and the current military occupation of the already fully contained and militarily weak Iraq supposed to be such a morally wonderful idea when e.g. totalitarian China -- which has a massive army and plentiful WMDs, which has sold nuclear and missile technology to undemocratic countries, which continues their oppressive occupation of neighboring Tibet, which has one-party rule denying their subjects of lack basic political rights and which is constantly threatening the democrating Taiwan with war -- is considered simply a trading partner and a fine destination for western capital and manufacturing jobs?

      Do you, dear candidates for the post of self-appointed leader of the free world, find any discrepancy or possible double standards in the United States' foreign policy wrt. the above-mentioned setting?

  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:36PM (#10368806) Homepage Journal
    Would the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan make it harder to declare war on, say, Iran or North Korea if the need exists?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:37PM (#10368816) Homepage Journal
    What is the plan for dealing with Iraq if the citizens of Iraq vote in favor of a fundamentalist Islamic form of government that resembles the one currently existing in Iran? How will your administration work to preserve the roots of democracy that have been cultivated in this middle eastern country if the citizens of Iraq vote in a theocratic form of governance?
    • by vandan (151516) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:26PM (#10369676) Homepage
      While I disagree strongly with the implications of this question ( ie that the US will have a right to overrule the democratic wishes or the Iraqis when they finally get a vote ), I would be interested to hear what Bush and Kerry have in mind. I imagine both will simply label the elections as being invalid, using the excuse that the Iraqi people were terrorised by the terrorists into voting for terrorists because of all the extreme terrorism occuring in the terrorist state of Iraq. Terrorist.
    • by killjoe (766577) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:29PM (#10369718)
      MOD PARENT UP.

      The Shia comprise of 2/3 of the population and the cleric Al Sistani is the most revered person in all of Iraq right now. What will the kurds and the sunnis do if the parliment if 2/3 shia?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:38PM (#10368826) Homepage Journal
    Dear Sirs, what specifically are your plans to ensure both Iran and North Korea do not obtain nuclear missile capabilities and additionally, and what is your stance on the defense of Taiwan?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:39PM (#10368834) Homepage Journal
    In the light of 9/11, Palestinian militant groups were designated as terrorist groups. This action has precluded communications and these groups involvement in peace negations. How do you propose to break the deadlock in this peace process, and what is your vision for how this peace will look (statehood, disarmament, settlements, etc)? Will this action be taken by individual nations (the road map which was supported by the U.S., Russia, etc) or through the UN (Security Council resolution)?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:40PM (#10368845) Homepage Journal
    In light of a number of recent publicized legal cases, including the suing of illegal file sharers by the RIAA [Recording Industry Assoc. Amer.], it seems that our legal system is slanted to benefit those with money. Large companies and rich individuals can afford lengthy legal proceedings with multiple lawyers, while non-upper class individuals often do not have the same access. This forces many individuals to settle cases, even if they believe they have done nothing wrong. What can be done to fix this injustice?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:41PM (#10368854) Homepage Journal
    Dear Mr. President and Senator, as a local nurse, I am interested in how you plan to help ease the stress many OB/GYN physicians and OB/GYN nurses have due to the ocean of malpractice lawsuits. How can you help us, as healthcare providers to NOT live in fear of undue lawsuits?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:42PM (#10368859) Homepage Journal
    Nearly 100 American media resources today are owned by only 5 corporations. While the Senate's overruling of the FCC's controversial 3-to-2 decision to further deregulate media ownership rules in June of 2003 is a source of encouragement, most Americans want more variety in their sources of news and entertainment. What will you do to ensure that Americans have accurate sources of information to base their democratic decisions on?
  • 18-35 #33 MEDICAL (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:53PM (#10368934) Homepage Journal
    Though the U.S. is the undisputed world leader, we fall last in line behind all other industrialized countries when it comes to post-partum maternity benefits. With all the proven advantages of a mother staying home with her child during the first year of life, what do you propose for changes in legislature to ensure a woman is not only allowed time off to stay at home, but can afford to do so by being paid for that time?
  • 18-35 #34 PERSONAL (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:54PM (#10368945) Homepage Journal
    Who is doing your respective jobs while you are campaigning? And if your job allows for the additional work that is put into campaigning, then what do you believe you could have accomplished if this were not a campaign year (assuming that you put this additional campaign work into your respective jobs)?
  • 18-35 #35 PERSONAL (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:55PM (#10368951) Homepage Journal
    What was the biggest mistake you made in the last four years? What were the negative repercussions of that mistake and what have you done to fix it?
    • by teamhasnoi (554944) <teamhasnoi@yahoELIOTo.com minus poet> on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @01:17AM (#10370509) Homepage Journal
      Bush has already been asked this. A written version of this question will provide us some precious anecdote about how he shouldn't have gotten his dog fixed.

      here you go. [whitehouse.gov]
      Q Thank you, Mr. President. In the last campaign, you were asked a question about the biggest mistake you'd made in your life, and you used to like to joke that it was trading Sammy Sosa. You've looked back before 9/11 for what mistakes might have been made. After 9/11, what would your biggest mistake be, would you say, and what lessons have you learned from it?

      THE PRESIDENT: I wish you would have given me this written question ahead of time, so I could plan for it. (Laughter.) John, I'm sure historians will look back and say, gosh, he could have done it better this way, or that way. You know, I just -- I'm sure something will pop into my head here in the midst of this press conference, with all the pressure of trying to come up with an answer, but it hadn't yet.

      I would have gone into Afghanistan the way we went into Afghanistan. Even knowing what I know today about the stockpiles of weapons, I still would have called upon the world to deal with Saddam Hussein. See, I happen to believe that we'll find out the truth on the weapons. That's why we've sent up the independent commission. I look forward to hearing the truth, exactly where they are. They could still be there. They could be hidden, like the 50 tons of mustard gas in a turkey farm.

      One of the things that Charlie Duelfer talked about was that he was surprised at the level of intimidation he found amongst people who should know about weapons, and their fear of talking about them because they don't want to be killed. There's a terror still in the soul of some of the people in Iraq; they're worried about getting killed, and, therefore, they're not going to talk.

      But it will all settle out, John. We'll find out the truth about the weapons at some point in time. However, the fact that he had the capacity to make them bothers me today, just like it would have bothered me then. He's a dangerous man. He's a man who actually -- not only had weapons of mass destruction -- the reason I can say that with certainty is because he used them. And I have no doubt in my mind that he would like to have inflicted harm, or paid people to inflict harm, or trained people to inflict harm on America, because he hated us.

      I hope I -- I don't want to sound like I've made no mistakes. I'm confident I have. I just haven't -- you just put me under the spot here, and maybe I'm not as quick on my feet as I should be in coming up with one.

  • 18-35 #36 PERSONAL (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:56PM (#10368957) Homepage Journal
    When is it appropriate for a leader to change their opinion? Both sides have been accused of flip-flopping on important issues - President Bush on establishing the Dept. of Homeland Security and steel tariffs, Senator Kerry on the Iraq war. But changing opinion due to thoughtful reconsideration ought not to be derided as flip-flopping. Tell us about a time when you had an honest change of opinion on a topic of national importance.
  • 18-35 #37 PERSONAL (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:56PM (#10368964) Homepage Journal
    What are the three written works or political thinkers that have contributed the most to your philosophy of governance, and why?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:57PM (#10368970) Homepage Journal
    In regards to social security, as a professional 25-year-old worker I'm concerned that I'm paying into a system, which is severely over-taxed and will be non-existent when I reach retirement. I would like to know what steps will be taken to either ensure I will get the benefits I've paid for, or to allow me to no longer contribute to Social Security and use that extra income to invest myself for my retirement, most likely a Roth IRA.
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:58PM (#10368977) Homepage Journal
    Let's look ten years out. Since we have a wave of baby boomers planning on retirement, what effect will their retirement have on me, my family, and the nation as a whole? How will we pay for the trillions that Social Security, Medicaid, and all of the other entitlement programs need to be handled? How does having countries like Japan who are buying our debt change the equation? How does the fact that Japan is heading for their baby boom retirement in 4 years change our equation?
  • 18-35 #40 OTHER (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @09:59PM (#10368982) Homepage Journal
    What is your take on so-called "intellectual property"? Would you veto any attempt to extend the duration of copyrights yet again? Would you attempt to reign in the range of software patents to prevent patents on ideas and trivialities to stifle innovation?
    • Re:18-35 #40 OTHER (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Jerf (17166) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:09PM (#10369493) Journal
      Drop the first part of the question. All it will draw are generic homilies about the importance of IP, how wonderfully innovative Americans are, and how Americans will be more innovative with me than the other guy.

      Specificity doesn't guarentee answers, but it makes evasion more obvious and sometimes that's all you can hope for.
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:00PM (#10368988) Homepage Journal
    Considering the reality of the rise in teenage pregnancies, what is your position on the availability of contraceptives, medical care, education and coverage for these health services for teens? Does your position realistically deal with the consequences of teenage pregnancy and teen parents, the resulting poverty, and the rise in back-alley abortions and abandoned newborns? What will you do as president to address this issue, and why?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:01PM (#10368994) Homepage Journal
    I am 15 and learning disabled because of a serious heart condition. I am having a difficult time in school. I face increased pressure with the "no child left behind" rules. I get pushed and I cannot keep up. My sister is autistic. I need to know where she will go when she is older. Her school may have to close because they are not getting funding. Why is no one stepping forward to support the growing need for special education?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:02PM (#10369001) Homepage Journal
    Why do you say bad things about each other? When I grow up and become President I will be truthful and honest and I won't talk bad about the other guy. You both have a war against each other and you are forgetting we don't care about your war but we care about the War in Iraq. I would like for you to say one good thing about each other.
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:03PM (#10369004) Homepage Journal
    If our society were to take a dramatic downfall in morals, what would be the best course of action? Who decides what is moral, and why are we basing our legislation on a book that was written centuries ago?
  • 13 - 17 #5 PERSONAL (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:04PM (#10369013) Homepage Journal
    Today, where you're at in your life, would you be willing to die for your country?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:07PM (#10369027) Homepage Journal
    The Bush administration has made a big deal of President Bush's Christian faith. Democratic candidate John Kerry is also a Christian. My question for both candidates is how does your faith affect your decision-making for the future of our country? Also, America is based on the separation of church and state. For the candidates, is it conflicting to take a position on issues based on Christianity (such as abortion and gay marriage) when not everyone in America believes in God or Christianity?
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:09PM (#10369033) Homepage Journal
    I am concerned about our growing population in the U.S. and all over the world. The traffic, overbuilding and suburban sprawl is not slowing, and I worry, that by the time I am an adult and have a family, that my quality of life is really going to suffer. I would like to hear the presidential candidates address their views on over population, how to control it, its effect on the environment, energy consumption, land use, etc., and on how to stop the overcrowding of both America and the world.
  • by Roblimo (357) on Monday September 27, 2004 @10:10PM (#10369046) Homepage Journal
    Why, as an American citizen, will I have to compete for jobs and college financial assistance with people who are here illegally from other countries? My immigrant parents followed the rules and waited their turn.
  • by Jerf (17166) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:33PM (#10369751) Journal
    ? #1: Score +5, Interesting
    ? #2: Score +5, Interesting
    ? #3: Score +5, Interesting
    ? #4: Score -1, Troll
    ? #5: Score +5, Interesting
    ? #6: Score +5, Interesting

    OK, maybe there is some value to breaking the questions down like that, but if ever there was a time that we needed a cap much larger than 5, this posting is it.

    (Or perhaps re-post all the +5 questions, with a post that doesn't have the +5 limit.)
  • by craXORjack (726120) on Monday September 27, 2004 @11:44PM (#10369836)
    Senator Kerry, we all know that George W. Bush (43) looks just like George H. W. Bush (41) for obvious reasons, but can you explain your own peculiar resemblance [npr.org] to Andrew Jackson [senate.gov] ?
  • by Pollux (102520) <`ge.ten.atadet' `ta' `reteps'> on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @12:05AM (#10370035) Journal
    Alright, rather than just "mod", here's my take on all of them:

    1) Electoral Reform - Oh brother. The electoral system is not broken. You should understand that the fact that a minority-vote-getter can become president actually proves that "Majority rules, minority rights" does exist in this country. Besides, electoral voting actually strengthens the individual vote (Miami-Dade county would not even exist if it wasn't for the 2000 vote).

    2) Online Voting - my opinion, but I think there's more pressing issues than just the opportunity to vote online (besides, you don't get the obligatory "I voted" sticker).

    3) Judiciary Appointment - this process was made to prevent stupid Joes from appointing judges. You can call it corruption, but Bush has had a *ton* of court appointments denied by Congress ... there are checks and balances to this system.

    4) AIDS - not unique. This question always appears in the debates, and they always have canned answers. "Blah blah, money for research, blah blah, I don't have AIDS, so I don't care, blah blah." Move on.

    5) Supreme Court Justices - PICK THIS. Every president wants some "echo" of their power to last throughout the ages, and this dates all the way back to John Adams and the appointment of Federalist John Marshall. Ask this question, and you get a good mirror image of the policies you can expect from candidates themselves.

    6) Marijuana vs. Alcohol - Hippie question. Alcohol is part of our culture, like it or abstain from it. No dance with Mary Jane. Move on.

    7) Drug Fight - Don't ask -- you'll get another canned answer from the politicans. "DARE this, Community involvement that, but you gotta love the alcohol commercials!"

    8) Medical Marijuana - Another canned response "Needs more research - need to make sure there's a way that it doesn't get abused." Not worth the breath, hippie. Go pack your bags and move to Holland.

    9) Drug Provision for Financial Aid - Definately the way to Go. My gosh, this is a good question, and one I never thought about before. Poster definately has a point that those who have paid their time still deserve an education.

    10 and 11) Draft - They'll all deny it, and everyone knows that. They may plan it, but they'll never admit to it. So don't bother to ask.

    12) Focused goal on Alt. Fuels - Worth Asking, especially with the spin on the "10 year mission to the Moon" emphasis. It just goes to prove that things can get done if you really put your mind to it.

    13) Child Abuse - Sad to say it, but skip it. What you need to stop this is GrassRoots - neighbor to neighbor, family to family, friend to friend, and teacher to student is the only way to fix abuse. Jail does not deter hate.

    14) Animal Rights - Eat more meat. Death to PETA. Next.

    15) Sex Ed - Thought Provoking - it's a good domestic question, because teenage pregnancy has always been a problem.

    16) Home Schooling - Last I checked, Bush was supporting it with "No Child Left Behind." If he wasn't, he'll just plug it as another alternative to failing schools.

    17) USA, the World Bully - Fine ask it, but the same question will be asked in the debates, and the answers will only be the same as what is said in the television commericals.

    18) Isreal vs. Palestine - Don't ask, don't tell - it's been the policy for the last 50 years regarding the actions of Isreal. No US leader that I know will change that right now.

    19) Integrate Family Values - Of course, the president has always been responsible for raising the children of the US-of-A. Need family values? Find a family that you can value.

    20) Metric Conversion in the USA - thanks. I needed a laugh. Metric in the USA? That's hilarious.

    21) Civil Marriage for Gay/Lesbian
  • by teamhasnoi (554944) <teamhasnoi@yahoELIOTo.com minus poet> on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @12:09AM (#10370069) Homepage Journal
    Why won't you answer any of the fucking questions?

    Thousands of people poured over the wording, grammar, and nature of these questions, making them as simple and clear as possible, yet both of you won't ANSWER THEM.

    We don't want to hear you talk about unrelated crap that has nothing to do with the questions in front of you, we don't want a rambling missive about the failings of your opponent(s), we don't want a speech riddled with prewritten soundbites. We want answers.

    When will we get simple, clear answers?

    • by kraada (300650) on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @01:03AM (#10370431)
      Actually, if you are carefully introspective of those answers which were answered by myself and my opponent, you will notice that he answered the questions far less directly than I.

      I answered the questions you gave me directly, speaking to the concerns of the American people, who, I believe, should vote for me as their candidate. If you look at my record it is clear that I represent all that is good in the world, and will lead us into a stronger nation is this new, post-9/11 world.

      The questions posed showed what a diverse and complex world we live in these days. As a result, you should vote for me, because I am best able to cope with these new issues as we move further into the 21st century.

      Sincerely,

      Either Candidate.
  • Questions for Bush (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Lightning Hopkins (817142) on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @01:21AM (#10370530)
    This question will never make it to the President, but I'd like to know how he responds to the arguments against the Iraq invasion presented by Brent Scowcroft in 2002 (http://www.opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.h tml?id=110002133 [opinionjournal.com])
    Or George Bush Senior's statement in 1998 that invading Iraq would have "incalculable human and political costs" (http://www.snopes.com/politics/quotes/gulfwar.asp [snopes.com]) He also said "Whose life would be on my hands as the commander-in-chief because I, unilaterally, went beyond the international law, went beyond the stated mission, and said we're going to show our macho?" he asked. "We're going into Baghdad. We're going to be an occupying power -- America in an Arab land -- with no allies at our side. It would have been disastrous. We don't gain the size of our victory by how many innocent kids running away -- even though they're bad guys -- that we can slaughter. ... We're American soldiers; we don't do business that way." (http://www.fas.org/news/iraq/1999/03/a19990303bus h.htm [fas.org])
    Or Dick Cheney's assessment in 1991 (http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/pubs/soref/che ney.htm [washingtoninstitute.org])in which he said that "I think the proposition of going to Baghdad is fallacious," that invading would get the U.S. "bogged down in a quagmire," and that "Saddam Hussein's offensive military capability, his capacity to threaten his neighbors, has been virtually eliminated."
    I want to know how the President (or anyone else, really) can reconcile the 2003 invasion of Iraq with these pronouncements. Obviously the situation has changed over the years, but it clearly has not changed enough to prevent the situation that Cheney described.
  • by mabu (178417) on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @02:52AM (#10370971)
    When I first saw this topic it really got my brain reeling about the possibilities.

    Then I came back down to earth.

    As much as I have hundreds of questions I could pose to each of the candidates, I know that ultimately any real tough or direct question would never be answered from them in any straightforward manner.

    So what's the point?

    Ask yourself, what could either of these men tell you that would really change your mind about them? What brilliant revelation will come from their lips that will suddenly make you understand? We've delved into their history to the nth degree. If you can't tell what kind of people they are from their past and their present, and knowing that in person you're going to get "politician-speak", what's the point?

    98% of the questions posed here would never pass muster to be asked to either of the candidates in a substantive public forum, and ironically, all of us know what the answers would be. Bush would respond with a shallow, thoughtless one-to-three word quip and then look at you like you slept with his wife while signalling the SS to remove you, and Kerry would blather all around the subject and twist it around to the talking points he rehearsed earlier in the day.

    No wonder people don't vote. No wonder we don't have truly great people in office any more. Who wants to put up with it?

    Aside from that, you bet your ass I'll be voting this year, as I do every year. The people this election is really about are not the people running, but everybody else in the country. You don't need to know diddly about Bush or Kerry. Look at your world and ask yourself if in the last four years you like the way things have been going. If you feel safer, more secure, live more comfortably, have more money and job security and better healthcare, then vote for GW Bush. If you aren't happy with the way things are going, one things for sure, keeping the same guy in office won't improve things and considering how the last election went, you can't afford to vote idealistically for a candidate who has no chance of winning. So it comes down to Bush or Kerry, and you must vote Kerry if you don't like the status quo. What either of them do or say at this point is moot to me. I'd vote for a bagel over Bush just to see if it could run the country better, and even in that case I'd be more hopeful and optimistic than I am now.

    Sad but true unfortunately.
  • Missing questions (Score:5, Insightful)

    by zaxios (776027) <zaxios@gmail.com> on Tuesday September 28, 2004 @04:10AM (#10371247) Journal
    These questions lack the sort of rigor I expect from Slashdot. I suspect more than a few people didn't actually email them. Here are some questions that need to be asked of the candidates:

    - Deficit

    The U.S. deficit stands at a record $477 billion. How would your Administration curb the deficit? Is there any way to cut spending without hurting homeland security, the Iraq situation, education or social security?

    - Intellectual property

    What is your policy on the INDUCE Act and extensions to copyright law? What is your attitude toward the preservation of Fair Use provisions in copyright law? How much power should organizations like the RIAA and MPAA be given to enforce copyright?

    - Iraq situation

    President Bush, how do you justify the war in Iraq knowing that before the war Saddam Hussein did not possess WMD and had no ties to al-Qaeda, and that parts of Iraq are now under the control of terrorists? How can you claim to be fighting a relentless war on terrorism when you have designated areas of Iraq as no-go zones for U.S. troops? To both candidates: in light of the CIA's recent predictions, what is your plan to avert a civil war in Iraq or defeat the insurgency? How do you plan to fight the insurgency without offending Iraqis and contributing to the cycle of violence?

    - War on terror

    Do you foresee an end to the war on terror? Will legislation like the USA PATRIOT Act and other suspensions of civil rights continue indefinitely?

    - War on terror

    Over $200 billion has been spent in Iraq and airline security has undergone tightening while port security and chemical plant security remain in large part unimproved since 9/11. What are your plans regarding this? How would your Administration protect the homeland?

    - Religion

    What is the role of religion in decision-making in the presidency?

    - Electronic voting
    (by bort27 [slashdot.org])

    Dear President Bush and Senator Kerry,

    For the first time in history, this presidential election will make use of electronic voting machines to track more than half of all votes cast nationwide. Diebold is the largest manufacturer of these machines.

    The Diebold machines have been proven insecure by numerous security analysts, and contain numerous security flaws. For example, it has been shown that anyone can change the electronic vote tallies by simply writing and executing a five-line computer script.

    William W. O'Dell, CEO of Diebold and one of the largest Republican campaign contributors in the state of Ohio, has stated publicly that he will do "everything he can" to get George W. Bush re-elected.

    My question is this: While there are clearly several advantages to electronic voting, do you believe that these problems could compromise the integrity of the 2004 election?


    - Kyoto by caseydk [slashdot.org]

    Senator Kerry, How do you reconcile the strict environmental guidelines established by the Kyoto Protocols - which you have spoken in favor of - with the creation and continuation of high tech - and therefore high energy consumption - industries?

Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed. -- Francis Bacon

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