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Jewish World Review Sept. 25, 2000 / 24 Elul, 5760

David Limbaugh

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AlGore: Turning dreams into nightmares


http://www.jewishworldreview.com -- PERHAPS the next time Sen. Lieberman decides to invoke the Bible on the campaign trail he could read a passage from the Book of Exodus to his running mate Al Gore. I'm referring to the Tenth Commandment.

"You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife ... or anything that belongs to your neighbor."

Or, he could cite the Proverb: "A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones."

This week, Gore escalated his attacks against insurance companies, drug companies, oil companies and corporate America in general. He persistently rails against Bush's "tax cut for the wealthy." He boasts that he represents the people, not the powerful or the wealthy.

Whether or not you believe in the Bible, isn't it just flat out wrong to turn people against each other on the basis of envy and greed? To appeal to our darker side? Wouldn't it be better to encourage people to aspire to success themselves, rather than demonizing the successful?

If the moral argument carries no weight with you, let me appeal to your patriotic sensibilities. By vilifying wealth, Gore is not merely attacking the financially successful, but all those who strive to be successful. In so doing, he is attacking the American dream.

I'm serious. Gore's premise is that the wealthy are evil (except for movie stars and trial lawyers, of course). Surely we all (including Gore) agree that it is evil to pursue evil. Therefore, according to Gore, it must be evil to pursue wealth. Consequently, the American dream is evil.

I'm not just giving you my subjective interpretation of the American dream. Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable defines the American dream as: "The concept that the American social, economic and political system makes success possible for every American."

Similarly, Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Allusions defines it as "generally referring to the ideals of freedom and opportunity on which the United States was founded. The phrase is often used to express personal pursuit of success -- material and otherwise -- frequently in a rags-to-riches climb from poverty to recognition, wealth and honor. It may be a reference to the achievement of comfort and security -- a house, a good job, a place in the community. Or the opportunity to achieve great riches."

Gore is not a champion of the "people," but their exploiter. He is using them as a prop in his pursuit of power. He began using this populist rhetoric during the Democratic National Convention after Clinton pollster Stan Greenberg advised him that he needed to solidify his standing among union workers, minorities and other people who normally vote Democratic but weren't solidly behind him. Gore's advisers have admitted off the record that his populist pitch is also aimed at white voters without college degrees who abandoned the Democratic Party in the past two elections and who constitute a large percentage of the Midwestern swing voters.

Is there any room at all in Gore's equation for the things that made America great -- the concepts that make the American dream possible -- such as freedom and opportunity? Responsibility and accountability? Not on your life. He has calculated that those words don't appeal to any of his targeted constituencies.

At least he's consistent. Why demand accountability for ordinary Americans when you won't accept it for yourself? Why stand to account for misconduct in office when you can shift the blame on to your prosecutor? Why own up to your own failure to develop an energy policy in seven and a half years in office when you can more easily scapegoat the oil industry -- and in the process appear to be the guardian of the little people? Why accept responsibility for the impending insolvency of Social Security and Medicare when you can divert attention from your failures by scaring people with your opponent's proposals? Why admit that you've gutted the military when you can deny it and make your opponent look unpatriotic for pointing it out?

One of the reasons this election is vitally important is that Gore's assault on the American dream isn't a matter of rhetoric alone. If elected, he intends to wage war against the values and ideals that many of us hold dear. If Gore achieves his dream he may well shatter ours. It's time for them to go.



JWR contributor David Limbaugh is an attorney practicing in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and a political analyst and commentator. Send your comments to him by clicking here.

WND

Up

09/20/00: Something fishy's going on
09/18/00: It's the liberalism, stupid
09/13/00: An open letter to open-minded cynics
09/11/00: The virtues of going negative
09/06/00: On a mission for marriage
09/04/00: Al Gore's 'Trivial Pursuits'
08/30/00: Lieberman and the paradox of liberal 'tolerance'
08/28/00: A campaign divided against itself
08/23/00: Al Gore's trickle-down populism
08/21/00: Prosperity without a clue
08/16/00: AlGore can run but he can't hide
08/14/00: When hate speech is OK
08/09/00: Bush: The pundits' enigma
08/07/00: GOP convention: Live or Memorex?
08/02/00: The first attack dog
07/31/00: The Cheney taint?
07/26/00: The anti-gun bogeyman
07/24/00: The raging culture war
07/19/00: Is Hillary 'Good for the Jews'?
07/17/00: How dare you, George?
07/12/00: Jacoby's raw deal
07/10/00: The perplexities of liberalism
07/05/00: Big Al and big oil
07/03/00: Partial-birth and total death
06/28/00: Some questions for you, Mr. Gore
06/26/00: Supreme Court assaults religious freedom
06/21/00: Waco: We are the jury
06/19/00: "Outrage" just doesn't quite cut it anymore!
06/14/00: Al Gore: Government's best friend
06/12/00: Say goodbye to medical privacy
06/07/00: Elian: Whose hands were tied?
06/05/00: Who, which, what is the real Al Gore?
06/01/00: Legacy-building idea for Clinton
05/30/00: Clinton: Above the law or not?
05/24/00: Not so fast, Hillary
05/22/00: Gore's risky, fear-mongering schemes
05/17/00: Can Bush risk pro-choice running mate?
05/15/00: Right to privacy, Clinton-style
05/10/00: Patrick Kennedy and his suit-happy fiddlers
05/08/00: Don't shoot Eddie Eagle
05/03/00: Congress caves to Clinton, again?
05/01/00: The resurrection of outrage
04/28/00: A picture of Bill Clinton's America
04/19/00: President Clinton: Teaching children responsibility
04/17/00: Elian, Marx and parental rights
04/12/00: Elian, freedom deserve a hearing
04/10/00:The fraying of America
04/05/00: Noonan: End Clintonism now
04/03/00: Bush: On going for the gold
03/29/00: Phantasma-Gore-ia
03/27/00: Treaties, triggers, tobacco and tyrants
03/22/00: Media to Bush: Go left, young man
03/20/00: Stop the insanity
03/15/00: OK Al Gore: Let's go negative
03/13/00: Deifying of the center
03/08/00: The media, the establishment and the people
03/01/00: McCain's coalition-busting daggers in GOP's heart
02/28/00: Bush's silver lining in McMichigan
02/24/00: A conservative firewall, after all
02/22/00: Bush or four more of Clinton-Gore?
02/16/00: Substance trumps process
02/14/00: The campaign finance reform mirage
02/09/00: President McCain: End of the GOP as we know it?
02/07/00: From New Hampshire to South Carolina
02/02/00: SDI must fly
01/31/00: Veep gores Bradley
01/26/00: The issues gap
01/24/00: GOP: Exit, stage left
01/20/00: Nationalizing congressional elections
01/18/00: Do voters really prefer straight talk?
01/12/00: Media's McCain efforts may backfire
01/10/00: Conservative racism myth
01/05/00: Just one more year of Clintonian politics
01/03/00: McMedia?
12/27/99: Al Gore: Bullish on government
12/22/99: Bradley's full-court press
12/20/99: Bush: Rendering unto Caesar
12/15/99: Beltway media bias
12/13/99: White House ambulance chasing
12/08/99: Clinton's labor pains
12/06/99:The lust for power
12/01/99: In defense of liberty
11/29/99: Are Republicans obsolete?
11/24/99: Say you're sorry, Mr. President
11/22/99: Architects of victory
11/17/99: Trump's tax on freedom
11/15/99: GOP caves again
11/10/99: Triangulation and 'The Third Way'
11/08/99: Sticks and stones
11/03/99: Keyes vs. media lapdogs
11/01/99: Signs of the times
10/27/99: The false charge of isolationism
10/25/99: A matter of freedom
10/20/99: Clinton's mini-meltdown
10/18/99: Senate GOP shows statesmanship
10/13/99: Senate must reject nuclear treaty
10/11/99: Bush bites feeding hand
10/06/99: Jesse accidentally opens door for Pat
10/04/99: Clinton and his media enablers
09/29/99: Reagan: Big-tent conservatism
09/27/99: The Clinton/Gore taint?
09/22/99: Have gun (tragedy), will travel
09/20/99: Hillary's blunders and bloopers
09/15/99: GOP must remain conservative
09/13/99:Time for Bush to take charge, please
09/10/99: Bush's education plan: Dubya confounds again
09/07/99: Pat, savior or spoiler?
09/02/99: Character doesn't matter?
08/30/99: Should we judge?
08/25/99: Dubyah's drug question: Not a hill to die on
08/23/99: Should Dubyah start buying soap ... for all that mud?
08/16/99: 'W' stands for 'winner'
08/11/99: The truth about tax cuts
08/09/99: Hillary: Threading the needle
08/04/99: What would you do?
08/02/99: No appeasement for China
07/30/99: Hate Crimes Bill: Cynical Symbolism
07/26/99: Itís the 'moderates', stupid
07/21/99: JFK Jr. and Diana: the pain of privilege
07/19/99: Smith, Bush and the GOP
07/14/99: GOP must be a party of ideas
07/12/99: Gore's gender gap
07/08/99: Clintonís faustian bargain: our justice
07/06/99: The key to Bush's $36 million
06/30/99: Gore: a soda in every fountain
06/28/99: 'Sacred wall' or religious barrier?
06/23/99: GOP must lead in foreign policy
06/21/99: Crumbs of compassion
06/16/99: Compassionate conservatism: face-lift or body transplant?
06/10/99: Victory in Kosovo? Now What?

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