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Al Gore, Democratic Party, (analysis of Gore
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Campaign and Election Reform: 7
Gore, relatively early and consistently, supported some of the stronger campaign reform measures that were sabotaged by the Republican leaders in the Senate.
At the same time, however, he has taken full advantage of the current lack
of real campaign finance laws to raise money.
He and Bush are equally bad on most areas of election process reform, such as, proportional representation," none of the above", electorial college reform. Gore has been better than Bush on voter access to easier registration and voting.
The Trial Lawyers Association heavily supports Gore over Bush. This Association has been active in impeding a high percentage of civil litigation reforms on items, such as, direct citizen access to the courts and certain numerous small extorting-types of lawsuit practices. This support likely means that Gore is worse than Bush on these needed reforms.
On the other hand, Gore has actively opposed Bush's version of tort reform which severely limits suits against large entities where there is real damage and cover-up which is a positive for Gore (see Bush write-up on this issue). In others words, Bush might be better on attempting reform on low-end, extortion-type law suits but worse than Gore on major litigation issues.
In criminal law Gore has been more supportive of preemptive expenditures to keep high-risk individuals from becoming full-blown criminals; much more than Bush. He is for greater availability of drug treatment programs for high-risk individuals.
Gore supports "three strikes laws" only for violent criminals; this would utilize existing jail space and resources for violent criminals which is now incarcerating people who have committed non-violent offenses. In all other areas of criminal and judicial reform, Gore is just as bad as Bush; he courts big agencies like the DEA (that provide little relief in real criminal activity for dollars spent).
Media Reform: 2
The Clinton-Gore administration has been supportive of legislation which increased the consolidation of major media into the hands of a few corporations.
Environmental 5 Animal Protection: 3
Gore-Clinton received overwhelming support from the environmental community when they needed that support to be elected. They then proceeded to be almost as bad as Bush and Reagan on this issue. Listed below are the points drafted by Michael Dorsey, a member of the Sierra Club's board, who offered them in January as a sound basis for the group to refuse to endorse Gore; they can also be found in an article by Coburn and St. Clair (progressive.org) also partially excerpted below:
Gore has failed to save forests both in this country and worldwide. At the WTO, in concert with his boss, he began to push for a global free trade agreement on timber with no conservation measures.
At the start of 1999, the Administration killed the Biosafety Convention being negotiated in Cartagena because Clinton and Gore wanted to protect the interests of biotechnology firms.
Although Gore launched an initiative against sprawl in 1999, he is simultaneously promoting sprawl in Florida. His actions will ultimately harm Everglades National Park by locating a commercial aviation and industrial center adjacent to it.
Gore broke his commitment to clean water in Appalachia. Further, the failure of the Administration to enforce the strip mine law has resulted in the removal of entire tops of mountains, the filling of valleys with rubble, and the obliteration of more than 1,000 miles of streams.
When West Virginia citizens successfully sued the Office of Surface Mining,
the Administration conspired with the West Virginia Congressional delegation
to create a political uproar and to get the judge's ruling
"stayed" pending an appeal. Justice has still not come to the victims of mining in West Virginia, where the Armageddon of mountain top removal continues unabated.
In 1992, Gore promised to keep offshore oil and gas drilling away from the
Florida coastline. Yet he never followed through on this promise, despite opposition
to such drilling by both Florida Democrats and Republicans. Now, after seven
years of pressure from many environmental
organizations, Gore says that in the future he will oppose new offshore leases. Why, if he feels this way, did he do nothing over the past seven years, thus allowing the Chevron lease to advance through the administrative process when even the state of Florida, governed by Jeb Bush, opposed it?
Gore demanded that chemical manufacturers begin new tests on nearly 2,800 chemicals. If they don't volunteer to do the tests, he'll force them to do so in what is now called the High Production Volume (HPV) Challenge. The tests include the gruesome lethal-dose-50-percent test (LD50), in which animals are forced to ingest or inhale a chemical in increasing doses until half are dead. In all, Gore's plan will kill an estimated 800,000 birds, fish, rats, mice, and other animals. It will cost taxpayers at least $14 million. He did reduce the original proposal, only after Animal Protection advocates followed his campaign around protesting, and physicians and scientists pointed out flaws and redundancies in the proposed tests. You can read about the positive and negatives relating to Gore on this issue at the website: http://www.gorenomore.com/
In 1992, Gore promised to stop the big hazardous waste incinerator in East
Liverpool, Ohio, but
today the project has proceeded and is polluting the community.
Gore quit on his commitment to protect marine mammals. The Clinton-Gore Administration
undermined protections for giant sea turtles and dolphins as it bowed to pressure from Mexico,
Thailand, India, and Pakistan to weaken our laws.
In 1996, Gore directly ordered the EPA to slow down its implementation of tougher
standards that were required by the Food Quality Protection Act. Since then, he has done nothing
to help implement the Act and nothing to get the worst pesticides out of our foods, according to the
Has Gore done anything good for the environment? A little:
Gore would: protect 40 million acres of roadless areas, has supported creation of numerous nation monuments(parks), supports wilderness protection for the arctic national refuge, supports stricter clean-air standards, supports reducing water pollution from factory farms.
Basic Human Rights: 4
The Clinton-Gore administration continued to supply arms to regimes which were known to kill and torture their citizens on a regular basis in places like Indonesia and Central and South America and parts of Africa. China was given favorable trade status under Clinton-Gore. Gore only gets a slightly better score than Bush because he does not advocate quite as much military support for bloody dictatorships as Bush and he has been less oppressive about American free speech issues as compared to Bush.(see Bush's human rights section on this site for more details).
Sustainable Economics: 6
How American natural resources are extracted strongly impacts large segments of the American economy. In this area Gore has constantly succumbed to the wishes of large resource extractors and polluters who do not practice sustainable techniques.
The administration has constantly rolled over and failed to veto or bottle-up Republican sponsored legislation which caused major clear-cuts and erosion in National Forests. These practices cause a boom-bust economy in the effected industries; the bust cycle being much longer than the boom cycle. The salvage logging legislation and the Forest Service non-enforcement of sustainable logging practices are two of many examples where Gore has failed.
The Clinton-Gore administration has increased monoculture forests and genetically-engineered farm crops which have a higher probability of massive failure due to using a non-hedged strategy.
American health and escalating taxes for "health" care are tightly tied to sustainable and environmentally sound economic practices.
Clinton-Gore have been very supportive of massive hog farms, cattle feed lots and large factory-farm chicken operations which have caused massive water pollution and health problems, serious worker injury, lowered net disposable income and lowered real estate values in the areas neighboring these factory farms. The long-term economic and environmental costs resulting from these industries far out-weigh the small number of direct jobs these industries produce.
Gore has been better than Bush on some economic issues that indirectly relate to having a sustainable domestic economy, such as, an improvement in the minimum wage, low-wage earner savings inducements and certain worker health protection acts.
In a brief summary, Gore is Clinton without the personal issues the press likes to concentrate on. Perhaps he will be a little better than Clinton on technology and environmental issues but retains many of the status quo policies which supports both the big contributor corporate agenda and many of the destructive federal bureaucracies agenda's.
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