General Question

stevenb's avatar

Do you think the US would have been better off if Al Gore had won the election?

Asked by stevenb (3836points) July 17th, 2008 from iPhone

I always here people say they wish he had won, but would we be better off? I think he is half nuts personally, and I will never critisize any president because I haven’t done that job myself. Everyone always blames the president for everything bad, and never gives credit for good things. He doesn’t run this country alone, nor does he make important decisions without alot of other peoples input. The president had to listen to congress, senate, and everyone, and hope they will go his way. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. I get irritated when people make it sound like every bad thing this country does or doesn’t do is completely his fault alone. I know he is the figurehead, but he doesn’t work alone. All that said, where do you think we would be if Gore was President and we still had gone through Sept. 11th? Where would we be economy wise, etc. Don’t hold back, and let er rip.

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37 Answers

shilolo's avatar

Um, is there another way to answer this other than, YESSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!

SilentlyLogical's avatar

I don’t think so. I personally think we would of been worst off. Global Warming is a huge joke. The average temp is down by two degrees Celsius. Co2 isn’t a freaking pollutant. The ozone layer is basically made of co2. The ice caps are melting because the world is still coming out of the last ice age. And yet we have people like Gore who think its real. And I can’t take anyone who is gullible to believe in the earth warming seriously.

gilgamesh's avatar

well Gore seems to have accomplished a lot since his initial presidency run
yeah i would say things could have turned out better

ezraglenn's avatar

@Silentlylogical, that is loudly illogical and a factually unsupported argument.

tinyfaery's avatar

Well, it couldn’t be any worse. I think we’d be a lot further along on things like limiting carbon emissions and alternative energy production. That alone would have created a lot of jobs, thus furthering the economy. I also think that the US would be in higher favor with the rest of the world had Al been elected. I call him Al because I met him when he taught a class at my university.

There really is no way to know. But speculation, and educated guessing, leads me to say yes.

SilentlyLogical's avatar

ezlragldnn: to the contrary. It is completly logical and has been supported by scientists. If you ask anyone where I live about global warning, they’ll say it’s a ton of shit and give you the scientiffical evidence that supports their claim

sndfreQ's avatar

Al Gore’s position is that we are influencing dramatic changes in global climates due to our conspicuous consumption and deregulation of major industrial polluters. At least that’s what I gathered after watching his doc.

El_Cadejo's avatar

Al Gore did win the election.

@silentlylogical i guess you live in a very uneducated town.

shilolo's avatar

@Silently. You must know chemistry and atmospheric physics very well… The ozone layer is composed of ozone (O3), not carbon dioxide, CO2. Furthermore, since you are so knowledgeable about how false the claim is about global warming, why don’t you educate us? I majored in chemistry, so please, don’t spare me the gory details. I’m all ears.

Poser's avatar

I think it’s less productive to ask what would’ve happened had (fill in the blank) been President at a given point in history than it is to ask how a given President did while he held office. I think it’s a bit naive not to question a President’s decisions based on the fact that we have never been there. I’ve also never been a doctor, but you’d better believe I’ll question the job one does on me if he screws up.

I also have to point out that the President is not merely a figurehead. He isn’t just the face of American government. The buck stops with him, so to speak. Yes, he has endless aides, advisers and staff working for him, but those people are there merely to give him suggestions. He is the ultimate decision maker, and responsibility rests with him. He is much like the captain of a ship.

I served several years aboard the USS John F. Kennedy (God rest her soul). During that time, we failed a major safety and readiness inspection. It was found that maintenance and upkeep had been neglected in vital departments for years, making us unsafe to operate. Three people from the ship lost their jobs over that fiasco, one of them being our Commanding Officer. He wasn’t the one who was supposed to be down in the spaces turning a wrench to make the ship ready to operate. But he’s the one that lost his job because he had ultimate responsibility for the ship. There have been other incidents where Skippers lost command for incidents over which they had no direct fault. It is the same with the President. Ultimate responsibility for the actions of the executive branch lies with him.

People can blame GW until they’re blue in the face for the Iraq war, but until we start holding politicians responsible (I’m talking impeachment proceedings—with follow through), all the talk in the world won’t matter. And further, last I checked, we had three branches of government, each of which is supposed to check the unadulterated power of the other two. We didn’t go into Iraq or hand our civil liberties over on a platter called the USA Patriot Act without the willing support of Congress. Let’s toss some of those jokers out on their asses too.

mirza's avatar

No. I mean i would rather have him then bush. But I dont like him. I think global warming is al gore’s propaganda (Yes thats what i believe. i dont care what science says or what you say for that matter. Sue me). There are a lot more important issues that need to be dealt with before global warming.

A question to fluther: Whats up with the personal attacks ? I mean isn’t everyone supposed to be nice on fluther (thats what makes it different from yahoo answers). People have their own opinions and let them have theirs. So lay off silently logical

@poser: agreed

Zaku's avatar

Yes. The Bush administration seems pretty clearly responsible for many unprecedented atrocities and I think moved us much further towards Fascist-Orwellian-Petroleum horror than a Gore administration would have. The Patriot Acts, the War On “Terror”, Homeland Security, the worst environmental record for any US administration, endless occupation of Iraq, and a raft of other disgusting episodes.

shilolo's avatar

@Mirza. Nice of you to say for silently, but no one is going to take your argument seriously if your sole argument is “I don’t care what science says.” There may be a lot of things that need addressing, but global warming is certainly a major global problem on which the US has had the most impact. If you want to have a “debate” about global warming, at least have the courage to provide some facts supporting your position.

breedmitch's avatar

I think Sarah Vowell best put my feelings about the potential of a Gore presidency into words in her essay “Nerds vs. Jocks” from The Partly Cloudy Patriot.

“Gore’s pencil neck tugs at my nerdy soul. I think the most lovable thing he has ever said can be found in a sentence in his 1992 book Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit. On page 67, he asks,“What happened to the climate in Yucatan in 950?” Something about the specifics of that query lit me up. For the first time, I could see casting my ballot for a man who would pose such a question. It was just so boldly arcane. The kind of mind that would wonder about temperature variations on a Caribbean peninsula a thousand years ago might have the stomach to look into any number of Americans’ particular concerns. Paradoxically, this fervor for scientific facts- the thing that alienates him from voters because they see him as cold- requires no small amount of passion. You don’t write a four-hundred-page book about ecology unless you have the heart.
“Of course, Gore being Gore, he doesn’t write just about what he knows. Gore being Gore, he is compelled to confess the dweebish details of how he learned what he knows. Earth in the Balance features countless hints that his life is an ongoing study hall: ‘Since that time, I have watched the Mauna Loa reports every year’ or ‘Beginning in January 1981, I spent many hours each week for more than thirteen months intensively studing the nuclear arms race.’ January 1981 he says—I bet it was his New Year’s resolution.. Every other member of Congress was vowing to cut back on the hookers, but then-Senator Gore probably French-kissed Tipper at midnight and made a mental pledge to really get a handle on those ICBM’s.”

I want that nerd President. I feel like the country was robbed.

jacksonRice's avatar

uberbatman is the only person to say it so far—gore did win the election.

obviously global warming is a very real threat; i shudder to think what kind of misinformation people such as silentlylogical (ironic username much?) have been swallowing.

it’s fairly obvious as well that al gore has been using his knowledge & understanding of our ecological problems to his political advantage; i don’t have a problem with him doing that personally: that’s just politics. if you want to crucify a politician individually for what is really a problem with our political system (ie, gore gaining power for defending the polar bears, clinton gaining power for calling for health care), take a step back & attack our advertising-centered system of campaigning & election.

finally, bush’s seeming lack of interest in the global warming problem is not, in my opinion, his most disastrous stance as a president. i look to the declining economy, a lack of health care, this dumb war, katrina, & a blatant defiance of international laws for that. i can only hope that gore would have had better solutions each time.

Poser's avatar

And at the risk of beating this dead horse senseless, we are going to keep getting these types of yahoos running our country until we do something about it. How much do you think Bill Clinton regrets lying under oath (remember, that’s why he was impeached—not for tickling Monica Lewinsky’s ivories)? How has his career suffered for that little soup-sandwich? For chrissake, the man committed perjury! You and I would go to jail for that, and this man doesn’t even get a slap on the wrist! As a serviceman, I am being held to a higher standard than my Commander-in-Chief! I will lose my commission for lying, and my career as a naval aviator will be over. Yet he’s still considered one of the best presidents ever by many people. Is it any wonder that our government is boldly corrupt? There are absolutely no penalties for a politician. They, quite literally, live above the law.

My God, I don’t even recognize this country! I’ve been lied to all my life. I grew up believing that this was a country of bravery, honesty and conviction. Instead I see only whining, corruption and blame-passing. To every Senator and Representative who started criticizing Bush when it became popular, I say put up or shut up. It’s easy to go on Hardball and talk about what an awful job the President is doing. It’s a different thing entirely to show some fucking sack and initiate proceedings to throw the bum out of office. They all talk a big game (when the opinion polls show them which way the wind is blowing today), but when it comes time to do something about it, they fall mysteriously silent. They ask me and my fellow servicemen to put our lives on the line, but they can’t even stake their jobs, positions or reputations to do what they claim is the right thing.

Well I say fuck ‘em. Fuck the whole damn system. We are getting exactly what we deserve. Go ahead and vote for McCain or Obama. Re-elect your incumbent Senators and Representatives, or the next slick used-car salesman who tells you exactly what you need to hear. It doesn’t matter. If you can’t see a future different from the only one they’re offering you, then you deserve what you get. As for me, I’m forever throwing my votes away on those who exemplify the ideals I once believed America was founded on, if I can find any. Ideals that have been pounded into my skull from the first day I stepped into the service of my country. Honor. Courage. Commitment. Ideas men once pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor to uphold. I guess they aren’t self-evident after all.

I’m sorry for the rant. This has been burning in me for a long time.

Upward's avatar

Yes, countless lives would have been saved to start with, we wouldn’t be running concentration camps..
Al Gore won the Noble Peace Prize from the brightest minds in the world. They don’t hand them out to just anyone. I promise you Bush will NEVER see one with his name on it. Great dictator

Upward's avatar

“Great Dictator” award maybe…

stevenb's avatar

@ poser, I agree with a lot of what you said, but Bush isnt like a doctor. A doctor doesnt have two other doctors looking over his shoulders trying to influnce his decisions, or trying to make him give the diagnosis they want. I do think the buck should stop with him too, but the other idiots deserve some credit too, and more than a little.

PupnTaco's avatar

I do. For one thing, he wouldn’t have been so obsessed with taking vacations that he would have ignored a certain report titled “Bin Laden Determined to Attack in the U.S.” Neocons like Rummy, Ashcroft, Wolfowitz, Cheney, and Rove wouldn’t have had a chance to fuck things up either.

wildflower's avatar

If by better off you mean in better standing with the rest of the world, have a healthier economy, actually be contributing to tackling environmental issues…....then, in short: yes!

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

You guys are forgetting something.
What makes you think it won’t happen again when we are still voting on Diebold voting machines?!?!?!

What will it take for people to really get mad??

Great rant Poser. Keep em coming.

chaosrob's avatar

Yes, it would have been better. And, point of order, he did win the election.

stevenb's avatar

It must just piss Gore off every day that everyone says he won, but didnt get in to the White House. That has got to be one of the biggest ‘what ifs” in history. You’ve got to love electoral votes. How many did he win the popular vote by anyway? Wasn’t it miniscule? The sad thing is that I dont think it will still make any more people go out and vote. I vote every election, but I know so many people who didn’t, don’t, and won’t, yet they are usually the biggest complainers about who is in office. I hope more people vote this time.

stevenb's avatar

I still havent heard too much from anyone on how they believe Gore would have reacted to 9–11, and where we would have ended up with him at the wheel. Thoughts? I really appreciate all of your opinions on this. I love to hear what you think without worries about it changing the way we think of each other the way it would in a face to face, I’ve known you for years kind of way. I know its all speculation, but I think it is good to know and it gives everyone a place to vent, which it seems a few of us needed!

PupnTaco's avatar

It may not have happened in the first place, but if it did we wouldn’t be in Iraq. I suspect Bin Laden would be dead and we’d be severing our ties to Middle East oil and prodding automakers harder to develop alternative fuels.

PupnTaco's avatar

To clarify: automakers developing alternatively-fueled vehicles.

marinelife's avatar

Yes, we would have been better off. How are you faring economically right now? Unemployment would be lower. We would never have gone into Iraq. That would have left sufficient troop strength to operate properly in Afghanistan and to capture Bin Laden. We would also be safer because Gore was a big supporter of the 9/11 Commission, many of whose recommendations have not been implemented to this day. Civil liberties under Gore would not have been eroded the way that they have been.

We would have been participating in worldwide efforts to cut emissions, which whether you “believe” in global warning or not is an admirable goal to improve air and water quality. The Justice Department would be focused on civil rights and not on whether the United States should or does engage in torture. Guantanamo would not exist as a prison camp.

stevenb's avatar

What would our relations be with China I wonder. They are such horrid poluters that I wonder what Gore would have done or would be doing about it. Would we even be in the Olympics?

flyawayxxballoon's avatar

This could go either way. On one hand, Bush messed things up so badly that it’s almost impossible to have done any worse. On the other hand, who knows what our relations with Iraq and Iran would be now? Would terrorist attacks still be occuring? It just depends on what Gore would have done to cease and repair such issues.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

flyaway asked if terrorist attacks would still be occuring. I think some people have forgotten that our servicemen and women are suffering terrorist attacks every day in Iraq. Yeah, it’s true the terrorist aren’t coming over here. Why waste money on plane tickets when they can attack us on their turf?

If Bush and Congress had never sent us to Iraq, at least that wouldn’t be happening, and we could focus on preventing real terrorist attacks here, instead of pretending we are by taking our f*ing shoes off at the airport.

jacksonRice's avatar

@la chica gomela, that’s a ridiculous thing to say. if our servicemen/women weren’t on their turf, i highly doubt we would be “suffering terrorist attacks” there. on the contrary, the more urgent statistic is the number of iraqis upon whom we are inflicting terrorist attacks by being in their country against their will, perpetuating violence. (see def. terrorism, from dictionary dot com—“the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, esp. for political purposes.”)
however, i do agree that if bush had never sent us to iraq, this wouldn’t be happening, which i suppose was the more relevant response to the question.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Jackson, I don’t understand your disagreement with me. Everything I read that you wrote seemed like…exactly what I wrote…
So, I don’t think it’s a ridiculous thing to say…

jacksonRice's avatar

forgive me, chica—i only take issue with the idea that we, that is, the united states, are suffering terrorist attacks when it is the US who is upon iraqi soil. i think that we are in the role of terrorist if we are on foreign soil. you said “our servicemen and women are suffering terrorist attacks every day in Iraq” but i don’t think it’s terrorism if it’s defense. that’s all.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Well i would take issue with that. no can claim to be defending himself by planting a roadside bomb, and then running away, or strapping a bomb to his/her chest and walking into a school or hospital. I’m not saying everything that happens in Iraq that causes people to die is terrorism, but for example incidents like those mentioned in this article from the New York Times, titled, “Terrorist Attacks in Iraq and Afghanistan Rose Sharply Last Year, State Department Says” are, in my opinion (and that of the State Dept).

Zaku's avatar

Conventional militaries historically have called planting bombs and traps to be defensive conventional actions. Despite growing disapproval of minefields, Western militaries continue to develop extremely nasty trap and mine technology. Not so much the suicide bombs, though the Kamikaze aircraft were considered defensive, and I imagine that at least some people who take such desperate measures are doing it as a last resort, and so feeling defensive of something in their actions. To be sure, there are terrible things being done often to uninvolved non-fighters on all sides in these and practically all other wars. The attempt to use language to vilify and illegalize the other side though are bringing violence to language and removing attention from the physical violence, and increasing hatred and misunderstanding, it seems to me.

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