You have to wonder why the big-money folks are spending so much — $59 million so far — to defeat Ted Strickland in the U.S. Senate race. When you meet and talk with the man from Duck Run, he seems like such a nice guy. An intelligent, polished gentleman, befitting the college education and Ph.D. that he worked hard to earn, and the minister he became. Of course, his opponent, incumbent Sen. Rob Portman, also comes across as mild-mannered and reasonable.
But Portman’s image may be just that — an image. As Bush’s Trade Representative and Budget Director, his positions on issues have generally followed the Bush policies. We know how well the trade policies turned out — American products that used to be made in Ohio, now made in China. And Bush’s economics were like the “Voodoo economics” of Reagan — so named by G.H.W. Bush — tax cuts for the wealthy, massive military spending increases, while pretending to believe the budget could be balanced by the new business the tax cuts generated. Problem is, tax cuts for the wealthy don’t generate much business, but they do take away needed dollars from schools, parks, highways, and other vital services.
Jack Burgess is a former teacher of American & Global Studies, and a member of the Gazette’s Board of Contributors.