UPDATE 11 am Israel time Monday:
There was a major infiltration attempt overnight on the Gaza Border. IDF forces shot and killed a Palestinian terrorist as he attempted to breach the fence.
Thursday has been earmarked as a national “support the South” day, with everyone in the country being encouraged to wear the color red (as in “red warning sirens”) to show solidarity with those communities on the Gaza border that live in their bomb shelters.
By way of disclosure, your humble servant is a dual citizen of the United States and Israel. Because of this, I am eligible to vote in both countries’ elections. Interestingly, while I cannot vote in an Israeli election while I am in the U.S. (no absentee ballots are allowed to be cast in Israeli elections), I am able to vote in the U.S. election while here in Israel.
The process is simple. Before I left California back in June, I went to my county elections office and requested a ballot be emailed to me before the election. I was instructed to print it out upon receipt, vote, and fax or mail the ballot back to the elections office. Of course, I had to waive my right to privacy–obviously there is no privacy when submitting by fax or letter.
One final disclosure: I am a registered “non-partisan” in the United States which simply means that I do not automatically vote for the candidate of one party or another.
I just voted one hour ago. Our California ballot included races for Senator and Representative as well as our local school board. In voting for candidates for all of these positions, I voted for some Democrats and some Republicans. In addition, I voted on numerous California “propositions” ranging from ending the death penalty (I voted “no”) to labeling genetically modified food as such (I voted “yes”).
For President of the United States, I voted enthusiastically for Mitt Romney.
Even though I disagree with Romney on a host of social issues, I think that Romney is the better candidate for a number of reasons, two of which are listed below.
1. The first reason is because of the U.S. fiscal situation.
Everyone can obviously see that the United States is headed down the road to economic disaster with a national debt of $16,000,000,000,000 (actually $16,234,899,872,727.31 as of this moment) and counting. With an oversized government totally unable to live within its means, the U.S. has adopted a “borrow to pay” philosophy.
And while Barack Obama is not solely to blame for this disastrous situation (a procession of Republican and Democratic presidents and Congresses have spent wildly), it fell to Barack Obama in 2008 to do something about it.
He has not. Instead of reversing the trend or even stabilizing it, he exacerbated it–and four more years of an Obama presidency will likely make it irreversibly worse.
In this regard, your humble servant strongly believes that Mitt Romney is more fiscally competent than Barack Obama because of his business acumen and organizational ability. I have the feeling that if Romney puts his mind to solving a problem, it will be solved. I think that Romney will make the hard decisions necessary to put the U.S. back on the road to financial solvency.
2. The second reason is because of Israel.
I have no doubt that in some ways that Barack Obama has been good for Israel. His administration has defended Israel in the U.N. and in the incident involving Israeli diplomats in Cairo. His administration has worked closely with Israel on a wide range of military initiatives. In some cases such as the Iron Dome system, Obama has gone the extra mile to provide Israel with weapons for its defense (though in many of these cases, the force behind the decisions was the U.S. House of Representatives).
Moreover, while we all know that the sanctions against Iran have utterly failed to stop or even slow down Iran’s nuclear program, your humble servant gives Obama credit for cobbling together a coalition to confront Iran.
However, it is important to note that in each of the above examples, I feel that Mitt Romney would have done even more.
Why do I feel this way? Because I think that unlike Mitt Romney, Barack Obama is driven by a naive, amateurish, and overarching hubris in regard to the Middle East and to Israel.
It is this massive arrogance that has substituted “personal outreach” for sound strategic foreign policy.
It is this massive arrogance that has blinded Obama to the Muslim takeovers of the countries of the so-called “Arab Spring.”
It was this massive arrogance that led Obama to spend the first three years of his term attempting to isolate Israel in the international community over the issue of construction in Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria–an attempt that had devastating results for the “peace process” as Palestinians pulled back from negotiations altogether.
And it has been this massive arrogance that has led Obama to actively attempt to undermine the democratically elected government of Benjamin Netanyahu by continuing to court everyone in opposition to Netanyahu from Tzipi Livni to Ehud Barak to Shimon Peres to Shaul Mofaz.
In short, Obama is possessed of a “J Street” mentality–a patronizing arrogance that presumes that he knows best what is best for everyone. In Israel’s case it has led to a rather bizarre paradox. While Obama’s actions have helped to fortify Israel defensively, those defensive fortifications are partly necessary because of Obama’s actions.
In sum, I believe that the best candidate for the United States and for Israel is Mitt Romney–and if you are in the United States, I urge that you vote for him if you have not already.
PS. As of this moment, one hour after I started writing this blog, the national debt of the U.S. now stands at $16,235,042,726,627.82. Click on this link to find out what it is at this moment when are reading this.
Special Note: Because I know that some people who support this blog may have different political views than those of your humble servant, I am not listing our wall of supporters today; it will return tomorrow.