DIFFERENCES BETWEEN REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS -- (House of Representatives - November 04, 2005)
The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of January 4, 2005, the gentleman from New Mexico (Mr. Pearce) is recognized for 60 minutes.
Mr. PEARCE. Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the opportunity to address the body. We are at a time right now where literally the stakes of America lie in the balance. Our future is going to be determined by our actions today.
Many people often ask me exactly what is the difference between the two approaches, and I will tell you that there are significant differences between the Republican and Democrat approach in Congress. Dennis Prager, a talk show host and author from California, has really summarized those very well; and I will quote from him, but these words express the beliefs of many.
The differences between this side of the aisle and that side of the aisle are important and substantial.
One party believes in American exceptionalism on a national stage, that the United States has better values than any other country. The other believes in the United Nations, the acceptance of all countries' values.
One party believes in universal morality, that is the ultimate good and evil that exists in society and the necessity to choose between them, and that that decision between good and evil should determine the international authority. The other believes the UN-iversal law; that whatever the U.N. decides should be determining our international law.
I will tell you, Mr. Speaker, that that is playing out right now in the United Nations, as we see the head of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, mired in corruption with his own son and with close allies of his in the bureaucracy indicted and involved, and yet we are not hearing one word about that corruption and that involvement from any of our friends on the other side of the aisle in this body.
One party believes that race is irrelevant. One party believes that race is the defining of the human being. I will tell you that race has no characteristic. Character has characteristics. And when we begin to understand that we judge people by their character and not by their race, we are going to be a better country for that.
One party believes in powerful government. One party believes in individual liberty.
One party believes in individual responsibility. One believes society is responsible for individual actions.
We often hear the words that poverty causes crime. If poverty causes crime, then affluence causes kindness. If you want to see that in play, you would look at the most heinous of the drug lords in central and South America, people who are rolling in billions of dollars and yet have an evil intent toward everyone around them and toward everyone in society.
I will tell you that poverty does not cause crime; character causes crime. If you do not have a certain level of income, you are determined to be morally retarded by our friends on the other side of the aisle. And I will tell you that that is one of the biggest insults we can give to people of low income.
One party believes that while compassion is important, standards are more important. One believes compassion is more important than standards. The only people held morally responsible today are white Christian males. In macro-life, society, standards must be more important than compassion. In your personal life, we allow compassion to rule. But when we begin to deal with compassion from the government, someone is always disadvantaged.
One party believes the Boy Scouts are the greatest blessing in America. One believes they are a curse and working daily to undermine the capability of the Boy Scouts to deliver their message and their program.
One party standard bearer believes that the greatest threat to humanity is environmental degradation. One believes that the greatest threat is human evil.
One party believes in secular government. One party believe in secular society. There is a huge difference between a secular government and a secular society. Government without religion or society without religion, if we are without religion as a society, where do we get the moral values that will compel us to follow laws and to act within the bounds of human behavior?
One party believes that Judeo-Christian values and God are what makes society tick. One believes that all values in society are equal, and that is played out in the moral relativism that we see declaring that even in the United Nations we cannot get a definition of what a terrorist state is because all societies are deemed to be equal. They will not condemn any other society in the U.N., and I will tell the Members that that value plays out inside this country, also.
One party believes in the value of Europe. One party believes in the values of Texas. One party regards the Lone Ranger as a moral model. One regards the Lone Ranger as an arrogant unilateralist.
Mr. Speaker, we are faced in these times with extraordinary difficulties. I would remind this body that just as late as 1999 we began to experience tremendous economic difficulties in this country. They were brought on by the collapse of the dot com industry. That was an industry that had built up the prices of its stock so that stocks that had no product, they had no sales, they had no net income, those prices had escalated from zero and $1 all the way to $200 and $300 per share. That was a fictional amount, but our economy experienced a surge in the late 1990s.
Then in 1999 and 2000, while President Clinton was still in office, we had the dot burst of the dot com bubble. That created a recession inside our economy that began to persist. We were just about to work our way out from underneath that economic burden when 9/11 came along. That shocked us again into deep recession.
Once again, the Bush administration, having inherited the dot com collapse, which collapsed before they came to office, and then faced with the economic pressures of the 9/11 catastrophe, fought its way back. And still we were about to come out from underneath those two deep shocks to our economy when we had companies like Global Crossing, which defrauded the Nation out of millions and the chairman of the Democratic Party, on a small investment, made $18 million.
That corporate culture of misleading and pulling money out of stocks and giving it to individuals, that Enron-Global-Crossing-WorldCom then created an even deeper shock into the economy because people began to pull their money out of the stock market and began to put their money into very safe investments but pulling it away from companies where they could grow and expand.
So those three deep shocks were facing this administration almost from the day that they took office, and still we did things as Republicans which caused the economy to turn around. We passed the individual tax cuts. The Governor of New Mexico, a widely respected Hispanic Democrat Governor of New Mexico, stated most clearly when he was lobbying for tax cuts inside the State, he said, and his words are very true, that tax cuts create jobs.
Now that is the question as we go in toward the end of this year, whether or not we are going to let ourselves understand the economic principles and try to achieve growth to where our kids continue to have jobs to go to or if we are going to listen to the other side and say that these tax cuts are just tax cuts for the wealthy. That is the discussion going on now. Do we want a vibrant, growing economy, or do we want to listen to our friends over here harangue about policies of which they appear to not have much understanding of? Who is going to win this economic struggle for the future of the country? That is the question that is involved right now.
I will tell the Members that if we are not dedicated to the principle of building this economic strength back into the economy, we are going to find after January 1, all the tax cuts were temporarily extending until January 1, and they roll out and become noneffective on January 1. If we do not do something about that, I will tell the Members that we are going to find the deep shocks into our economy that are going to penalize all of us.
We are finding, also, that the policies of our friends from decades of obstructing industries in this country that we are harvesting the benefits of those policies of obstructing. For instance, drilling. Are have constantly hearing from our friends that you will not drill here, you will not drill there, you will not drill anywhere. So today we have $70 and we have got $14 gas.
Now what does that mean? The $14 gas is compared with normally $2. One does not have to really understand gas much. Just think about the relationship between 2 and 14, and one will begin to understand the economics that face us. This winter, because of past policies, we are going to reap the benefits of those obstructions to drilling that our friends on the other side of the aisle have thrown up.
We have made decisions not to drill in ANWR, we have made decisions not to drill on the Outer Continental Shelf, and we have made decisions to not drill in the Rocky Mountain regions of the country where tremendous trillions of cubic feet of gas are available. And the losers are going to be the American public and the consumer.
But, long term, we are going to continue losing because our jobs are moving overseas. When we are paying $14 for natural gas in this country and because gas is not easily transported, the pricing tends to be national in scale rather than international. We are paying $14 in this country, and yet many of our friends around the world are paying under $4. Some places pay as little as $1.
One can imagine that if one is a plastics manufacturer here in this country or a chemical manufacturer or a fertilizer manufacturer that they are paying $14 and they could locate a plant where they are paying $1. Common sense and business sense will tell us that there is great incentive for people to go where the $1 gas is, but, when they do that, they are going to take the jobs and the manufacturing facilities and they will never come back to this country because we will never be able to get our price down to where the foreign nations have it. They have such a low relative wage that we are never going to compete dollar for dollar. So once we allow those plants to move overseas, then we will have lost that segment of our economy.
I will tell the Members that that is where the real threat for America lies, in the loss of that economic structure, that economic base for this country.
The future of our children is at stake. Those of us who are baby boomers like myself, I think during the next 10 years we can see that slow deterioration of our economic base. But it is when it is dissipated that our children and grandchildren are going to reap the very sad rewards of policies that our friends on the other side of the aisle, with good intentions and good hearts, have foisted on the American public.
Today, the debate in this country is about the future of this country. President Bush and his administration have steadfastly moved us into pro-competitive, pro-business environments, and our friends here in Congress have constantly criticized that, have constantly thrown up roadblocks to that and have constantly had no suggestions of their own.
Mr. Speaker, I would like to just close today by saying that this is a very important time in our Nation's history. We are fighting basically three deep struggles right now. We are fighting an economic struggle that is worldwide. The worldwide economy has taken traction. Jobs can be here or jobs can be in other countries with equal facility. Investment capital can move up and move to wherever those capitals would want to go. There are absolutely no restrictions. The Internet makes it possible to move one's money literally overnight. So we have an economic struggle where we are competing with low-price, high-quality competition in our labor market.
So the economic challenge is one, but we are also facing a challenge of military circumstances. The war on terror is absolute. It will be fought. It is just a question of whether it will be fought in this country or in the homeland of the terrorists. For myself, I always vote to take the battle to the terrorists there.
We did not invite 9/11 into this country. It came without provocation and with no warning. We are either going to continue seeing that escalation of terrorist attacks inside this country or we are going to find that we will encounter the terrorists and defeat them on their own ground. And I will tell the Members that as long as people are willing to cut off the heads of individuals who are private, nonmilitary citizens, without provocation, that there is no negotiating with that kind of a person. It is a fight to the death, and the more terrorists that we kill and capture and put into prison, the more safe that our streets will be for the kids who are walking on the streets just intending to go to school on certain days.
So we have got the economic struggle going on. We have then the war on terror. But we also have a tremendous social struggle going on where we are trying to determine the values of this country.
Again, my introduction differentiated between the two parties and the approaches to the values. I am not saying that everyone in America agrees with our friends on the other side of the aisle, even if they are in the Democrat Party, but I will say that the leadership here in this Nation is willing to talk fiction and talk nonanswers and throw obstructions into the way of good, hard-nosed policies which guarantee our future, and for that they will be eternally accountable.
They talk about corruption, and yet they fail to mention that the only person in prison today is actually one of their members who came in in my class last year. Only one person. And yet they are sending phone messages and they are sending radio commercials, bank phone calls into many Republican districts saying you should give back that money. Theirs is the side with answers to give, and yet I never hear those questions about their own people. Their agenda is a political one. It is designed to gain back political power at the expense of the Nation. It is a day that they should not be proud of.