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Voice of the Voter - This Week's Stories

Tell us what's important to you. Submit your article to Voice of the Voter today.
This page updates every other Wednesday

Is America Facing a New Cold War with North Korea and Iran?

Since the recent launch of a test rocket from North Korea there has been renewed interest in the possibility of North Korea becoming a nuclear threat to the rest of the world. At the same time Iran has remained defiant in the face of calls for them to suspend their uranium enrichment program. Now that the United Nations Security Council has unanimously voted to condemn the launch of the test rocket by North Korea the North Korean government has moved to remove UN inspectors from the country and have vowed to resume enrichment activities which could lead to them building up a nuclear weapons stockpile.

With these latest developments the question arises of whether the United States may be looking at another arms race of sorts with North Korea and Iran stepping into the role of the Soviet Union in a quest to end American military dominance on the world stage. While neither country possesses the military capabilities of the former Soviet Union they do pose regional threats that endanger key American allies in their respective regions. With alliances throughout Asia and the Middle East inconsistent from country to country it could cause a potential global conflict if war involving nuclear weapons were to break out in either region surrounding Iran or North Korea. In the face of such a threat it would be reasonable to assume that America would feel the need to arm our allies in the regions to maintain a balance of power. In response the allies of North Korea and Iran would likely also increase the defense capabilities of those nations in response to our arming of our allies. Thusly another arms race unfolds.

So what can be done to avoid the arms race that could lead to World War III? Some posit that the only way to avoid this escalation is to strike Iran and North Korea so as to destroy their capacity for creating nuclear weapons. Others promote a tactic of increased diplomacy and direct talks aimed at negotiating away the threat to world peace. Which is correct? Is either way going to be effective or could there be another alternative which could avert the threat without setting a dangerous precedent of giving in to the demands of rogue nations?

One thing to consider is that the current methodology has proven ineffective in stemming the tide of nations striving for nuclear weapons. As the only nation on earth to ever deploy these weapons in war we are in a unique position to understand the pros and cons of nuclear weapons. We know that using the weapons should be an option of last resort which comes only in the most desperate of situations. From that position of knowledge we know that the end goal should be one of global disarmament. We also know that if we refuse to entertain the notion of American nuclear disarmament we will likely find no real level of success in convincing other nations to dismantle their nuclear programs. In the end the answer may come down to compromise with nations like North Korea and Iran. On multiple occasions both nations have shown a willingness to talk but also are clearly not willing to be dictated to by America. It will likely only be through some form of compromise that America will achieve its goal of a non-nuclear Iran and North Korea.

Troy Wilson-Ripsom - Staff Writer | E-mail Comments on this article. | Click icon to Digg this article

Are American Cities Really Going Green?

Over the last few years many cities have claimed to go green and have plans for being zero waste cities in fairly short order. Citizens are encouraged to utilize the citiesí recycling programs to reduce waste and it is presented as a way to save money for cities in reduced landfill and promote positive environmental change for the cities as a whole. The problem is, they are not telling people the whole story.

Oakland, CA: the Oakland Recycles program through private contractors picks up recycling bins once a week and takes them off to be recycled. People put things in the bins like newspaper, bottles, cans and other recyclable materials. The problem is that the other recyclable materials such as scrap metals and plastics are not being recycled. The materials are perfectly recyclable but the city has made the decision to send them to landfills instead of recycling them.

Before writing this article, I approached the city recycling program for comment. There was no reply to my inquiry. Without reading too much into the lack of reply it is clear to me that it was not an important enough issue to them to take the time to reply to my inquiry into the reasoning for their apparent double standard when it comes to recycling. Bottles and cans are recycled along with newspaper and other paper products. Despite the fact that the San Francisco Bay Area is home to no less than ten scrap metal recyclers, Oakland chooses to throw away revenue, unnecessarily increase the landfill volume and pollute the planet because they refuse to establish a scrap recycling program as part of their residential Oakland Recycles program.

The big question this situation raises is how many more cities are doing exactly the same thing across America? Scrap metal and plastic can be sold to raise revenues for cash strapped cities yet Oakland which is in a perpetual budget crisis is throwing away money. Tons of recyclable materials are being dumped into landfills because they are essentially the wrong shape and size to meet the cityís idea of what recyclables should look like.

If you donít know what your cityís policy is on recycling, take the time to find out. If they donít recycle scrap plastics and metals, donít put them in the bins. Take the materials to a scrap recycler near you and get some money for things you would have thrown out anyway. If our cities canít get on the ball it is left to us to do the right thing. If we happen to make a little money in the process, hey, consider it a bonus.

Troy Wilson-Ripsom - Staff Writer | E-mail Comments on this article. | Click icon to Digg this article



Get Involved

Do you sit and yell at the TV when politicians come on? Do you shake your head sadly whenever you see a homeless veteran? Is that all you tend to do?

It's time to put up or shut up America. We all love to talk about how we could do things better or how we would do it if we were in charge. Well, it's time to put your money where your mouth is. If you can think of it, you can write it down. If you can write it down, you can type it. If you can type it, you can e-mail it and if you can e-mail it, you can send it here.

We at Reform America are committed to giving voice to anyone who wants to put their ideas out there to make our nation a better place. As the readership grows, we are able to take those views to a wider and wider audience. Grassroots campaigns begin with voices speaking out. You have opinions. Voice them. We aren't about conservative or liberal. We aren't about pro-this or anti-that. We're about Americans and the First Amendment. Reform America is about politics by, for and of the people. You are the people. You only need to speak up. America is listening. Send your article to: stories@reform-america.net



Have You Been Downsized Due to Outsourcing?

For several years now we have listened to some within the business community tell us that America can't compete on a global scale unless they send our jobs overseas where they can be done cheaper. The question becomes, if we don't have good paying jobs here, how can we sustain our own economy? We want to hear from you. Have you lost your job? Have you been forced into a lower wage job due to outsourcing? Has outsourcing been a success for you? Did you end up in a better job?

Tell us your story so we can make sure the politicians see how outsourcing really impacts the workers who are backbone of America. Send your story to stories@reform-america.net

 

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