The crowd is pumped for their candidate and media devices around the world are connecting hundreds of millions of listeners to the Garden's floor on 14 September 2008. The Garden is a-buzz with raucous delegates.
Announcer: "Ladies and gentlemen, it is my honor to introduce your candidate, and the future 44th president of the United States, David Schwartz."
The crowd erupts as Schwartz emerges to smile and wave at his supporters. The Garden is out of control with cheers, dancing, and applause. Schwartz takes the podium and breaks into the noise, "Thank you...Thank you very much."
The noise subsides as the candidate begins:
Where did we lose sight of the path of dreams and aspirations?
This year, you the people, have a real choice.
On the one hand: The Republicans continue to claim that nothing is wrong, the economy is fine, the environmental warnings are not their fault, and the threats to homeland security are overseas.
On the other hand, the Democrats continue to play the attack and stall tactics of the politics of the past. They offer no real solutions and have let the middle class down for the past eight years. [applause]
So, the question is: Why vote for an independent candidate in 2008?
The answer is simple. It is not to make a political statement. This year’s election has too much at stake to waste it on idealism. There are real pressing issues that face all of us as a nation and we need to be careful what type of leader we choose to lead us for the next four years. [applause]
I am proposing a four-part plan. The four Es. Education, Economy, Environment and Equal Opportunity.
The first part of my proposal will be to expand education programs across the country. [applause]
Whatever President Bush’s intentions with No Child Left Behind, he didn’t deliver on his promise. The only thing Bush’s plan did was leave all children behind a wall of tests, anxiety and racial inequality in education. [raucous applause]
His plan was comprehensive, but unsuccessful coupled with zero federal funding.
[The subheading "Education:" is projected on the wall behind Schwartz.]
It's time to stop talking about making education a priority. Education will be my number one issue. Every citizen in the United States should have the ability to earn a degree regardless of age, race, gender, or socio-economic background. This will be possible by first offering the most comprehensive college tuition credit and loan program in the history of America. [applause]
My administration will also work with educational professionals and not dictate to them how to run their schools. Education should not be about money. Education should not be about politics and education should most definitely not be about test scores. The education of America’s students will be about student learning. [applause]
The best test for student achievement are the teachers that have those students in their classrooms each and everyday. And my plan won’t require students to fill in test sheets, but ask the teachers, principals, and guidance counselors to answer detailed progress reports. My education plan will not be about leaving children behind, but pushing everyone ahead.
It's a simple difference in perspective. It matters not to me the minimum requirements that students have mastered, but we should as a nation start to imagine a world in which all of our students achieve the highest potential of which they are capable.
[The subheading "Economy:" is projected on the wall behind Schwartz.]
The second part of my proposal will be to stimulate our economy. Again, I do offer a more realistic approach to our fiscal strength. The Republicans believe tax cuts boost the economy. The Democrats believe that lowering interest rates help Americans spend more money.
I have an alternate viewpoint.
Our gross domestic product is the highest of all industrialized nations, and yet our economy somehow can't seem to stay above water. Why? I believe that our laws and our tax codes are too restrictive to the transfer of money from those that have and to those that have not. [applause]
This is not socialism. This is charitable giving. This is social Darwinism. This is being an American at the core of our ideals and beliefs. If we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal, than it should be allowed that if corporations wish to give donations to various groups that they should be commended and praised not penalized. [applause]
My proposal would be to create a joint public-private task force to tackle the most deleterious ills in our society. Child healthcare, poverty, homelessness and starvation. [applause]
No American should be without water, food and shelter in the United States and it will be the Task Force's mission to accomplish that goal. I believe that if we as a nation can achieve that, then our economy will regain its confidence and swagger. [applause]
Of course, the side affect of the task force will be to create jobs, which helps boost the economy. But our nation is undergoing a major shift in worker industries.
I also propose legislation that takes a much harder and closer look at the SEC and the stock market. The scandals of Enron, MCI, and Tyco have hurt the credibility of our economy. Are we still safe from the corporate raider, and unscrupulous CEO?
To most of us, SEC filings don't mean a whole lot, but to Wall Street and the companies publicly traded those regulations are very prohibitive. But did they protect us? No. In fact, the entire system on which our economy trades makes almost no sense to most of us. I can see some of the largest companies in the world, being publicly traded today with stock prices plummeting because they only earned 4 percent instead of 5 percent.
In a new world economy, we need to be very careful that we analyze companies on broader ranges than just revenues. We need to find a level playing field; otherwise we may be bankrupting our future for present gains. [applause]
[The subheading "Environment:" is projected on the wall behind Schwartz.]
Just like protecting our economy, the third part of my proposal will be to get back to protecting our environment. We have wasted too many years not caring about the harmful effects of pollution, contamination and unsafe water. [applause]
We need to invest in alternative fuel sources. [applause] This will not only help improve our environment, but the innovations will create new jobs, and new sources of revenue for our economy. The environment can be the single biggest boost to our nation since the end of WWII. [raucous applause]
New innovations in environment friendly fuel, recycling, transportation, and agriculture can pave the way to new industries.
Imagine cleaner buses, cars, trains, and airplanes. Imagine safer and more efficient energy sources. Imagine cheaper and healthier foods to eat and grow. [applause]
America has a window of opportunity to seize the moment and be a leader in a new world of environmental safety and prosperity. [raucous applause]
[The subheading "Equal Opportunity:" is projected on the wall behind Schwartz.]
And that leads me to my final piece of my proposal, which is equal opportunity for all Americans.
WE the people need to remember that we all have an equal stake in our future. America is not for the rich. It is for all of us. [applause]
We all are the huddled refuge yearning to be free. We have gotten away from that and we need to remind ourselves that hard work, sacrifice and belief in the American Dream are real.
We are talking about real opportunity and real equality.
Equal Opportunity will be the over-arching theme during my administration. Whenever a piece of legislation or an issue comes across my desk at the White House, I will ask one simple question. Does this include everyone? [applause]
No more pork rolling, no more graft, no more political favors, unless All Americans will benefit. [raucous applause]
Equal Opportunity to education, equal opportunity to jobs, equal opportunity to investments, equal opportunity to real estate, equal opportunity to owning or operating a business, equal opportunity to prosperity, and equal opportunity to healthcare. [applause]
And one more. An equal opportunity to vote. The exclusions of the past can no longer be allowed to creep into our future. [applause]
I believe that you have a real choice in this election.
An opportunity to make a better tomorrow for yourselves and your children is what sets our values apart from Republicans and Democrats. [applause]
Do you want an America that is only for one segment or the other? Both parties claim to represent all the people, but passing tax cuts only benefit the top one percent of our country. And both parties claim to care about our children’s futures, yet young people seem to be without jobs, healthcare and hope for a brighter tomorrow.
I am proposing an America that is for everyone.
We either all move forward or we all shall be left behind.
Thank you and God Bless America." [raucous applause and ovation]
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