Written October 30, 2008
AFTER THIS ELECTION, IT’S ONLY OUR CHOICE!
I'm a long-time conservative but didn't vote for either one of the two main candidates this time. I did struggle some with that but finally concluded that they both represent nothing more than more of the same.
I realized while completing my absentee ballot that I had many questions about the main candidates and the direction they were promising to take our country. Oh they both have mounted the usual spirited attack campaigns and both camps have the rhetoric down pretty good; plenty of money… collectively spending more than a billion promising everything and assuring change and all that.
But this time I’m really concerned about what I’ve been seeing and hearing and was looking for more. Our country is such a mess right now and it seems that respect for us around the world is worse than I can ever remember. And it’s painfully apparent now that our very way of life can be compromised by this current economic calamity.
From most of what we’ve been hearing during this election process, you’d think it was all George W. Bush’s fault. Having voted for him the past two cycles, I can’t even begin to express my disappointment in him so I won’t say anything more about that! But the fault for this whole mess lies elsewhere and is much broader than just him and his policies.
This election is important, if not the most important of my lifetime. We are in dire need of leadership and real change but I don’t think we’re going to get it this time from either party! As for the two main party's current offerings, I’ll try to be as unemotional and objective as I can in describing how I feel about them and why I’m sure that neither one is the answer!
I think that Obama is a smart guy and definitely an eloquent and captivating speaker. But I have issues with his lack of experience; his lack of candor and personal disclosure; his many unusual relationships and associations; and the many distortions and contradictions that he and his campaign have presented. Essentially, much of what we have learned about him and his associations through other than mainstream sources is pretty scary! Also it seems to me that he’s the main one skirting all of those issues. I also suspect that he’s been bred, coached and promoted for the job… but by whom? It’s astounding to me the lack of inquiry and criticism of his past by the media! And what are his qualifications really?
As for McCain, by and large, what you see is what you get… and that’s not much! He seems a nice guy and at times he’s bucked the typical “politics as usual” crap. I admire his background and character and he is the most qualified, but Presidential… please! I did struggle with the fact that if I vote for him it would offset a yes vote for Obama, but I’d been there before and decided this time to stick to my conviction and vote for the one I thought the best choice.
I find Palin smart, likable, refreshing and interesting, plus it’s a bonus that she’s not conditioned to the “old boy” politics that’s so much a part of our system now. I think she has potential and find it positive that most of the media and politicians from both parties have chosen to criticize her. But aside from only Obama, she’s less qualified to be President than many of the others that could have been on the ticket!
As for Biden…uh well, I wouldn’t consider choosing him as running mate “the best choice to be President if something bad happens to me”, a testament of good judgment. Most of the time one could think he’s being paid by the McCain camp.
Both campaigns for the most part have offered up more self-serving bull than substance! Although I’m a long-time republican, it’s apparent to me that neither one of the two main parties or candidates can or will address the real issues and problems we now face. I’m confident though, that there is a way out of this mess but to get there we have to understand how we got to where we are now in the first place!
Crazy as it may seem, but convinced that I didn’t have a real choice anyway, I decided to be honest with myself and support the only politician I’ve heard in some time with realistic views of our country and the rest of world! And moreover, the only candidate that has offered sane and concrete solutions to the issues we now face… Ron Paul!
My main concern about the choice was that I would hate to see the liberals control everything as I doubt that’s what the founders had in mind. Anyway, how could one vote have any influence on that especially when my candidate has to be written in? Like I wrote above… I’m being honest with myself this time!
The way I see it, the root problem we face as a country now is endemic to the size and scope that the great United States Government and associated bureaucracies have become. The founders of our country would surely be surprised at this! In their time they tirelessly debated and considered various outcomes for the potential and future of the United States. I feel that in their wisdom they must have thought about the possibility of the problems that are happening now and the challenges we currently face. That was the reason and basis from which they debated, wrote and implemented the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as a guide. I think that they would be appalled at how far we’ve strayed and what we’ve become!
If the Constitution, corresponding laws and the founders’ philosophies had been maintained, we wouldn’t be in this current tenuous situation. There are plenty of opinions to support this based in fact. After all, it's there in the Constitution, with the many associated writings thereafter, for all to look at. Ron Paul, a medical doctor and Congressman has based his political life around studying and supporting those principals. It’s obvious that he, above any other in the fray, has supported and expresses those sentiments continually.
The founders never proposed that the federal government do anything much more than facilitate the means for commerce, maintain the value of our currency and protect the citizens! This is a big part of what the Constitution prescribes and intends. That doesn't mean becoming part of our “used to be private” banking system or being a contractor and construction company, prison keepers, drafting our children into the military or, as Obama has suggested, other types of public service for accepting a government handout! It especially doesn't mean creating, maintaining and growing giant bureaucracies within the federal government to show us how to live and control every facet of our lives. I wonder if the founders ever conceived of an economy controlled by a Federal Reserve. Or, what federal reserve would even mean these days?
Taxpayers have provided trillions of dollars to the federal government over the past few years! (Maybe it would be more appropriate to say the government has extracted trillions). Yet our infrastructure is crumbling and we can't afford to fix it; legions of citizens go without health care; our students cannot compete academically with much poorer nations; we don’t protect our borders, and on and on. Does that make sense when we are the richest, most progressive, innovative and admired democracy the world has ever seen? We were the country to which most people around the world wanted to immigrate and other nations wanted to be like. What is happening to that sentiment now as we’re losing the respect of much of the rest of the world?
Fixing our infrastructure makes sense on many levels. Remember the Minnesota bridge collapse? Well there are many more like it in every part of the country. Soon Iraq, by and large, will have better roads and bridges than we do! However, unlike what either one of the two main candidates is want to do, there’s no sound reason for the federal government to fund another bureaucracy to build our roads and bridges… with their track record of trying to do those types things that would surely be a waste of time and resource! And there's no reason why they should manage jails, print inflating un-backed dollars out of thin air, or create laws at the federal level that contradict the laws developed by our states and local communities. And I don’t think the founders ever intended or even imagined the concept of a supreme federal court and a federal court bureaucracy the size that we currently support.
Let's see, with the more or less 700 plus billion we send to foreign oil suppliers and the billions we spend in Iraq and Afghanistan per month “protecting our country”, including the billions of funding ongoing to maintain the rest of the empire; bases around the world, foreign aid, etc., along with the untold billions wasted at home in every other imaginable way, we could probably afford to build quite a bit of new stuff that would put millions to work, take care of our seniors, help educate our youth and even support good private health care for all! With the right attitude and leadership we could change our need to import so much oil and even develop and lead the rest of the world in implementing a culture of using alternative sources of clean, safe and domestic energy. What could that be worth to us and the rest of the world?
And unlike what the current breed of politician may think… I don't mean transferring government income from those savings into those types of federal programs. We need to have a much smaller, less intrusive federal government that costs way less. We need to reduce the tax basis so that citizens, private interests and local government can have the money and incentive to do those types of productive and needed things. I’d bet the farm that the two main candidates or their party’s, aside from occasional rhetoric, would try or seriously consider doing anything like that!
I’m a long time hawk, a Vietnam veteran and will always be for a strong military… but one designed primarily to protect our country and citizens, not one used to buy influence and to intervene in other countries’ and regions’ local affairs and politics. Why do we need to support more than 300 bases around the world… to protect us and our allies? I don’t think so! The founders wanted us to be, for the most part, non-interventionists and besides, we just can’t afford to do that anymore!
I believe that we can have greater influence around the world the way we used to… by taking care of what we need at home; by providing help to the rest of the world when needed from a strong base; and by showing the world what the most productive and innovative democracy and wealth generator in the world is capable of doing! Part of that solution has to be reeling in our bloated empire and all that it represents, evaluate and eliminate the many needless bureaucracies we now have to support, abandoning the federal war on drugs and by implementing a type of value added tax that would be truly fair for all and certainly net much more revenue.
The state where I lived, California, a very liberal state with many faults, has laws and a policy fairly lax about the use and possession of certain drugs. However, federal laws and policies supersede, indict and prosecute citizens by ignoring the local laws while contradicting the most basic principle of our Constitution… that the federal government not-interfere with state and local governments about such issues! Does anybody really understand the type of powers the federal government has created for itself by implementing the Patriot Act? We are learning more everyday about how little we really know about that…how scary is that?
Remember the federal government was designed primarily to protect us, facilitate commerce and maintain the currency… don't get me started on what they're doing to the currency and what the dollar is really going to be worth in the very near future! Let’s just say we've strayed a long way from our founders intentions in many ways! With a better tax structure and by respecting local jurisdiction without interdiction by the huge federal bureaucracy… taxes, drugs, health care, education, retirement and many other social issues would be much less of a problem for all of society.
I would think it hard to argue that doing these things doesn’t make sense! To solve our problems the federal government has to shrink dramatically! It will be very difficult but not impossible for the feds to give up those bureaucracies. We should all know by now that the only nature of a “mature” bureaucracy is to perpetuate and grow itself! Our federal government now is “really mature” and fortunately can’t get much bigger without the whole deal collapsing… and soon! Now it’s not in our best interest to let our current system totally collapse and it will be a real challenge and a struggle to wean government and ourselves away from this, but not impossible.
People, this should be our main focus and priority! It is without any doubt our only true issue and we are solely responsible for doing it! We are the only ones that can make this happen… us, the citizens of the United States of America! It’s not as impossible as it sounds as our political process, fashioned by the foresight of our founders, was and still is designed for us to have the capability to take control and make it happen. We just need to realize this and get back to the principles of our founders and the Constitution.
Dr. Paul has written much about this in his many books on the subject of our freedom as prescribed by the Constitution and Bill of Rights! We can and must…WILL…Murphy is an optimist, find the right combination of leaders and legislature who will serve the nation under the guidelines set forward by our founders. Guidelines that are non interventionist, that if willfully implemented can shrink the federal government, make our economy healthy and give us control of our country again so that we can effectively address the real issues with which we are confronted.
This idea is starting to get real traction now! Read his work and support others that are like-minded. Look for those types of leaders in your community at the local and state level! Support and encourage them to run for elective office and vote for them! Help them make their way nationally to Congress and to the White House!
It’s not too late and never forget that we can change our country. Remember the movie Network and Howard Beale's “I'm mad as hell and not going to take it anymore”! Well I think that right now the people are madder than they've ever been. The climate is ripe for change and I don't mean Obama or McCain or only Republicans or Democrats and business as usual. There are options and sooner than later they won't be ignored.
Michael Murphy, October 30, 2008
Latest posts by Mister MandM (see all)
- POTUS & Mr. Congeniality - January 15, 2013
- Hmmm… No Picture? - May 5, 2011
- Notes About Travel Screening and Security - February 17, 2011
- Bread and Circus, Egypt and a New Political Delusion - January 31, 2011
- Here's to the Beast - November 2, 2010
- Maybe That Crazy Pastor Was Only Making a Point! - September 10, 2010
- The Politics of Petty on the Arizona Immigration Law - May 18, 2010
- Finally Ridding Ourselves of the Slack - November 5, 2009
- I Love Those Kids Singing for Obama… - September 25, 2009
- The Ted Kennedy Memorial Healthcare Legislation??? - August 28, 2009
- Obama, Gibbs, Gates and Fox News Sunday - July 27, 2009
- I haven’t felt like ranting… - May 15, 2009
- Interesting Day to Do Some Media Watching… - April 16, 2009
- Questions to the Answers We are Getting to the Wrong Questions - April 3, 2009
- Racketing Up the U.S. Auto Industry - March 30, 2009
- Ridding Dr. Paul of His Demons - March 27, 2009
- Thoughts About the Last Election - March 25, 2009
- Let’s remedy the drug violence! - March 23, 2009
- Tarp, Tarp Me Do! - March 3, 2009
- Thoughts on the Rhetoric…Again! - March 2, 2009
- Fairly Free - March 1, 2009