Thursday, August 16, 2012

Political Battles

Now that Romney has picked his vice president, the political battles are heating up. Ready for more attack ads? More half truths in advertising? Both sides think the way to win is through painting their opponent as the worst possible candidate ever. Romney is rich and out of touch and thinks everyone should pull themselves up by their own bootstraps (or their father's). Ryan is a devotee of Ayn Rand who hardly anyone knows and even Ryan now is backpedaling from his affection for the atheistic philosopher of radical individualism. Both sides are trying to scare senior citizens out of their dentures - who will be able to afford them and all the other health care they need if Medicare as we know it is gone - or if Obamacare as we don't know it bankrupts the country. So for the next few months we are resigned to negative ads informing us why we don't want to vote for the other guy, and scary scenarios about things we don't fully understand.

Most of what each candidate says about the other guy is not true. There are enough fact checking websites now so we can get closer to the truth. Neither candidate is evil incarnate and if elected spells the end of America as we know it. Both sides have some good ideas if they have the chance to lay them out without trying to spin them so they play better for a certain targeted bloc of voters. If we could elect all four of the candidates and make them sit down and hammer out a plan for our country, it might work. As it is now, neither side is honest about what they really think because they are saying what they think will get them elected. That's the way the system works and there are people with big money backing each candidate so they can get what they want and that is who we should be most concerned about. So, the system will work again this November as it has every four years in the past and America will still be here when it is over. We will try our best to get some straight facts and make our decision about who to vote for as best we can. But, what happens in November will probably not affect life here in our hometown too much. Change, if it does happen, is very slow, glacially slow. The bureaucracy of Washington DC is about as easy to change as any one of us trying to turn around a Sumo wrestler. But, we can work to make changes in our hometown. In our churches. In our communities. There is work to be done right here. Honest work where we can see what needs to be done. Committees need volunteers. Shelters need meals. The elderly need visits. Kids need coaches, and tutors, and mentors. Whatever is ailing America can start being fixed right here. Right now.