Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Our Disdain for Politics....and Occupy Wall Street

The question was posed today online - Are the slew of debates by the Republicans hurting their chances and the party?  How can anyone say, "No?"  Of course they are...for a variety of reasons.  First of all, we've all been bemoaning the length of presidential campaigns for quite some time.  Personally, I'm tired of it already...and the good news is we're more than a year away from the elections!  I know, we have to find the candidate.  I've said it before and stand by my assertion - we're not going to find the person that's best for the job.  We're going to get the person with the fewest amount of skeletons in their closet.  Seriously, we're going to take the current field of 8 or 10 candidates and whittle them down to about 3 or 4.  They will drop out because they have no money or they realize they won't be able to make a successful run after all.  Then, when we narrow down the field, someone will get tripped up by said skeletons.  Don't believe me?  Think Gary Hart.  Think John Edwards.  Trust me, there's dirty laundry out there and we will be witness to the exposure.  Does it not happen every 4 years?  When there are Congressional races, we see it then, too.  We are now more than a year ahead of the elections and have had more than a handful of debates so far.  They stumble over answers - see ya'!  They trot out ridiculous plans that get picked apart - Gone!  They give the Democrats time to kick back, grab a bowl of popcorn, and wait for the implosion...all while they plot how to defeat them and get the President reelected.  Is anyone really guiding this ship?  I can't bear to watch anymore.  Honestly, I am already fed up with the lack of leadership and in-fighting with our elected officials.  Sadly, we now get to watch as they parade around telling us why they'd be best for the job of leading us.  Think about it - the President was elected in 2008 and took office in 2009.  He then had to ramp up and get everyone marching to his wildly mistuned drum.  Congress, apparently, doesn't like the beat of that drum, either...so they make things more difficult.  Now, after the President has had a couple of years (maybe 1,000 days) under his belt to govern, it's time to get reelected.  Forget the working class.  We'll mind the store and hold down the fort while you guys are telling us how great you'd be.  At this pace, I'd say our kids, when they are our age, will elect a President and watch everyone immediately launch the next campaign.  Very, very disheartening if you ask me.  I know no one asked...but I'm the one with the keyboard.  I'm sharing!  This, of course, leads to the Occupy Wall Street protests.

I was wildly lost when I first tried to track down information on the protests.  Asleep at the wheel might be a better term.  The, after a few suggestions by friends, I decided to read.  Novel concept, I know.  Best I can tell, the movement and protests are, well, to protest the fact that we're fed up and the Middle-class is getting screwed.  hey, not my words - I read it somewhere.  Can anyone disagree, though?  It's actually a protest, from what I gather, against big corporations and the fact that they have far too much influence on government.  It's been described as democracy at its most basic level.  It's being knocked for being leaderless.  But leaderless, as it has been explained, does not mean unorganized.  They are organizing in many more areas and, while I can honestly say I have not informed myself enough yet, I know that I am one that believes that lobbyists and corporations are making more of the decisions within our government than the common man.  I know that this group of protesters is making a case for real democracy - as when our forefathers founded our country.  They debate.  They listen.  They argue without fighting.  There are real ideas being discussed, as far as I can tell, to benefit all rather than a select few.  They are growing...and fast.  Even the take on the protests, it seems, are divided across party lines.  And there it is.....

I'm not sure if I fit in with these protests or not.  I only know how I feel.  My opinion is just that - my opinion.  I long, however, for the days of John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Ben Franklin.  I long for the days when spirited debate took place over a cold ale and men argued the pros and cons of differing ideas...ALL for the benefit of the many rather than a mere few.  I long for the days of the greatness of our country.  A time when we listened to each other.  A time when we cared about each other.  A time when we helped each other.  A time when the news wasn't merely filled with murders and rapes.  A time when we heard good news, too.  This weekend, we will travel to celebrate my grandmother's 85th birthday.  Quite a rare event, actually.  She was a member of that generation - The Greatest Generation - as they were called by Tom Brokaw.  They knew what it was to pull together as Americans, not just as Republicans and Democrats.  They always were, and always will be, Americans.  We could learn much from them.  We're too busy, though, to be concerned with what they can teach us.  We're busy being our 12-year old children - we refuse to listen to our elders because (as any kid knows) we know best...and much better than they do!  I want leaders and I want people that will listen to us.  I want our government to do what's best for people trying to put their children through school...not the oil companies.  Hey, I'm certainly NOT against free-enterprise.  I'm against screwing the people that are keeping the economy moving.  It's time the government paid attention...and protestors might just do it.  I'd wake up if I were in Washington.

Until next time...........

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