That is the Question:
“This Presidential election cycle scares me, and it is not the candidates but those constituents who blindly oppose the other side.” In a discussion with the grandfather of a childhood friend, that statement from a long time political veteran in my home state of Louisiana made me pause and contemplate longer than usual. Those who know me personally or have listened to any of my classroom lectures, professional or public presentations, or have read anything I have written know that extremism in any direction worries me. The thoughts of an individual who can recall bits of information about every federal office holder and state wide office holders from his first “honor and privilege,” as he terms voting, in 1948 had the combined effect of lighting a lantern to see in the blackened night and the donning of shades to see more clearly moving directly into a setting or rising Sun.
Let’s leave some of the outlandish attacks out of the descriptions of the two men. Barack Obama critics have argued that he has never run a successful business. He lacked the qualifications and experience for the office of President. He has not kept a vast array of campaign promises such as cutting the deficit in half and creating an economic thrust. Mitt Romney critics have argued about the operations of Bain. That he and his companies have sent jobs overseas, laid off workers in the US, and broken apart other businesses to be sold piece by piece for profit.
There are many other examples, but if you could remove the names and Party affiliations, I think most could find some degree of evidence to “prove” any of those points made regardless of ideology.
Romney Ryan, Vote Obummer Out:
Romney supporters blame Obama and the “Obama policies” for all the problems in society. Regulations prevent the economy from rebounding. He apologizes for America’s weakness abroad and demeans Americans at home with remarks such as “You didn’t build that.” Still, while he is a weak President, he does nothing but attack the GOP because he has no record and thus it will result in a society of taking from those who have “earned” success and redistributing to those who want something for nothing. Government will take any and everything away from the working individual and control all aspects of our lives. Charges that socialism is the way and Communists are in the government ring out along with birther and other Marxists claims as some must have learned that all of these different ideologies are identical. Government death panels are a part of health reform, and have thus facilitated a mutation that I never thought possible. I have heard that Barack Obama is a Communist NAZI. Seriously, I expect to hear Rod Serling’s voice, the Twilight Zone theme, see Tail gunner Joe’s image emerging from the monitor, and discover that HUAC is recording strokes on the keyboard.
Folks I’m from the South and drink my tea cold and sweet
Many Obama supporters will pull out the race card if an Obama position is questioned. Others will cast the blame entirely on the policies of George W. Bush. Trickledown economics is described in a vast array of positions. Mitt Romney flips more than a mullet in the Gulf and flops so much that basketball is going to enforce new rules on faking charges. Somehow this renewed emphasis on charging will get tied in with the financing of 2 wars on a credit card and the downgrade of the country’s credit rating.
Was that sarcasm or is this or are neither?
The final sentences of the 2 preceding paragraphs are ridiculous, but so is the treatment of this election cycle by candidates, media, and we the voters. Though supporters won’t admit it, if I want to believe the GOP, I need to admit that Barack Obama is all powerful. We the people are too weak and lazy to overcome such evil. Prices rising, unemployment, tragedies such as terrorist acts abroad and murders here are all because of Obama and many people are oblivious because of Kool Aid consumption. I must remember that Obama promised to solve all of these issues if elected. Now, if I want to believe the Democrats, I need to demonize at least a major part of free enterprise. I also have to realize that other people believe that 47 percent, probably including me, are takers.
Simple and to the point variations:
Hogwash, Pig Puddles, Chicken chips, Cow Cookies, Gator Gonads, Nutria’s Nuts, or Doggy doo doo. It all looks and smells the same to this Louisiana boy.
To think in terms of the worst if Obama wins:
Worst case scenario according to ardent Romney supporters. Obama takes from the rich and redistributes wealth among the people. Government controls every facet of your life. Government controls your access to health care. Government controls your job.
To think in terms of the worst if Romney wins:
Worst case scenario according to ardent Obama supporters. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Your employer has full power of your life. Your employer can decide to provide or not to provide health insurance and place restrictions according to the employer’s personal beliefs. If you agree 100 percent with your superior, then you will receive enough benefits to survive and possibly be comfortable. If you don’t, then you will drown in the Kool Aid.
In the United States under the Constitution to the United States, which is the more likely worst case scenario?
Even though there were numerous opportunities since 1789 in the United States, I haven’t discovered the total control or unitary totalitarianism that Obama is said to be capable of bringing with another 4 year term. Yes, we have had war time powers and sedition acts, but they were never unchallenged. The other scenario, however, has a more evident precedent which the Populists and later the Progressive Era of Teddy Roosevelt, W.H. Taft, and Woodrow Wilson stopped with variations of concepts we know as a Square Deal, New Nationalism, and New Freedom which blossomed into the Nationalism. (It is incongruous that Taft actually had the most success at curtailing the monopolies, but he is least credited in mainstream thought).
Just a Thought of Mine
Today, I see the influence and money spent by Super PACs and non profit 501(c) organizations in our democratic process. I see the promises of individuals such as David Siegal and the Koch brothers.
I think that in many ways Obama and Romney are moderates who should be collaborating and working together to bring this country together. Unfortunately, the constituents of both would vehemently oppose. The voters, Members of Congress, and the monetary infusion do scare me more than either Presidential candidate.
A final analogy from the conversation:
The sage political veteran offered a revealing comparison. “It’s a game of chess, but Romney and Obama are a bishop and a rook, those who make millions from dividends and capital gains are the king and queen, those of us who serve in the military, teach, drive trucks, work as plumbers, nurses, and so on are merely pawns. We might make it to the other side and become a queen or knight, but in the big picture our value results from being a diversion or a sacrifice to achieve a stronger position. Son, this Presidential election cycle scares me, and it is not the candidates but those constituents who blindly oppose the other side because they rely on rhetoric or need a scapegoat.” Ignorance is not bliss in my opinion.