By the end of today or early tomorrow, the United States of America will have a new President. Or, will it?
I’ve been asked a number of times on who I’d like to see as President, and my politically correct and truthful answer has been ‘I don’t care; I just want a winner by the end of the day.’ The memories of the 2000 election are still fresh in my and other people’s memories. Days and weeks of agonizing recounts and questions around our election system. It was during that time, the question – can our republic last or is this the beginning of the end? – first entered my mind. The events of 9-11-08 once again brought that question back to the forefront.
The people of the United States should be proud of the final outcome of the 2000 debacle. No, I’m not referring to Bush winning or how abysmal Florida’s election boards ran things, but the fact that at no time during the entire process did anyone question if there would be a military coup. The fact this point seems obvious to most reading this is a testament to the structure of the United States. Ask the folks in Pakistan, Russia, or even Venezuela if that’s always the case. Scary stuff, but thanks to a nicely developed process it never materialized. Hell, it wasn’t even considered.
No, I’m not suggesting that it’ll occur this time, more suggesting that it’s really not a good thing if we have to spend a few months arguing over hanging chads and how many morons left a voting line because it was too long. Let’s have a definite winner … a landslide … something that leaves no question as to the outcome of the election.
During the 2000 election, I felt passionately about my candidate, but not this year. Why? Frankly, I see equal flaws with both candidates, which off-set the benefits each can bring. Obama is an inspirational candidate that appears to be very thoughtful and measured in his decision making. My, wouldn’t that be nice for a while. The giant BUT in the analysis is that he does appear to lean toward socialism, which on paper and in speeches sound great but just doesn’t work. Stronger regulations that require banks/financial institutions/corporations to provide more information to investors … the public … so we can properly measure the risk – great! Throwing government money around like a drunken sailor and expanding the size of government with more government led programs – scary stuff that does little to enable each and every American to make the most out of their lives. Government led socialism economically and psychologically enslaves people through an entitlement mindset. You, yes, you, deserve a fair playing field to make the most out of your lives.
So, McCain must be the answer. Hardly. One of my favorite sayings is from Einstein, which paraphrased is ‘you can’t use the same level of thinking that got you into the mess, to get you out of the mess.’ Age problem? Nope. Advisor problem? You bet. The same people asleep at the switch for the last 10 years will stay at the switch for the next four. Ten years, isn’t this Bush’s mistake? Nope. The policies under Clinton (whom doesn’t care for Obama) were continued under Bush (lowering the barriers for home entry by encouraging those who wouldn’t normally get a home loan to get one). But, W and the boys certainly added a nice side dish of lack of oversight to the entire meal. I just don’t know if much would change under McCain, but too much may change under Obama.
The final outcome – it’s a push. My hope is that the winner pushes for good policies that maximize revenue and minimizes government spending. Rolled up in this would be policies that encourage states to better educate kids, lowering the debt (not just deficit) and a long term plan on national security that returns the US to its pre-WWII mindset.
But, before all of these things can come true – we’ll need a winner.