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I'm burned out on politics

Published October 06. 2012 09:01AM

Election coverage is saturating the airwaves. No matter what channel I watch, I am inundated with political messages. Each party is making promises that they cannot keep. Yet they continue to spew forth a stream of political nonsense that proves the old adage "baloney baffles brains". Both presidential candidates speak in glorious generalities yet offer no details on how they will implement their plans. When will the voting public awake and stand up to these tricks that get professional politicians re-elected even though they have failed us miserably?

This election is not about abortion; it is not about Medicare or Social Security. Even if the presidential candidates wanted to change these programs, it would be impossible to get Congress to approve them. To me, the election should be about restoring America to its former greatness. Our enemies need to know that we will defend our nation and our citizens. If you kill one of our ambassadors in a god-awful place like Benghazi, then we will send in the Marines or our bombers to capture or kill those who attacked our citizens. Our enemies need to know that Americans will not be targets of choice for terrorist groups. Any terrorist group or unfriendly nation that attempts to attack our citizens will meet with the retribution provided by the full force of the American military.

Will Romney defend our embassies, American citizens and American interests in foreign lands? We already know that President Obama prefers to run away to Las Vegas rather than take military action when Americans are threatened or killed. I do not want to replace a socialist president with a new president who will stay on the same course as Obama. We need a president with a backbone. We need a president who will respond quickly to threats and protect American assets at home and abroad.

As for Medicare, I'm tired of the rhetoric that Obama will protect Medicare and Romney will kill it. Or that Romney will protect Medicare and Obama will lead it into bankruptcy. Medicare must remain in place so that our senior citizens, who paid the Medicare tax all of their working lives, will receive the benefit they paid for and that is due to them. With regards to gay rights and abortion, neither candidate will take a stand against abortion, nor will they openly admit that they will oppose gay rights. In my humble opinion, these are personal choices and the government should stay out of these issues. If a gay couple chooses to have a civil union, I will support their right to do so. Heck, if am invited to the ceremony, I'll congratulate the couple and wish them a long and happy life together. If I learned one thing in Sunday School it was "Judge not lest you be judged".

What we now need is a president with a new vision for America. We need a president who can lead us out of the recession and into prosperous times. More importantly, we need one who can bring joy into the hearts of all Americans and ensure that every American who wants a job will be able to find one. Unfortunately, Ronald Reagan is long dead. That said, there certainly is room for a new leader who can motivate our citizens and lead our nation back to prosperity.

One way to get our country back on track would be to create a budget. We have not had a budget in almost four years. As a result there has been no restraint on federal spending hence the growing deficit. President Obama single-handedly increased the deficit by over $6 trillion during his reign. If he is reelected, you can be sure that the $16 trillion in federal debt will increase to $22 trillion by 2016. We need a president who can rein in spending and balance the budget. American families must live within their means, carefully balancing their income against their expenditures. Our nation must be fiscally responsible and it is the duty of our elected representatives to present a balanced budget to the President for approval. If the current lame-duck Congress does nothing but present a balanced budget, then their session will have been a success.

Without a budget, the size of government continues to grow. More importantly it is constantly reducing our freedoms. My grandfather often said to me that I should never a borrower or lender be. Little did I know at the time that he was quoting Shakespeare. His advice was valid then and it is valid now on the personal and the national level. A person who is in debt is subservient to the wishes of the lender. A country that is in debt is beholden to those they owe. In this case, apart from American citizens, our biggest lender is China. What will happen when China decides to pull the string and stop the funding?

What if China decides to attach strings to the money they lend us. Will the leader of China, Hu Jintao, tell President Obama that he must withdraw all of our troops from Asia including those based in Japan? If the troops are not withdrawn, then China will not loan any more money to America and they will also dump our bonds on the market, causing the U.S. dollar to collapse. Yes, it has come to that! A single nation, China, can dump $1.1 trillion worth of our debt on the market anytime they wish, instantly destroying the value of the U.S. dollar.

Anyone who has debt knows how difficult it is to repay. They have to work hard to put food on their table, a roof over their head, pay the interest on the debt and try to repay the principal. For many people, debt becomes a trap. They borrow for a new car or for Christmas presents, then they have difficulty repaying the loans. The government is no different. They continue to fund existing programs even though some are no longer necessary. Congress continues to fund new projects that they hope will get them reelected. At some point in time, the piper must be paid. I believe that the right time to repay our debt is now. We cannot slip further into the hole. It is time to balance the budget and repay our national debt.

Our government is like a spendthrift neighbor. A spendthrift borrows money to fund his extravagance today and hopes to repay the debt in the future. If you are a spendthrift, then dying with a lot of debt means that you played hard, had a lot of fun, and will never have to pay back what you borrowed. While this may work for an individual, it does not work for the government. Our children and grandchildren will be responsible for the debts incurred by our government. It is up to each of us to ensure that our nation is better off tomorrow than it is today. That way, our children and grandchildren will not have to pay for our failure to live within our means.

Based on the platforms of the existing presidential candidates, our nation will continue to slip into the financial hole. I believe that the only way to change this is to push Congress to create and pass a balanced budget. We must write our representatives and senators frequently to emphasize that a nation encumbered by massive debt cannot be a free nation. We must band together at the local level with other conservatives so that we can coordinate our efforts to deliver a message of fiscal responsibility to our elected representatives. We cannot survive another spendthrift Congress. We must ensure that those who are elected in November understand that the United States of America must be financially sound if we are to survive as a free nation.

© 2012 Gordon Smith - All Rights Reserved

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