An Election Rant

For the life of me, I do not understand people.  Every four years it’s like everyone gets collective amnesia, not to mention collective exaggeration, as in “This election is THE MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION EVER IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD!!”  Didn’t they say that during the LAST election, and the one before that, and the one before…Geesh people, read your blooming history books.  Oh, and that goes for the “THIS IS THE NASTIEST, MOST NEGATIVE CAMPAIGN IN HISTORY!” meme.  Okay, short answer.  No.  It ain’t.  Just about EVERY campaign in the 19th century was nastier than any you or I have been alive for, so let’s drop that particular argument please, can we?
Now…why in the world do people expect things to really, seriously change?  I just don’t get it.  Are we in a gigantic “Men in Black” movie where they zap [most of] our collective brains every election cycle so we forget that, in the last four years, the government has gotten bigger, blown through untold zillions of dollars, printed zillions more, all the while telling us that we are better off than four years ago?  Unless you happen to be in the “out” party, in which case you are telling everyone that WE ARE CERTAINLY NOT BETTER OFF THAN FOUR YEARS AGO!

I REALLY hate numbers, I’m not a “bean counter” but for the sake of my one hundreds of readers I’m going to plug in some good old numbers to prove my thesis above [Advice:  If you’re a Marine, just skip this paragraph].  National Debt Ford’s last year = 653 billion.  Debt at the end of Carter’s presidency = 930 billion.  End of Reagan = 2.7 trillion.  End of Bush41 = 4.1 trillion.  End of Clinton = 5.7 trillion.  End of Bush43 = 10.7 trillion [Way to go fiscally “conservative” Republicans!].  Halfway through Obama’s fourth year = 15.9 trillion.  Are you seeing a trend here, grasshopper?  We just keep spending beyond our means whether a Republican or Democrat is in charge.  Indeed, the two biggest  “spenders” were Reagan (Debt up 188% in 8 years) and Bush 43 (Up 89% in 8 years), with Obama racing to take the lead going up 41% in 3.5 years, starting from a base of 10 trillion!  Turn the money gun on full auto, gentlemen!

I heard Tom Wolfe on the radio yesterday and he said that the government is like a gigantic train heading down the tracks.  There are Republicans on one side of the track and Democrats on the other and they’re each claiming that they can drive the train down the tracks better than the other party.  Here’s the thing, the train is going down the tracks no matter who is in charge.  Maybe a little slower (think Clinton years – fiscally, not…ahem…morally), or a little faster (think Bush 41); or FULL STEAM AHEAD GENTLEMEN, AND I MEAN POUR ON THE COALS (think Bush 43 and Obama and Reagan). The point is that the train is not leaving the tracks, I know it, you [should] know it, the media knows it, the politicians know it, but almost everyone acts like they can control a stinking 6000 ton freight train.  Unbelievable.

The point of all this.  We. are. screwed.

Your devoted and optimistic friend,

John

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One response

  1. John,
    I don’t think this election will change everything, but I do think there are some ways that the outcome of this election will matter a great deal. I just made a list of the six clearest and most important ones, and I’d love to hear what you think. http://politymaking.wordpress.com/2012/10/28/why-this-election-matters/

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