Same Story, Different Day (ms)

If anything the Republican primaries have taken us on a foray to Fantasyville, a mystical place where anything is possible provided you have enough money. It is in that place they speak of fixing whatever ails the good old U.S. of A. even though they’ve asked but a tiny fraction of the population about what seems to be ailing the nation. They’ve had one-way conversations with the rest through commercials and advertising. Actually, I can’t wait until the remaining candidate(s) in the race make it to Pennsylvania. With any kind of luck someone in the campaign will be handing out ink pens or those flat round rubber jar opener thingys.

Admittedly we have seen a battle of Republican stars and wannabes that was interesting the first few times. After that it boiled down to the lobbing of insults, the practiced smirk or smile, the well rehearsed battle plan for nation repair which appears to involve kicking regular folks under the bus while allowing a select few to ride in air conditioned comfort inside. We dare not scrape at the door and beg for a few tokens for it may disturb the job creators traveling to the next big project and heaven knows what will happen then. They just may refuse to do business here and take all their work to China or India and then what would we be left with?

As I sat at my desk pondering all this, friend Flannery urged me to get heavy handed in my writing, say it like I mean it. The trouble is this happens to be the American system and it’s pretty hard for me to slam it when I happen to think it’s a good one. What I find difficult is the notion I’ve acquired that the people who are running in this Republican primary tend to forget who it is they’re trying to eventually lead and they don’t seem inclined to want to find out.

I would be happy to offer any one of them the chance to accompany me on my travels. They would not be allowed to bring along the usual gaggle of photographers and reporters though for that would break up the aura of many of the places I visit. No one wants a herd of people coming into their diner or donut shop around coffee break or lunch to just gawk and ask foolish questions while buying nothing; that is hardly good for business. If a candidate for any office did this however he or she would find out fairly quickly what the problems are and there might be a few folks able to offer some pretty good ideas on how to clear things up. I don’t see that as likely to happen, of course, for there’s not enough money in that sort of campaign. You need to spend big, do all kinds of polls, run all kinds of ads to state your case, to stand out from the pack, to be the one who knows it all and occasionally shares it with the great unwashed masses if they are but quiet and don’t ask for or about anything in return. Lots of money spent when they could have had exactly what they and we needed for the price of a few cups of coffee.

–Mike Stevens

~ by admin on February 2, 2012.

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