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Words from Winterbilt

Picking parties and candidates is not easy

Shannon Bohrer

(Oct, 2010) It is election time so I thought I would offer some advice for picking candidates. This article does not endorse either party or candidate. Anything said in this article is true (in the writers mind) and he has not been offered any monies, gifts and/or anything of value for the purpose of recommending either party and/or candidates.

Without regard for either party (or any other parties) I suggest voters listen to each party and examine the differences. Despite any premade preferences, voters should examine all parties in order to make a well-informed decision on important issues. Two positions, however, hold much higher importance that should ultimately determine which party to vote for. The two positions, from my perspective, include being fiscally responsible and reducing our dependence on foreign energy. Since both major parties have said they plan to do this for almost 40 years, I would say that voting for either party should be fine.

As to fiscal responsibility – the balanced budget under President Clinton in 1999 greatly annoyed some Republicans. The Republican Party’s displeasure confuses me since they had a balanced budget under President Eisenhower in 1959. If political events repeat themselves, we are due for a balanced budget in 2039, once every 40 years, and it should be the Republicans’ turn. The puzzler is that both major parties running for office claim to have a plan to balance the budget. One can only assume that both parties want to balance the budget, but their planning must be flawed.

As to dependence on foreign oil – it is a problem. Starting with the Nixon administration, both parties and every president has stated that we need to end our dependence on foreign oil.

"By 1980 we will be self-sufficient and will not
need to rely on foreign enemies… uh, energy"
President Richard Nixon, 1973

"America is addicted to oil, which is often imported
from unstable parts of the world,"
President Bush, 2006

"I will set a clear goal as president: in ten years
we will finally end our dependence on oil in the Middle East,"
Democratic Presidential nominee Barack Obama.

The dependence on foreign oil has obviously been a problem for a long time. While everyone sees a problem and says they will do something, maybe the problem is in the planning. Of course there is a relationship to oil dependence and financial responsibility – In order to buy foreign oil, we need to borrow money from China so we can pay for the oil. While China and the oil companies may be doing very well with this, I don’t believe it is in our best interest to continue. So I recommend that you vote for the party that will be fiscally responsible and put us on the road to energy independence. Determining which party will do this can be a daunting task. Viewing each party’s plans will help in this decision process. As I already mentioned, it has been an issue for a long time.

"The defense of Saudi Arabia is vital
to the defense of the United States."
President Roosevelt 1943

As to picking individual candidates – that may be easier since we often hear them talk, maybe we hear them talk too often! What often appears to be the ideal candidate will say that s/he will reduce government size, make government more efficient, reduce waste and fraud, make sure our defenses are strong and will ensure Social Security and Medicare are fully funded. Additionally s/he will discuss the plan to have a balanced budget and everyone will receive a tax break. Oh, you also don’t want to forget that the candidates are for traditional American values. I would think that the traditional values would include a balanced budget every 40 years! You should be a little suspicious when they say that they have PLANS to do all of this. Of course the above description is the general blue print for every elected representative and the opposition candidate.

Of course, maybe, just maybe the reason the plans don’t seem to work is because they can’t. Maybe, just maybe we can’t have everything we want and/or think we should have. What would you think if you heard a candidate say, hey folks, we are in big trouble? We are waist-deep in bovine fecal material and to get out is going to cost us. We have spent too much over the last forty years and we need to reduce what government spends, and at the same time raise taxes. The debt and deficit is so great that if we don’t take drastic measures we could fall into an economic hole that we may not be able to recover from. Not only do we have to reduce our debt, we need to reduce our dependence on foreign oil…. I have a plan….and we start all over again.

"Things that are obvious are not necessarily true and
many things that are true are not all obvious"
Dr. Joseph LeDoux

Part 3 choosing candidates, next month.

Read other articles by Shannon Bohrer