18 February 2008

A bit concerned

I've been a bit concerned lately about the presidential race, and the more people I talk to, the more concerned I get. Everyone is sick and tired of the 95% idiot, 99% corruption factor in Washington. Everyone wants something changed. And everyone is good and ready to have those changes made.


One candidate in particular promises "change." Sen. Obama articulates hope and the power of the individual. He and his wife both seem to be wonderful people who can relate to the majority of Americans, and they genuinely believe they have the solution.

That is where the problem comes in.

I've been debating whether to post anything on this topic, because I have met so many people - and more all the time - who are drawn to that genuine (as far as I can tell) idealism and hope. The promise of the American Dream. A promise to help. But I believe that so many of these people are not ones who would agree with his policies, IF they knew what they were and what the effects could or would be.

I finally decided to post because inaction when I believe the future of our country is at stake, collectively and as individuals, is inexcusable. I don't want to anger these good-hearted people - I want to help them understand what they would be voting for as "hope" or "change."

For example, from his website:
Wages are Stagnant as Prices Rise: While wages remain flat, the costs of basic necessities are increasing. The cost of in-state college tuition has grown 35 percent over the past five years. Health care costs have risen four times faster than wages over the past six years. And the personal savings rate is now the lowest it's been since the Great Depression.
Now, he's basically saying the problem is inflation. So part of his solution is to raise the minimum wage. Rising unemployment aside, simply mandating higher wages with no economic backbone spurring and supporting that change will put more money into the economy (for those who still have jobs) - in a bad way. That's called INFLATION.

Witness the danger of ignorance. ("I don't know all of his policies, but he wants to help.")

Witness the danger of class warfare. ("I wouldn't steal my better-off neighbor's Mercedes, but the government should take their money because they don't deserve it.")

When ignorance, class warfare, and utter despair - nurtured by the same welfare state that prolonged the Depression - combine, we can fall for anyone with charisma (or establishment backing). Cases in point:
  • The Germans allowed Hitler to rise to power largely because of despair.
  • Mussolini made the trains run on time (presumably, "finally! We're ready for that change!").
  • Mao and Stalin "equalized" society (well, except for the ruling class, of course - that would be ridiculous, wouldn't it...) and managed to keep pretty decent order with massacres and labor camps.
  • Kim Jong-Il is still oppressing his people for his personal power and enrichment - something he can do because they are dependent on the state.
  • Closer to home, FDR was either misguided with good intentions and unfortunately ended up creating a welfare state by trying to artificially make everyone prosperous to a certain level, or he was slightly less nobly-motivated. Either way, look at what we have created: "I can't believe the government doesn't pay for X." "We have a right to X." "I can't do it myself."
Personally, I believe Obama is a great human being who really wants to help. I can't envision him having evil designs to create personal power through dependence. But what about the corruption in government? Obama is one (misguided but nice) person, but the corrupt will be the ones implementing his (increasingly powerful and thereby disastrous) policies. The policies he espouses that sound so good to the hopeless will take us to government-equalized misery and complete dependence on a failing government.

That's not the American Dream. It's a death sentence.

1 comment:

Montie said...

Just scrolling through this entry, and found it interesting. I know our political views are quite different....however, I've been also skeptical of the Obama charisma-- where is the concrete details, the substance? What is behind the mass appeal? How does he plan to change??
I find him very appealing but do see him as a candidate that could easily end up batted around by the establishment--or assassinated? Unfortunately, Clinton doesn't fit with my values either, so I am left supporting my liberal fringe candidates ... Oh, well!