Honestly I have not really been excited about a Democratic National Convention since 1992, which was the last time a party convention really felt like it was nominating someone. In 1992 Bill Clinton was the clear leader by the summer of 1992, but Jerry Brown had a popular following, and he fought for the nomination until the end. In 1992 we also witnessed the emergence and popularity of the third party candidate Ross Perot, who exposed many popular ideas that struck a cord with the American people. The election cycle of 1992 was a far more positive and exciting one, and I just remember becoming so civically aware.
By 1992 people had grown weary of George Bush Sr. politics and his nearsightedness when it came to the American economy, and denying that climate change, then called global warming, was taking place. As a thirteen year old I was weary of a president who denied scientific research, and who was failing to connect with the American people like Clinton, Perot, and Brown all seemed to do in their very own ways. It was wonderful becoming politically aware in 1992 because this was an election year that really made you think, and it could have been any man's election if Perot had not withdrawn during the summer. He did re-enter the race before November, but he lost his previous edge and creditably by doing so.
Perot revealed he had withdrawn because the Republicans were going to disrupt his daughter's wedding, and thus he felt compelled to withdraw from the race. Of course the top presidential candidates sniped with each other back in 1992, but it was nowhere near the level as comical as it is today. Even though I did not agree with all of George Bush Sr. policies, at least he was far more centrist than the right wing policies of Paul Ryan today. In those days the presidential election was fascinating to watch, and it did not have this circus like atmosphere that the Republican party of today seems to specialize in.
If you are a liberal then you probably agree with me that the Democratic National Convention so far is just easier to watch, but honestly I think conservatives who think logically even need to admit their convention was pretty bad. There are quite a few Ron Paul supporters who fell Mitt Romney pretty much brokered the nomination, and even though I do not agree with them on all the issues, I have read enough to hear they are not impressed with how the party handled this. Yes, back in 2008 it had pretty much been decided that Barack Obama was going to be the nominee for the Democratic National Convention, but a lot of this had do with how his main opponent, Hillary Clinton, was already considered an insider, and he was a fresh face that promised change. However, what was the Republican party's excuse at their nomination, especially considering Ron Paul has a very enthusiastic and loyal following on both sides of the political spectrum, and he was basically glossed over by Mitt Romney, the man who bought the election. Prominent Republicans have been saying for four years that Mitt Romney would be the next Republican presidential candidate, and it makes an astute observer realize that the Republican party is a bit set on who they want as president.
This coupled with their desire to keep fighting and starting new wars overseas is not attractive. Yes, I do think the Democrats also need to withdraw from getting involved in other country's affairs as well, but the Republican National Convention almost seems like a platform that revolves around talk of future wars, and securing more oil in the Middle East. There was no talk of clean energy there, and Mitt Romney thumbed his nose at scientific facts about water levels rising due to climate change. The Republicans have made it clear that they are only out for the wealthiest Americans, and really do not care if they pollute the environment or outsource jobs. They only care about tax cuts for themselves, and securing greater oil supplies. Nothing new to see here.
Yes there are corporate interests on both sides of the aisle, but by and large those of us who elected Obama in 2008 know that he was and still is an outsider somewhat when it comes to outsourcing. Obama was a community organizer that wanted to help all people have a better chance to find jobs, housing, and improve their educational opportunities. For the last four years prominent Republicans have been exposing the mantra about how they should not be punished with taxes because they are successful, but it is just hard to relate to the Mitt Romney types who say this. People who grew up in well to do families are able to say how hard work will bring success, but they do not usually realize how others struggle. Even if there are conservative who are self-made business people, they often lose sight of how working and middle class families struggle to put their kids through school and make better lives for their children. The mantra lately has been the successful people rise to the top, and anyone mentioning that multimillionaires paid higher taxes under Clinton, Reagan, and Eishenhower is just expousing class warfare.
Any time working or middle class people talk about wanting a better future for their kids, they are told to go work harder by the 1%. This line is one of distraction, and glosses over the fact that outsourcing has made it harder to find well paying jobs these days. There is a minority wealthy elite of the world are adopting the rich kid sand box taunts about how their toys are better than yours. Meanwhile savvy billionaires like Warren Buffet have pointed out they can and should pay more taxes, and others like Bill Gates have done considerable charity work, whereas Steve Jobs acted like giving money to charity was a waste of resources. If you think I am just picking on conservatives here, well Steve Jobs claimed to be a Democrat, but he had this same corporate mindset about outsourcing and the feeling he was above paying his fair share in taxes. It is not attractive when any billionaire feels they are above paying taxes that help our entire society function smoothly.
After four years of a few of the well to do acting like they are victims because they should get more special tax cuts for outsourcing and failing to create more American jobs, so many of us are just tuning them out. Since I grew up in a resort community where a few wealthy people got incensed if Pleubians came near their private docks to watch the Fourth of July fireworks, or dared to tell my sister she could not live near the lake because she did not dress nice enough, I am just not impressed with the "my toys are better than yours" mantras. America was founded on the belief that all children and people have a chance for a better life here, and most of us are against the notion that a landed gentry should be the only ones that have all the rights, which is why our ancestors came to the New World in the first place. No one is criticizing those who work hard and achieve success, but billionaires are not exactly coming off as approachable when they constantly brag about their wealth. Not everyone can be, or wants to be rich, and the rest of us deserve to have comfortable and decent lives if we are willing to work hard.
From the inception of this country small communities have always had public schools where kids could go to get a free education, and this is part of America's equality and sense of freedom. So you might want to send your kids to a private school, but stop trying to defund public education for our children. Countries like Japan, France, and Finland all invest heavily in public education, and their children learn more and have better career opportunities when they graduate. I refuse to go back to the days of Oliver Twist where only a few rich prep school kids can attend university, and other kids have to get jobs in factories. Things are like that in India right now if you have ever researched their society, but their business people, educators, and politicians are working hard to make the future more equitable for all their people. Only in America do we have conservatives talking about defunding public education, cutting already paltry salaries, but wanting to go to war again in the Middle East. If we stopped spending money on militarization, we would have more than enough money to invest in education and to create clean energy jobs at home.
The Democrats have recognized again and again at their convention that Americans are hard workers, and they talk about wanting to improve education and create more jobs. Obama did some of that under the stimulus plan, even though it could have gone farther. The Democrats are savvy enough to realize most Americans do not want to be told they do not work hard enough. When you have a person who was born into privilege stating this again and again how they are just harder workers, now that comes off as comical. Those with true work ethic would not need to brag so hard, and the positive people are the ones who recognize the potential of all Americans to have a brighter future. Of course a lot of what is said at the Democratic national convention is rhetoric, but at least it is more inclusive when it comes to women's rights, education, faith, and the environment.
Republicans complain about how they are not able to secure the minority vote, but one thing that is for sure is the Ryan plan that wants to cut social security, public education, and public infrastructure that benefits Americans under sixty is not going to appeal to the changing demographic of this country. Republicans say again and again how we are a Christian country, but not everyone is Christian, and some want to force their beliefs and ethos on legislation, which is goes against our Constitution. With changing demographics this becomes less popular, and most Americans are not enticed by corporations and their bed buddy politicians telling Americans they are not working hard enough. For this reason the Republican National Convention was a three ring circus, and the Democratic one has just been easier to watch. So far no one is talking to empty chairs, which is always a plus.
I have always been a current events and political commentary enthusiast since I started reading a news paper around the age of eleven, but this election has made me not want to pay attention as much. Yes, I will be voting for Obama again, and even though he may not have done everything I would have hoped for, I often wonder what president could. It is much easier to be a president during a good economy than a bad one, and to Obama's credit he did not exactly have a Republican Congress from 2010 onward that has wanted to work with him.
My one disappointment with Obama is that I wish he would have pushed for a New Deal jobs program the way FDR did, but I can imagine how Republicans would have branded him much more of a socialist than they already did for adopting their own health care reform plan that Bob Dole put forth back in the 1990's, and which many other conservatives supported at the time.
So I will still follow the news, but I have to admit the reason I am not following this election as closely is because I am just not interested in Republican spin doctoring, or the side show circus that goes on these days. Donald Trump was already way over the top claiming that Obama was not born in the United States, and I was aghast to hear Mitt Romney get in on the side show antics by chiming in about how no one has asked him about his birth certificate.
The bottom line is the tone of American politics is turning a lot of people off with the vitriolic attacks Obama has been subjected to, which no other president before him has really had to deal with. There have been many conservatives making comments in the blogosphere about how Clinton was horrible for cheating with Monica, but how they know he is a true American that loves his country unlike Obama. Romney makes comments about how America is going down a dangerous path under the Obama administration, but then bristles when the Obama campaign suggests maybe he should have been more forth coming with his tax records and the money he keeps in overseas accounts.
The tone of this election is really over the top, and Mitt Romney seems to only care about those in his inner circle. I always felt he was very aloof, but when I heard a snippet of his acceptance speech about how he did not care about global temperatures rising along with the sea level, and that he only cared about the American workers families, I was a bit disconcerted by this. Romney was a very good businessman, and part of his time at the helm of Bain Capital was about outsourcing and saving the company money. He also outsourced state jobs when he was the governor of Massachusetts. I just have a hard time believing Mitt Romney cares all that much about protecting or creating more American jobs because he has not laid out any concrete plans on how he would do so. Also, he seems a bit uncaring about how the rising sea levels have literally hurt countries such as Kiribati. I mean does he realize entire parts of island countries such as these are now under water, and a lot of this has to do with climate change? Is only saving money in the form of tax cuts for the 1% all that Mitt Romney cares about, and getting involved in the carnival antics with Donald Trump over birther comments?
I really do not care what Mitt Romney thinks anyway because I will predict he will not be elected. I have a feeling Obama will be, and I would like to share with some Americans about how silly we are looking to outsiders right now with the comments even prominent Republicans are now making. Outsiders do not understand why Republicans want to get involved in people's personal affairs as much as they do, and how these politicians can make such comical statements. So the carnival can live on with the GOP, but I am glad that is one party I do not really follow.
Many of us Americans feel it is long overdue to have a Constitutional amendment to get money out of politics once and for all. Sure, this might sound like pie and the sky dreaming, but there was a time when people of humble origins, such as Harry Truman, could rise to the office of president. I am not a Republican and I do not agree with most of their policies, but I sort of feel that money is buying political power when I see how Mitt Romney has pretty much bought the GOP nomination, especially when there were quite a few candidates who did not agree with him on certain issues. However, it seems as if everyone has pretty much decided Mitt is going to be the nominee, even though there are a few Ron Paul supporters who are still holding out for their candidate of choice.
Now I will be voting for Obama again in this election because I think he is the best choice, but even with my progressive stances I find he gives in a bit too much when it comes to corporate influence on politics. For instance, I would have liked to have seen true health care reform rather than just health insurance reform like we got in 2010. There were positive aspects of health care reform for many of us who have known people that were thrown off their insurance because of pre-existing conditions will now be covered, and that the insurance industry can no longer this to us. However, in a way health care reform was a big win for the private insurance industry because they now have millions of new customers. By 2014 everyone will have to buy health care insurance, and it would have been far better if there had been a public option that would have given Americans the option of going with a government subsidized insurance plan.
Some Republicans argue that health care reform is the socialization of medicine, but actually Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has privatized the health care industry since we are all going to have to buy private health insurance. Now some Republicans are even changing their minds about health care reform, which is actually based on the Bob Dole plan of the 1990's. Anyway, the insurance industry won on this issue, which is just another example of how there is too much money in politics.
Do you ever feel like your local Congressman cannot return your calls, but it seems those who own large businesses in town get plenty of time to discuss issues with him? If you feel that way it is not entirely inaccurate because the reality is people and corporations that have money do get more say in our political process, and that has been proven by the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling that recognizes corporations as individuals. As Cenk Uygur has pointed out on the Young Turks, it is time for a Constitutional amendment to take money out of politics, but are the American people finally ready to stand up and say they have had enough with corporate greed running the show?.
I would definitely recommend that people watch Cenk Uygur and The Young Turks
Monday through Friday if you want to hear real commentary about what is actually going on in American politics at the moment. If you are not able to watch the live show during the day, you can subscribe to The Young Turks YouTube channel
and watch segments there.