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A common complaint heard in grocery lines, and even at church, these days is about all the political commercials. They are unavoidable. Each side pitching their answer to all that ails on TV, radio and, of course, in newspaper. After a while, voters just tune it out.
Recently, I was surprised to hear one nationally-syndicated talk show host commenting about the Rand Paul/Jack Conway race. He claimed the Democratic Party was dumping massive amounts of cash into advertising Paul’s alleged college escapades. The purpose, according to the talking head, was not necessarily to sway voters into Conway’s camp, but to get them fed up enough with the process to stay home on election day.
If any small amount of truth could be found in that statement, I am amazed. One, because I find that strategy so incredibly intelligent and, two, because I find it so remarkably vile.
Regardless of the motivations – or the party – behind campaign strategies, each voter will eventually reach the end of his patience with political ads. Good advice would be to turn them off, but don’t tune out.
I discovered an editorial I wrote for New Year’s that applies even more today. It said, “Our states of mind have been beaten down with each new report on the state of the economy. Somewhere along our way through this recession, we have lost that distinctively-American spirit. The one that used to embrace the concept of self-reliance. The one that was unashamed of prospering through hard work. We have lost the belief that government handouts are a sign of weakness and dependency.
“We need to find our American spirit again before it burns out. Before we succumb to the growing wave of apathy that finds us choosing to watch reality TV rather than keeping up with current events. We need to wake up and pay attention to the liberties that are being taken away from us. We need to take back our country and return it to the rightful owners – the people.”
This has been a rough two years for most Americans financially. The unemployment rate in Kentucky has dropped from its 12 percent high in February to its current rate of 10 percent. Good news, perhaps, for some – but not enough to take the queasy feeling out of our stomachs. Not enough for big factories to begin making widgits. Not enough for small businesses to confidently expand their workforce.
Something has to be done. For a while now, it seems like the passionate pleas of the voters have gone unnoticed. Politicians in Washington have become so far removed from life in their home states that the voices of their constituents are barely a buzzing gnat near their ears. A similar attitude can also be found among state and local politicians. This attitude of entitlement and “I know best for you” is intolerable. Voters have a chance Tuesday to change all that.
Now is your time, voters. It’s time to elect the people that we believe are best capable of getting the economy – this country – turned around. Don’t just stay at home in disgust at the political process. Go to the polls Tuesday and change the process.