Before reading this post- if you get annoyed at political discussion stop reading now. This is just my opinion. I simply found something that motivated me to be a better person, and I wanted to share it with all of you. Take it or leave it!
Everyone knows I love politics. I enjoy hearing different opinions and arguments on all sides. I have always liked the passion behind a good debate. I am not sure why- just have. If the opportunity presents itself I would love to someday be a public servant in some small way. This would not be for my personal glory but to serve my country and support the values I believe in. Why does the idea of public service seem to be lost on our society? The early founders were practically forced into service and now the career path of a politician often feels like the journey of a Hollywood celebrity.
I think both parties are equally guilty of this game, which is why neither seems to care what public opinion currently thinks. For instance, nobody cares that the public has resoundingly opposed the stimulus package- from November on this has consistently been the case. A recent poll said the support for the package was below 37%. Another sign of discontent is that President Obama’s poll numbers have fallen dramatically in the first 100 days and they are now below President Bush’s at the same time in his presidency. Despite such disapproval nobody in Washington is listening. In fact, many of the politicians seem to think the American public is not educated enough to understand such tough economic conditions. If that is the case than your job as politicians is to educate us!
The problem is many in Washington not only think we are too stupid to understand what they are doing to our economy, but they think we do not care. In my last entry on the stimulus package I posted a video with Senator Charles Shumer. In it he calls the American people “the chattering masses” and says “the American people don’t care”. I found this statement shocking in its candor and disgusting in its implications. And remember this is not some no-name senator. It is the 3rd ranking democrat in the senate. My fear is that he was stupid enough to say what all the Senators and Congressional Representatives feel. They think we don’t care.
What if they are right? There are certainly a lot of people who don’t care enough to vote. The ones that do, rarely take the time to be informed on issues- even though such efforts only take a minute or two. It has always boggled my mind! Do they not understand issues like the stimulus bill effect our lives? They effect ALL of our jobs, investments, property, families and certainly our education.
I am not saying that everyone has to agree with me but CARE! If anything was gained by the election of President Obama it proved that American’s could get excited about a candidate and politics. For several months people watched debates instead of sitcoms and commented on interesting issues. Although I did not vote for President Obama, I felt the excitement of a candidate of change. Now I wonder- what has he changed? Not much. What promises has he kept? Not many. To name one failed promise, he swore time and again on the trail to stop earmarks in bills. Now the spending bill he signed has over 9,000 of them! 9,000! With the President’s current popularity I do not buy his excuse of needing to sign an “imperfect bill”. He had the political capital to at least reduce the earmarks and he failed to do so. I will also add that 40% of these earmarks came from Republicans, so they are equally guilty in ignoring what America wants. In fact, the Republicans are trying to make the Democrats seem like the bad guys while still sneaking in whatever spending of their own they can get in.
I am not writing this to bash President Obama or any other politician. I have hope for them all. Perhaps foolishly, I believe most of them are good men and woman with the right intentions; however, many have forgotten who they work for, and what we as Americans stand for. They have gotten so caught up in money- that it has become a type of panacea for every wound. Just throw more money at a problem and it will all be made better! Selfishness, greed and a loss of vision is leading us into debts both morally and financially. In a sea of money and political correctness, these politicians seem to have forgotten the fundamental values of honor, freedom, integrity, faith, justice and hard work that our government is there to support.
To be honest, this spending bill was making me depressed. I felt like no one was listening to me and millions of other Americans who find it crazy and irresponsible. Even the socialist nations of France and Germany are refusing to go along with the big spending! Now China has expressed worry that the $1 trillion in US treasury bonds they own is a bad investment. The Chinese, the French, the Germans, the majority of Americans all seem to think this is a bad idea! Why doesn’t anyone care?
Well, I found someone who does. I am not usually a talk radio/ tv news person. I love NPR and feel I am an Independent on most issues. However, I happened to catch the latest Glenn Beck Show on Fox News, and was very inspired with what I saw. I have heard Beck speak and been impressed in the past but this was something special. In the program he talks about his feelings after 9/11 (thus calling it the 9/12 project) and then contrasts with his current feelings. He talks about how no one is listening and how nobody in either party can be trusted. He asks every American who still believes in this country to send in their photos- he gets millions. He interviews Iraq veterans, 9/11 victim families and gives 9 principles and 12 values that exemplify the American spirit. I agree with every one of his 9 principles and 12 values. If I worked for a year to summarize my own values and principles in regards to this country they would end up the same as Beck’s. I love that he isn’t afraid to declare his belief in God, family, and America!
He actually gets emotional at several points, and I found the whole thing very moving. He tells us to remember how we felt on 9/12, and how we just knew what to do, and how we could help. Those feelings came out of our core beliefs and values. It is these values that will save America- not spending more on lavish programs or shopping to boost consumer confidence. Real confidence comes from an understanding of why we matter- why each of us matters to this country and to God. I can’t recommend the program highly enough. During the broadcast there were crowds all over the country watching and cheering. I wanted to cheer too! Put it on your DVR this weekend or watch it online if you can. It’s not just a political rant. It’s a reminder of what is good about America, and I felt validated by it.
Beck is a member of my church, so perhaps he presents his program in a way I understand. However, this basic message of integrity, service, friendship and courage is one any American can relate too. I promise it is not a partisan attack. Check it out!
The Nine Principles
1. America is good.
2. I believe in God and He is the Center of my Life.
3. I must always try to be a more honest person than I was yesterday.
4. The family is sacred. My spouse and I are the ultimate authority, not the government.
5. If you break the law you pay the penalty. Justice is blind and no one is above it.
6. I have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but there is no guarantee of equal results.
7. I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable.
8. It is not un-American for me to disagree with authority or to share my personal opinion.
9. The government works for me. I do not answer to them, they answer to me.