After the Debates Are Over

  • 10/18/2012
  • Terelle Jerricks

romney_obama_2_debate_2012_10_17Does America still understand the concept of enlightened self interest?
By James Preston Allen, Publisher

It is quite curious how our national debates have come to resemble reality TV shows and boxing matches.

As Gov. Mitt Romney the challenger and President Barack Obama the champion circled each other on the floor like boxers in a ring, each debate was characterized as 90 minute rounds. Afterwards, pundits sounded like sportscasters deconstructing a fight in their instant commentary. Ringside, fans rally their champion and bash the opponent on Facebook and Twitter. Nielsonwire reported that 67.2 million tuned in to watch after the first debate. We should devise a point system like we have in boxing to determine a winner when there aren’t any knockdowns or knockouts.  It was clear Obama won the second debate, but there was no K.O.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: you can never ask enough questions to determine what a candidate will do once in office, and has to face real-life decisions. From either candidate, we only have a record of their past actions that says anything about their true character. Romney clearly represents the elite money class. His résumé at Bain Capital speaks volumes. Obama’s populist-progressive leanings are explained by his background as a community organizer. Both want to appear to be centrists, but the question of the day seems to be, “Where is the center of American politics today?”

The decision at the polling booth couldn’t be clearer this time around. Do the voters want to return to the failed “trickle-down” economics of the Reagan-Bush era and the endless war theory of Bush-Cheney? Or, do we move forward with the policies that we know have worked before — solutions derived from the New Deal Era? Obviously the Wall Street bankers don’t want more regulations. But after their most recent economic blowout, who could possibly trust them to exercise ethical restraint or even good judgement? Even now, we still haven’t really gotten to the the true causes and the real culprits of the Great Recession. And, Romney is not at the top of my list of people I’d trust to do it either!

This election comes down to this: Are you going vote for those who will protect the interests of the vast working class majority or are you misguided enough to vote for the people who tanked the economy and subscribe to the “I’ve got mine” principle of laissez-faire economics?

My critics on the right like to call me and Obama socialists, or worse. But I’d like to remind those who think that working for the common good is some kind of socialist ideology that it was the founding fathers of this republic who used the Latin phrase “e pluribus unum,” Out of many, one. Originally, this suggested the emergence of a single nation out of many colonies or states. In recent years, it has come to suggest that out of many peoples, races, religions and ancestries has emerged a single people and nation—illustrating the concept of the melting pot. It also reminds us that we are stronger united and not divided, like we have been many times over the course of our history.

I’d like to think that the majority of our citizens still understand this concept of enlightened self-interest that is enshrined on our national seal. Clearly the decline in public education, the dumbing down of the electorate with false information and the emphasis on “In God We Trust” (which was added to our currency during the McCarthy era) has overwhelmed our common sense. Have we become too stupid to see through Romney’s shameless hucksterism for money rather than the material well being of ourselves or our country?

So if you still are one of those that still are confused after all these debates and confusing television ads, let me give you some sage advice. One of the most important lessons I have learned in the last 35 years of doing business is that when someone tells you to “trust me,” like Romney says with his secret tax plan, protect your wallet because you’re about to get robbed! And that’s what it comes down to with the Romney-Ryan tax plan.

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