Jim Childers: Soapbox | AspenTimes.com

Jim Childers: Soapbox

Jim Childers
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

It all starts with the present and everyone knows something is wrong with the present, so let’s change it. The war, health care, jobs, economic needs, environ­mental concerns, gas prices and the American dream is swiftly dis­appearing.

These are just some of the concerns, and certainly let us not forget many who still live in fear of terrorism, our weakened defens­es and our stretched to the limit armed forces. Both parties, Democrats and Republicans, have major concerns and both have basic philosophies of what our country should be and how to attain that goal. The results of these past seven and a half years have been a disappointment to many ” certainly the majority. The Bush administration, in many views, including many Republicans, was a rouge administration with its own set of rules, guidelines and ideals outside the thinking of either par­ty ” with just enough help within the Republican party, for loyalty sake, to keep it operational. Only recently have Republicans said enough is enough ” the Republi­can nominee and the campaign doesn’t even mention Bush.

The militaristic ideals of the Republican party that has spread fear and utilized it to their benefit under the Bush administration is a characteristic ideal of the Republi­can party. The fear of being weak has always been a major part of the Republican philosophy, which has led to the gigantic militaristic com­plex of our century. President Dwight Eisenhower, himself a Republican, being a career military man and then president was in a position to see both sides, and before leaving office he warned America to beware of the growing military industrial complex it was creating. Today our nation spends more on the defense budget than the rest of the world combined and yet we have a weakened military! Perhaps we need to spend more on leadership or at least crank up our brains and begin to think when it comes time to elect our leaders.

Our government can become stagnant even if the right president is chosen, although he or she can do many things for the country, as well as do many things that can hurt the country. If the right con­gress and senate is not in place much of the president’s vision might not become a reality. This is why the party philosophies should help individuals to choose not only a president but also congressmen and senators. People who involve themselves become aware of can­didates ideals and their connec­tions and power they might pos­sess to accomplish these goals, which help them in their decision. Tragically enough, many voters make a choice on a sound bite, a pretty face, race, or something they like or dislike such as their appear­ance. Voting a straight party line without knowing the philosophy and real ideals of the party is per­haps the worst in my opinion. Another example I find difficult to understand is the situation with Hillary delegates. As I understand, many may vote for the Republican candidate since Hillary was not picked as Vice President. The insanity of this compares in a more dramatic way to someone loosing a race and taking a gun and shooting themselves as well as everyone else around them. In other words, they wanted to elect a woman no matter her party, philosophies, ideals or where she would lead our country! With voters like this it is no wonder Bush got elected ” must have been his little cowboy hat.

Currently we have two candi­dates running for president of our country. Each is a nice person; patriotic, and wanting to do what, in their opinion, is best for our country. However each has a very different idea of how this can be done and what is important to most Americans. One seems to see the concerns of the needy, the waste of warmongering, the loss of the American dream, the needs for environmental concerns, common sense approach to energy inde­pendence, tax cuts for the middle class, and a renewed leadership roll in the world community. The other candidate believes in tax cuts for the wealthy, that people having less that $5 million should not be considered rich, a continuation of the war and possible other wars, possible renewal of the draft, drill, drill, drill anywhere, and it is not necessary to know how many houses you own to be president.

It’s your choice, America, and I hope you do a better job than you have the past two presidential elec­tions!

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