My Thoughts on the US Presidential Race.
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The US economy is desperate for growth. The dollar is on a one way path to ruin. Washington hasn’t passed a budget in years. 7.8% unemployment is now a positive statistic according to the media. Government worker unemployment is roughly 4.3% (that is considered full employment by the way).
Household income is down almost $4,000 annually. The country’s fiscal deficit is over $16 trillion. The fiscal cliff is rapidly approaching. The only growth in the US economy is coming from inflation and there is an election in three weeks. That’s where the US stands right now in an economic nutshell.
With the American economy now more politicised than any other time in the last 75 years, and with such a dire economic outlook, both candidates running for President (and their VP’s) should be giving precise details on how they are going to fix the economy.
Sadly, despite brief moments of specifics on their economic plans, the candidates are spending nearly all their time, and hundreds of millions of dollars, degrading and belittling one another. While one party seems to be crossing the line more than the other, they are both guilty of this behaviour.
Looking back on Presidential campaign ads, and the evolution from the first televised Presidential debate (Nixon and Kennedy) to Romney and Obama, it is clear that the respect for the other guy has been lost. Click here to watch the Nixon/Kennedy debate. Nixon and Kennedy clearly respected one another and showed each other common courtesy, despite having drastically different philosophies.
Nowadays, degrading and belittling the other guy is excused because it is ‘just politics’ and/or is considered ‘political theatrics’. I disagree. It is not ‘just politics’. These men are hoping to lead what is currently the most powerful nation in the world and steer it away from complete economic collapse. I’d like to see them held to a higher standard than the rest of us. I’d like to be inspired by their behaviour, not embarrassed for them as I was last week during the Biden/Ryan debate.
Although I thought the debate between the two VP’s had more substance than the first between Obama and Romney, the constant interrupting, eye rolling and chuckling from Biden was tiring. This was disrespectful to the American voter.
Viewers who haven’t made up their mind are trying to understand the candidates opinions and ideas. It makes it difficult to do so when one candidate is constantly interrupting the other. Furthermore, VP Biden’s demonstrable lack of respect toward Congressman Ryan, as exhibited with many outbursts of laughter, chuckles etc. was a clear example of the way this campaign is being run. Let me be clear however, BOTH SIDES are guilty of appalling political behaviour.
There is no place for disrespecting and belittling an opponent while 23 million Americans are unemployed. Spare the voters the theatrics. Stay on point. Discuss the issues that mean so much to the people of America. In addition, the international spotlight is on each candidate and their behaviour reflects the integrity of the US. The world is watching, and as a Canadian, I feel this Presidential race has been one of shameful behaviour. It certainly doesn’t portray American leadership in a positive way.
There are so many fallacies (to put it kindly) claimed by each campaign. Some of the things that have been said by Romney and Obama, or from their respective campaigns, are astounding. I think Mark Cuban said it best: “I only wish that candidates were held to the same standards of fact that CEO’s of public companies are.
If CEOs were as vague, fast and loose with the facts as our candidates are, they would be in big trouble. How sad is it that our Presidential candidates are not required to hold the same levels of fact as our corporate leaders are.”
By not presenting clear and concise game-plans on how the candidate plans on turning the economy around (during debates and in televised ads), they are hoping the American voter is ignorant to the facts. Sad but true. Roughly 90% of the ads being televised have been negative toward the opposing candidate. 90%! These ads are playing to the stereotypes and fears engrained in the American culture.
Both candidates have made poor judgments in some of their speeches. And both candidates have been responsible for dividing the voters into classes. Both leaders continue to be vague with their plans and various claims. Romney states he can create 12 million jobs in 4 years, yet he lacks specifics. Obama blames all the economic problems of America on the Bush Administration as he asks for more time. Obama loses the first Presidential debate to Romney and then this ad is released:
Are you kidding me?
Romney politicised the Libya attack by undermining the White House. Whether the White House mishandled the situation or not, this was a tragic event and not one to politicise – especially not within 24 hours of the incident.
Give the American voters a clear choice. Lay out your plans with specifics. Debate your ideas respectfully. Enlighten your countrymen on how your policies will help them.
This has become a mud-slinging contest rather than a race on substance and facts. My concern with this election is that many Americans (probably the majority) will be making a choice for President without knowing the nitty-gritty of each candidates policies and ideas.
“I am just so sick of ‘You suck, no you suck more’ politics that both sides are playing.”