The Iowa Straw Poll is on Saturday, and I'm an Iowan now. So I'm debating if I want to take the six-hour round trip to Ames to participate in that. (And discussing it with hubby -- yes, he has a say.) It just seems to me like, we're part of a very small percentage of people in the country whose voice gets to be heard in this way, who get to have this kind of impact on the national scene. Feels like a privilege and a responsibility.
On the other hand, I don't have a bloody clue who I'd vote for. Not impressed at all with the array of choices. I'm really hoping someone will stand out at the debate tonight -- stand out in a positive way. I hate these elections where I'm having to choose the least bad candidate. I'm not sure I've ever had anyone to vote for that I was really excited about. It's usually a matter of, "Well, he would have to be better than HIM."
You know what would be awesome to hear from a Republican candidate somewhere? A real honest-to-God conservative vision. Not one that is simply everything-not-Obama, but one that makes the case persuasively why you should want smaller, less-intrusive government. Why YOU, the unemployed, should want the government to get out of the way of American business. Why YOU, the underinsured, should want medical tort reform and free-market policies in medicine. It's not enough anymore to point out that liberal ideas have failed -- that's quite clear now. The country needs to hear why conservative ideas are going to work better, because they don't believe it yet. Better the devil we know than the devil we don't know, especially when the devil we don't know just sounds mean and bitter.
I would also love to hear a Republican candidate give credit where credit is due to the left. The hate-fest has to stop if we're going to survive as a nation.
AND I would love to hear a Republican say, "Yes, you're right. The wealthy in our nation do need to give their share. All of you CEOs with your monstrous bonuses, take those bonuses and invest them in local organizations that are providing health-care to those who can't afford it. Invest them in local programs that have proven themselves effective in reducing poverty in your area. Invest them in local education initiatives that are actually improving the education of your communities' children. You can live on less than you live on now. You were blessed to be a blessing. Do it because it's the right thing to do -- not because your government forces you to do it."
That's how America is supposed to work. I don't think it can work any other way.