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 Texas : Features : Columns : Letters From North America :

Election Over, What Now?

by Peary Perry
Peary Perry
Well, we have the election over and now we can get back to the health ads on the news rather than the ones on the politicians. I switched channels the other night and tuned in on MTV and then Nickelodeon for a few moments, their commercials are entirely different.

First off, none of this death and dying stuff. Not a pain pill or supplement in sight, it was a welcome relief. I stayed about five minutes since I wasn't able to understand anything that was being said on either channel.

So, did the Democrats win or did the Republicans lose? I think it all depends upon your point of view. A case can surely be made that the Republicans lost, but why? Well, for one thing they haven't been taking care of business like they should. Even though they have had control of both houses, look at how little has actually been accomplished in the past few years. The same can be said of the Democrats, did they win? Well, of course they did, but at what price? What will they do in the next couple of years that is any better or that will achieve any longer lasting results than what the Republicans have already done? The proof will be in the pudding. Whose feet can they now lay the blame for any future failures? It'll be interesting to see how much they posture and how much actually gets done in the coming months.

In my mind this election should show all of the politicians, at all levels of government just how most of us are fed up with politics. I believe the average American is caught in the middle, between the far left and the far right. We are tired of partisan game playing, corrupt members of congress, special interests and treatment to those who buy influence by campaign contributions. I don't have the resources to buy a politician. I wouldn't know what to do with one if I had one.

I have always said that I always thought all persons seeking elected office did so with the best intentions in mind. I truthfully believe they go into politics in an effort to get something changed for the betterment of the public they represent. I believe the system corrupts them once they arrive.

I think the system is not one of simply black and white, but of a dull shade of gray. Each publicly elected official is forced to make so many compromises in order to achieve anything of importance that their principles get watered down in the process. This situation makes the average voter a bit wary when it comes to believing anything that is said by any politician. It looks to me as if they spend all of their time worrying about how to get reelected rather than putting forth any effort on the issues that we are facing each day.

Were we wrong to jump into Iraq? No, I think Hussein was a weapon of mass destruction. Where we messed up was in not having a planned exit strategy to allow us to leave in some orderly fashion. What to do now? How can we leave and not be faced with another Vietnam situation?

What should we do about the immigration problem? We need the workers, they are important to us in many industries, but how to control the negative effects we have allowed to happen over these past couple of generations? How can we be fair and firm at the same time?

Our dependence on foreign energy is at sixty percent or higher. Need I say more?

Our education system is in a shambles and our young kids are falling further and further behind the kids in the rest of the world. What is the solution to this problem and how long will it take to fix something as massive as this?

Crime, social security, healthcare, Medicare, budget deficits are all issues which need attention by everyone elected to public office. These are the items that matter to those of us in the heartland of this country.

We are tired of picking up the paper every morning and reading about some elected official getting arrested for stealing or influence pedaling. We are tired of cover-ups and lies. If you screw up, just say so. We do and we expect you to stand up and admit it. These are the things we teach our kids as they are growing up. You wouldn't think we would need to go over such basics with adults elected to high office.

Last but not least, let's eliminate the term 'bi-partisanship', which is the same term we had in elementary school for 'plays nice with others'. This isn't first grade; you are now in the real world. Your decisions and stance on issues has an effect on all of us. Try and get along for a change.

Come on folks, no one said you had to all believe the same things, but good gosh, it seems to me and a lot of the folks I've talked to happen to agree that the word 'bi-partisanship' is due for retirement.

Why haven't you folks been practicing this since you got started? It isn't like it should be a new concept. When you were elected didn't you know there would be people who didn't agree with what you thought or were trying to accomplish?

Perhaps if you had been more aware, then more progress might have been made and we would have been further on down the road.
Peary Perry
Letters From North America >

November 16, 2006 column
Syndicated weekly in 80 newspapers
Comments go to www.pearyperry.com
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