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Commentary & Opinion
Tue July 17, 2012
Barbara Traynor : Common Sense is Really Simple... Really?
It’s a given that most of us, even those benefiting financially, agree our current election process is tedious and costly. In less than 200 years, it has evolved from small, exclusive meetings to a Henry VIII orgy, gulping down hundreds of millions of dollars. What our forefathers suggested be a simple process, simply isn’t anymore.
Our Constitution depends on our common sense. It says nothing about how political candidates should be nominated, merely provides guidelines to allow the development of political parties.
Suggestion: Common sense says projected election campaigns begin on Jan. 1 of an election year. Ten months is long enough to advertise, vocalize, and dramatize. Halfway through our present foray, candidates are expended and the public feels stampeded. Voting becomes a spectator sport.
This is really sad . . . because you and I have been known to possess the ability to distinguish between façade and reality! Internet with apps like Twitter enable instant communication, transmitting data with lightning speed, ensuring immediate exposure of person, place – and skeleton. We are constantly bombarded with miniscule details and disclosures of candidates’ lives.
Give us voter education, not verbal assault and battery. Give us straightforward, realistic objectives on which to base choices since individual leadership can and has transformed history. Allow us the opportunity within a specific period of time to listen beyond promises made – to do more than be a bobble-head.
Actually, the job of politician is no different from any other. Get past the period of adjustment and it becomes cyclical BUT due to passive term limit policies, our politicians plus our Commander-in-Chief become gerbils on an exercise wheel. Year one: acclimate to 24/7 fishbowl. Year two: State of the Union - a quasi apology counteracting criticism. Year three: look to re-election. Forget the fourth! For most, this leaves one year of actual focused leadership.
Suggestion: presidential term of five or six years, sans re-election. Common sense says this will allow focus on issues, not campaigning.
Our forefathers served with commitment, dedication – and at times a certain amount of flair – departing at the completion of duties. They worked together to build our nation, trusting the growth of that nation to future generations. They were not career politicians. They got elected, served, and got out before they burned out.
Our democratic process works. It is filled with those who willingly guard world peace and resolve constituent woes. It’s up to us to elect the most qualified individual in a timely and prudent manner.
Suggestion: How about some common sense?
Barbara Traynor is a Second Career Volunteer, and an author and workshop facilitator at BT Books LLC.
The views expressed by commentators are solely those of the authors, and do not reflect the views of this station or its management.