Let’s start with the Democrats, because I’ve been a registered Democrat all my life, even though I’ve been disgusted with them for at least the last six years.
There’s Hillary Clinton. I am well and truly Ready for Hillary… to just go away. Between Benghazi, and running her own personal private e-mail server while Secretary of State, she is now officially a sneak. I’ve gotten to the point where I simply can’t believe anything she says.
But let’s make the plausible assumption that, if elected, she would follow the same policy directions as the current President. Would I want four more years of a listless economy, an airheaded foreign policy, and open borders? No, thank you.
The other official candidate at this point is Bernie Sanders, who is somewhere to the left of Hillary: a fan of more government ‘investment…’ to do what?
Then there are the Republicans. I’ve been disgusted with the Democrats for the past six years, and while I could change my party registration, what I’ve seen on that side of the fence hasn’t been compelling.
First, there’s Jeb Bush, who has the obvious name factor: is there no other family across our broad land capable of fielding plausible Republican candidates?
But beyond that, he and the newcomers Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio all subscribe to the same basic platform: a more assertive America, meaning going to war against whomever makes us mad, (And if there’s no obvious enemy, they’ll make one, Where would W have been without 11 September as a pretext to go to war in Iraq?) They also stand for ‘immigration reform,’ meaning, at best, another 1980s-style reset, in which the illegal immigrants already here are given a path to legal status, while the icky part of the job–securing the borders and enforcing the law against hiring illegal immigrants–goes quietly by the boards.
In fact, all of the candidates seem to stand for open borders, although some are more vocal about it than others. Evidently, the Power Beyond wants open borders. Perhaps they’re worried that we’re in demographic decline because of our low birth rate. But what’s galling is that we, as real American citizens, don’t seem to matter.
And all of the candidates claim to be ready to fix the economy, when in fact, they can’t. The economy will improve if and when the private sector returns to real productive activity instead of pluffage. But while government can encourage productive activity, it can’t force businesses to expand and hire.
Finally, none of the candidates seem to want to do anything about the emerging police state. One of the things that I realized from the muted overall response to Edward Snowden is that much of our leadership is OK with our government snorfing up every phone call, e-mail, and blog post.
We became a superpower decades ago because we had the productive economic base to support it. We didn’t become a superpower because we were ordained by God, or because there was something magical about our land: we earned it. And if we want to remain a superpower, we have to maintain and expand that base, which we haven’t been doing. So we need to take a few steps back and either rebuild our economic base (which is more in the hands of private enterprise than something the government can do), or face the reality that without that base, we can no longer be a superpower.
And none of the candidates running for President, nor even any of the not-quite-candidates who are still considering whether to run, seems to get this.