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These words are my diary screaming out loud

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Warning: This is a Political Post

I've been a little MIA this month, for a few reasons, and I apologize. Between heading out to visit my nieces (SUCH a great trip), working on a paper for school (only 2 classes left until I'm officially done with my Masters Degree!), and life in general, I just haven't been here much. On top of that, I've been pondering a couple of things that I want to talk about. I think I'm ready for one of them, but we may have multiple posts over the next few days. Let's just call it making up for lost time :)

(And here's the disclaimer: Don't read past here if you don't want to read about politics, because this is my politics post. I promise I will leave it to this post, for now.)

As anyone who's known me for any period of time may know, I'm kind of a politics junkie. I read a lot, and I pay attention, and I've found myself really changing my political views in the past few years. Well, more accurately, I think I've actually been forming my own views instead of just latching on to those of my family and the preponderance of people I surrounded myself with in the military. I very much find myself relating to people like Meghan McCain - I want to maintain my Republican-ness, but I'm finding it harder and harder to do.

Its not that I don't agree with the party on anything. I agree that the deficit is a problem and the current policies are not working. I don't think that raising taxes on the upper class is the right answer, but I also don't think they should get breaks. I'm all for closing loopholes. I have no problem with the capital gains tax rate being lower than the regular income tax rate. I think the continued spending by the current administration is unsustainable, and needs to stop. I think this President uses the words I and me and a little too much for my liking. I love the military, and I take the national security of this country seriously, and I think that the threats of severe cuts to the defense budget would be a huge mistake, especially without true reform of our policies.

However, that's about where it ends for me. I have a very hard time with a party that touts its desire for smaller federal government yet wants the federal government to regulate our social lives. I have a hard time with a party that consistently talks about the importance of every single human life, yet doesn't want to ensure that programs are in place to care for the child that was born to a mother (or parents) who can't care for it. (And yes, I agree that the federal government is not the place for those programs, but I also think that until the infrastructure has been set up for local/state/church/whoever to take care of them, they need to continue in their current state.) I can't get behind a party that continues to say nothing about the birthers, and who refuses to do the research into all of the good Planned Parenthood does before denouncing the whole organization. Or who think its perfectly OK for myriad tax loopholes to keep the extremely rich from paying any income taxes - I see paying their fair share not as raising rates on those folks, but as actually getting them to pay the rates that are currently set for their brackets.

The rhetoric, the blind allegiance to party instead of issues, the continued practice of making things up for the sound bite, often intentionally, because the sound bite will inevitably get more attention than the correction/apology that comes after the damage is done... This is happening on both sides, and frankly, I'm sick of it.

I'm far from happy with the current President, don't get me wrong. But really, was Mitt Romney the best the Republican party could come up with? I read something the other day that said only a very small percentage of probable voters was really and truly undecided at this point. I really do think I fit in that small percentage. I really do feel like I'm part of that truly independent group, that moderate group that apparently can't put up a viable candidate because it takes being extreme on either side to win a primary. So I, and many others like me, find myself in a position where I can't get even mildly excited for this presidential election, because neither choice seems like a very good one. I really do hope for the day that moderation returns to favor, but I wonder what it will take. Will it take huge defeats in this election year? I'm not even sure that those will happen, and if they do, they won't be landslides. This is likely to be a very close election. This country is divided almost right down the middle. Its people like me that will probably make the decision one way or another. Unfortunately, and I'm sure I'm not the only one, I'm having a hard enough time making that call that just staying home on election day is looking like a much less painful idea. But I know that's not the right answer either.

To wrap this up, I don't like being confused! Hopefully between now and election day, something will click that will make the decision for me. I hope its something easy like the Republican VP pick, but somehow I don't think that will be the case.

And... end political rant. :)

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