Thursday, October 23, 2008

Politics and money

I rarely talk about politics. Never here on this blog, but it's rare for me to get into a political discussion anywhere. My brain shuts off and I look for a quick escape if I see that is where a discussion is heading. But I am going to break from my usual habits to just discuss one thing.

Recently, we received an invitation to a fundraiser for someone running for State Representative. Now, I have nothing against this candidate, and a dinner at a local restaurant sounds fun, and a good way to raise some funds. But it had me thinking about the bigger picture. During this presidential election I have been listening more to the news about the money involved in financing campaigns. It's always made me sick to hear the size of the figures mentioned, but this time around it is hitting me harder. Maybe it's our own personal financial strain, maybe it's reading about Pipo's home village being hit so hard with the recent hurricanes, or maybe it's just the huge downward spiral our economy is in. Whatever the reason, hearing the amount of money being shoveled into all these campaign funds is making me want to vomit lately.

I think maybe it started back in February when the Clinton/Obama race was heating up, and Hillary loaned her own campaign 5 million dollars. I listened to that on the radio, and my head started spinning. With rising oil costs, how many families here in America were struggling to heat there homes? How many families didn't even have homes? How many were struggling to feed their families? That 5 million sure could have gone far.

Clinton wasn't the only one though... all the presidential candidates were racking up huge numbers. It's estimated that this years election will cost about 5.3 billion dollars. Think about that... 5.3 billion dollars. How many 3rd world countries could be helped with that? How many hungry people fed? How many economies helped towards stabilization?

For just once, I would like to see a candidate that wasn't rolling in money. An average Joe kinda guy... someone who works and struggles and lives life the way most of us do, just trying to get by. And I would like to see that candidate run a money-free campaign. Just picture it... someone just plainly telling us how they would like to help our country. How they would like to make a difference without racking up those big numbers. Someone who would just walk into small town public schools, town halls, and stand right outside on our sidewalks saying "Vote for me... you don't have to pay for it." With the technology of today, especially the internet, it wouldn't be hard to run a free campaign. Post some Youtube videos of why you should be president, start an email campaign, blog about your beliefs... I'll vote for you.

Anyone who would take public spending that seriously would easily get my vote... anyone with me on this?


JourneytoFamily said...

I'm with you on this!!! Especially when just a fraction of that money would go so far and help so many people in developing countries.

Becky said...

I agree...I feel sick when I hear the numbers too. And...I'll vote for you!

Anonymous said...

I SO agree. It is quite sickening really.