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The toxic, poisonous influence of politics

Are you as tired as I am of this political bullshit that is destroying our sense of what America is supposed to mean and how we as a society are supposed to live?

I was trying to watch Meet the Press this morning on TV. The host, David Gregory, a bought and paid for political hack if there ever was one, was interviewing David Axelrod, one of President Obama's senior political advisors. In spite of the news that the economy is making some feeble but honest signs of recovery, Gregory had nothing but criticism and hand wringing and just blathering on and on about how bad things are and how Obama has failed.

I finally just turned it off and wanted to drain a bottle of vodka at 9:30 in the morning. I mean, what in the world has happened to this country? How did we get to the place where our, OUR, elected officials RUN and CONTROL and DECIDE how much money we will make, where it will be spent, and who gets to get all the rewards and who doesn't?

What happened to freedom? What happened to representative government? What happened to rules of fair play? What happened to respecting the Constitution and The Bill of Rights?

What has happened to us as a citizenry? We've just allowed these people to take over our country and our lives. The rich and powerful use the government to protect only themselves and their own businesses and corporations and personal interests while the rest of us are left without any power, without any say, without opportunities to better ourselves unless we do what the elite tell us to do or say we can do. And it is just so frustrating and disappointing and discouraging to watch unfold day after day and year after year.

This ubiquitous, endless, annoying, partisan, petty, money wasting political campaigning that rules the media is a toxic, poisonous influence on our society and is simply wrecking our nation and our lives. Even if you don't follow any of it, it's still there everywhere around you. On the radio, on TV, on the Internet, in the newspapers, on billboards. You can't be a living human being and not be confronted with the destructive political influence in this country.

Are there solutions? I don't know. Honestly, I have no idea anymore. I used to think if I voted, if I did my homework on political candidates and tried hard to make good choices that I was contributing to a healthy process of fairness and good citizenship and in the end the majority would rule. But that's all out the window. Do our votes really count? Isn't our president, and aren't other elected officials determined not by we the people but by a very powerful few or by very powerful groups? By the media? By think tanks? By Wall Street? By unsympathetic and greedy millionaires and billionaires? Even at times by a biased Supreme Court?

I will continue to vote and study the issues and choose candidates I believe in, men and women I believe will be good for our country. But it's starting to get really difficult to find them.

Mark Twain once advised, “Loyalty to country always. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.” And I agree. But I'm beginning to wonder if our country knows what loyalty to its fundamental rights and freedoms and values are anymore. As voters we need to stop voting for and supporting candidates who once elected turn on us and establish legislation and rules and use tricks that work against our own best interests and the good and decency of our nation.

© 2011 Timothy Moody

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