Let's thrive, not just survive

I have a distrust of whoever is in power. Republican, Democrat, liberal, conservative, I don’t trust any of them with the power they constantly wrestle for. At this moment I lean toward the conservative side, simply because I’m currently watching a liberal power base take liberties with my liberties. However one thing that has become clear to me over my lifetime is the brilliance of our forefathers in the creation of this republic in which we live. Despite all the selfish, self-centered interests that want to manipulate it into their own design, it still survives. Unfortunately, those same thoughtless, self-pleasing, interests are constantly making sure it doesn’t thrive. Profits drive business decisions regardless of human or societal costs. Membership numbers and recognition drive religions, unions and non-profits, as headlines and the assault on anyone that interferes with their righteous ideas, overpower the goals originally set forth. Power stimulates politics as re-election and idealistic platforms, funded by the aforementioned interests, push aside all efforts to truly lead for the betterment of the populace. And, worst of all, the populace itself seems willing to sacrifice the freedoms and liberties guaranteed by our Constitution in exchange for short term gains and individual satisfaction and comfort.

Perhaps, I’m just turning into a curmudgeonly old man. Perhaps the Constitution that I have grown to covet and the rights and liberties it represents has served its purpose and we are simply in the process of evolving into a more enlightened system, more attuned to a new era. Maybe I simply need to better adapt to a society where rewards for hard work are minimized. Where regulation is more important than production. Where equality is administered rather than protected. Maybe personal freedoms should be exchanged for the well being of the masses and we should all open our homes and our bank accounts unconditionally to whoever is in need, regardless of merit.

Maybe, but, not in my world. We have an election coming up, in which we will choose between two very different schools of thought. I, for one, don’t believe in either party. Either, in the quest for power, would, without malice or contempt, let me starve on their doorstep if it got them elected or re-elected. They care not for you or me, or for this country. They are blinded by power and will say what they need to say and do what they want to do. Our choice is not so much for a savior as for a reprieve from the never ending assault on liberty that we have allowed these politicians and their talking heads to wage.

So, next Tuesday when we make our way to the polls, let’s do it with dignity. Let’s not selfishly reward those that offer us a free lunch or pork barrel project. Let’s put our country first. Vote for the candidates that you feel most want to preserve your liberties, your freedoms. Vote for future generations not a quick payoff. Your rights and your responsibilities aren’t exclusive of each other. They are dependent on each other. Let’s see if we can start rewarding ourselves by electing responsible leaders and representatives. It can’t happen over night. Our options are limited by the self-absorption of our past. But, our options will improve if we bend the government to our will instead of bending to the will of our government. The walk out is as long as the walk in. Let’s start now with responsible choices, not selfish ones. Let’s thrive instead of survive.

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