My daddy always told me just that…and to ‘never, ever lie, cheat or steal’. With that thought in mind and the upcoming Presidential election looming in November it brought to mind my take on the whole deal.
First of all, I do not watch television in the morning or before noon or after noon…unless it’s the U.S. Open or weather. That’s a fact Jack.
Secondly, sure I listen to the speeches of the two candidates…but here’s where the road forks for me….I do not need a ‘talking head’ to interpret what the candidate said or meant or implied…or whether or not he or she lied, misrepresented or slung mud. I do not need to be told what to do, or how to think or decide whether I’m right or wrong, and why.
I listen to the speech, and immediately turn off the television set…I do not need ‘the other side’s point of view’ or some make-up packed face asking asinine questions about the content and reaction of the American people regarding the speech….heck, I AM THE AMERICAN PEOPLE….as American as you can get from this Scotch-Irish working class man.
Here’s an example of the problem…
“With soft rebukes of his opponent and his own party — and harsh words for the culture of Washington — Sen. John McCain claimed the Republican presidential nomination last night and promised that ’change is coming‘ after eight years of the Bush Administration.”
O.K….I don’t need the press to tell me something was ‘harsh’…I can make up my own mind on that and more.
Enough of television telling us what to think, how to think and when to question…are we not the very ones who invented television, the assembly line. Why now do I bring this up? Simple, really….this is one major election for sure, that cannot be denied. In the past year I changed my voter registration three times…and I’m not ashamed of it…For years I registered as an Independent…then a former sheriff urged me to change my voter registration to Republican…and since I was dating a ‘staunch Republican’…I changed over to the Elephant Party….and you know what, the next morning I didn’t feel or act a bit differently than the day before.
Then I got fed up with the Bush administration and some of the high-level shenanigans they were pulling and in a fit of disgust, went to the Election Board and changed over to Democrat. There, that took care of that anxiety attack once and for all.
Along came the fleet of Democratic candidates and the endless debates and it did more harm than good in my book….totally disgusted another trip to the Election Board was in order. They now knew me by my first name, which isn’t Todd…“Hello Stockton, how may we help you?”…Very fine folks at the Election Board…very courteous and competent totally.
They kind of make it a secret when they hand you the paperwork to fill out, I guess that’s because we can have a few secrets left in this America we live in…but not too many…as you well know.
O.K….sharing my secret, my voter registration card now states, “Independent”…just like it did at the start of 2008. I have no intention of changing it again…if anything perhaps I’ll never vote again. It’s disgusting what the right to vote has become in the land I love and cherish as my own. It’s a sham…a ‘gigantic spending machine’ to buy the right to run the country. Millions of dollars are raised to convince the working man trying to stretch a dollar that change is right around the corner. Right.
The idealism that was part of my youth, of voting for the right person, regardless of party affiliation was sacred and I looked forward to exercising my vote as much as getting my license or registering for the Draft. Not any more.
With that in mind, sure, listen to the speeches of the candidates, listen well, because you need to understand what they are saying, and how you feel deep inside your gut of how it affects you…You do not need to keep the TV on any longer after the speech…please, I’m begging you…switch over to the Animal Planet…or pick up a book…look up a word in the dictionary you don’t understand…anything but listening to some one-sided face with an agenda…fronting for an ad campaign that sells cars, beer, financial plans and air fare.
It’s all about fear and selling…yep…that’s television…even on cable or the dish…I pay $47.99 each month to DIRECTV…for what? To see a ton of commercials that bug me…I’m paying for television. And paying to see commercials…what’s wrong with this picture…no pun intended…
I’m fed up…and as Peter Finch’s character Howard Beale said in “Network” “’I’M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!’…his stinging indictment of what newscasters are told to say to sell cars and beer…and that’s a great combo…drink and drive…oh, mercy me…the pain never ends.
For now though, in writing this little scribble, my feelings are eased that it’s out in the open…and a lot of you already know this…but for those who don’t, try it…just think for yourself…it’s good ‘brain candy’…mental exercise…and you might just make a difference when it comes to lots of things…like Presidential elections…or life among the living.
Nobody ever said a news commentator was smarter than you…they might be better looking with all the lighting and make-up…but keep in mind, ‘beauty is only skin deep’…and beneath that flesh of yours there’s a heart beating for the best of life and well meaning times ahead.