Now that the Presidential primaries are underway I can start paying close attention to all the candidates running to be the most powerful person in the world. After the Iowa Caucuses and now with the New Hampshire primary today I can honestly say that I am less than excited by the field of candidates. Nothing new right? But I'm not going to do the usual complaint about voting for the lesser of several evils because I don't believe the problem is with the candidates. I believe the problem is with the electorate.
Something has changed in this country over the last 20 years and it is not a change for the better. We've become a "for the children" society. Adults in the United States are looking to the federal government more and more to be the paternal figure or the generous grandparent. Is this a temporary phenomenon given the "maturity" of the massive baby boom generation? I can only hope.
You can tell that we are in a full nanny state swing of the pendulum by the platforms the candidates are running on and the rhetoric they are using in their campaigns. How else would we get the constant mantra of "candidate for change" by both Republican and Democrats? How else would we end up with every viable Democrat candidate in favor of a universal health care programs and tax increases? How else would we end up with Republican candidates that actually signed into law a universal health care program (Mitt Romney) and in-state college tuition for illegal aliens (Mike Huckabee) while they were governors of their respective states? Hell, our current President who is supposed to be a conservative Republican signed into law an energy bill that bans the incandescent light bulb and expanded Medicare to include the payment of prescription drugs.
Where have we gone wrong? Why are we not interested in taking care of ourselves anymore? Why are we so ready to hand off to the federal government our responsibilities? Why are we so wanton to live in a cocoon where we are sheltered from the realities of life? The vast majority of the population seems to be acting like a 30 year old child that won't leave the house for fear that they'll actually have to do something with themselves.
Faced with a modern world with modern threats we need to leave the protective cocoon of the federal government. We need to harden ourselves for the realities that lie ahead. China is now a threat not only economically but also militarily. Russia has thrown their support towards China and has taken steps towards a more closed communist style society. Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, and North Korea are all nations that need to be closely guarded.
The United States' economy is one that is being strangled to death by ever intrusive tax policies and regulation. Energy policies that look to conserve our consumption without looking to expand our sources of energy makes us a no-growth nation rather than a pro-growth nation. Out of control government spending on entitlements which threaten to throw us into bankruptcy. Entitlements which the federal government has no authority to grant.
What this country needs is a leader that will wake us up. A leader that will look us in the eye and tell us that in the end we are responsible for ourselves. A leader that knows that government is most often not the solution but the problem. A leader that will get government out of our way at home and protect us from threats abroad. A leader that will protect our national interests where ever they reside on the planet. What we need is a leader.
Unfortunately, given the slate of candidates in both parties, what we seem to have are grandparents. Someone we can look to that will make us feel better. Someone that gives us as much candy and soda pop as we want. Grandparents are great and they play an important role in our lives but they are not the ones in the end that will save us from ourselves. After all, grandparents move on to their next lives leaving us to eventually fend for ourselves. That is, after we finally move out of our parent's house.