Where is America headed?
written by Ron:
Your comments about this column are welcome ~ e-mail Ron at
Make no mistake, America is where it is today because of policies formed five and six decades ago. Our immigration policies, our public education system, our interstate highway system, our space program, massive funding for science and technology – all were created in the 1950’s and 1960’s.
America is still No. 1 in the world. Our standard of living excels and is the envy of the world. We have the world’s largest economy and the largest military, but that is today. There is no guarantee that America will be tomorrow as it is today. In fact, there are omens on the horizon that are frightening.
We have the most crime among advanced countries. We have the most guns, the largest debt by far of any nation on the planet.
Our infrastructure is 23rd in the world. Health-wise we rank low in the world. We’re 27th in life expectancy, 18th in diabetes, first in obesity. We are 79th in elementary school enrollment. Fifteen year olds in America rank 17th in the world in science and 25th in math. We rank 12th among developed countries in graduation from college.
During the past few years, more years than we like to admit, our government has been stymied. Our representatives have put on this big show about budgets, pensions and our nation’s future, but all of this is falderal. Our senators and representatives (even our presidents) have been orating and bloviating on every subject imaginable – all careful to avoid saying anything that might cause them the loss of votes. Every uttered sentence is carefully staged to escape saying anything that would cause them or their political party discomfort or the potential loss of votes.
What our politicians are avoiding as they search for answers to our fiscal dilemma is the real cause of our money difficulties – Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare and taxes. The military-industrial complex and governmental waste add to the list of transgressions. This is where our money is going and few dare to search for answers among the real causes of our country’s financial enigma.
Year after year, administration after administration these senators, representatives and presidents face our country’s problems with a timid, myopic and fearful approach. Our problems continue, decade after decade. And why do they avoid challenging the real problems? Because they are spending their days and nights focused on what is politically easy and minimally dangerous. The targets of their energies are those without a wide support or strong and influential interest groups behind them. They are sticking with what is easy and will not cost them votes or support money.
Our governmental system is based to let remain the current subsidies, the tax breaks and the billions in subsidies. Our future rests in the hands of those in the federal government that spend $4 on elderly people for every $1 it spends on those under 18. And when the reductions in spending are made which group do you think gets their allowance slashed?
Follow where the votes are and you’ll find a lobbyist and an interest group. Vote against the National Rifle Association or A.A.R.P. and the chances are good you’ll lose the next election.
America is still No. 1 in the world, even as we struggle through decade after decade of avoiding the real solutions to our major problems. Reelection ranks as the immediate goal of our senators, representatives and presidents.
It is time that we, the voters, stop looking at our senators, representatives and presidents as actors on the stages of the Sunday morning talk shows and demand that they solve our growing problems or face defeat in their next election.
If we don’t act as interested, active and vital citizens of this great land our children, grandchildren and their children will be inhabitants of the number two or three country on the planet.
The time has come to end the impasse. To end the political jockeying - to end the avoidance of the complicated and painful decisions.
There is only one way that our senators, representatives and, yes, presidents will buckle down and prepare our country for the generations to come – and that will be if the citizens of this great land demand that action be taken.
We surely cannot continue flitting down the road that we are currently traveling.
The future of American will depend on how much interest that you and I express to our senators, representatives and presidents.
The change must start with us.
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