Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Imagine ...

There has been so much anger and furor in these final days of campaigning that I thought that it would be nice to calm down just a bit and take a little break. So I would like to take just a moment to paint a little verbal canvas in your head in the final days leading up to the coming election. Something to help you focus on the prize just ahead. Relax, breathe, close your eyes (No wait, if you do that you can't read this ... OK, leave them open.), and try to see if you can picture this in your mind. 


Imagine a tax and spend president who believes in massive national infrastructure projects, and who believes that making huge investments in things such as railroads and highways is in this country's best interests. Imagine a president who believes strongly in higher tariffs and taxes, and especially the desirability of the federal income tax. Imagine a president who believes that the federal government has a right and obligation to strongly control the banking system in this country. Have you got a picture in your head yet? 


Imagine a president who believes in tax-funded subsidies for favored businesses. Imagine a president who constantly demonizes his enemies and uses every power of the federal government to make their lives difficult at best, miserable and impossible at worst. Imagine a president who seeks to control the press and in fact brings the power of his office to bear on them to see that his message, and only his message, is heard. Can you see his face clearly? 


Imagine a president who believes that he can pick out the parts of the Constitution that he likes and ignore or reinterpret the rest of this document to suit his needs. Imagine a president that pushes laws through a willing Congress to enforce his will and control over the voters of the United States, regardless of whether they believe in his vision or not. Can you see him? How do you feel about this president? What do you think about his leadership skills? What do you imagine his place in history might be? 


Now imagine that he is taking away the right of the states as guaranteed in the Constitution. Imagine that he is using the full force of the federal government (even troops) to bring those states into line with the federal government's dictates and mandates. Can you see him clearly in your mind? Now picture him not as you think you see him, but as he actually is ... Abraham Lincoln. 


The message here is a cautionary one, aimed at a Republican Party who often glowingly refers to itself as "the party of Lincoln". Be careful my friends! Just because it appears that your star is rising once again in the Halls of Congress doesn't mean that you get to write your own rules. Nor does it mean that the voters who raised you up expect you to become part of the same tired process that they rejected when you get there. 


Remember carefully that if in fact you are elected, you are being sent to Washington DC to do the will of the people, not that of your party. Remember the pretty speeches you gave about listening to those people, and about returning to the concept of government envisioned by those who wrote the document that limits the government you are about to become a part of. Remember that in but two years you can be swept from office with the same alacrity that you were swept into it.



4 comments:

mud_rake said...

The message here is a cautionary one, aimed at a Republican Party who often glowingly refers to itself as "the party of Lincoln".

Oh, THAT Republican Party. You must be referring to that Grand Old Party that died a slow death about 20 years ago. I remember it well. It used to include an honorable and diverse membership.

Too bad that today's GOP looks nothing like the one I recall from years back.

Roland Hansen said...

Gee, Amigo Tim, upon reading the early paragraph of a "president who believes that making huge investments in things such as railroads and highways is in this country's best interests." my thoughts immediately went to Dwight D. Eisenhower. Then I continued reading, and as I read more and more, I saw a variety of Presients.
I like how you put it all together. It is a great piece. Throughyout the history of American politics, both present day major political parties have undergone several processes of realignment and dealignment. Historically speaking, it is the norm rather than the exception.

Tim Higgins said...

mud_rake,

Neither party has done itself any favors recently, but far too few Republicans are finding time in their march forward to think about what they will do if they win. Someone has to remind them.

Tim Higgins said...

Roland,

I am not surprised that you were captured by multiple references, and the confusion was intentional. While some would see only one president, students of history would discover as you did, that this has happened before.

As for the method of assembly, I wish I could take full credit. I was inspired however, by a recent viewing of the closing argument of Matthew McConaughey in "A Time To Kill". That scene gets to me every time I watch it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7f-BgDgpmE