Friday, February 1, 2008

"The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter" - Winston Churchill

As November 4th, 2008 nears, we see Republican, Democrat, and third candidates stumping for votes.

We live in the greatest nation in the world, our patrotism is strong, we're protecting our borders and our values -- and here in the North Country, we're the proud hometown of Fort Drum. But I believe democracy in our nation has become stagnant. We are lacking in keen critical judgment.

Too many Americans are easily persuaded by political pundits -- how much faith can you have in democracy when we've become eager buyers of sensationalism and partisan trash-talk. Too many Americans are seduced by celebrity-watch -- how industrious can our society be if we're so easily diverted by Britney. We'd rather go shopping, looking for the best deals, than spend time learning about each candidiate.

Politicians at every level - local, county, state, and nation - set "the agenda." But Americans themselves deserve blame. Politicians wouldn't be where they are if they didn't get votes.

In this election year, our democracy depends on the active, responsible, and discerning voters. It can be challenging to navigate through all campaign spin and rhetoric. But that is what a democracy should be for every citizen -- it should be a challenge. Keeping democracy alive and thriving requires work.

In this blog, I will not pretend to know the best direction for our county, state, and nation, but I will offer suggestions, and try to prescribe positive action.