October 28, 2016

Vote for the Country, Not the Candidate

By Donald G. Mashburn

What’s a voter to do in voting for a president on November 8? We have the answer: Vote for the Country, not the candidate! We’ll get into the specifics later, but first let’s take a look at how we got into this mess of having to choose between two candidates with the highest unfavorable ratings of any presidential candidate in our time.

Early, it looked so easy for the GOP. Just nominate someone with experience as a governor or senator, or who had done something requiring broader experience than a community organizer in South Chicago. The Democrats were almost certain to select Hillary Clinton as their presidential nominee, even with her back trail – all the way back to Arkansas – littered with the baggage of the multiple scandals of White Water and the cattle futures windfall, all the way up to Benghazi, the private server in the basement of her home in New York, and in the words of FBI Director James Comey, her “extremely careless” handling of classified State Department information.

Clinton’s lack of solid accomplishment, her frequent disregard for the truth, and the desire of much of the nation for relief from too much Obama had the country looking for anybody that could ride a horse to ride to its rescue.

Republicans couldn’t wait to line up for the chance to right the leftward and downward spiral of the Obama “experiment.” The crowded Republican field of 16 men and a woman, all accomplished, seemingly sharp, and mostly talking common sense solutions gave the nation hope. From the beginning, most candidates said things that got the country’s attention, such as secure the border, build the wall, bring American businesses and the jobs they provide back to the U.S., end Obama Care, etc. Early on, there wasn’t much detail but there were tons of repetition.

Donald Trump emerged as an early leader, not by being the most promising candidate, but being the candidate promising the most – in addition to being the meanest, the vainest, and quickest to take offense. Flying into showy rallies in the Trump helicopter and the Trump Boeing 757 airliner caught the attention of the public and the television news channels. Big crowds were drawn to the Trump rallies, and these drew the slobbering, panting, television channels and networks starving for what they called the “big story.” The result brought Trump virtually fulltime live coverage by the television media, which used the “big story” to lavish upon Trump free 24/7 coverage that has been estimated to have a value ranging from $1.8 billion to $3 billon.
But there were those 16 other wannabes, and Trump looked at the crowded and talented GOP field and saw that on the basis of experience in government and world affairs, he faced some stiff and talented competition . So Trump began “being Trump,” by belittling opponents with personal insults and accusations, and, in his own words, to “knock off” or “destroy” his opponents as the large field shrank to the final three, Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz, and Gov. John Kasich.

Fast forward. Trump’s smearing of names, character, and appearance, and relentless, often pointless repetition allowed him to pick off enough primary pluralities to become the established leader. Either Cruz or Kasich would have been an opponent that Clinton probably couldn’t even stay close to, given the continuing flow of scandals involving her untruthfulness and deviousness, and her joined-at-the-hip relationship with the Obama administration and his Depart of Justice.

So in the last days of a too-long and too-ugly campaign, instead of the lesser of two evils, voters are faced with choosing the evil of two lessers. Moreover, they are faced with the fact that not voting is in fact a vote for the one who raised the most money and ran the meanest campaign, which in this case means Hillary Clinton.

So, what are voters to do? The answer is they can do what our Creator so richly blessed every citizen of this free nation to do: Vote for what’s best for the Country!

First, voters should recognize that both candidates are flawed. Then they can vote for our country by judging which candidate will do the most good for, and the least harm to, the nation. Vote for the one most likely to end the harm wrought by eight years of Obama. Vote for the one who can do the most good for the country in national security, build a growing and sound economy that creates plenty of good-paying jobs, build our military capability, and get big government off our backs. Ignore the candidates’ empty boasts that “I [BIG I] will create jobs, etc.” Or “I [BIG I] will bring FREE education, health care, and free Bubble Up with fried pork rinds for all, etc.” Ignore the “BIG I” and listen to how they describe what they think is important to this country’s future.

Look at the good things that YOU think are important to this country, based on it being what it is, what it has been, standing for what it has stood for, and being what it can be with a doer, instead of a taker, as its leader.

Realize that presidents are not kings and can’t order things to be as they wish. Our founding fathers wisely included TWO other branches to our government, Congress and the Judiciary. Presidents can’t just order jobs into being; they can only recommend actions to Congress that they hope will be favorable to the economy and private sector so that jobs can be created by someone other than government.

More important– and this is where YOUR vote is essential – presidents can appoint Supreme Court justices, subject to advice and consent of the U.S. Senate; and do useful things in foreign affairs and decisions affecting our border security, national defense, and agreements and treaties – the latter not including the unconstitutional, heavy-handed actions of president Obama.

To vote for Clinton, one has to be willing to ignore – or choke down – the odor of past scandals, the seemingly constant pursuit of self-enrichment that seems to motivate her and husband Bill, and the public confirmation by FBI Director Comey that Clinton “was extremely careless” in handling and mishandling the nation’s classified information. Considering the continuing stream of new disclosures that show Clinton’s disregard for the rules and laws that govern the rest of us, the risk of voting for Clinton is much higher than any dubious benefit of her dubious background and experience.

Worse, with Clinton, you get not only her and all her baggage, but you also get four more years of Obama multiplied by having Bill Clinton in the White House with access to every piece of government business and every international moneyman wanting access to the White House. With Clinton there is little or no upside, while the downside is more than any nation should risk.

A candid look at Republican candidate, Trump, requires a “long focal length” mind that blurs the up-close warts and idiosyncrasies of less than perfect behavior, but brings into focus the long range potential of tighter border security, a stronger economy, having Supreme Court appointees that uphold the constitution, and a strengthened national defense. On these, Trump outscores Clinton by huge scores – and in areas like national security and the Supreme Court appointments, Trump wins by a pitching a near shutout against Clinton.

Boil all that down to a “low gravy” and Trump, with all his warts and misspeaks, would be a far better choice for the country than would Clinton. So just hold your breath, resist the urge to cuff him around the head and ears when he misspeaks, and vote for Donald J. Trump, the candidate best equipped to get our country going again and keep it from blundering farther down the road to socialism and worse.

Think of it as a vote for your country. It is.

LIFE'S STATEMENT

How brief the statement that is life,
The sum of all that has transpired,
Be it joy, pain, or merely blanks,
Or works which were praised, admired.

The statement you began at birth,
Then wrote upon the sands of time.
And which becomes the story told
When the bell has tolled its final chime.

An account of what your life has meant
To those who came to know you well;
The people, places, you have been
Make up the stories they will tell.

And the telling, will it be
Done with pride – or words of shame?
With comments on the lives you've touched,
Or recall nothing but your name?

Or of a life of love and grace,
And faith that on the pathway trod,
Death would not the last word be,
But eternal life with God?

—Donald G. Mashburn

It’s more blessed to give than to receive, but too many are willing to let others be blessed.

Our choice for president this Fall seems to be to vote for the evil of two lessers.

Self-acclaimed intellectuals are often educated beyond their intelligence.

Lines in the face tell of life’s battles fought, smile creases show you won a few.

You can judge a man’s heart when you’ve seen what it takes to break it.

Hope often drives our promise, and fear our performance.

Happiness comes from what we are and want to be, not from what we have.

Contentment for some folks can be as simple as a cold Pepsi and a bag of peanuts on a hot day.

Character is important, especially when seasoned with humility and kindness.

To understand forgiveness you must first understand love.

Part of wisdom is knowing that all the things you’ve learned ain’t so.

Memories look back, dreams look forward; reality is what we see around us.

Ability and motivation lead to doing, character and attitude to it being worthwhile.

An airplane sitting on the ramp is safe, but airplanes were made to fly, not sit.

Judge the size of a person’s heart by the kindness coming from it.

Buy stocks when they’re low, but be able to tell a dead horse from one that’s resting.

The past collects memories, the future collects dreams.

Government would be better if folks weren’t so ignorant of the issues during an election.

Death — the last sleep? No, it is the final awakening – Walter Scott.

I don’t dislike politicians, but the limits of my admiration are set pretty low.

To compute the difference between a Christian and an Atheist, multiply Quality of Destination times Eternity.

When you include God in those you love, you end up loving a whole bunch of people.

Love isn’t always easy, but it gets easier and better with practice.

Old friends are like riding a favorite horse, the ride is pleasant and without stress.

I can no more imagine life without being thankful to God than I could imagine life without breathing.

In general, people want to be good, but too many are afraid they’ll overdo it.

Wisdom comes not from the pursuit of it, but from living right and paying attention.

The things in life that give it value are those things that can’t be given a value.

Learning is understanding, wisdom is knowing the truth of what is understood.

Good leaders have the confidence to lead without talking about it to those being led.

If opportunity doesn’t knock, leave the door open or kick it down.

Obama speeches for Clinton amaze us at how many words he can cram into so few ideas.

Man can never be more than he is on his knees before God.

Your kindness benefits others, or at least makes you better than you were.