The election last week gave us some great positives and some seriously depressing negatives. I’ve been brooding and celebrating and brooding some more. But let’s talk about it, and we’ll start with the good stuff:
Locally we were fairly successful in moving closer to responsive, accountable government. Two new people were elected to the NIC Board of Trustees: Todd Banducci and Ron Nilson. I wish Paul Matthews had won also, for two reasons: First, because he is a very smart and honest person but, secondly, because having three voices on the panel of five would have been better for voting. But Paul was up against the toughest incumbent, Judy Meyer, who has ruled that roost forever and had very big money and power behind her. So Paul made a good showing and we thank him. Now we have two new trustees, which is a good start, and in two more years the remaining two trustee spots will be up for election. Inch by inch.
We voters also defeated the proposal to change the structure of County government. The results showed we turned it down by a margin of 2:1, which should send a clear message to all three Commissioners that we don’t want our voting rights taken away. (Note that I said all 3 Commissioners—Jai Nelson was on record as supporting the changes overall, but I’m told she didn’t like the way they were presented on the ballot.)
And now the sad part. Apparently $4 million dollars of outside money does work. That’s what the NEA spent in Idaho to convince voters that all three of the Education Reform laws passed last year by the legislature, and signed by the Governor, should be overturned. Not smart. And not good for kids or teachers. Those voting to repeal these laws (No, No, No) seem to think the current system, with less than 25% of Idaho high school graduates going on to receive a college degree—one of the lowest percentages in the nation—is good enough. As they say, money talks, and this money was saying “Unions come first, not kids.” I can’t believe Idahoans fell for it.
The national election was the most unsettling of all. Now we have to endure 4 more years of arrogant, divisive, classist, ageist, sexist, racist, religionist, dishonest, nontransparent, fiscally absurd, job crushing, business bashing, intellectually insulting, and totally inept leadership in the White House. And that’s my polite version.
Newsweek magazine has a new cover that yells to Republicans, “You’re Old, You’re White, You’re History!” This came just days after a close election. There’s no respect. There’s no acknowledgement that almost half the voting public chose Romney and now, in his second term, Obama will still have to govern the whole country. No, they grind salt in the wound and laugh in our faces. Not classy.
Old white men? That’s both racist and ageist. And ridiculous. Obama would never have won without Bill Clinton and Joe Biden, two of the whitest, white haired old men around, even though Bill is one of the biggest mis-users of women, and has been repeatedly disloyal to his wife. Remember the long list of women who testified that he used them to satisfy his personal urges? Even in the Oval Office. And then he lied about it. As President of the United States. Under oath. And he was impeached for it but not removed from his position. Yet he stood in front of crowds recently, campaigning for Obama, calling Mitt Romney a liar and claiming the Republicans are waging a war on women. How dumb are people to believe such a womanizer and convicted, impeached, liar as Bill Clinton?
Of course, all of that was cleverly designed to take attention off the real issues of importance in our world today. I won’t name them all for you, I’m sure you know them as well or better than I do. But it reminds me of that animated movie “Up”, where the dogs could be easily distracted and thrown off the hunt by someone yelling, “squirrel”. The Obama camp has yelled “squirrel” time and time again to turn attention away from their record and get their win. They’re using the same trick now, even after the election. Bengazi?…oh no, it’s not a massive administrative mistake, murder or worse, plus a cover-up, it’s just a salacious sex scandal at the Pentagon—look over there, not at the White House.
Four more years of squirrels?…I may go nuts.
Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I know we will. All of our kids will be home. We’re calling it “Thanksmas” because it’s the only time this year we’ll be together, so we’re rolling the holidays into one. I pray for blessings on each of you, and on our country.