OPINION COLUMNS

‘Twas the week after the election…

By Bob Buckel | Published Saturday, November 10, 2012

I saw a sign on Farm Road 51 south of Decatur as I was driving in to work after the election.

It said, “Nation in sad shape.” It took me back.

Bob Buckel

During the eight years Bill Clinton spent as president of these United States, a guy in my community attached an upside-down U.S. flag to his garage door and displayed it every day – even in defiance of veterans’ groups, who said the flag should only be flown that way as a sign of the most deep distress.

He said it was justified, given Clinton’s conduct in office.

He lacked, perhaps, a little historical perspective. This country has faced a Civil War, the Depression and two World Wars, and even during those times, the sun has still come up every morning. People have still eaten and drank, worked and played, done good and done evil, worshipped and profaned, slept and risen.

The occupant of the White House, although portrayed as supremely important in the days leading up to an election, has little impact on day-to-day life out here in America. To be honest, we give him way too much credit when things go well and way too much blame when they don’t.

One time I heard a preacher say the most important address in America isn’t 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. – it’s your address. What you do in your house will have infinitely more impact on your life and the lives of your loved ones than anything Barack Obama or any of his 43 predecessors ever did in the White House.

Like most of Wise County and Texas, I didn’t vote for Mr. Obama. But now he’s my president, and as I did the past four years, I wish him well.

Both the president and Congress – I have not been happy with either in recent years – need to put partisanship aside and practice some statesmanship, stop “punting” on the tough decisions we hired them to make. Get all the information you can, roll up your sleeves, burn a little midnight oil and hammer out the details. Then pass something.

Compromise, for crying out loud. Give a little to get a little.

Stop drawing lines in the sand and refusing to budge(t). Find the common ground.

Like most of you, I do not think it’s government’s responsibility to make my life wonderful. I want to be free to shape my life the way I imagine it, and I want government to stay out of my way to the greatest extent possible.

If I’m a business owner, I need taxes and regulations to be reasonable. I do not need endless government programs trying to encourage me to hire people – I’ll hire them when I need them, and I’ll need them when my business grows. If government would take care of its business and stop trying to take care of mine, I think growth would come, and I believe my business would do just fine.

I think many of the policies of the past four years are a result of Mr. Obama’s lack of experience in private business.

Mr. Romney’s business experience was a big plus for me, but it came with a big red flag, too. He’s a Wall Street guy. His five biggest donors? Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan Chase and Credit Suisse. Wall Street loved him – and those are the very folks who got our economy into the mess it’s still in today.

I know they’re smart, but I don’t trust them to do what’s best for me. Their nature is to do what’s best for them, and the more complex and convoluted it is, the better they like it. That way nobody can understand it but them.

But overall, I’m optimistic about the next four years.

I think the two sides will finally work together. Nobody wants to see us go off this “fiscal cliff” – even in separate barrels.

I think President Obama has come to the middle, and the Republicans must meet him there. Based on his campaign rhetoric, I think he does understand the need to get off the backs of small businesses and turn our economy loose to grow again. I think he understands that if the economy doesn’t grow, it doesn’t matter how much they raise taxes or even cut the budget – the deficit will never go away.

I honestly believe that on both sides, voters have elected people who care deeply about this country, who love it and want the best for it.

This is your moment, people. Rise to it. Lead. Do your best and sleep soundly at night.

That’s what I plan to do.

My flag still flies right-side-up. I see a nation sober, but not sad – and ready for better times.

3 Responses to “‘Twas the week after the election…”

  1. Rusty White says:

    Bob,

    I posted this on another post, but believe it belongs here as well.:)

    Sadly and as predicted the Republicans were their own worst enemy in this election, and got what they had coming. IMHO

    Here is a list of things I believe cost them the election.

    1. Many in their party openly and arrogantly claimed their main goal was to make sure President Obama was going to be a one term President. In their effort to do so they “failed” to do the jobs they had sworn and were elected to do! Due to their selfishness and self serving agendas our whole country paid the price. These career political parasites put their party, beliefs and agendas above and before our country and our nation as a whole, there again getting what they deserved!

    2. They and their lobbies manipulated the system so big money could be thrown all around the country without any accountability. Well guess what the American voters held them accountable, President Obama won “all” the “supposed” battle ground states and the popular vote as well! Rove and his kind and their 1.6 Billion dollars did more to energize the other parties voters than any good it did for the Republicans.

    3. They attempted under the guise of voter fraud to deny others from voting, and it cost them for it!

    4. They cost them selves by dishonestly redistricting, and the courts held them accountable. Many have claimed each party does it, well “never” do two wrongs make a right nor is it justification for “your” wrongs!

    5. Saddest of all many have and still do attack President Obama over his name and lie about his faith! Yet out the “other side” of their mouths they claimed to be persons of faith, really??? Guess what the American people are smart enough to “know” no child gets to pick their own name! They are also smart enough to know in a country where faith is an Individual Freedom “no matter” what it is, and those of real faith don’t use it as a weapon, FACT! Every week many in this country take their children to the houses of their beliefs, from infants to teenagers, how many of them and at what age do they get a choice in going or not?

    I for one am glad this debacle is over, the Republicans would do well not to make excuses or try and blame this election on any others but themselves, and their openly and arrogant attempts to manipulate the odds in their favor as well as their self serving beliefs and agendas. IMHO

    Even as I am writing this we hear the Republicans saying they must create a “new” message that will appeal to those they have turned their backs on for “decades’, lots of luck! Would it not be better served to create a party that really accepts those of others faiths, races and beliefs? While putting and end to attempting to “force” and manipulate your self serving party,agendas and beliefs on all others, would it not???

    While they are at it they might want to rethink running this new son of the “Bush Dynasty”, the American people are fed up with career politicians and their family dynasties, in “both parties“! Not to mention it will take far more that 8 years to heal the wounds caused by the last Bush family member that took his supposed rightful “turn”!!! IMHO

  2. says:

    Bob, I couldn’t agree more with your letter, the election needs to be put behind us and everyone start pulling together to make this country the greatest nation the world has ever seen. That’s the way this country has been for 200 some odd years, even if your candidate lost or won you put your differences aside and did what is best for the USA. This last election was the most divisive and hate filled election in the history of our great country, now we ALL need to put it out of our minds and work at making the USA what is best for all of it’s citizens ! USA ! USA !

  3. Rusty White says:

    Melniv,

    WELL SAID!!!!

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