So, who will get my vote for President? And why? There are a lot of reasons why I don't divulge that information to anyone but the woman I live with. And, I usually don't do that until after I've been to the polling place.
Firstly, I decided long ago upon entering the field of broadcasting, that if I was to have any credibility in delivering the news I would have to keep the specifics of who I support in any election to myself. To be considered a real journalist...even though this idea has gotten lost in the battle for ratings lately...one must preserve personal views for very private discussions that can never be available for public consumption. I don't even think a true journalist can succumb to the temptation of supporting a particular candidate financially..no matter how unbiased their on-the-air presentation might be. Political donation records are made public and if someone really wants to know your leanings they can find out that way.
Secondly, I also made a conscious decision when I was much younger...high school age I think...to not align myself with one party or the other on anything approaching a regular basis. It is obvious to anyone who pays attention that when one party dominates an elective office, bad things happen. And the Constitution works to our benefit much more effectively when we keep the elected officials on their toes. For the life of me, I don't understand why any elected official should be allowed to stay in office for more than a few terms...any office. Elected officials would be much more inclined to go to Washington to accomplish the goals they have for their constituents, represent their ideals to the fullest in the limited time they have...and then move on. Wouldn't that be more beneficial to the population than when someone stays in an elected office...and can expect to be...for multiple terms? When that happens the person and his/her office become much too powerful in the grand scheme of things. When an elected official gets too comfortable in his/her office, it's time to move them into a new line of work.
Thirdly, I think we'd be much better off if there were more than two parties that were viable on the national level. The donkeys and the elephants are often much too cozy for my taste, and for our good. When I voted for Ross Perot back in the 90's it was more in the hopes that he would be able to establish a viable third party than that I wanted him to run the country. Other countries seem to get along nicely with more than two parties involved in setting policy. Coalitions and alliances are formed to further legislation that is deemed important. Why should a democrat have to stray from the party line and be considered a maverick to cast a vote for a bill that he considers important to his constituents? Why does a Republican from California have to support the same ideas that one from Mississippi does? But it's obvious right now that you have to have either an R or a D next to your name to get elected in the good 'ol USA.
As to the two men running for President...I will say that I admire anyone who gets to where they are and sincerely want the job. Barack Obama has a level of charisma and fluency that we haven't seen in a candidate in a number of years. John McCain is perhaps the closest thing to a war hero that we've had as a candidate since JFK...some would say Eisenhower. Both of them would likely be good at the job. Obama is certainly more representative of his buzzword "change" than is McCain. The Senator from Arizona though, offers a comfort level that Obama doesn't. He's been around long enough for us to really get to know who he is...and for what he stands. So, before I go on too long stating the obvious, I'll say that I look forward to the next few weeks in the hope that I will get a sign from one of these gentlemen as to which I should support with my single, solitary vote. As yet I'm not sure...and wouldn't say here if I were. Either way it goes, I think we're in for an interesting next four years.