EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Columns

August 19, 2012

Column: This election, like 1980, is a choice between two views of America

“It’s morning again in America!” the Reagan presidential campaign announced in 1980.

As the Summer Olympics was ending, with 104 U.S. gold medals, I was wondering what would be inspiring to watch next. I soon learned: We are going for the gold in a presidential election.

This is what I’ve been waiting for: another election, like 1980’s, in which we will debate two opposing visions of America, instead of just getting by with focus group positions, rehearsed talking points, efforts to pander to various special interest groups, sappy slogans like “hope and change.”

I know, “morning again in America” was a sappy slogan, until it was proven true, as Americans recovered from the “misery index” of the Carter years and began to believe in the American Dream once more.

However, even then there was more work to be done on the “entitlement society” and the national debt, which has taken us into the dusk, with the dead-of-night pending. Certainly Obama’s 2008 slogan “hope and change” hasn’t lived up to its own sappy rainbow’s promise. Now, as Congressman Paul Ryan says, the Obama forces rely on an “envy, division and resentment strategy” to get themselves re-elected.

To this end, and my amusement, the Obama campaign has been attacking Mitt Romney by calling him “RomneyHood — Robin Hood in reverse,” apparently not realizing that Robin Hood led the Sherwood Forest Taxpayer Association of peasants which fought Big Government — the wicked Prince John and the evil Sheriff of Nottingham. With his bold choice of Paul Ryan for his vice-president, Romney joins Robin as one of my activist heroes.

He has shown his willingness to take a chance on the American voters, to give them credit for understanding the problem and being ready to address it. This team will put the economy ahead of everything else, because without the economic fix, everything else is in jeopardy. America can deal with war, terrorism, disease control, climate concerns, energy concerns, all the big issues, only if America is solvent; no country can thrive under overwhelming debt any more than we individuals can.

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