Confessions of a
Growing up Republican in a
strong Democrat/Labor Union family is not easy. I imagine it is a lot like
growing up knowing you are gay, and not being able to express it. You know
you are different, but you don't want to talk about it because you know nobody
Then came the Reagan
Revolution. Along came a guy who articulated the things that I have always
felt; less government, lower taxes, it's ok to be proud of this country and the
things it stands for.
My uncle Chip has always said
the Reagan is going wind up in Hell and when he arrives, he will actually be
surprised. I don't think Chip could be more wrong. You
can argue about how Reagan did business, or the merits of this or that policy,
but what is undisputable is he set the nation on a new track. Reagan
directed us away from the helplessness and malaise of the 70's and the
Watergate/Vietnam era. He challenged the way business was done and didn't
worry about whose toes were going to be stepped on. He fought with the
Democratic Congress that had been entrenched since Eisenhower. The Federal
government continued to expand, but he was fighting the good fight, right?
If only he had the votes in the Congress, we could get things done.
After enduring eight years of
Clinton, I thought I had another candidate cut from the same rough cloth as
Reagan. George W. Bush accepted the nomination as the Republican candidate
for President in 2000. Here is a man who is clearly not a savvy public
speaker, but after eight years of Clinton, I was ready to hear the message, not
the presentation. I put my full support, financial and otherwise, behind
my candidate. When he won I thought I was finally going to see the changes
I had been promised for a generation. The Republicans held a majority of
the seats in both houses of Congress and the Presidency, we were finally going
to see some fiscal responsibility, reduction in the size of government, and
accountability to the people.
As recently as last year I was
defending the Iraq War, The Department of Homeland Defense, the Patriot Act, and
a hundred other Bush policies for no other reason than he was "my guy".
Well guess what...I have had it. The size of Government has continued to
grow exponentially, good American men continue to die weekly for a piece of dirt
that happens to have a close proximity to large deposits of petroleum, and the
Bush Administration continues to operate as though they answer to no one.
Democrat, Republican, it doesn't matter who has the reigns. What a fool I
have been to think that the Party in charge would change the status quo.
Bill Hicks said it best, "I
think the puppet on the left hand more closely mimics my views - no the puppet
on the right hand is a better candidate". The US Government is an
insatiable animal that feeds on money and power and it will step on anyone or
anything to keep feeding.
It's been a fun ride, but I am
getting off. No more political donations, no volunteering, no arguing with
strangers about how the teachers unions are strangling the education system.
I have been following politics closely since high school, but it's time to get
off this merry-go-round. And it is a merry-go-round, lots of noise and
motion, but you never really go anywhere.