Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The one thing we want most from our leaders is missing

I voted yesterday. Yes, neither of the candidates is my first, second or third choice. Through the whole process I've wondered if God is playing a joke on us or maybe just giving America what it deserves.  I know many people share my concern for our country and are really dismayed by our choices for president.  The reason is pretty simple but I haven’t heard many express it.  The one characteristic that people want most from their leaders is lacking from both candidates for president.  A survey of thousands of people around the world found that the characteristic they most desired in their leaders is integrity.

So we have two candidates, one who has a record of habitual lying and corruption of power and the other who comes across as a pompous, impetuous billionaire with a reputation as a womanizer.  If we want candidates with integrity, candidates that are honest, moral, principled, stable and virtuous, all words to describe integrity, how then did we end up with Hillary and Donald?

Perhaps this is an indictment on the people of America, that we have chosen candidates with the least quality we want in leaders. Maybe we don't really value character and integrity.  Perhaps we have fallen so low as a nation that we want leaders who get things done by whatever means possible more than persons of integrity.  So we are left with two candidates who specialize in getting their way; Hillary with a history of manipulation and down right criminal actions and Donald who has mastered the art of negotiating and making good deals by whatever means possible.  

I long for the time when I supported a candidate I really admired and liked personally.  Unfortunately I don’t have that choice in this election so I seem to be left with voting for policy over personality.  I’m left with deciding which candidate will help bring to fruition the type of country in which I want to live and the government in which I want over me.

So my second observation is this:  As I see it, Trump and Clinton, personalities aside, are extreme caricatures of the government types they represent.  There is Hillary the consummate politician who has used and abused her government power to gain wealth and even more power. She distrusts business and the free enterprise system and relies on government to “fix" the country.  So in her administration there will be more regulation, more taxes and controls on businesses.  There is also a distrust of the regular American citizen to make decisions for themselves. So there will be more and more government intrusion into the lives of American citizens, more thought police, rules and more government control. The government's role in Hillary’s administration will be to make life more equal for those who don’t have as much as others and safer for those who are abused by the capitalistic system.  

Then there is Trump, the outsider with no government experience, the capitalist who has used the economic system to gain wealth and power. His side distrusts government and wants to limit the power and control that the government has over business and the individual.  He will reduce regulations and make policy that will help the American business owners prosper which in turn will mean more jobs for Americans and theoretically a renewed economy and more opportunities for all people.  As I see it, these are our choices.  It’s all a matter of which country in which you want to live.

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