Sunday, November 2, 2008

Please tell me who to vote for

I'm not a political junkie. I don't read political columns or follow any political pundits via RSS because to be honest, I just find it boring. I know we are in the middle of one of the most important elections in our country's history, but I'm just not caring. Don't get me wrong, I do care, but all I hear is talking, talking, more talking, SNL jokes and more talking.

So my question to you hardcore voters out there, tell me who to vote for and why. However, before you answer, here are the issues that are important to me:

1. Taxes: I understand the need for taxes. It costs money to run the country and our hard-earned cash fuels it. However, please tax within reason and make sure that those they are able to pay taxes are taxed based on their overall net-worth. I don't want to be taxed the same way Matt Damon is for example. He makes just a little more money than I do.

2. Healthcare: The system is broken. Long waits, misdiagnosis' and increasing costs are killing healthcare. Simply put, we need more doctors. I'm convinced that's why we wait so long in doctor's offices. The more doctors we have, the more care that can be given out and the better healthcare service will be because doctors will be able to spend more time with patients, really trying to figure out the best course of treatment. Now, we wait hours, are seen for 10-30 minutes and sent on our way with a prescription for high blood pressure when all you're suffering from is a bum knee. I'm not sure what exactly needs to be done but all I know is that care is poor and costs are high. Fix it

3. Education: Why is no one talking about education and the ridiculous costs of higher ed? Parents work very hard to keep their kids on the straight and narrow, while preparing them to be responsible adults. Part of that process is their education. Every parent would love to see their kid go to Harvard and graduate with honors. However, that's not feasible because 1. not all students can make the Harvard cut, but more importantly, 2. it's just way to expensive to attend to the top tier schools. If my daughters get into top schools along with other second or third tier schools, I'm going to want them to go to the cheaper option because it'll be a difference of paying 100K a year to 70K a year - still not a treat, but geez. I'm going to need four jobs. I just want them to get a good education that will prepare them for long, rewarding and fruitful careers WITHOUT putting them in 50 years of debt.

4. National Security: This is not a war rant but rather a protect-our-borders rant. I agree that the best defense is a good offense. We need to be out in the world, fighting terrorists in their backyard so they aren't trying to attack us on US soil. However, that doesn't mean we shouldn't bolster our defenses within our borders. I can't tell you how many times I've taken the MBTA and thought to myself how easy it would be for a terrorist to bring a pack back on the train and detonate a bomb. It's a legit concern. Every so often the MBTA police are checking bags and running chemical tests on items brought on to the T. I think they should do that everyday. Yes, it would backlog the entrance to the platform, but I'd rather be safe than sorry. I just feel that since 9/11, our country has gotten a little lax in terms of security within our communities.

5. Financial Futures: I understand that the economy goes up and down. That's how it works. But how the heck does it get so bad that tax payers have to cough up BILLIONS to bail out our banks and other financial institutions!? All I'm saying is that it should never get this bad again. Put measures in place to avoid such disasters please.

Some might think this list of concerns is small-minded, uneducated, etc. That's fine. I'm a simple-minded guy and these are the discussion points that resonate with me, my life and the well-being of my family. That's how I prioritize everything in my life. If it's good for me, my kids, my family and friends, I'm all for it. If it's self-serving, makes the rich richer and the poor poorer, I'm giving it the Heisman.

Lastly, as a former journalist and current PR professional, it's my job to ask questions, probe issues and educate myself on anything and everything. So to those that are more passionate about politics than I am, please feel free to break it down for me. Give me the scoop as to why you are voting the way your are. Tell me which issues you are passionate about and why.


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