NORMAN — Have you ever wondered what the difference was between a turnip and a politician? If the thought never crossed your mind, allow it to step across your mental threshold and examine it from every angle.
As a matter of fact, it would be helpful for you find the answer to that probing question soon because the mid-term Primaries are popping up all over the country. Each Primary is both entertaining and appalling. They are filled with creative and revisionist disclosure by any given candidate of his, her or its personal history. There is the excitement of far-fetched tales tossed out by the opposition, also known as blatant lies. And, all too often, there is ennui – a huge disinterested yawn from most voters.
Why are Primaries important? The answer depends on your point of view because the Primaries are perceived in different way by each interested party.
If you approach the question as a voter, you are interested in voting for the best person for the job. At least that is the ideal reason for voting. Having said that. Each candidate, be it the incumbent or someone bent on overthrowing the current officeholder, tells us that he, she or it is “the one” and you should elect them to achieve nirvana. In the end, the problem and the choice come down to trust.
Let us consider the hopeful candidates’ perspective. He, she or it has blinding political aspirations. Each hopeful wants to grasp the golden ring and win the Primary for the opportunity to capture the ultimate prize and win the general election. If that burning need to run and win is not in the heart of the candidate, why the push to be elected to any office? After all, the process is similar to voluntary brain damage.
No slime-covered stone is left unturned by the opposition in its quest to beat down and destroy the “honorable” candidate. A clever, but unidentified person once said: “Why pay money to have your family tree traced; go into politics and your opponents will do it for you.”
We might add that the opponent’s efforts will be focused on the “bad apple” branches of your family tree “in the interest of full disclosure” and as much damage as possible to the candidate perceived as a threat.
The incumbent has the most to lose. After all, politics is a cushy way to make a living and politicians are takers, contributing and signifying nothing. One would think that it would be difficult to lie about a record. However, the incumbent is not unlike the Wizard of Oz, or more specifically the fellow behind the curtain. “Pay no attention to my record. Ignore past performance and believe in the smoke and mirrors I present to you today, knowing it will all vanish once I’m re-elected.”
Whether the incumbent is running for dog catcher or state or national office, the blurb is always the same. “I believe in [Fill In the Blank With Whatever the Promise Du Jour May Be (and my record reflects that… Not really!)]” In fact, incumbent candidates may have invented the bald faced lie.
The whole primary process funnels down to one important question: Which of the two has more to offer us, a turnip or a politician? Mind you, the question does not cover or consider which of the two will pollute the air with blather, signifying nothing, but you should be able to figure that one out for yourself.
Some people like turnips, but no one likes politicians. Given a choice between the two, the turnip has food value and provides roughage. The politician is self-serving, untrustworthy and, within a short span of time, develops considerable bulk in physique as well as in his or her bank account.
Vote for the turnip.
Elizabeth is a freelance writer and author. Her latest novel “Sins of the Father” is available on amazon.com. Website: www.elizabethcowan.com.
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