Opinion | Voters need to be skeptical, not cynical regarding candidates
Published: Thursday, September 13, 2012
Updated: Thursday, September 13, 2012 21:09
Cynicism, believing that our country is too far gone or that one’s vote has no impact, departs from the healthy skepticism of a republic. A lack of information is one cause of cynicism. Bickering commentators and irrelevant reporting seem to overshadow informing the public on true substance.
A couple of weeks ago, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan held a rally in Powell, Ohio, a suburb of Columbus. This was the first time they spoke together in Ohio and the last time before the Republican National Convention. While The Columbus Dispatch accurately noted that their speeches’ main message centered on the economy, it did not communicate the substance of their message. Instead it chose to focus on campaign humor.
The newspaper article did not inform the reader of the economic details of Romney’s speech, but it chose to quote what an Obama Campaign spokeswoman wanted people to think Romney’s message was: “trillions in tax breaks for the wealthy” and “a top-down, backward-looking economic vision that rewards the wealthy at the expense of the middle class.” No one who read this article would gain any substantive information regarding Romney and Ryan’s message at the rally.
Disappointed, I decided to inform myself by watching the Powell rally speeches on YouTube. Paul Ryan began by reminding people of “Joe the Plumber” who in 2008 asked Barack Obama about his small business tax policy and Obama responded by emphasizing the importance of spreading the wealth around. Ryan assured the Powell audience that the he and Romney want to grow the “economic pie” and that it’s not the “government’s job to redistribute the slices of the pie how they see fit.”
This shows that they understand that government in America was never meant to interfere with people’s economic and individual liberty. They understand that the government is not the “source of our great strength and economic vitality,” but that the “job of government is to protect the freedoms of the people so that they may build a better life for themselves.”
I think Romney’s most important message was his explanation of how “taxes are crushing your small business.” Small businesses provide over half of American jobs. As economist Art Laffer once explained, when you tax something you get less of it. There should not be such a heavy tax on small business owners when we are trying to increase employment. Romney understands this when he said, “We will champion small business because that’s where our jobs come from.”
President Obama wants to raise the federal tax on small business from 35 percent to 40 percent. And this increase is on top of all the other taxes small businesses must pay – state tax, city tax, real estate tax and even a self-employment tax. The government is taking about half the revenues of small businesses!
When the Obama Campaign attacks the rich by declaring their taxes should be increased, it is attacking the small businessmen. And by doing so, it is not helping the ‘middle class’ who need the jobs produced by small businesses and who may want to start their own small business someday.
The economic crisis of 2008 was prolonged by the Obama Administration’s economic misunderstandings.
Government stimulus funds do little to jump-start an economy and contribute nothing towards long-term, strong economic growth. Allowing small businesses to make profits by paying fewer taxes enables them to hire more people, produce more and grow and subsequently jump-start the economy. Because businesses are uncertain about what the government is going to do in the future, they will not take risks to start or grow their businesses now. This is why the government shouldn’t interfere with the economy by burdening businesses with more regulations and taxes.
Lastly, I would like to point out that Romney clarifies the decision of this election much like I did in my last article. “What we have laid out in America,” Romney said, “is based upon the skill, the capacity, the dream of each individual, and a government that protects their rights and encourages them to be able to realize those dreams.
That’s our vision. The president’s vision is one of a larger and larger government that’s taking more and more and trying to provide more and more to you.”
It is my opinion that it is essential that we keep ourselves informed. I encourage you to be skeptical, not cynical. Read and watch the speeches of both candidates, form your own opinion and then strive to hold the media accountable.