Last night I took my girlfriend and my kids to see Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band play at Met Life Stadium in New Jersey. It was an amazing three and three-quarter hours of music. As a singer, songwriter and live artist, Bruce is simply without peer in the annals of rock and roll history.
As I was there with my family, singing at the top of my lungs, I marveled at Bruce’s talent and energy, and at his unsparing, and often painful, take on life in America. He has always been the champion of the working man, the 99%, or the 47% that Mitt Romney so casually dismissed recently.
That got me thinking about the direction of this country, economically and politically. Let me state upfront that I’m a fiscally conservative Democrat with some Libertarian leanings. Unfortunately, I don’t think any of our elected officials really represents my interests any longer (if they really ever did), and that leaves me very sad, frustrated and angry. It seems as though the national good, our collective interest, has been abdicated by the extremists, special interests and partisan political hacks. Goodwill and compromise for the greater good has been replaced by nastiness and divisiveness in the callous hopes of “stealing” a few votes from the fringes. It’s disgusting, and I’m fed up with it.
Do you wonder, as I do, what could be done if these Super PACs were banned, and the untold millions of dollars being spent by billionaires to elect their puppet, I mean candidate, were diverted to paying down the national debt, or building a road or a school, or maybe curing cancer? What if there were a real debate on taxes and entitlements rather than simply partisan rhetoric about soaking the rich or trickle down economics? What if there was an honest discussion of OUR view of this country and it’s future, rather than being bombarded by vitriol-soaked ads cranked out by some caffeine-fueled media geeks? I could go on, but you get the point.
I’m mad as hell and ready for a change. And I don’t mean Obama or Romney. I mean a real change. And I’m afraid that only a serious crisis will precipitate that change. I’d rather we make some of these changes of our own volition, but I’m afraid the kind of change I envision will ultimately be thrust upon us, whether we’re ready for it or not. And it won’t be pretty.