Prepare yourself for another armchair quarterback – me. Blame my dad for he put me up to this. He should be the one writing this, not me. He enjoyed a highly successful career, rising to the position of President of a major corporation and, in fact, personally experienced Bain at its best. And his years provide more wisdom than I profess or possess. Nevertheless, he felt my activities earned me a place to speak out – so I shall.
Briefly, I am a small media business owner – a telephone directory publisher. I sit down with 30+ business owners a week on average. They own retail establishments or service businesses, or they may be doctors, lawyers, dentists, community bankers or tax preparers. In short, I speak with ‘main street’ everyday. They know me and I know them. I call on them several times every year and I have, with many, a very healthy and often personal relationship. We talk. I listen.
I am also active with several Chambers of Commerce and serve as Vice President of our local Chamber. I sit on the Board of the ECWIB – Workforce Oklahoma. I am active in politics, serving as Precinct Captain locally and as Vice Chair of our County GOP group.
I consume a lot of books, articles, blogs, and news daily. I don’t miss too much.
I mention all of this only to demonstrate that I am informed and in touch with ‘everyday’ Americans – everyday.
There is seldom a day that goes by that I am not asked what I am hearing out there relative to the local economy, to how people are feeling, or for my outlook. So, despite the fact that you have not asked, here goes a distillation:
People are scared, frustrated and angry. Most are generally afraid that what lies ahead, in terms of the economy, will be far worse than the 2008 financial crisis. Their fears are centered on our government institutions’ lack of courage or honesty in dealing with any of our myriad problems – debt, deficits, entitlements, monetary policy and more. Few I speak to trust either party. No one I have spoken to trusts or respects Congress as an institution. Most view the institution and its occupants as corrupt, spineless and mostly only interested in being reelected and continuing to enjoy their privileged status, not doing the people’s business.
Many also fear the future in terms of moral and cultural decay. This area hardly requires any further comment – morals and ethics seem out of favor wherever you look. Our country has lost its foundations – in faith, family, community and self-governance.
Our heritage of freedom; of the exalted individual reaching for his or her dreams, of responsibility for being an informed, good citizen, of a benign and benevolent government, are largely in the ash heap of history – not to mention the Constitution itself.
None of the business owners I speak with wish to place their lives and dreams on hold until they regain their trust and vision of the future, yet that’s exactly what most are doing. Most are on hold, waiting for some sanity to show up in our institutions.
And they are afraid of some of their neighbors – the uninformed, the looters and the moochers. They know these people vote and they suspect that they are now the majority. They fear a repeat of 2008.
Now on to you, Mr. Romney – and the aforementioned armchair quarterbacking:
I had heard some sound bites from your Irwin Pennsylvania speech and later watched the entire talk. Both there and in Ohio you spoke as many Americans feel. Outstanding messages delivered with the passion they deserve – heartfelt, sound and inspiring. I/we want to believe you.
We desperately want a leader (a President) that understands, values and can communicate core American values. We want a President that honors our Founding documents and that takes seriously the oath of office, swearing to uphold and defend the Constitution against all enemies – foreign and domestic. We want a President who puts United States’ interests and laws ahead of all others – including, and perhaps especially, the U.N.
We want a President that will tell us the truth, treat us as adults and who will work tirelessly to restore this country to its founding principles. We want that restrained, smaller, smarter government that limits itself to its Constitutional role.
We want our businesses to be free to grow and prosper – without the chains, or the ‘help’ of government. We want our local banks to once again be able to act as banks, succeeding or failing based on their own judgment and business acumen, not mired in Dodd-Frank webs of regulations, government edicts or social engineering quotas. These local enterprises are the lifeblood of a community.
We want our fellow citizens, our churches and our community organizations to reclaim their rightful place as the real safety net for those in need of a hand up. We are a generous and good people – we can handle it. And clearly the Federal Government cannot, nor should.
We want our sovereignty back too. That means we don’t wish to hand over any aspect of our governance to the United Nations. The arms treaty (will Secretary Clinton sign this later this month?), LOST (law of the sea treaty), rights of the child, rights of the disabled, financial transaction taxes, Agenda 21 – none of these initiatives in any way advance the needs or interests of the United States or its citizens. The United Nations is a corrupt, ineffective organization that espouses values mostly at polar opposites to our own. Why do we continue to support this organization? And we want our borders secured and our immigration policy to be developed with our interests at heart, allowing in those who choose us for economic and religious freedom. Those who choose to obey our laws, assimilate into our culture, and add to our fabric as a nation. We don’t need to be spending millions of dollars developing programs with Mexico to make sure that those entering our country illegally know how to sign up for government largesse the day they set foot on our soil.
We want our money to be real. We want the printing presses to stop. We want the Federal Reserve to open its books. We cannot continue to monetize our debt. We cannot afford to have the Fed continue to feed off and punish our savers. The Fed has in less than one hundred years destroyed 97 cents of value of each dollar – what will they do to us over the next several years as our debt and deficits demand attention – and faith is lost in America’s future – and its currency?
Governor, what we want is a President who embraces all things American and leads accordingly. You know – the Superman thing – truth, justice and the American way. We want to be left alone as citizens and as businesspeople. For those who stray, we have laws and courts to deal with them. We don’t need any more two thousand-page pieces of legislation. We don’t need another hundred bureaus and agencies to govern every last aspect of our lives and interactions. We just want the rule of law – applied to us equally.
And yes, Governor, we want clean air and clean water and we don’t want to throw ‘granny’ off the cliff. As Americans we can make good choices as individuals. Our entrepreneurs, too, will help us find better solutions. The courts are there to severely punish corporate wrongdoers. You can trust us, and our system, to more positively impact environmental and healthcare challenges than tens of thousands of bureaucrats and myriad laws and regulations. And relative to Medicare and Social Security we know it needs major reform now to remain viable. Just be straight with us and present some good options.
Governor, we trust almost no one. We need to see that you are for real – that you mean what you say – that you will govern conservatively. Will you choose a running mate that is “safe” or will you show us you mean business and pick a Bobby Jindal, a Mike Huckabee or a Marco Rubio? Will you show us that you are serious about education reform (like Governor Jindal) and tap a Michelle Rhee as your Department of Education Secretary? How about your choices for other key cabinet posts? As parents often say, “show me your friends, I’ll show you your future”. Give us a clue as to who you would surround yourself with – we don’t want any more of the likes of Van Jones, Steven Chu, or Eric Holder.
Will you show us you mean business with tax reform and ending corporatism and crony capitalism? Eisenhower warned us about the military-industrial complex – now we have one of those in energy, healthcare, the environment, banking, agriculture and education, to name a few. Will you get government out of these industries? Can we return to simple, effective oversight and regulations, and no picking winners and losers?
Governor, will you stand up for a flat tax or better yet, the FairTax, so all citizens and companies are treated fairly and equally? Yes, we know it’s a risk and easy to demagogue, but it’s the right thing to do and would go far to unleash and grow our economy.
Governor, we are in a world of hurt out here and we have allowed our government to continue its march towards tyranny. Shame on us, we forgot the good citizenship responsibilities. We forgot to keep watch. No longer, we are now awake. Was it Admiral Yamamoto that said, “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant, and fill him with a terrible resolve”? Mr. Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi and the healthcare fiasco have set off our alarms. Fear not, we are watching, acting and participating now. And we intend to hold every elected official accountable for their promises and their actions. We have chosen one more time to camp out with the Republicans as our best hope. Please don’t let us down.
Governor, I see you as a good man. I look at your family, your accomplishments, and the way it appears you have conducted your life, and I see the American way and the American dream. You are clearly a highly talented, moral, and accomplished man. Heaven knows these are traits we need now more than ever to lead us back to our ‘promised land’.
Only bold, principled, tough action will begin to turn the tide for America. Our Founders pledged their “lives, fortunes and sacred honor” for this Republic – we only want your sacred honor. Will you give us that? Your children and grandchildren deserve no less, nor do we. Will you be our last, best hope, please?