Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Great Debate

Did any of you see the Democratic debate the other night? I watched it pretty much from beginning to end and I just have to say, I was thoroughly disgusted. I'll admit, all three candidates seemed to have decent ideas on various issues, but most of that seemed to be overshadowed by the constant back and forth squabbling between Hillary and Obama. If anyone watched that debate and couldn't tell the level of animosity both these candidates seem to have for one another, I'd be very surprised. All either one of them seemed to be interested in doing was tearing the other one down. And then there was John Edwards. To be honest with you, I hope Edwards wins the Democratic nomination. He seems to me like the only genuine candidate the Democrats are putting forward. He may not be the best person to have ever run for the office of president, but at least he seems truly interested in trying to achieve things to help the American people, and to do it without tearing people to shreds in order to get the job. To my knowledge, he's also the only candidate from either party to tell us the truth about NAFTA, which is that it's done away with most of the good paying factory jobs our country once had and replaced them with near minimum wage jobs with no benefits. Admitting that alone tells me he's decent and honest enough to tell us like it is. That also tells me he's on the side of the workers rather than big business, since big business is the only one truly benefited by NAFTA and our countries current free trade policies. So, I'm rooting for Edwards to become the Democrat presidential nominee.

On the Republican side, I'm beginning to get the sense that John McCain will win. He seems to have the most appeal right now among most Republicans, I think. And he's been bipartisan enough in the past that I believe he'd govern in a much more moderate way than our current president. I think he'd be willing to actually work alongside of Democrats to help get things done. I actually like John McCain. To be honest with you, I'd hoped he'd win the Republican primary back in 2000, but no such luck. Looking at McCain now, I think he's a smarter candidate than he was back then. Aside from his bipartisan background, one of the biggest things that appeals to me about McCain is his stance on the war on terror and the war in Iraq. McCain says he wants to bring our troops home, but not until we've achieved victory in Iraq. Unlike a lot of people these days, I believe we actually can achieve a sort of victory in Iraq. The problem we're having, or have had, so far, is the way in which this war has been fought. I think McCain would handle the situation in Iraq much better than Bush has and would be able to do as he says; to win in the war and then bring home our troops (and without it taking another five years). But I also like his stance on the war on terror in general. His approach to that is that we should spend more effort and money to secure ourselves at home so that the enemy has no way of ever getting to us here. That, to me, sounds like a much wiser course of action than for us to be going all over the world fighting preemptive wars and the like as we have been. So, I'm hoping McCain wins on the Republican side. Having said that, I'll go a step further and suggest a McCain/Huckabee ticket would look pretty attractive to me.

Whoever becomes our next president, my only hope is that they'll be somebody who truly does care about making America great for ALL people, and not just a few. We have so many problems in this country right now, most of which could be solved in rather simple ways actually, and yet nothing seems to be getting done. I just pray the best man (or woman) will get the job.

And for those of you who may not know, I am a registered, moderate, Republican.


RikFleming said...

The first time I voted was for Ronald Reagan in 1984. I then voted for Bush Sr., I stayed out of the Dole vs. Billary election years and then voted for W twice.

Because of my job and interactions with people in the government I tend to get a “behind the scenes” look at the political world and consequently I don’t get all that excited about “who is doing what” (or “who is doing who”) in the White House. The changes at the top of the food chain are short lived and we don’t get the best “bang for our buck” in terms of the amount of money and time that is spent and the lasting results from our efforts.

While political involvement is certainly a legitimate work for any Christian and I suppose it is some people’s calling, I have come t the conclusion that long-lasting results and better fruit of our labors and money is better spent on changing out culture at the grass roots level.

For example, the Christian homeschooling movement that started in the early 1970’s has grown tremendously and I believe that if we are faithful in training up children in the way that they should go (Proverbs 22:6) rather than turning them over to Darwinian institutions we will see a more long-lasting change in our culture.

I also believe that if we were to do the same thing in the way that we train men for the ministry and stop sending them to government accredited seminaries (which all go liberal eventually) we would have a longer lasting affect in the church as well. About 99.99% of the theological heresy I hear has its roots in the seminaries which are not under the auspices of the church but rather receive their accreditation from the state.

I could go on and on... but I think the way that Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church is having an impact on Seattle Washington is an example of how Christians can have a more long last and more effective impact on our culture.

Can you imagine if the money we spent on politics was spent in promoting the gospel and reaching the lost by followed his example?

Brandon said...

I agree, Rik. That's one thing I really dislike about people like Pat Robertson, and even the late Jerry Fallwell. Even those with Exodus International. The spend way too much time delving into politics. The fight we as Christians are in should never be a secular, political fight, but one to reach out to those in our communities and bring Christ into the world. Doesn't mean we can't have a say so in politics or an opinion, but politics should never, ever be where we put our focus on. Like you said, raising our children in better Christian atmospheres, reaching out to others in love and compassion, being a friend and a good example to our fellow man, those are the things that'll bring about real change in this country. And that's what'll make a greater, more positive difference in the lives of those around us.