Some 225 years ago, as an aged Benjamin Franklin departed from the Constitutional Convention of 1787, a woman in the street called out: "Well Doctor Franklin, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?" Franklin replied back: "a republicif you can keep it".
No truer words could have been spoken, then or now, than by Franklin. The indisputable facts of the national election of 2012 beg the question: are we at the turning point? Are we nearing the day when this great republic of ours is no moreor at least not as it was conceived by the framers?
One need only consider the profligate level of spending that has characterized the last four years to answer these questions. Trillions upon trillions of dollars in spending on bank bailouts, on auto bailouts, on massive government stimulus programs, on a humongous new national health care bonanza, on food stamps through the roof, on free cell phones for anybody that wants one, on grants and subsidies of every imaginable "green" initiative that liberals love (but which have virtually all failed). Have I missed anything?
Meanwhile, the once mighty engine that has made all of these trillions of public dollars possible is slowly but surely being run into the ditchover taxed, over regulated, over burdened to the point that the very viability of America's once preeminence in manufacturing is no more. China has now surpassed the United States as the leading manufacturer of the world. Not coincidentally, they are also now our largest creditor. Does this scare anybody? It should.
What has all of this done to America's balance sheet? At over $16 trillion in national debt, for the first time in US history our debt is at a one-to-one ratio with our national gross domestic product (GDP)or national income. It is a ticking time bomb. And, raising taxes on 1 percent of our populace will not get the job done and President Obama knows it.
We can stay the course and face a calamity the likes of which would be epoch by any standard of measure in world history. Or we can chart a new course that is centered on private sector growth and a rededication to the free enterprise system of economics that which has made us the envy of the world.
Of course, if you want to stay the course, President Obama is your man. We know his record of the past four years. You want another four? Senator Sherrod Brown and former Congressman Charlie Wilson would vote with him 98 percent of the time that is not just a Republican "threat", it is their promise.
Mitt Romney, on the other hand, proposes an alternative course of less government spending, less burdensome taxes and less crippling regulations. Josh Mandell would be a vote for this agenda in the U S Senate. And 6th District Congressman, Bill Johnson, would be right with him. His record in Congress has proven this.
For the state house of representatives, we can keep one of the most successful entrepreneurs of the county in officea fiscal but thoughtful conservative, Craig Newbold. Or, we can choose somebody that has been hand picked by the teachers union and the public employees union, who pledges up front that he will expand state government at any cost Nick Barborak, an avowed Obama liberal.
The county races offer a mix of challengers and incumbents. If you are looking for fiscal conservatism, then here again the Republican slate is for you.
In the final analysis, though, we will get the government that we deserve. In this critical election year, I believe it will be one that, from top to bottom, Franklin himself would agree "measures up" to the challenges confronting us today. I pray this is so.