Stop Obsessing About the How

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Bernie Sanders is telling us that he wants Americans to have universal health care – single payer. He is challenged by those on the left, the center and the right, asking how he’s going to get that done.

Donald Trump tells us he’s going to deport 11 million undocumented residents now in the U.S. The math for that works out to 7,534 people to be deported every day of a 4-year presidential term. How will he do that?

Ted Cruz has a plan to completely re-make the federal tax system. It would reduce the income of the government by $8.6 trillion over a decade. At the same time, he plans to dramatically increase money for the Defense Department and the National Security apparatus. The math simply doesn’t come anywhere near to working, so how will he do that?

Marco Rubio disapproves of increasing the national debt limit, but he doesn’t explain how the United States will avoid default on existing debt without raising the limit. By what magic will we not become a deadbeat nation?

Hillary Clinton has accepted many millions of dollars from big money influencers, including the fossil fuel industry, big Pharma and big banks. How will she lead without being influenced by those massive campaign contributions and the money sure to arrive for the purpose of funding her second term?

Here’s the point: You’ll never get a satisfactory answer to “How?” from any of the candidates. Nobody can tell you how a Democrat as president will get what they want through a Republican Congress. Nobody can tell you how an absolutist Republican president would accomplish his absolutist ends with the filibuster alive and well in the Senate.

All you can get is an idea of what these people believe in and the direction they would take the United States if they could take it some place. Decide for yourself if their values and ideas match yours (or if they are totally cuckoo bird) and stop fretting about the “How?” stuff, because most of what is promised during a campaign will never be done.

And VOTE. Illinois, Florida, Ohio, Missouri and North Carolina primary elections are on Tuesday, March 15. Show up and VOTE.

Here’s some happy news: If you’re an Illinois resident and are not already registered to vote, you can register on election day. Yes, we have same-day registration now, so bring a few forms of ID, like your drivers license, passport, student ID, credit card, utility bill with your name on it – you only need one, but bring more just in case. Show up at your poling place and you’ll be able to register and VOTE right then and there.


Ed. note: There is much in America that needs fixing and we are on a path to continually fail to make things better. It is my goal to make a difference – perhaps to be a catalyst for things to get better. That is the reason for these posts. To accomplish the goal requires reaching many thousands of people and a robust dialogue.

YOUR ACTION STEPS: Please offer your comments below and pass this along to three people, encouraging them to subscribe.  Thanks!  JA

Copyright 2024 by Jack Altschuler
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5 Responses to Stop Obsessing About the How
  1. Edmund Sass Reply

    If “It’s not about believing what a candidate promises/says,” it’s no wonder so many Americans don’t vote.

  2. Edmund Sass Reply

    If you can’t believe anything a candidate promises/says, then what’s the point of even bothering to listen to him/her? The devil (and governing) is always in the details!

    • JaxPolitix Reply

      Good question.

      It’s not about believing what a candidate promises.

      Candidate issue positions and vision for America’s future tell us that candidate’s values and what they believe should be the future of our country. They tell us that, if they were able, s/he would do such and so. Those promises tell you what the candidate will work toward if elected. But they really aren’t promises because this is not an election for dictator.

      Clearly, some candidates pander and have no intention of doing what they “promise” they will do. These are simply manipulating liars. Different issue.

      My point is to avoid bogging down in the “How ya gonna do that?” morass, because it is a waste of time and energy and misses the main point. I continue to believe that the importance of this election is secondarily for the presidency; it is primarily about the future of the Supreme Court. When candidates tell us who they are via their “promises” they tell us the kind of people they would place on the Court.

  3. dominick Reply

    A succinct presentation, Jack, of our faith-based oligarchy. Listen to the promises of the political party politicians, which represent our corporations, with the exception of Bernie. Then, go vote for one of them. While a few of us know that not one of their promises can be fulfilled without the cooperation of the same political party members in Congress, the rest have faith that their candidate will prevail. Moreover, regardless of whether their promises are sincere or blatantly false and self-serving, we lose all control over their decisions the moment they step into office.

    We have become a nation of faithful followers, much like religious true believers, seeking someone else of higher authority to guide us. Like the religious faithful, it appears that most of us accept the delusional notions priests tell us about the afterlife, and politicians tell us about the afterelection. These fantasies apparently give comfort to many as they continue to trust the inspirational orators who convince them to part with their money, although in the case of politicians, their civil rights as well.

    Unfortunately, the small amount of money given to religious leaders and usually worthwhile causes, even at the 10% level of tithing, is dwarfed by comparison to the amount of money taken by corporate greed from our pockets.

  4. David Houle Reply

    No matter who wins, there are two very probable outcomes: a one term president and perhaps the beginning of a three party system. Both of these are very positive options.