Politics is supposed to be local, at least that’s what U.S. Rep. Tip O’Neill probably meant when he said that now famous quote. These days, candidates for office on the regional and national levels are steadily getting away from that practice. At least when it comes to the small towns and rural areas of the land.
Once upon a time, it wasn’t just the local candidate who showed up on on the courthouse squares or the porches of general stores. Many of them spent as much time listening as they did talking.
I bring all this up because we are one week away from the party primaries in Texas. This election season doesn’t seem very exciting. The one race around here people seem to be talking about is the primary election for Texas Governor. Governor Rick Perry is running once again. His G.O.P. challenger is U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison. They both have their talking points. Yet, it’s all very routine despite the negative attacks hurled both ways.
They don’t argue with each other out in public. They don’t debate in a civil setting (other than a few television opportunities.) To me, they have yet to show who’s the better candidate. Neither of them.
Instead, my email inbox has been filled with hundreds of messages from the camps of all candidates. The GOP candidates have been the worst by far though. Apparently, one of the candidates said something the other candidate didn’t like. It obviously made them so mad, they sent out a flurry of emails bashing the other candidate.
On Friday, in the middle of our big snow event across the region, our email programs were full of snow pictures, school advisories, and traffic tips. Then, somebody floods the inbox with no less than a dozen unsolicited “Perry (or Hutchison, I can’t remember which) said…”
I was more than slightly annoyed. I only needed one of those messages, not 12 to 15.
Furthermore, I never signed up for that mailing list in the first place.
And finally, I find it very interesting these campaigns are all over the place when it comes to sending information about their campaign or how awful their opponent is. But when someone finally wins office, the frequency of the messages drops to near zero.
End of rant.