Thursday, November 8, 2012

Bookending Tuesday

Taking a moment to talk politics here today...if you're not in the mood feel free to take a pass.  Come back tomorrow when this side of the pond returns to its mostly light hearted fare.

I wrote a post yesterday and let it brew for a bit, re-read it last night and then decided to sleep on it.  Anyone else do that?  When it comes to matters about which I have great passion, writing, waiting, and then re-reading in the light of day seems a wise course of action.

I have great passion for America.

While I have no plans to turn my blog into a place of political ranting, a Presidential election is a big deal and I want to comment on its outcome.  Perhaps that is my first point.  I know what I say will be judged and judged harshly.  Although this is my blog, when it comes to politics and you sit squarely on the 'unpopular' side of the fence, you do think twice about speaking your mind. What I've experienced in this election cycle is the notion that if you do not support our current President you are either an intolerant racist or an ignorant fool.  I have been called both.  I am neither.

Let's address the issue of race, the elephant in the room that everyone dances around. All my life I've had friends in every color of the rainbow, not because they were a particular skin color, but because life's circumstances threw us together or we had things in common that drew us to each other.  The same is true of all the people in my life, yet I know some will roll their eyes that I feel the need to mention it.  We are told not to judge someone based on the color of one's skin, but in not voting for our current President I'm accused of being a bigot?  I'm supposed to vote for him because of the color of his skin?   Believe me when I say this, I have a long list of reasons why I don't think President Obama is up to the job of running our country and the color of his skin is not anywhere on it.

It makes me sad that in America today if you disagree with the opinions and ideals promoted by our no longer unbiased media you're dismissed as foolish, misinformed, and/or ignorant.  If you've reached a different conclusion than I have based on what you see, hear, read, and know, I won't verbally assault you.  I won't even un-friend you on Facebook.  For the record,  I listen, read, and investigate issues before I vote, and I get information from both sides of the aisle.  Can everyone who voted for our still President say the same?

America is deeply divided. Sure, roughly half the country voted for President Obama, but roughly half did not. The gulf stretching between the ideology of left and right is as wide on the 8th of November as it was on the 4th.  President Obama did not win this election in a landslide, and in fact Washington in the new term will look very much as it does in the current term.  He's got the White House, Republicans control the House, and Dems the Senate. People on both sides of the political fence (myself included) are unwilling to compromise their deeply held convictions on spending and other issues for the sake of meeting a political agenda. I actually admire that and am not a fan of compromise if it means giving up everything you hold dear so the 'other side' can take things as far as they want to go.  I do believe there are areas where compromise is possible, but our country's descent into name calling, vulgarity, and just plain mean talk very often keep that from happening.

I wonder if my President recognizes that while half of the country celebrates, the other half feels something close to despair. No I didn't vote for him, but he is still my President.  He is charged with the task of representing all of America, not just those with whom he agrees.  I don't understand exactly what it is we're celebrating in November of 2012?

The stock market plunged following Tuesday's election and numbers coming out of The Bureau of Labor Statistics remain dismal.  We have massive debt, massive unemployment, and the abuse and misuse of our current welfare system.  We have yet to hear details of our President's plan to move us 'Forward', other than raising taxes (or revenues as we like to say these days) and he has not spelled out fixes to the entitlement programs that are literally bankrupting America.

On top of that we're getting ready to experience the largest tax hike in American history...all of us, not just 'the rich'.  There will also be new 'fees' as more of Obamacare is implemented.  These new taxes and fees will affect individuals certainly, but will also hugely impact corporations. I know some people feel positively giddy at the notion of corporations paying more, but anyone who thinks corporations can be hit with enormous new fees and taxes that won't affect the individual and our economy in general really hasn't thought that one through.

I am so very weary of it being said and/or implied that people who believe in capitalism don't care about the poor. That Republicans care about making money and Democrats are the ones who actually care about the poor.  It is absolutely positively untrue,  and literally makes my head want to come off.

In his acceptance speech on Tuesday President Obama used much of the same language he used in 2008-

He said back then he would be the President of ALL the United States, yet half the country feels disenfranchised, disregarded, and immaterial.  

He promised hope, yet millions of Americans today are without work, have lost their homes, have seen a reduction in hours or take home pay, and have been forced to collect food stamps or visit community pantrys for the first time in their lives.  Many have just plain given up and feel the very opposite of hope-ful.  

He said he would reach across the aisle, work with anyone who wanted to work with him, yet when the time came he threw down conditions before he'd talk, agreeing to raise taxes revenues being one of them.

He promised to unite Americans, that there would be no red or blue under his leadership.  I think the case could be made that President Obama has been the most divisive President our country has ever known.  We are fractured in ways we never even knew existed prior to 2008.  

He promised transparency yet has opted for popular culture venues such as Letterman, Leno, and The View over taking serious questions from White House journalists.  He has not answered basic questions or seriously addressed the nation on the very troubling events of 9/11 (Benghazi) outside of a brief statement early on. 

In his first term President Obama has talked the talk, but he has not walked the walk. Obviously I'm disappointed.  Some will argue that it takes two, that everyone needs to do better, and I'd agree.  I would add that the job of a leader is to lead, to set the example, to take the high road in hopes that others will follow suit.

In spite of all this seeming negativity, I am never ever a person without hope.  My hope for the future does not rest with man and I take seriously my committment to pray for our beloved country and her leaders, all of them, the red and the blue.

I would love to think all Americans will do the same.
Now that would be something worth celebrating.

I'm leaving comments on today because this is the grand ole USA and I'm a fan of free speech. Based on Tuesdays results half the country feels differently than I do, and I think debate is healthy.  If you want to disagree go right ahead,  just please be gracious.  Nasty or personal attacks will be deleted.  


  1. Joyce you should know by now that I am 100% with you. I wanted change and 1/2 the country voted to keep things the same. Why, is that half of the country really happy with their lives today? I have cried, I'm still crying, my stomach hurts and I have had a headache for two days now. I prayed so hard on Monday night for God to touch the hearts of our country to make what I thought was the better choice. Now I pray for Him to heal my heart and help me to love being an American. Excellent post!

  2. Dare I say it doesn't really matter to me who the president is? I make a decision who I would like to vote for. But in the end, it's God who can use whoever is in office. These verses in Daniel 2 always stay in my head:
    “Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever;
    wisdom and power are his. He changes times and seasons; he deposes kings and raises up others."

    It's in God's control.
    (I think your post was very well written.)

  3. Your post today echos every single sentiment I have been stating myself for 2 years. And all I can say right now is my heart is broken. Not because my choice for President didn't win, but because what we have seen in this election, is a complete divide in our country and its vision for the future. The numbers proved that. 700,000 people .... the population of the city of Detroit, or Memphis is all that separated the Democratic (left) ticket from the Republican (right) ticket. So what does that tell us? To me, it says our society is changing....we've become polarized! And a polar President can't succeed without addressing issues on both sides and working out a compromise time after time after time. He's the's his job. And if he doesn't do this, he'll always be judged in a negative perspective by the right if he's not willing to lean towards the middle.

  4. Debby, thank you! You wrote exactly what I have been saying and feeling, and did it so eloquently. Again, thank you. I would love to re-post this on my blog with your permission.

    It does matter who our president is! It matters because they can be the instrument for good or bad and in this case some very unfortunate consequences will result. I agree with Judy that God is in control, but I also believe that God can and very likely has removed His hand of protection and blessing from our country. He is a jealous God and will not share allegiances with any other god. His wrath is as real as His love and I'm afraid we will see the consequences of our sin and rebellion in the next years to come.

    Again, thank you for being bold and courageous and speaking for many of us. We must stand strong and against the evil and persecution around us.

  5. Thank you for standing behind your beliefs and your right to freedom of speech. I never, ever in my life get into political issues simply because where I was raised you never talked politics and nobody knew how you voted or stood so that has stuck with me my whole life. Suffice it to say that I commend you on your rights to feel the way you feel. I neither agree or disagree, I just am proud that as an American we have the right to voice our feelings and that you have done so very eloquently. I will state I agree with you that no matter who someone voted for, our President is the leader of our country and as such we should pray for him continually.

  6. Very well said, Joyce. A lot of this echoed conversations I had with 2 different friends yesterday, one who was very happy and one who was not. The difficult thing for me was that they both were still using very ugly words against the candidate they did not support. Though they are both good friends, what they were saying made me sick. I just can't accept that some people have so much hate in their hearts. I will continue to believe what I believe and have hope for healing and a positive direction for our country.

  7. Yesterday I was called "stupid, a bigot, and foolish and misguided. When I tried to defend my right to have my own opinions, I was simply told to shove it. This was from my nephews wife, who I expect is not a fan of mine. I don't talk politics often, but did mention my disappointment and concerns yesterday on FB.

  8. I swear you've been reading my mind! All said more eloquently than I could have put it, though. I did not vote for President Obama, because of all the reasons you stated. And like you, the color of his skin has nothing to do with it. I wish the country wasn't so divided, but we are and that won't change anytime soon. I hope that Obama will actually walk the walk, and realize he needs to work FOR Americans, not for his own political agenda. I do worry however, that if taxes keep getting raised there will be a revolt on his hands. I hope it doesn't come to that, but I fear it will. California's governor has already implemented new taxes for those that live in rural areas - we have to pay a "fire hazard tax", in a sense. I mean, REALLY?!?!

  9. Very, very well said Joyce! I too will pray for our president that God will help him when he's doing right and that God will change his mind when he is doing wrong. No matter what, I believe God is ultimately in charge and that if we do what 2 Chronicles 7:14 says, then God will keep His promise in the same verse.

  10. I want so badly to be happy and to look forward to the next four years. I want to believe that he has the country's best interest at heart. For the last 4 years, I have called him "the President", not "my President". I just can't do it. I admire you for being able to! :)

  11. Jiyce. I have been siiting on a post that is only written in my head. I have every reason to think that being a Christian and complaining about the election are polar .

    1. I think Christians need to demonstrate grace and balance : ) I don't think silence is the answer, nor is whining and complaining. I hope this didn't come across as complaining. I do think it's important for everyone in America to feel they have a voice and can use it to express opinions without fear of reprisal which is where the lead up to this election felt like it was headed. Because America is so polarized right now I think its important to hear how people on both sides of the aisle are feeling. I have many friends who despaired the day George Bush was re-elected and I'd like to think I treated them with kindness and understanding.

    2. For some reason my ipad wouldnt let me finsh my comment. It got stuck, and i was going to log back out and in again , but then the old dog peed on the carpet and that was the thing tht made all intentions vanish.

    3. It did it again. What s wrong with this thing or is it user error?.?? I didnt think you were complaining in the sense of whining, just legitimately expressing how you feel, and i t

    4. Totally agree. I feel persecuted to hold some of the views i do. Does the left not see how hypocritical it is to holler intolerance? Gonna go writethat post thts brewing in me and junk up your comment box.

  12. Well documented post Joyce. I appreciate your honesty and boldness. I, we, are blessed to live here in the USA and enjoy countless freedoms. I too had hoped & prayed for a different outcome but alas, it is what it is and I will continue to hope & pray for all our country's leaders.

    Josh 24:15 for me & my family, we will serve the Lord.

  13. Joyce, oh how I wish I had your way with words! You have so eloquently written down everything I'm feeling today. Thank you for having the courage to express what you are feeling. May God help us all through the tough times I'm afraid we are going to face.

  14. Oh, if I could express myself in words as well as you! This was great and I agree with every last word. And, I'm with some of the above, it DOES indeed matter who the President is and I believe that it matters greatly to our Lord as well.

    Blessings as you all dig out from under all of this horrific weather!

  15. Ditto. I have just one question, why is it so important for black people to be identified as black, can't we all just be human beings, regardless of the color of our skin or hair or eyes for that matter? I just get so sick of being called a bigot if a person of a different race feels put out!

    You can delete this comment if you want too.

  16. Thank you so much for voicing an honest opinion in a non-disrespectful and insutling way. I'm about ready to quit FB over these ignorant comments people are sharing. I too did not vote for our current president, but it was not a decision I entered lightly. Of course it is sort of a mute point when you vote in a state like Maryland. My vote really didn't count for much. (Thanks for mentioning my hubbys place of employment ---BLS. He wroks hard on all of those stats) Sad for no Wednesday Hodgepodge.

  17. Joyce, thank you for exercising your right to free speech. I wish all Americans felt they could voice their opinions without being called ugly names. That takes grace, which we are sorely lacking at this time.

    Well, I've rewritten my own comment several times. Suffice it to say, I agree with you and I applaud you for being kind and respectful in what you said. Well done.

    Prayer is the answer. Only God can change the trajectory of our nation.

  18. I do NOT think that just because we disagree on politics, we cant be friends:) I also do not think that anyone should be voted into office based on the color of their skin. Although, I do know some who voted against because of his color (sadly, in my own family).

    We can agree to disagree on issues. People grow, learn, and come to compromises by speaking to each other not at them.

    As you know from FB, I did Vote for Obama. Have I been disappointed this last 4 years? I can not tell a lie - yes. Do I hope for more from him in the next 4 years? Yes. Do I think healthcare needs reform? Yes. I am totally sold that Obamacare is the way to go. No. As I said before, if both sides would work together for the good of the country and not their party; I think better things could and should have happened.

    I actually blogged about the need of working together the other day (

    As far as speeches go - they all promise to cross the divide. Think of Bush/Gore. It's all lip service and it's sad.

  19. Joyce,
    thank you for this!!! I think you have some kind of esp and can read all of our minds. I also, believe that we as AMERICANS all need to take a stand and get to serious praying!!! God is still in control, however with "our president" knowing he is not of our Christian Faith...really makes it even harder for us to understand WHY?
    Only God knows the reason and the answer.
    AMERICA UNITED WE ALL STAND at the glory of God and give him the upmost glory!!

  20. We must hang on- we get a "Do-Over" in four years!

  21. Excellent post. Can I bring up one more point? I teach gender communication at a university so I listen carefully when "women's issues" are thrown around. I have never nor do I ever plan to let my students know how I vote. One challenge that I had this semester in class and with this election was the "women's issues" as if all that concerns us can be boxed into a category of reproductive organs and health issues. I was very disappointed that women's small businesses are at great risk of being taxed out of their American dream. I was very disappointed that women's issues of debt, taxes, and in my mind our real future was ignored because of ovaries. 49% of the workforce is women. We are now making an average of 83 cents per each dollar a man earns. That number is actually GREAT news because it is up from the 77 cents of just a few years ago. We are productive contributing humans and were created to be so much more than just reproductive beings.

  22. Thank you, Joyce! My brother reminded me that if God could change the heart of Nebuchadnezzar he could change the heart of a U.S. President, as well! This is my prayer.

  23. I just wanted to say thank you for this post. It is the first well-reasoned, level-headed, yet passionate post I've seen since the election on either side of the aisle and I very much appreciate that.

  24. Joyce, I totally agree with you and thank you for this post. There seems to be total disregard for the $16 trllion debt, unemployment, the Monsanto situation etc etc.

  25. Can I just say how much I applaud you for this thoughtful post? You hit the nail on the head in every area.
    Dispair is exactly the word I was feeling.Dispair that one half of the people in our country think almost the polar opposite of what the other half think it is going to take to fix the mess we are in.

    It's not the fact that we are "the losers", it is so much deeper than that, it's a feeling that this ship may never be able to be righted. We can't compromise on the little things, how will we ever make progress on the big things?

    I also wonder if Libby up there hasn't mentioned a significant issue. How much longer will God bless our increasingly secular, wrong is right society? If we remove our support for Israel, I fear He will remove the lampstand of His protection. He blesses those who bless His people.
    Rev. 2:5
    New International Version (©1984)
    Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.

    What gives me hope is knowing that nothing is too hard for God. He can use undesirable circumstances for His good. It's all I've got right now, and I'm going to wear it like a pair of uncomfortable shoes and just keep walking.

  26. Cheers (clink) !!! I could not have said it better.
    And now we just move onward, pray and hope for the best.

    CA in and of itself is in such a mess right now - I hope other states are not as dismal as it is here. Why is it that people don't care about the children in our schools and colleges, but they care about giving illegals the right to get a drivers license and make them eligible for Soc Sec? It seems it's all about the people with their hands out and not about those who are working their butts off just to make ends meet. And those people with their hand out? They are just laughing at the rest of us who are stuck with them. Makes me crazy!

    Again - pray. A lot. Hard. and "onward"...

  27. Great post Joyce!! I agree with all your points. I pray daily for our elected officials to have the wisdom to do the right thing for the country and not just for their own special interest. That goes for both sides of the isle.

  28. You know I agree with you. Well said. I noticed though that you only have positive, agreeing commenters here. Where are those who disagree? Celebrating and putting their heads in the economic sand, I guess.

  29. As a follower of Christ I agree with a lot you said.Although ,I get the idea from way too many Christians,that Christians should be Republicans or at least conservatives. This idea I know is very wrong.Some,even in My own family,in fact most Of My family lean in that direction of thought.I will stand up for those God fearing and Christ loving people who are Democrats and even liberal.There is a mix of all different levels of thought and morals in all people no matter of Politics.All Christians must be careful in judging and grouping others.I come from a very very long line of Christians that goes back for at least 8 generations now and I know I will see them in heaven no matter how they voted politically.My Mom was a liberal Democrat that also was a born again Christian church secretary in the 4 square Church.I could explain her views but it of course would take a book.She even once gave our pastor a reminder of this.Love,your sister in Christ Denise

  30. I found you through Sandie at Chatty Crone. I have really enjoyed reading this post. I completely agree with you! I've been depressed all week and am sick with worry for our country! Keep writing, you've got a gift. :)

  31. While I'm happy about the outcome of the election, I can understand where you're coming from. I had similar feelings after George W. Bush became President. We're all Americans. We all want the best for our country. I'm disappointed that neither side had much to say about the poor.

  32. Sorry I got here late. I couldn't agree with you more - in everything you said. I wonder where the people who voted this man in again think the money is going to come from. The 'rich' that are so hated are the job creators. But when you demonize the 'rich' and say you're the only party who cares about the poor, does nothing to ensure citizens-only voting, increases food stamp dependency by 420,000 in one month, it's pretty hard to lose an election. Unfortunately, as Margaret Thatcher said, 'Socialism works until you run out of other people's money.' And I'd have to add that the 'other people' are going to get sick of working and having so much of their income stolen from the government and from the Federal Reserve who stands at the ready to print more worthless money. The day after the election, a friend's daughter's employer laid off its 75 employees because of the demand on the employer re. Obamacare. Her son who works at a nuclear power plant is making alternate plans because he sees the handwriting on the wall.

    And one more thing: Gen. Petraeus better watch his back. Something is very rotten in Denmark - and since when has anyone in Washington cared about extra-marital affairs???

    I firmly believe that God is in control. But that doesn't let us off the hook re. voting responsibly. May He have mercy on this nation and not give us what we deserve.

  33. Oh, Joyce, you stated so eloquently in your blog post what I attempted to state in my election day post (not very polished, I'm afraid, but definitely from the heart). My heart broke a bit after the election. I'm from Massachusetts. Mitt Romney was a great governor and would have made a fantastic president. I had hoped that a sense of dignity would be restored to the White House. I'm sorry if that offends anybody, but for our President to call Governor Romney a "bullsh***er" in an interview just a week before the election, and to encourage people to vote for revenge was just too much. The sad thing is, it wasn't all that surprising. Hopefully someday respect, honor, and dignity will return to the White House and Washington in general. Thank you for your insight... Donna