Posted by: MC | January 9, 2012

Here Comes New Hampshire — Time to Launch the 100 VOICES Primary Commentary

Detail New Hampshire State Flag

I want to see this country back to using its head.  Just common
sense.  I’ve known some Congressmen and other people in
Washington. They all kind of shrug their shoulders.  I have a
Congressman friend I asked, “How many Senators and
Congressmen do you admire for their intelligence?”  This man
is very, very sharp.  He said, “About 20%.”  He said there are
more idiots sitting in the Senate and in Congress than he can
believe.  Educated, but still idiots.  What are you going to do?
You have to stop electing them. 

–Voice 17, Bob Bliss, Walnut Creek, CA

Hey Everyone!

Well … I’ve determined I can no longer resist offering counterweight to the faces and words flooding our airwaves as the presidential caucus season gets underway.  I owe it to the Americans who talked with me in the winter and early spring of 2009.  In the chorus of reason composed by the people who lent their wisdom to the book 100 VOICES – AMERICANS TALK ABOUT CHANGE,, a powerful and common theme was frustration with the weakness of too many of our elected leaders (the words immaturity and self-interested came up frequently).  Change characterized with greater maturity, wisdom and practicality among our leaders stood out as a high priority for Americans from across the range of circumstances and affiliations.

Meanwhile, the sadly predictable glitz of media fanfare around these first caucuses has only served to celebrate the under-qualification and dearth of wisdom publicly evident among the candidates for the Republican nomination.  In good conscience and out of my huge respect for each and every person in 100 VOICES I’ve decided to post comments as the primaries proceed.

Who knows, maybe I’ll even get to a few primary states around voting time.  Wouldn’t it be a great antidote to the pabulum of usual media hype to hear more from the underrated wisdom and creativity of everyday Americans?  Stay tuned.  Soon I’ll also be posting my schedule for driving again as the EX:Change continues.

But, back to business.  Here we are.  One day away from New Hampshire.

Here’s my best shot at a synopsis.  In the first eight and 1/2 days of 2012, a man named Rick Santorum has remarkably become recognizable as having something to do with recent politics by perhaps as many as 10% of the voting public.  Headlines this morning indicate that John Huntsman is on the rise. Texas governor Rick Perry (tell me true, did you know there were two Rick’s vying for the Republican nomination?) has taken to using complete sentences involving the words “pink slip” to rip into Mitt Romney for his possible dealings with personnel as a private equity executive (i.e., a wealthy man serving wealthy men and, to be fair, likely a handful of wealthy women).  Michelle Bachmann is history.  Herman Cain is now ancient history in the context of our 24 hr. news habit.  Oh, and Newt Gingrich.  He’s still offending African American citizens with his sweeping racist and classist statements.  Public confrontations on the process are leaving him, “irritated.”

Ron Paul.  Did I forget Ron Paul?

All of this proceeds awkwardly (at best) on the coattails of that whopping 5.4% voter turnout for the Iowa Caucus just seven short days ago.  That’s five-point-four – 147,255 American souls.  Just over two and a quarter million voters live in Iowa.  That leaves 2,103,198 people in the state who had better things to do on the third day of this brand new year.

Now for New Hampshire’s go at it.

Here are two possibilities.  The voters of New Hampshire could rise decisively to the occasion, joining together in a resounding public statement to demand nothing less than reason and wisdom from our elected leadership.  They could do this in gatherings in public squares across the state or in conversations with their neighbors leading to millions of calls to Republican and Democratic Party headquarters throughout the day on Tuesday.  Way more likely, and continuing the underwhelming display in Iowa, a few New Hampshirites will go to the polls and the same (pretty boring, really) story line will continue.  The media will give their all out best to contriving our interest – catchy prose, flashy images and nothing, nothing, nothing of more reason and maturity will enter the publicized conversation.

Except in the lack of interest.  Maybe, as with 100 VOICES, the nonparticipation of the voting citizens of Iowa and New Hampshire is its own protest – its own activism – its own reason.  Perhaps the EX:Change can help with the listening, learning and assertion of our common interests as we the people.

It’s worth a try, huh?!


  1. Definitely worth a try! I’ll enjoy following your commentaries!

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