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Dear Undecided Voter

I’m sorry, did I wake you?  I know it’s been four years since the last time you checked the news to find that a presidential race was in the final weeks, and much has happened since then.  I thought it might be a good idea to help you get caught up, since I keep hearing that the fate of the nation rests in the hands of people who can name the winner of American Idol and Dancing with the Stars, but can’t name their own Congressman.  Please know that I honor your sacrifice in giving up precious time that could be spent watching those human livestock shows, where a group of people scheme, back-stab, connive, and manipulate each other in order to find true love, but this is sort of important.  You see, the country is imploding and the world is on fire.  We sure could use your help.  

Item:  The bottom is falling out of American median income.  During the recession, it fell from $54,489 in 2007 to $52,195 in 2009, after President Obama spent your grandchildren’s inheritance on his much touted “stimulus” plan.  Since then, the government has taken in more of your money and left the nation with a median income of $50,054 just last year.  So while they take more, you get less.  Is that the change you were hoping for?  Meanwhile, the poverty rate in America has gone from 12.5 percent in 2007 to 15 percent last year as median household wealth declined 39 percent over the same time span.  President Obama keeps saying that all of this is the legacy of Republican policies, as if the laws he signed over the last four years had no impact.  In 1981, Ronald Reagan inherited an unemployment rate of 7.5 percent and four years later it was 7.2 percent.  Barack Obama inherited an unemployment rate of 7.8 percent, and today it stands at 8.1 percent only because the work force itself is shrinking.  As the Washington Post observed, “If the same percentage of adults were in the workforce today as when Barack Obama took office, the unemployment rate would be 11.1 percent.” 

Item:  If you think you’re paying more for electricity now, stay tuned.  Coal companies are in the President’s crosshairs, just as he promised back in 2008 when he said, “If somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can, it’s just that it will bankrupt them.”  Alpha Natural Resources has just announced that it will close eight mines as a direct result of Obama Administration edicts and regulations.  Some 400 jobs were terminated on the spot, with a total of 1,200 jobs to be eliminated through 2013.  As the supply of fossil fuel shrinks, the price of available supplies will rise on households who, as noted above, are losing income.  And chanting, “Yes we can,” isn’t going to help.  

Item:  Food Stamp use is on the rise.  When Obama took office, 1 in 10 Americans received such assistance. Today it’s 1 in 7, as food stamp usage has reached an all time high of nearly 48 million Americans.  People who point this out are called racist by the President’s friends in the media.  But people who ignore it are willfully blinding themselves to a catastrophe that threatens to undo a great nation.  Your share of the $16 trillion national debt is currently $142,000.  Your spouse and each of your children and grandchildren owe the same amount.  Do you think this is sustainable?  

Item:  Remember the health care law that so many people made such a fuss about?  According to the Associated Press, “Nearly 6 million Americans — significantly more than first estimated — will face a tax penalty under President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul for not getting insurance… Most would be in the middle class.”  Health care premiums are already increasing as insurance companies try to cope with the additional cost of covering pre-existing conditions, 26 year old adults hanging onto their parents’ plans, and handing out birth control like it was Halloween candy.  If you think this is going to end well, you might hazard a look to Great Britain, where people who have insurance die while waiting for actual treatment. 

Item:  While channel surfing, you may have noticed what at first appeared to be world-wide cookouts at American Embassies overseas.  Actually, they were Islamic moon bats who over ran our outposts, killed an American Ambassador and three of his staff in Libya, scaled the walls in Egypt and tore down our flag, replacing it with one saying that there is only one god, Allah is his name and Mohammed is his favorite dude, or something like that.  What about the Marines who typically guard these places, you ask?  They were unarmed, because we wouldn’t want to offend the sensibilities of those  peace-loving savages. Today we learned that the attack in Libya was planned well in advance, with the assistance of one Sufya Ben Qumu, who we previously released from Guantanamo.  

Item:  Two United States Marines, including a Squadron Commander, were killed in an attack on their base in Afghanistan just a few days ago.  The attack also saw the destruction of at least half a dozen Harrier fighter aircraft.  Additionally, the Afghanistan security forces we’ve been training have taken to murdering the Americans that are training them.  The Taliban is making a comeback, and the situation is deteriorating by the hour.  This is the sort of thing that can be expected, and was predicted, when President Obama announced our retreat and publicized the time table.  Wars are generally lost when one side retreats, ya know.  Last time we did this was in Somalia, and the bad guys responded by flying planes into buildings on American soil.  I don’t think this approach will end well either.  You may recall that when Ronald Reagan was inaugurated, the moon bats in Iran got religion and released the American hostages.  They feared him.  They didn’t fear Jimmy Carter, and they don’t seem to be worrying about Barack Obama, who keeps telling them that he’s really sorry about a movie they don’t like.  In fact, the authorities have even arrested the guy who made the movie!  What’s that you ask?  The First Amendment?  Well, President Obama and his Democratic friends aren’t big fans of the Constitution either, if you didn’t know.  

There is so much more to tell you about, but I don’t want to overburden you with information.  I just wanted to let you know a few items that you may not have seen in the news.  Odds are that you heard Mitt Romney’s comments about how 47 percent of the people are dependent on the government, and how he doesn’t worry about them, right?  The point he appeared to be driving at was that a certain portion of the country is going to vote for Obama no matter what, and that many of them think they are entitled to the fruits of your labor.  He knows he’s not going to get their vote unless he repudiates individual liberty and starts sounding like Fidel Castro, so he’s going to focus his efforts on you instead.  

Now, what you probably didn’t hear was the recording of Barack Obama, back in 1998 I believe, saying that, “…the trick is figuring out how do we structure government systems that pool resources and hence facilitate some redistribution — because I actually believe in redistribution, at least at a certain level to make sure that everybody’s got a shot.”  A few weeks ago he assured people that if they have a successful business, it’s because someone else built it, and now we hear him talking about redistributing someone else’s earnings.  Call it Fundamental Transformation, or Hope and Change, or plain and simple plunder.  Call it what you will, but make no mistake, you have a choice to make in November.  You can choose the American dream of liberty and excellence as intended by the authors of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, or you can choose American weakness abroad and an endless welfare state that is quickly collapsing at home.  It’s up to you.  By the way, have you ever tried to watch Dancing With The Stars with no electricity?  

  1. grotiushug

    I’m a thirty-nine year old man who’s engaged to be married next year.  I’ve been in two other long-term relationships (never married).  One thing I’ve learned the hard way is that it’s better to preserve the peace in the household than it is to win an argument with your lady over politics.  I don’t mean you should lie and tell her you believe something you don’t.  I mean only that it’s better not to talk about some things when there’s a danger of hitting a sore spot.  If she presses you on something in particular that you know you disagree with her about, it’s probably better to gently change the subject.  For example, you might tell her you’re “undecided.” 

  2. Crow

    Diane: But I’ve got a real dilemma on my hands.  How do you get through to someone who’s been in the grip of liberalism (of the Christian bleeding heart variety) his whole life, and is now trying to think fairly and clearly and weigh each and every issue objectively? (And who doesn’t yet fully see the bias of the media, I might add)

     While there are some undecided voters (most, maybe) out there who fit Dave’s description to the letter, I think there are not a few out there like your husband, Diane.

    You are unlikely to convince someone in this position to renounce everything they’ve believed their entire life all at once and expect to get results. Human nature and habit react against this strongly. A change on this scale takes time.

    If a person is genuinely undecided and not, as grotiushug suggests, just trying to  keep the peace, I think the first step would have to be to ask why? Why are they undecided–what is it about the opposite side they find compelling, and why is it that they find your own side unconvincing on the subject?

  3. Crow

    The virtue of an approach like this is it lets them talk and you get to find out how they make decisions–what do they find persuasive? That allows you to tailor your own argument to meet them where they are, without losing sight of where you’d like them to end up.

    Obama has failed to seal the deal for these undecideds. He’s had four years to do so. Why?

    DocJay also makes a point worth considering–perhaps this post is not the best material to show your husband, but how aware is he of a fully articulated view of the ‘other side’? Has he read any of the large body of Christian conservative writing produced in the last 100 years?

    I don’t think conversions happen overnight. Yet, I do think  a confrontation with a truly difficult and challenging thinker can jar a person out of their present state of mind and point them in a different direction. Thinkers of a certain breadth and depth are the one’s who tend to stick with you.

    You have to work the long and short term fronts at once.

  4. Indaba
    J.Voss

    Mendel:How can we condense this argument onto an index card and still keep it persuasive? · 3 minutes ago

    One index card eh? How about this:

    Under Obama you are measurably poorer… Under Obama you have measurably less freedom… Under Obama you are measurably less secure (Just ask the ambassador)… Under Obama you are paying measurably more for energy (by design)… Under Obama your yet-to-be grandkids already owe $X…

    How’s that? 3×5 index card might be a stretch, but you could use the back to cite sources! So that’s something. · 4 hours ago

    here’s one line:

    Your economy is driving off the cliff and if you want to save it, vote Romney.

  5. Matthew Gilley

    Toughen up buttercup, I say. Red states didn’t get that way by apologizing for or soft-pedaling the message. That is, though, how states like California went irretrievably blue. I marvel at like-minded folks who bend themselves into pretzels trying to make the conservative message appear not so, you know … conservative. If I’m on the fence about an issue, I’m not likely to join up with a solution delivered without conviction. Preach on, Dave – to the choir and to the “unwashed!”

  6. Giantkiller

    Dave – great post.  Very pithy.  A pity that these arguments and the underlying facts, perfectly obvious and easily verified, seem not to sway a great number of our electorate.  What seems to cause a stir is when the idiotic media bellow about a secret tape of the Republican candidate talking perfect sense.  Sigh.

  7. Gretchen

    I’d feel a lot better if Dave were writing Romney’s speeches.

  8. Joseph Eagar

     Since then, the government has taken in more of your money and left the nation with a median income of $50,054 just last year.  So while they take more, you get less

    Dave, I think it’s very dangerous for us to be making this point.  There are a lot of temporary tax cuts that, one way or another, will have to expire at some point.  Telling people the government is taking more of their money implies Republicans will be in a position to give that money back–which we won’t.

  9. Dave Carter
    C
    Diane Ellis, Ed.: This post is a shame.

    Don’t get me wrong: I agree with every word.  But I happen to be married to an undecided —I know…inconceivable!!!—and I would never dream of sending him such a post to read.  In tone, it’s rude, condescending, and does nothing but preach to the choir.  And for all I know, that was your intention. …

    You know, that exact impression gave me pause when writing this.  But then, two thoughts occurred.  First, if the undecided want to be wooed with sweet nothings whispered in their ears, they have the entire RNC apparatus already doing it.  Second, I’ve grown weary of being told we have to kiss the derriere of people who can’t be bothered by the fact that their country is dying.  

    Since there is no shortage of people who are willing to tip toe through the tulips with these folks, I thought a blunt assessment of their priorities followed by list of items that ought to concern them might fill in the void.  Uncomfortable truths are sometimes best confronted head-on, and some people prefer a bracing reality check to being patronized.  

  10. WI Con
    Diane Ellis, Ed.: This post is a shame.

    Don’t get me wrong: I agree with every word.  But I happen to be married to an undecided —I know…inconceivable!!!—and I would never dream of sending him such a post to read.  In tone, it’s rude, condescending, and does nothing but preach to the choir.  And for all I know, that was your intention.

    Sorry, I’m on Dave Carter’s corner on this. Just what does his (and other undecideds) mental ledgers look like – just how is this a toss-up?

    5.8 trillion in less than four years, should we give him another 5 trillion or so while he makes up his mind? A couple more embassy burnings while he sorts things out? Basks in the glow of our nation’s racial harmony while he carefully (glacially) considers the promise of green energy & high-speed rail?

    If he can’t say no to a second helping of “this” – we are utterly doomed and he’s an accomplice to it. 

  11. She
    Diane Ellis, Ed.:   . . . does nothing but preach to the choir . . .   

    I disagree.  I think what Dave does, for the great majority of his post, is itemize, with quite a bit of supporting detail, exactly why this election is so important.  These are exactly the details that should convince ‘undecideds,’ if they are thinking about the issues.

    You could argue that the opening paragraph of Dave’s post could turn off some people who might be offended by his characterization, and who might not read further because of it (although he’s perfectly describing some people I know and love). 

    Why would those same people  not be equally, offended or turned off by Joe Biden’s “chains” remark, or the hysterical ‘war on women’ rhetoric that comes from the other side, and which does not have any supporting detail to back it up?

    It’s sometimes hard to accept the truth if you don’t like the box it’s wrapped up in.  But, to quote the fellow whose bust Obama chucked out of the Oval Office, the thing about the truth is it’s incontrovertible.

    “Malice may deride it, ignorance may attack it, but in the end, there it is.”

  12. wmartin

    The wonderful news I awoke to this morning:

    According to Gallup, Democratic enthusiasm has surged past republican enthusiasm nationally, and in the swing states.

    Obama now leads even in rasmussen, both nationally and in their swing states poll.

    I have donated quite a bit to Romney, and received another fundraising email today. It was different from the others I have gotten in that it ony asked for three dollars. According to Karl Rove, when campaigns ask for that little, it is a sign that their fundraising is drying up.

  13. Leslie Watkins

    Diane, could it be that your husband is undecided only because he loves you and respects you and knows you feel differently? I know only too well the pain of ubiquitous guilt swirling like the furies around my head. When I was your age I was practically immobilized by it: you must forgive, you must give give give. When I finally realized that it was a kind of ego trip in reverse—that I was responsible for every one else’s pain—I, oddly enough, became strong enough to actually accomplish things. That’s the difference I see in the two political philosophies doing battle here: The Democrats want you to feel guilty all the time no matter what you’ve given or done with your life and regardless of why their faceless victims are in the situation they’re in. The Republicans want you to take responsibility for your own life and to assist those you care about. I think it’s obvious which is the more loving approach. Being against government as the answer is not the same thing as not wanting to find an answer, which is why it’s a harder road to travel toward life.

  14. Lucy Pevensie

    Dave, I’m sort of, kind of with Diane on this. I love this, but I would love it if you would write another one, without the anger and sarcasm and boiled down to the length that a real undecided voter might read.

  15. Matt Blankenship
    Diane Ellis, Ed.: This post is a shame.

     But I’ve got a real dilemma on my hands.  How do you get through to someone who’s been in the grip of liberalism (of the Christian bleeding heart variety) his whole life, and is now trying to think fairly and clearly and weigh each and every issue objectively? (And who doesn’t yet fully see the bias of the media, I might add)

    I think he needs to see the case laid out by a former liberal who has seen Anyhow, insulting people like him does no good. · 7 hours ago

    Try the cold splash of logic in the face:  Thomas Sowell (in the long form, not syndicated columns).  If I could download/import a worldview onto my liberal and undecided targets, Sowell’s would be the one I would choose.

  16. Lucy Pevensie

    @Diane: Here’s my husband’s approach to the liberal Christian, with a slight modification of my own. 

    Ask him if it’s wrong for me to hold a gun to your head and take your money.

    Ask him if it’s wrong for me to hold a gun to your head and take your money even if I use it for something good, like taking care of my elderly mother or food for myself.

    Ask him if it’s wrong for me to hire someone else to do that for me–a hit man, so to speak, who robs you–even if the goal is to do something good with the money.

    Ask him if it’s wrong for me to do the same thing if the person I hire works for the government.

  17. Lucy Pevensie

    By the way, Dave, hope your Dad is still doing well.

  18. DocJay
    wmartin: The wonderful news I awoke to this morning:

    According to Gallup, Democratic enthusiasm has surged past republican enthusiasm nationally, and in the swing states.

    Obama now leads even in rasmussen, both nationally and in their swing states poll.

    I have donated quite a bit to Romney, and received another fundraising email today. It was different from the others I have gotten in that it ony asked for three dollars. According to Karl Rove, when campaigns ask for that little, it is a sign that their fundraising is drying up. · 51 minutes ago

    Edited 47 minutes ago

    You believe this?

  19. Essgee

    Diane Ellis, Ed.

    This post is a shame.

    No…it is not a shame.  It is not meant for every “undecided voter” out there.  It is meant for the person who doesn’t know who to vote for because they pay too little attention to what is going on. 

    It is not for those who are trying very hard to merge their world view and the notion that things are out of balance.  Who have attempted to wade through the overwhelming amount of info out there to make a decision that they are comfortable with.

    The first group–the uninvolved are probably not going to vote anyway.  They won’t be insulted because they will never read anything.

    But it serves as an outlet for the rest of us–the choir–because we can’t imagine that people don’t think citizenship is important, participation by voting is necessary, and getting informed whould be the minimal requirement to vote.  It is frustrating to see what passes for the main street news and we can’t understand why everyone remains blind to it.

    It might be a dig, but it was consise and provided some comic relief!

  20. Diane Ellis
    C
    Dave Carter

    Diane Ellis, Ed.: But I happen to be married to an undecided —I know…inconceivable!!!—and I would never dream of sending him such a post to read.  In tone, it’s rude, condescending, and does nothing but preach to the choir.

    You know, that exact impression gave me pause when writing this.  But then, two thoughts occurred.  First, if the undecided want to be wooed with sweet nothings whispered in their ears, they have the entire RNC apparatus already doing it.  Second, I’ve grown weary of being told we have to kiss the derriere of people who can’t be bothered by the fact that their country is dying.  

    Since there is no shortage of people who are willing to tip toe through the tulips with these folks, I thought a blunt assessment of their priorities followed by list of items that ought to concern them might fill in the void…

    So the plan is to mock and shame people into voting for Romney?

    Not calling for wooing or the whispering of sweet nothings…jut for a lucid post like yours that lays out the case item by item, but without all the snark.

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