If you are Righty Roy or Lefty Louie, you should be enjoying politics this year. For although both parties claim there is only "One America," each is out trying to capture your vote by portraying the opposition as a bunch of villains trying to ruin your life.
Never has so much venom been used to blame others for the problems in our country. The politics of polarization is in full swing. If you don't agree with our views on an issue, you are not just wrong but out to destroy the American way of life.
Don't want to see entitlements scaled back? They wouldn't have to be if those greedy rich folks would pay more in taxes. The flip side of that coin - why it's part of the socialist agenda to make us pony up more tax dollars.
Each party is trying to build a winning coalition by appealing to a patchwork of single-issue interest groups. Whether it is rich versus poor, pro-choice versus pro-life, anti-gay marriage versus pro-gay marriage, big health care versus little health care, young versus old, etc., etc., etc. - we're going to give you someone to hate if it will get you to support our cause.
There is surprisingly little discussion about what most people say is the number one issue of the day - the economy. Job growth is anemic and the housing market remains depressed.
There is no serious discussion about finding workable solutions to the gigantic long-term problems facing the country - deficits, the national debt, Social Security solvency, soaring Medicare costs.
Our political parties would rather reach out and find your hot buttons on social issues. It is a lot easier to get you mad enough to join them than to present real, but controversial, solutions to our biggest problems.
We need to demand more of our politicians. We need leaders, not rabble rousers.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.