Are you ready for this? We are about to embark on the most intense, likely insufferable, and yet important election that this state and country has seen in years. What happens in Michigan this fall will shape our lives in ways that could and may well be exceeded only by the results of the presidential and congressional contests.
Candidates will be reviled, candidates will be revered, and the awesome factor will be how much campaign money the candidates will spend. The money raised will be spent on disgustingly negative TV ads and will bring annoying robocalls to your home and junk mailings to your mailbox. Money will be spent to destroy opposing candidates, not to inform us of a candidate’s abilities, much less enlighten the electorate with the ideas and imagination of people who would lead us to a strong future.
There is serious danger in Michigan petitions that would seek to change the state’s constitution. Other petitions seek to recall elected officials, possibly our Governor. There is little merit, even less fairness in these pre-emptive initiatives.
The stability and security of the legislative process is critical to our well-being and we all lose when the will of the electorate can be consistently challenged by well-financed special interests that are not getting their way. They seek to change the constitution in order to preclude the ability of the legislature to make future decisions that may be contrary to their interests.
It matters not whether the issue is national, state, or local; we are all in similar boats these days. In spite of economic strife; it seems as if we as a society have bought into the idea that compromise in politics is treasonous and collaboration between rival parties is distasteful. We are polarized by the well-funded stirrings of powerful political forces that have turned us away from our communal instincts in pursuit of political promises that never come to fruition.
We incurred financial responsibilities when our economy was the strongest in the world. Now, we, as a country, borrow 40 cents of every dollar we spend. Our government is printing dollars we don’t have. To put it in terms of the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, we’re trying to crowd more and more people into our social lifeboats without paying the price to build more boats.
In Michigan we’re hoping for political results that will help make our state stronger overall, with more opportunities for all its citizens. Please keep these thoughts in mind as we face the 2012 political season.
Editorial opinions are the consensus of The Daily News editorial board.