I can understand why the politicians are taking off their gloves and starting a whole new round of personal attacks. With less than a month to go to election day, they are desperate to score a few points.
Am I alone in thinking that the past is irrelevant right now. Economies around the world are wobbling, the old order is changing and the new may not be pretty. Yet we are about to be subjected to a stale repetition of past actions and decisions by Obama, McCain, Palin, and Biden.
I readily acknowledge that all candidates have probably made mistakes in the past. I acknowledge they have all consorted with dubious characters and priests. But surely the issue now is what they propose to do to deal with the future, not what they did and thought in the past.
Mining is not exempt from the changes that are hurtling around. Today some folk I know had to shut down their small mine and lay off thirty miners. They are seeking to sell their US operations to Koreans. They hope to retreat to a cash-rich position and do something. For them and the thirty laid-off miners and for me and my children, the issue is not whose priest is sillier, or who listened to the most venial lobbyists, or who should or should not star on Saturday Night Live. For all of us the issue is how much the candidates understand what is happening, what they plan to do, and how they plan to do it.
Thus my plea: Candidates stop dragging up the past. It is known, understood, and disparaged. But it is irrelevant and ugly. Now rather gather people together with vision, insight, and hope. Now give us confidence that, having learnt from past mistakes, we can make the future bright. For if you do not, the anger and fear of the populace will turn on you and you deserve their nay.