I voted last week, and I hope my readers have done so or will vote on Tuesday, Election Day.
We citizens have very little say over how our government operates, but at least we can still vote. While the senator and representative I voted for don’t know me from Adam, the elected officials for county offices are different. I voted for the sheriff, district attorney, the school board members, local judges, and multiple county office holders. In our county election, a few hundred votes, or maybe a few dozen votes, may be the difference between winner and loser. In a small county, every vote really does count.
While I care little about who is the county clerk, many of these local offices impact our daily lives. For example, they control local spending and our property taxes. They decide what grants the county applies for, what investments it makes, the budget, and how the count spends its money. They make zoning decisions, have an influence on who gets hired and fired in county offices, and serve as the chief law enforcement officers. We all know the DA can determine whether criminals get locked up or let out, and that is critically important these days.
One advantage of living in a small community is you know your local officials. For example, we know the mayor of a nearby town because we shop in her store. We know a two of the county commissioners because my wife met them while volunteering. I’ve met the Sheriff while picking up mail at the post office. We also hear things about them from neighbors, some of whom grew up with these people and know their families.
If a local elected official develops a reputation for something, good or bad, you can bet it will get around pretty quickly. That kind of news travels in a small town, especially one where lots of people are related to each other. Likewise, an official gets pulled over for drunk driving or arrested something else, it will rapidly become common knowledge.
If only Congress Was Like That
I’d like to think that when our founding fathers designed our government, they figured that our congressional representatives would be people we, the voters, knew. You know, people you went to church with, did business with, and whose kids grew up playing together. That may have been the case in the late 1700s, but with 700,000 people now living in the average congressional district, that’s no longer possible. Too bad, because they were much more accountable when the voters can shake their fist or throw a rotten vegetable at them when they ride their horse by on the way to Washington.
While I believe many people who run for Congress do so with good intentions, I think the position corrupts them. It quickly becomes about building power and collecting money rather than doing good. That’s a shame, and it’s contributing to the downfall of our country. The vast majority of representatives and senators are in it for themselves, not you or I. The same goes for many of the officials in the agencies and administration.
There’s been some talk about term limits, and I support it. However, I also think we should replace all the unelected bureaucrats about once per decade. Let’s trade them like football players so no one ends of working for the same “team” their entire career. Shift the lawyer working for the ATF over to the Social Security Administration and the engineer working for the Depart of Energy to the Department of Transportation. It will break of all the cronyism and shake things up.
I’d also like to see many of the departments based outside of Washington. Since every state pays taxes, let’s distribute these alphabet agencies and departments around the country on a more equal basis. Let’s move the headquarters of DHS to Texas or Arizona and let them live with the open borders. We could put the EPA headquarters in Detroit and see if they can find some lead pipes to clean up; I hear Michigan is full of them. Let’s get rid of the Department of Education and move the IRS to Minneapolis. Not because Minnesotans need to be taxed more, but because I would like to see the IRS stuck somewhere cold.
By basing agencies, their staff and their executive staffs outside of Washington, they can bring a more diverse set of views to Washington. More diversity–shouldn’t the liberal be in favor of an idea like that?
A Snapshot in Time
I think the true value of midterm elections is that it gives us all a snapshot of how the country is feeling. If the president’s party loses dozens of seats, as expected, it will be proof he isn’t doing well. If his party wins, then it’s a sign he has support among the populace.
When Clinton lost 52 congressional seats and eight senate seats in 1994, he changed and became more willing to work with the opposition. I don’t see this administration changing course. This election is likely to drive home to the liberal democrats how America really feels about open borders, critical race theory, fossil fuels, inflation, censorship, their idea of “science,” and the rest of their socialist policies. However, I don’t expect them to care; I think we have to prepare for them to double down.
Because the writing will be on the wall, they will push twice as hard to force through as many parts of the socialist agenda as they can before losing the presidential election. They won’t be able to get anything through congress, so they’ll do as much as they can with executive orders, much like they are trying to do with the student loan forgiveness.
Let me recap: If you think things will improve after republicans pick up seats in the midterm elections, don’t count on it. Things could get worse if they let Bidenomics and Joeflation ride. Don’t expect more oil leases, permit approvals, or lower gas prices. Instead, expect higher costs, more vitriol, more illegal ATF actions, and more unconstitutional programs.
This is no time to let your guard down. Keep prepping.