Thursday, October 16, 2008

What's that smell?

"What's that smell in this room? Didn't you notice it, Brick? Didn't you notice a powerful and obnoxious odor of mendacity in this room?" That's "Big Daddy Pollitt" in one of my favorite movies - "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof".

There ain't nothin' more powerful than the odor of mendacity. And that's all I smell as I count down the days (19) until this interminable election season is over.

The movie is about one day in the life of a family torn apart by lies and liars. Only when a family crisis causes the lies to come to light is the family set on the road to healing. It's extremely painful, and they almost don't make it through.

Here's another line from the movie that sums up what I mostly feel about the media, the pollsters and even the candidates right now:

"I don't know what to believe in. Now what's the good of livin' if you got nothin' to believe in?"

Yep, you have to have something to believe in. Just don't make it a politician.

Democracy is not pretty. You have to dig through miles of crap to get to the truth of a situation, because everyone involved is going to spin it to make themselves look good or convince you their actions aren't what you should pay attention to. They tell you what they think you want to hear, or what they want you to believe. No wonder so many people are turned off by politics.

And it's nothing new. I'm finally getting towards the end of a biography of our second president, John Adams. Even our country's earliest elections were marred by lies and corruption and mind-boggling spin. All that has changed are the delivery methods.

If you're a voter, make sure your decision is based on as much of the truth as you can dig up. Don't believe anyone whose promises don't line up with the actions they have taken at times when it really counted. Get as close to their core values as you possibly can.

And trust that God will continue to bless this nation of ours, no matter who we elect. That is what I have to believe in.