Payne: Need a leader with a successful track record |

Payne: Need a leader with a successful track record

Garnett Payne, Park County

Obama and I have a couple of things in common. Our birthdays are just months apart and we both have learned lessons from our fathers. Fortunately for me, my dad is still alive, and I’m still listening to him “the greatest generation.” Though it requires patience sometimes to listen to him finish his stories, he continues to provide me guidance and wisdom that I can apply as a parent, a wife, an employee and as a voter. He is a WWII veteran, serving along with his father, a soldier in both world wars. His mother was a member of the DAR, Daughters of the American Revolution. Lt Col James Work taught my brothers and I to honor our God and country, as Scouts, as citizens as active members of our churches and communities. He instilled in me the importance of being truthful, of maintaining good credit and praying for guidance in decision making. I watched him walk to work with his peanut butter sandwich so that he wouldn’t have to say no to summer camps, music lessons and vacations. In later years, I observed him live very simply, saving for more extravagant adventures with my mom, including a trip on the Orient Express. More recently, as we’ve watched the fiscal irresponsibility of the last four years, he shared with me the following quote from Alexander Tyler, history professor at the University of Edinburgh, in 1787, intended as a warning to our founding fathers as they were drafting our Constitution, “A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship”. He goes on to suggest that the typical lifespan of a democracy is 200 years!

This is why my father and I will be voting for Mitt Romney, and Republican legislators in November. We must address the $16 trillion deficit. We must re-establish our credit rating, our military strength and our position as an exceptional nation. We need a leader with a successful track record in both the public and private sector, one we can trust, who inspires, influences, challenges and engages teams to solve important problems. We need a leader with a strong moral compass guiding his decisions. We are at a critical crossroad in our nation’s history. We are wasting critical time and attention by debating issues such as abortion and gay marriage right now. These conversations are a diversion from the critical challenges we face with the economy, our military and foreign affairs. What can we do? Start by putting down the kool-aid, turn on the news (anything but MSNBC) and watch what is going on in the Middle East. Look at Mitt Romney’s website to hear his own words, and watch both candidates make their cases in the debates next month. And if you don’t have an elderly father to consult with on the consequences of our decisions, then seek guidance from our Heavenly Father. Like my dad always says, “Have you prayed about it?”

Garnett Payne, Park County

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