by Dan Smith
Boy, I know we are all a little groggy from the bombardment of political ads we have endured.
The good part is that it's almost over. Soon the winners will congratulate themselves and the losers will sulk away to lick their wounds.
When it comes to politics, I do have my opinions, but in truth I am not a very political person.
Back when I first began to write this Land Lines column, I ventured into territory that a few readers believed was just a bit too liberal. One lady wrote an e-mail to tell me what she thought. She let me have it pretty good and finished with "I knew it all along. You're nothing but a Democrat!" She seemed to think that was the worse volley she could fire at me. It made me smile.
A little later on I wrote a piece exposing local and national food stamp fraud. You may have seen the tirade that brought in the form of rants to this paper. The writers of those letters refused to acknowledge there is any fraud at all in that program. I suspected they were somehow employed in that field but couldn't prove it. The rant writers didn't come right out and say it, but they suggested I was a Republican and as such was not worthy of the print the paper used to produce my column. It made me smile.
Not one of the writers accused me of being an independent, which I am. Yes, I am a card carrying registered, unregistered. In the state of Florida that keeps me from having to choose a candidate until the actual election. Some people who are registered independents like to bemoan the fact they are not allowed to vote in the primaries. Not me. I am perfectly fine with that. You good folks pick your best guy and on Election Day I will vote for the lesser of two evils. At lest that's the way it seems to work out. Not being a Republican or a Democrat relieves me of some of the guilt that goes with putting up a poor candidate. While that works in theory I do pay a price for my independent ways.
Both presidential candidates have called me almost nightly for months now. Some fast-talking guy who sounds as though he is trying to sell me a used car keeps calling to tell me Romney will save Florida. While the guy is yakking at warp speed I usually pick up the phone and shout "Mitt! Mitt! Is that you?" I never get a reply. That message ends with the fellow asking I donate three bucks to the campaign. It seems Mr. Romney is conceding his opponent has managed to get inflation under control, otherwise what good would three bucks do?
When President Obama calls he usually touches on the few positive things that have come from his four years. The message ends with me being told that Mr. Romney will ruin Florida.
Neither candidate ever tells me how they intend to straighten out the mess in the Middle East or what they intend to do about the huge trade imbalance with the Asiatic nations. Both seem to be intent on waging a war of attrition on us poor Florida independents.
With both parties registering about an equal number of voters in the state I suppose we are obvious targets. These days if you want to sleep in the White House you must win Florida.
Oh well, it will soon be over. Most of those ugly political signs will go down and our televisions will return to ads for dog food and lawyers. One thing is for sure, I will celebrate on election day no matter who wins. You see, Nov. 6 is independent Dan's birthday!
Dan Smith is on the board of directors for the Ormond Beach Historical Society, The Motor Racing Heritage Association and is the author of a fishing book.