The hope and change slogan always annoyed me, but I never took the time to figure out why. Now I have. Instead of the hope of changing America, which is a great country not in need of great change, but rather small incremental improvement, I would like to see a candidate of hope and change with a statement like this:
"I hope to faithfully respect the freedom and best interests of our nation and I pledge to change the culture of corruption in Washington DC by reducing the role of the federal government as dispenser of goodies to favored interests."
The belief that the federal government will solve every problem and allay every risk is bleeding the country dry. Further, because goodies are dispensed to the most successful lobbyists, we have provided incentive for corrupting behaviors, whether or not they are actually illegal. The Republicans could easily reinvent themselves and clobber the Democrats by making themselves the party of small government and reform, which go hand in glove. Unfortunately their track record is abysmal and they are not reaping the rewards of the Democrats obvious bad behavior.
Ultimately, voters are rational. Given the choice between an avowedly left wing socialist party and an incompetent right wing socialist party, they will go with the competence. Time for Republicans to end the earmarks, the porkulus, the special favors that they have been as guilty of as Democrats, and they will be able to win big in 2010 and beyond.