So I wonder: Is this freedom, Thomas Jefferson, to have become a nation of Pavlovian puppies? Or does our modern lifestyle simply reflect American appreciation of all life has to offer, as well as a sensible desire to save money where we can?
Maybe. But I’ll bet there’s a connection with our recent inability as voters to sort through the choices, the complexity, the clever advertising in the electoral arena. I’m pretty focused politically but am also easily distracted by a new issue. Why are we talking about racism all of a sudden, when the national debt is approaching $20 trillion? What part of illegal don’t we understand, in so many areas from immigration to the limited presidential power allowed by the Constitution? Were we smarter voters when we had only a few television channels to watch and no Internet?
I know one thing: If all voters don’t start taking some time from their pursuit of comfort and variety to understand what is happening in our country, the comfort and consumerism will go from being simple pleasures to pathetic escapes from a hard lesson learned too late. We’ll no longer have what really matters: our Right to the pursuit of the real Happiness that is only possible with Liberty.
Barbara Anderson of Marblehead is executive director of Citizens for Limited Taxation.