Letters to the Editor

Fearful voters look for simple answers

Bill O’Reilly’s recent column, “The fear vote” (published June 10) is provocative, insightful, and balanced. O’Reilly argues that fear will be the motivating factor in this presidential election. I hate myself for agreeing with him.

Many voters (and nonvoters, too) are afraid. It’s been my experience that fearful people accept simple answers for complex circumstances. In this case the pending decline of the United States as a world economic and military leader and its concomitant life style.

I voted for President Obama. The Obama team failed to do their homework. The U.S. health care system definitely needs an overhaul. The president failed to understand the over-riding issue continues to be the economy; jobs, financial reform, and nation building right here at home. I am not advocating an isolationist policy, but rather an assessment of national objectives. Simply put: history demonstrates “we can’t have guns and butter.” At some point an accounting must be made.

The media talk shows (right and left) are motivated more by listener ratings and commercial sponsors than ideology: simplistic entertainment. Conservatives tune in conservatives. Liberals listen to liberals. Prime time news is a series of sound bites sponsored by pharmaceutical companies with “Americans drowning in prescription drugs.”

Voters don’t vote for politicians who will change their circumstances. They accept simplistic, feel good answers. The truth is that when most of us are under pressure we return to our old ways. The old habit is a comfort zone. In our democracy most voters tend to be single issue or target voters. In this case, as one poster proclaims: “Get Obama!”

Neither President Obama nor Mitt Romney appear to have the ability to turn the tide.

The writer lives in North Myrtle Beach.