Editorial: The speech we want to hear on election night

Editorial Staff

Tonight we will celebrate a victory. But tomorrow, we all must trade in our political words for real political will.

This government has lead its people into a world of instability. We can no longer afford to have a government that only tells its people what they want to hear, and is afraid to do anything that might hurt approval ratings or public image.

Our federal budget is on its way to self destruction, as we now borrow more money annually than our entire economy produces in a given year. The financial situation in this country is no longer something we can turn a blind eye upon, and my administration will be taking dramatic actions over the next four years to save our system.

The following are the changes that you, the American people, must prepare yourselves for if we want to emerge from this presidency stronger as a nation.

Entitlement programs as they now exist will be changed dramatically. Social security, Medicare, and Medicaid will make up over 60 percent of our budget within the decade if left untouched. There is simply no money for them now, but, before I leave office there will be programs in their place which are sustainable for the long run.

Our finances are not the only issue with the potential to run us into the ground. Energy policy in the United States is grossly behind the times. Our production of renewable energy lags significantly behind European nations, but by no means should we use them as barometers of efficiency. We can do better.

Today we are still a top producer of oil. Let us capitalize on that fact by seizing the opportunity and moving forward with more modern energy production. It’s a whole lot easier to move forward when we’re not struggling just to hang on, and that window is closing fast.

Perhaps the most patriotic institution in this country is also among the most costly and most in need of adjustment: the military. Our defense spending makes up 20 percent of our federal budget. Of course there is a need for a modern and well equipped military, but we are facing domestic issues too pressing to pour money into endles overseas endeavours. We need to prioritize, and cuts to defense are unavoidable.

More young people than ever before are seeking a college education while fewer and fewer can afford to follow this dream. That our education system eats up such vast resources, and still excludes so many is unacceptable. Even those who can pursue college are left at a disadvantage, as average student loan debt for the class of 2011 was over $26,000. Our higher education system is bent, and just about ready to snap.

Anyone can acknowledge the problems, but it will take a real leader to acknowledge that the solutions are going to be ugly as well.

I am going to raise taxes, cut benefits, and lower government spending. No politician wants to do these things, but I am going to do them. It’s not what is easy, but it is what is necessary.

We have acted with a short-term mindset for far too long, and now we have to take a stand. My actions will not be the most popular of any president, but four years from today we are going to be better off because of them.