This is a perfect example of why I believe in Barack Obama's ability to lead our nation. Here is his new television ad in New Hampshire.
He's got a plan to provide a better education for our children. Great. Most candidates do, most candidates talk about making it better. But, he says right there that the government can't make it happen all on it's own. Parents have to be involved, and their participation is what will make the difference for the children.
So many of his ideas have this same foundation. This idea that we as a society have a responsibility to those around us, but that is balanced out by the fact that each of those people also have to do their part. The government can't give you a better life, but they can provide tools so that you can give yourself a better life.
Individual responsibility is a refreshing idea that I think our country has moved away from. I don't think all of it has been completely unhealthy, but take look at the subject of auto insurance.
Auto insurance is rather necessary. If I have an accident in my $12,000 Jeep, I'm not likely to be able to fix my own vehicle, much less pay for the bumper of the Mercedes I just hit, right? But, if I take that as a license to drive like an idiot, because I won't be held accountable, that insurance isn't doing me or society any favors.
On the other hand, if I didn't have insurance, should the other guy have to pay for his own repairs because I don't have the money or the insurance? No. So, we have deductibles and fines and other ways of requiring a person to be responsible for their actions.
I believe that many of the government services we have, and some we don't have yet, are necessary. I understand the conservative view that big government is bad. But, I think that by taking the initiative to tell a parent that they have to be a part of their child's education in order for that child to succeed, Barack Obama will help to change America's sometimes lazy viewpoint about what is required in life. To stimulate Americans to achieve greatness is far better than patting them on the back and telling them "it's ok, you don't have to do anything you don't want to, we'll take care of it for you".
Just to bring this back home to Utah - this was part of my point about vouchers. If the parents and other people that were for vouchers would put their hearts and souls into public schools, we could achieve everything voucher supporters dreamed of, and more.
Barack Obama will be one of our great presidents, not just someone to fill the office for a few years. I'm excited about the possibility of seeing our country thrive.