Election results will be good for our economy and our unity
By Michael Lewis
Good election news: the outcome will give the economy a boost and help reunite our nation. That's as close to a certainty as you can get — and it's true no matter who wins.
We've been so contentious as about 50% of us battle the other 50% that business decision-makers have taken a sideline seat to await the outcome before they actually make their decisions.
Once we have the unambiguous outcome — and we will if chads don't hang — deals will be done, employment decisions will be made, goods will be ordered and the US will get back to work in earnest.
For at least a short time — and maybe a long period — our 2% economic growth should speed up.
At the same time, and within days, enmity that has made this election seem so nasty will mostly evaporate. As has happened throughout US history, we will all come together to support the winner — not necessarily his policies, but the fact that he will in fact be universally recognized as our president.
Think about this: in much of the world, an election ends but the battle goes on — sometimes with real bullets.
In this nation, we accept the winner as legitimate and pray that he makes the right decisions, with our total support as our president if not necessarily as our party's leader or belief that his policies are on the track we would ourselves have chosen.
That stability will continue in 2012, neighbors who came near blows over political choices will again be friends until the next campaign, and the nation will move forward.
And businesses that have been awaiting an election to ascertain our national leader's policies will have a much better idea of how policies might affect them — and they'll get off the fence and act decisively.
Think how good things will be starting next Wednesday: no robo-calls from politicians, no mailboxes filled with postcards vilifying the opponent, no e-mail litter from both sides, no more political ads every five minutes on television — and a friendly greeting from the neighbor who was a bit chilly in the heat of a political campaign.
A US election, after all, is not a sea change. Our parties truly are both near the center of a broad political spectrum. One only appears far left or the other far right because we have no major fringe parties to compare them with. Look abroad for such comparisons.
Democrats and Republicans are far more alike than different — and virtually all of them support the principles on which this nation stands.
It isn't that way everywhere on the globe.
Even if you perceive one of the two major candidates as a creature of the extreme — with which I'd take issue — remember this: without the acquiescence of Congress a president has relatively little leverage to achieve major change. And Congress as a whole is anything but extreme.
No, it will not be a disaster for the losing near-50% of the nation Tuesday that the winning barely-50% prevailed. Neither candidate is as horrible as the other side paints him or as splendid as his supporters claim.
So whether A wins or B wins, we can all offer support. Besides, the best candidate was obviously C, who wasn't in the race at all but will be around to contend for our nation's top office in 2016.
So let harmony once more prevail.
I'm Michael Lewis, and I approve this message.
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