Perfection in politics will never happen, or even come close. I compare it to a smudged mirror. Mirrors don’t look nice with smudges so we’ll wipe them away and polish until the smears are gone. The result is a shiny mirror. The problem is, even if the mirror was much improved by cleaning, it’s not long before smudges reappear.

The 2016 election was an attempt to “clean the mirror”. Why there was suddenly an urgent movement to polish off the political dirt in this country, I will never understand. After all, dirty politics is not something new. Millions of people fell for an idea … the idea that putting a businessman instead of a politician as POTUS would get rid of grime and purge America of all things ugly.

To those people I ask, “How is that working out for you?”

In my mind, many people were intimidated by the prospect of a woman president in 2016. Some also just plain didn’t like the Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, although she did win the popular vote. I still believe the election of Donald Trump was a fluke: a huge mistake, maybe the result of foreign interference.

And there’s the Electoral College, which should have been dismantled in 1969 when the House of Representatives came so close. At that time 80 percent of Americans were in favor of electing our President by popular vote. The constitutional amendment sent to the Senate came just five votes shy of becoming reality because of a filibuster. Perhaps it’s time to revisit a movement to abolish the Electoral College.

Whatever the reason Trump won the election we are forced to live with the consequences … and it’s been a hard life. I don’t see how anyone can deny that statement.

During election years we, the people, sometimes have to choose what some call the “lesser of the two evils.” We must choose Democrat or Republican whether we like either candidate or not. Too bad unaffiliated citizens like myself don’t have an ideal candidate of our choosing to run against both parties from the beginning. I believe it will be up to Independents, Democrats and reformed Republican voters to get our country back on track this time.

With that being said, IF a third person, any third person, should appear on the ballot this year, we independents need to think twice. We won’t be doing this country any favors by voting for an unknown. We all know that practice only serves to take votes from both Republican and Democratic candidates, possibly from the more deserving one. We must also avoid the temptation to not vote at all. At this point we have to vote for someone, not of our choosing perhaps, but the person least likely to divide us. I believe Independents will play a major role in this election. I think there’s a multitude of us and we can help wipe one certain smudge off that mirror.

In May this year a Gallup poll found that about 40 percent of Americans identify as independents. About half of those lean more towards the Democratic party. Only 38 percent lean towards the Republican side. It’s interesting that the same poll shows 31 percent of Americans are Democrats and 25 percent are Republicans. If these numbers are correct, I feel a bit better about the upcoming election, providing independents get out there and vote. Please do that! Vote early, vote by mail, vote at the polls on election day! Just vote!

Since I’m very opinionated I will state a few topics of discussion from my point of view, while not being totally keen for either party. There has to be a meeting in the middle at some point. I think the Biden/Harris team will try. That’s the way I lean.

Perhaps the most emotionally charged issue between parties is abortion. I believe as the Democrats do that women have the right to choose what happens to their own bodies. That sounds right. But I don’t believe abortion should be used as birth control. Late term abortion is completely out of my realm of understanding. Why not adoption as a choice for unwanted babies? The problem and reality is that if abortions are illegal there will still be abortions. I might add that our current president has been speaking out against abortion. He will get some votes that way. The thing is, abortion has not vanished during his nearly four years in office.

The gun thing … I believe as the Republicans do that law-abiding citizens have the right to legally own guns for hunting and self-protection. We all know that criminal types will have them regardless of any laws or bans. We need guns to protect ourselves from them. We have that right.

Same-sex marriage is OK with Democrats as a general rule. Republicans condemned the court’s decision in states that legalized same-sex marriage. I am not sure of the reasoning but if they are going by biblical authority, then I suggest they go by the good book on other issues like loving their neighbors and following the Ten Commandments as well.

That leads me to immigration. I’m with the Democrats here. They want to fix the problems in the system and give deserving undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship. The Trump administration’s fix is to build a wall. If immigrants make it in, cage them and treat them all as criminals without any human rights.

Room here does not allow for the other big divides, like climate change, Medicare and health care for all, Wall Street, and foreign policies, among other things.

One of the worst atrocities from both parties is the spending of enormous amounts of money to campaign when so many people are out of work and hurting financially due to the pandemic. I understand some advertising must be done to let voters know what the candidates stand for but I think all voters have decided by now. I hope most won’t base their decision on ads that make false claims.

I’m being honest when I say that I’ve seen far more lies and the spreading of those lies from Trump-obsessed Republicans. They just take what they hear from their leader and claim falsely that Democrats encourage racism, human trafficking, rioting and defunding police. I don’t personally know of any Democrats that go along with violence and hate. So, absolutely no Republicans are involved in riots, looting or other unrighteous conduct? Only Democrats? How many times have I seen on social media and TV that citizens will not be safe in Biden’s America? I ask you … is it safe now under current leadership? It’s a fact that some Trump ads have been proven as fear mongering and/or untrue. Some have been removed, but not before doing their damage. Think of the wasted money on those.

I must add with all sincerity that when I say, “Republicans” I do not mean every single one. I know good people who are of that party, Also, when I use the word “they” I do not mean every single one. I speak of the ones who parrot Trump’s words and actions and defend even the most disgusting of his lies. Why do lies not matter to these people?

There has never been a more important election year in my lifetime. Independents can make or break it in my opinion. We can hope for that mirror to shine a bit brighter after all is said and done; we just have to approach it realistically. That mirror won’t shine perfectly all of the time, but improvement is possible. Let’s remove some smudges on election day and keep polishing away at the others with recovery as our objective. I really do believe under better leadership we could meet that goal.

Author Carol Hartsoe lives in Bear Creek. She is a Tideland News contributor.

(35) comments

David Collins

By golly Carol , we can agree on something after all . It is abortion .

To abort should be between a woman and her God , if applicable . I do not believe it should be a political issue In any way , shape or form . Religion is the main stumbling block because they all want women to be fruitful and multiply . More Baptist’s , Jews , Methodists and any other sect you can name to fill the tithing pot on church day . More power as well . As far as I chose to go on this note .

The problem with each political party and their embellishments and at times outright lies is never going to stop unless the courts step in to curb it . The courts have degraded to the point of being a joke in many cases and are themselves so politicized as to render themselves useless in such things . Sooo , it falls on the voter to pay attention to what people actually do rather than what they say . The hallowed halls of DC would be quite empty if that happened . Basically pick the least poisonous poison when voting . Shouldn’t have to be that way but it is .

Same sex marriage is fine and I frankly do not care if you marry a duck or a toadstool . Actually they would be far better served , legally , if they formed a legal partnership . Costs about the same and would then have clearly defined rights . Costs less to dissolve compared to a messy divorce .

Trans gender folks are another nut indeed . It’s the Wild West for you guys and would not wish it on my worst enemy .

Going to say this again , for the umteenth time , out of 330+ million folks in out land and this is the best we have to show for it to run for the highest office ? Sad indeed . I honestly believe the pathway to the presidency is so over the top invasive , hostile with land mines planted every step of the way and beyond , who in their right mind and loves their family would put themselves and said family through all that ? Not I and that is double down for sure the gods truth . The best at the job wouldn’t have the job . So , we are stuck with the culls . Pure and simple .

Enough said , for now .


As always a thoughtful perspective, thank you. Somehow you were able to express an opinion without hyperbole,melodrama,endless quotes from the media, and no one was villanized.

Lets see if the replies can do the same.


Oh, Carol from Bear Creek…. Welcome back from your trip to the west coast. We missed you!

I can tell you supported Clinton in 2016, even though she mishandled Benghazi and then lied about. Let’s don’t forget about her email scandal, which we now know was her plan to distract the public from her use of a private email server by tying Trump to Russia. Hillary had too much baggage and reasonable Americans were fed up with political dynasties.

You ask how is Trump working for me?: Fantastic! Can’t remember when my life has been better.

Only reason to whine about the electoral college now, is because your candidate lost in 2016. Using electors instead of the popular vote was intended to safeguard against uneducated voters and to prevent states with larger populations from having undue influence.

I’m not saying I’m a fan of the electoral college, but we have to play by the rules. The electoral college does, somewhat, ignore the will of the people and gives too much power to "swing states".

I’m sorry you are in the “independent” minority, but that’s your choice. Feel free to vote for, or write in, Kanye West for president and Pelosi for VP.

You really lean toward what conservatives believe, but despise Trump so much you are willing to go against your own beliefs and the good book.

So congrats on supporting late term abortions, the government trying to take away guns and you and/or your daughters using the same bathroom as men.

You should know, Obama built holding enclosures for illegal immigrants, during his term. And, illegal means forbidden by law. Do you believe in law abiding citizens?

How did those Polls, you quoted, work out for you in 2016?

Turning a blind eye or cherry picking - as you say - I don’t personally (i guess the word personally is your escape word) know of any Democrats that go along with violence and hate. racism, human trafficking, rioting and defunding police…..

*Bail funds promoted by Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris and many staffers on Joe Biden's campaign helped release many protesters and rioters from jail.

*Kamala Harris once accused Joe Biden of being a racist who touched women inappropriately. Now, she’s his vice-presidential running mate. It’s amazing how access to power changes a politician’s opinion.

*Dem Cities that have defunded the police: NY, LA, Minn, Portland, Phili, Sanf Fran, Baltimore, etc

*On May 31, the fifth night of riots in MN, Biden wrote in a statement that protesting police brutality is “right and necessary” and the “American response.". It took 4 months for Biden and democrats to finally condemn riots and only after Trump called them out.

*Seattle Democratic Mayor Durkan said riots in her town were just a "summer of love".

In 1984, Biden called for a one-year spending freeze that would have included Social Security, and he boasted about that position from the Senate floor in 1995, saying “When I argued that we should freeze federal spending, I meant Social Security as well. I meant Medicare and Medicaid. I meant veterans benefits.

Your mirror does seem to be distorted.


I truly enjoy debating you Carol, drewski and johnnyR. Well maybe not ski. I think of you as the “3 blind mice”. Imagine how boring it would be with just David, dc and me posting our opinions? Cheers!


There is so much nonsense posted i feel like I need pitchfork with my morning coffee. Jeep lists all the " blue" cities who defended the police. Are we to beleive if we go to Baltimore tomorrow you won't see the exact same number of patrol cars out working as a year ago? I think not, so defend is just another alarming word for Tucker to shriek about. Then we have despots going after religion, and the spectre of re-education camps on a NT ltte.

Dear gawd when biden is elected how long before the fema ovens start ?

I wonder if you guys are really that over the top on right wing propaganda, I mean at some point you have to turn off fox news and look around at reality, right?


Fox News, with the exception of Sean Hannity, is certainly better than your choices of Don Lemon, Chris Cuomo and Anderson Cooper.

David Collins

Mp , if you enjoy this author than you would have loved Ann from the next county to the East . Talk about a total loose cannon who wants to ban everything she dislikes . Transplanting from Ct. was a culture shock and it showed . Sort of dropped off the radar as of late and perhaps is seeking solace amongst others of her kind .


Oh lord, David, don’t tell me that about Ann. Hope she stays in hiding.

The thing about this author is she talks in circles, contradicts herself and talks from both ends. Funny reading her analogies. Takes all kinds to keep the world turning, I guess.


I don't think most people were intimated by Mrs. Clinton. She proved herself to be a liar and her actions were of self interest, not the interest of this nation. A lot of people voted for Trump, not because they wanted to, but it was a vote against Hillary, and we were hoping that Trump could redirect and change the course of politics in this country. But, that has not proven to be the case. Our constitution is based on an ideology formed by rigorous debate. It is a political document that promotes fair and sound principles. The polarization of political views in nothing new. What is new is that we have access to an abundance of information. That seems to be working against us, each side spearheading their claims via their "truth" sources. Yep, going to use another song to end this...seems appropriate for this article...

I'm starting with the man in the mirror

I'm asking him to change his ways

And no message could have been any clearer

If you want to make the world a better place

(If you want to make the world a better place)

Take a look at yourself, and then make a change

Michael Jackson


Debates have given no real or clear answers to questions most of us have. Most polls say that 97% of the country have made up their minds before the first debate took place.


What are democrats so afraid of? They say they have the election in the bag. But yet 3 weeks before the election they want to use the 25th amendment to get Trump out of office.

David Collins

Oh , you mean MJ the pervert . Good choice .


I answered Carol's question on DEFUND the police. The Baltimore City Council approved cuts of $22.4 million to the police department's budget. June 2020


Oh jeep, still with the alarmist DEFUND THE POLICE. Now for " THE REST OF THE STORY" What is the budget total? 550 million, what was cut, some overtime,and the marine unit is being combined with the fire department, oh and the mounted patrol took a cut too. Same number of cops same patrols and sectors. Sadly upper managers won't be going to police conventions in Vegas ..and the horse patrols have been cur-tailed. Its about the budget, plain and simple.


Yes, Carol, as you say “unrighteous conduct”.

If Cunningham will break his Oath to his wife, he can’t be trusted not to break his Oath to North Carolinians.

I hope the good folks of North Carolina won’t elect this flawed adulterer.

Cunningham wants to minimize the affair. Probably a divorce coming after November 3rd. I’m sure his wife is devastated, angry, embarrassed and probably depressed. I see or hear no guilt, shame, regret or embarrassment coming from Cal. Maybe regret from getting caught.

Cunningham was asked repeatedly Friday, Oct 9th, whether he’s had other extramarital affairs aside from one confirmed this week, but he declined to answer the questions. (WRAL)

Cunningham has based his campaign on truth and honor? We will see what the US Army, which prohibits adultery, says about this, as well as, the voters.

As Dr. Phil says, “the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior”.

"Hey!! And you are historically sexy," Cunningham wrote. "Every day and night." "When can I see you? I want to kiss you," Guzman Todd wrote."And I kiss back," Cunningham responded. "A lot."

"Get away for a night soon," she said, as seen in the texts. "The longer we wait the crazier fall schedules will get. In the spirit of the 'I like what I like' quote on your adorable video, I operate under the 'I want what I want'... approach and I want a night with you."

"Sounds wonderful - I want that," Cunningham said.

In a later text, Guzman Todd wrote, "Pick a day, city, make up an excuse for the fam, ditch a staffer, starch your white shirt, and be ready to kiss a lot."


"He’s not even cute enough for me. It’s the power I’m attracted to," Guzman Todd writes. "But it’s ... dumb." Quite frankly he doesn’t deserve my womanhood.

"I’m like a convalescent hospital for broken men," she continues. "Make them feel better to be with a hot woman. And then they disappear."

According to the texts, Guzman Todd frets about not hearing from Cunningham and tells her friend she used to "hear from him almost every day.""Lol ... I’m just going to send his opponent his naked photos," Guzman Todd wrote. "That will teach him."

David Collins

Mp , perhaps not Trump , for they have already defeated him . More like Biden , dementia never gets better with time . Harris President , Pelosi as VP . Talk about a doomsday duo . That would be , as they say in the Navy , a stand by for heavy rolls event indeed . Coup completed .


Pelosi, and democrats, are looking into the 25th amendment so as congress can remove a sitting president for health issues.

Pelosi did say “this is not about President Trump, it’s about future presidents”.

What she didn’t say, and some speculate, Pelosi wants the 25th to be able to remove Biden from office due to his reduced mental capacity and replace him with Harris.


I wonder if the secret service will let Pelosi/Harris go to the hair salon together?


Hey Justice, I think a better song might be from Willie Nelson, To All the Girls I’ve Sniffed Before, and I think it goes something like this

To all the girls I've Sniffed before

Who traveled in and out my door

I'm glad they came along

I dedicate this song

To all the girls I've Sniffed before

To all the girls I once caressed

And may I say, I've held the best

For helping me to grow, I owe a lot, I know

To all the girls I've Sniffed before

After being asked more than 2 dozen times in the past month, Biden said, during his trip last week in Las Vegas that voters don’t deserve to know if he would attempt to pack the Supreme Court if he wins in November.

Finally saying you’ll know my position on court-packing the day after the election.

Didn’t Biden come from the transparency era of Obama? Right!



Funny song... google youtube "I Think My Dog's a Democrat" by Bryan Lewis



mpjeep, I agree with you that adulterers are the worst. They are the most selfish people on the planet.


Which adulterers? Men or women? Okay, both? Seems the most evil ones might be the ones that kiss & tell so there might be some worse than others. That should probably be the bottom line "go or no go" in making the decision to go astray if one is even thinking about it period. Cal really picked a good one, or was it two, or was it three or more? The one that got let down when she found out about the other one is almost Bubba bait. Hillary would have a hard time railroading her. Career-wise Cal is in more trouble with the UCMJ than anything.

David Collins

Can’t help but wonder where Carol fits in with all this . With little joe retired , or should be by now, Stuck in Bear Creek in that little brick house and the View only lasting an hour , kinda low and slow out there . Not a lot of stimulation goin on . Vicarious living , I guess fills a void . Works for me !


I guess Carol is working on her next letter to the editor, since this one didn't fly.


dc- adulterers can be either gender. Not sure why you are wanting to specify. They commit an act that devastates and shatters families. But they justify their actions in so many ways. So far, the one most bizarre to me is when I was told that the couple committed adultery because it was destiny. God had brought them together because they had been married in previous lives. They profess to be Christians. Religion is good like that, right?


Bryan's dog probably claims to be an independent to all the locals but is for sure a dyed-in-the-wool flea bitten socialist D. You can fool some of the people some of the time but....


Hey hiding Carol, I'm not the only one that thinks I'm better off now under Trump.

A recent Gallup poll taken Sept. 14-28 made headlines after it revealed that 56 percent of voters said they were better off now than they were four years ago.


Hey Carol,  Here's a recent question put to Biden from a reporter:

"Why should people who feel that they're better off today under a Trump administration vote for you?"

"Well if they think that, they probably shouldn't," Biden responded.

(well 56% think so)


I doubt Ms. Carol is hiding, or filling an imaginary void in her life with" the view" as another crass poster suggested. Starting your comments with what you think is a clever zinger " trip to west coast" is not likely to get any response from an intelligent person. She stated her opinion, zingers and personal attacks are the stuff of middle school lunchrooms not adult conversation. if you want to have an adult discussion, speak like adults about the topic raised, unless of course your just filling some void in your own life?

David Collins

My , my , aren’t we the righteous soul today . Posting comments is not for the faint of heart . Been bashed about myself and probably will continue . Have to look at things with humor in mind . You know , lively discourse and all that stuff .


Not righteous, just observant, My comment suggests if you want "lively discourse" you need to speak and act as an adult, zingers, snark, endless cutting and pasting, quoting the same tired right wing authors as if they were gospel,and other such sophomoric behavior and comments are likely be ignored by adults wishing for actual comments and possibly even ( gasp) a different perspective then their own.


How about those rallies?

David Collins

Everyone sees things through different eyes . Get over it . That is part of what makes the world go round .

Might want to review some of your own comments before throwing stones . I know , I am guilty of sniping . So be it .


These boards are for posting "one's views and opinions". Thin skinned folks should probably ski away from them.

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