Messages converge – trust becomes the major issue

In the third Presidential Debate at Hofstra, both candidates did a more effective job of articulating their ideas, but their messages are converging. Public trust in the candidates will be the differentiating factor.

Their proposed solutions are becoming more aligned as the day draws closer when one of them will be elected and have to lead all Americans, not just their supporters. They have different philosophies, but it seems that both recognize the practical realities of life in 2008 and are sincerely trying to propose workable solutions to those problems.

It comes down to a matter of trust now. If two groups propose similar results through different approaches, who do you trust to achieve a meaningful result?

Take education for example: Both candidates agree that our school systems are not producing the results needed to give America a prosperous and secure future. One candidate thinks lack of money is the answer. The other thinks the school systems need to be improved by introducing competitive offerings, such as charter schools and vouchers so that parents can choose the schools that provide the education they want for their children.

Your choice will be determined by your trust in the person proposing a particular solution as much as the desirability of the solution. If you have real experience with the problem being addressed, it will make it easier to recognize real solutions.

Becoming informed on the issues that matter to you will help you decide what candidate to vote for. All candidates have strong points and weaknesses. Each has a balance of style versus substance. You can’t know everything about each candidate, so you choose the candidate you feel you can trust. In that way, you will probably be able to live with whatever that candidate brings to the table.

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0 Responses to Messages converge – trust becomes the major issue

  1. Perspective says:

    I’m often troubled by the school issue. It seems we keep throwing money at the schools and results don’t get better.

    To me, this seems like the teachers and administrators get increasingly better pay and benefits in exchange for letting families off the hook to provide the necessary structure and discipline required for children to mature into students.

  2. GBGames says:

    I watched the debate. Since Obama made a point of saying “We agree on this”, I’m curious where you got the impression that one candidate thought that the solution was more money and the other candidate thought it was competition since they both concluded that competition was needed.

    You may not be able to know everything about a candidate, but if you want information on them, it’s out there if you look. I think supporters for either side tend to get most of their information from their side only and will decry the other side even though there is plenty of information available for both. McCain claims we don’t know who Obama is, even though we’ve got two autobiographies, his voting record (which McCain likes to point out as representative of Obama so I guess we DO have some information), and his many speeches and conversation with the media. How many times does Obama have to say “Let’s set the record straight” regarding Ayers? Not enough, apparently, because last night’s debate was probably the third time I’ve heard it.

    Meanwhile, Obama distorts McCain’s position on a number of issues, too.

    Luckily FactCheck.org and other sites tell us plenty we need to know, regardless if we want to know it.

  3. Again, thanks for the mostly evenhanded discussion!

    I believe trust is only part of it. On issues where I have some knowledge, I may have an opinion as to which of the candidates has a philosophy or strategy that I think will work. After that comes the issue of whether I trust the candidate to carry out that strategy.

    The dilemma is if I believe that one candidate has the better strategy but can’t get it done, and that the other candidate has the lesser strategy but greater ability!

  4. Jim White says:

    The issues may be the same, but the real concerns of each candidate shine through if you take a reasoned, rational (impartial?) look at each and consider their logical effects. I think that the candidate’s health care plans highlight the differences in their philosophies as good as any. After reading each plan, it became apparent that these men are coming from totally different places in their quest to solve this problem.

    In short, McCain’s plan reads like a wish list for the insurance industry. The effects of which allow insurance companies more leeway in disqualifying folks from coverage in a variety of settings, blunt and simple.

    On the other hand, Obama’s plan is laid out like a Patient Advocate’s dream come true. His plan addresses all the obstacles faced by everybody who needs medical care, in their quest for reimbursement/payment. The effect will be to empower individuals and their families who face health challenges.

    Whether it’s a good thing or not McCain’s plan protects insurer’s bottom line without much consideration given to us end-users. Obama’s plan opens the door for everybody to have access to health care, with insurers being held accountable for their duty. I guess it depends on your values as to which plan is better.

  5. Dragon Quilter says:

    It should come down to each individuals list of what’s more right for them, about a candidate than what is more wrong about that candidate. Too often folks get caught in the middle of the emotion and can’t think about the pluses versus the minuses!

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