Mailbag Disclaimer: I don't have all the answers. But, I'll attempt to make a humble from-the-heart attempt at explanation.
I'm glad you enjoyed the column, and welcome to the site. I hope to have valuable, reasonable discussion with you and others long into the future.
I'm aware of the failure of the Reagan administration to combat the increase in public debt, but the climate of the nation was much different than that we have today. I won't deny the GOP's failure to limit spending in past terms, but much of that has been defense spending, which is another topic for another day. However, I still believe in the four pillars of Reagonomics.
1. Reduce government spending.
2. Reduce income and capital gains marginal tax rates.
3. Reduce government regulation of the economy.
4. Control the money supply to reduce inflation.
My biggest fiscal sticking point comes with progressive tax policy. I was a strong supporter of Mike Huckabee's Fair Tax plan, and Reagan pursued change in the progressive tax plans of this nation. That's where I'm coming from.
To your second point, I have done extensive research on Marco, and I've been impressed. We're very much alike, and you and I will have to agree to disagree on his substantiveness.
Having said that, it's unlikely don't agree on every single item with any candidate. We are a nation of compromise, and our nation is much the same. PolitiFact has an interesting look at Marco's "change of heart" on the Arizona immigration laws. I'll place the link here. Statements like this I don't fully agree with, and require further examination and pondering.
That's why I claim to be "politically inclusive." I'm willing to question my own beliefs and hold valuable, respectful conversation to promote understanding in democracy for a healthier state. Just because I hold right-of-center beliefs doesn't make me unwilling to work with those on the other side of the aisle to reach the best conclusions for our nation. (Wow, that sounded like campaign material.)
"Who am I really," you ask? I am a person that holds certain viewpoints on how our nation should be run, but I realize that I'm not always right--and the right isn't always right. We can learn from others, work with others. This is a society of compromise. It's unrealistic that a single party can enact every single reform they'd like to see in society, but we can work with those from the "dark side" to achieve the best result for the largest majority of Americans.
My point to make in my discussion with Connie wasn't about policy--I'm a 19-year-old college kid, I don't have all the answers. I have opinions and ideas, not foolproof answers. There's no speechwriter behind me, no thinktank ready to provide me with talking points. It's all off-the-cuff and from the heart.
My sitting down with Connie was about returning unity, respect, and civil discussion to this great nation.
Thanks for your input, and I look forward to more conversation in the future.
This one comes from Brenda, a user on the Cleveland Plain-Dealer's website, voicing her opinion on the comment section following Connie's article. She writes:
"I enjoyed reading the article, then naturally started through the comments below and I am so disheartened. To me, it's less about left vs right as it is about the spirit of cooperation that is so badly needed in politics today and in the future. More young people (I'm in my early 30s) find themselves unable to identify with either political party... we may be staunch fiscal conservatives but passionately supportive of gay marriage, for instance. And we're at a loss as to how to reconcile our ideologies with the current political structure. Young people like Kyle are a beacon of hope that in the future, old barriers and stereotypes and "buckets" in politics can be broken apart, and a spirit of compromise and compassion will pervade everything we do as a country. I almost didn't comment because too often I see this as a platform for sniping, but felt so strongly abut the spirit of the article I needed to voice my support."
Thank you so much for your support. While we may not agree on every issue, it's so encouraging to see other young people that understand that this message isn't about right and wrong between the right and left. I'm not likely to change anyone's beliefs, nor do I attempt to. Many of us are out to bring responsible, civil discourse to our country that will hopefully bring about responsible, bipartisan compromise that truly respects representative government--in doing what is best for the majority of people in this nation. Always questioning one's own beliefs and having flexible, willing-to-compromise viewpoints shouldn't make anyone any less conservative or liberal, but will allow them to truly bring positive change to our nation and make steps to repair the growing schism in our country.
Thank you for your thoughts, and I hope you continue to allow your voice to be heard.