Jonathan Richie BW.tif

Stevie Wonder is one of my favorite musicians. I tried to get the entirety of Wonders’ “Big Brother” printed here, but that was a no-go with the bosses.

So, these two lines will need to suffice.

“Your name is Big Brother…

You just come to visit me ‘round election time.”

I recently mentioned the election materials flooding my mailbox over the last several weeks. I’ve been saving them up and I’ve got some of the numbers to prove a point that I’ll make later.

I have been collecting every single one of those political/election mailers. I recently referred to it as propaganda, which it is.

I collected almost 60 pieces of this junk since about mid-September. This mail includes waste from candidates, parties, outside groups with political intentions and non-partisan groups.

Of the 59 pieces:

• 12 from non-partisan groups

• 18 from political groups

• 29 from political parties,15 for Democrats, 14 for Republicans

If I’m the average recipient of this postal onslaught, it could mean over 900,000 pieces of mail could have been delivered in Burnett County alone to full-time residents.

Isn’t it great that these political parties have millions of dollars to sling mud at each other? I’d love it if that money could go anywhere else.

But to quote John Cougar Mellencamp, “Ain’t that America, for you and me.”

The overwhelming majority of them dealt with the State Senate District 10 race between Patty Schachtner and Rob Stafsholt. In the past two years, both have held events in Burnett County.

The Wisconsin Examiner reported outside groups spent over $670,000 on in this race.

“Six groups backing Republican candidate Rob Stafsholt have spent $587,407 and seven groups backing incumbent Democratic Sen. Patty Schachtner, of Somerset, have spent $84,057.”

CNN has reported this presidential race could lead to around $6.6 billion spent when it’s over.

The United States might be the wealthiest country globally, but we only seem to know how to spend money on wars and elections instead of spending money to improve people’s lives. So, the folks who run things make out OK, the rest of us? Not so much.

Just remember, whenever we get the results of this election, nobody has a magic wand. Once they announce who will live in the White House for the next four years; the coronavirus will still be here, we will still have trillions of dollars in federal debt and will continue to disagree on things.

Whoever wins the election will have an opportunity to have the nation’s undivided attention for a brief moment.

Abraham Lincoln once said “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory will swell when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”

Let’s have some of that Nov. 4, please.