Politics isn't about candidates and elections, it's about solving public problems. How can we ensure that our water is safe to drink, that our schools provide quality education, that high-wage jobs do not migrate to other countries, that poor children do not go hungry, that excessive government regulation does not stifle job creation, and that crime and violence are reduced?
People have lost confidence in the ability of politicians, candidates, and the political process to solve these public problems. The public distrusts government in general and individual politicians in particular. Voters register as independents or seek out third-party candidates. They support term limits for "career politicians." They are tired of expensive, wasteful, government "solutions" that do not work and may even make problems worse.
But the problems will not go away, and the public does care. They may not like either candidate for Congress and may even stay home on election day, but they are concerned about the economy, the environment, health care, crime, and education, among other issues. The same public that opposes welfare supports helping families and children in need. Those who want lower taxes are willing to pay more if they get better schools and safer neighborhoods. People dislike government but demand police protection and clean water. They want to preserve endangered species, but not at the cost of their jobs.
And they are finding ways to make their voices heard. Increasingly,