Last night's GOP candidate debate in New Hampshire left us underwhelmed.
Right now, we're not overly excited about any of the candidates -- either Republican or Democrat -- who are making a bid to lead our nation after the 2012 election.
We have 17 months of campaigning ahead of us, a time period that will almost certainly prove mind-numbing to most voters.
So far, both parties are playing to platitudes, rather than sound policies.
Like weather forecasters and economists, every politician running for office claims to have a clear crystal ball predicting what the future will bring, even if all of them have had a poor record in the past for anticipating events -- such as the economic meltdown that occurred two-and-a-half years ago.
In fact, most of the candidates last night had praised the deregulatory actions that led to the meltdown -- and then either didn't offer any viable alternatives or went along with the bailout most experts now agree was vital to preventing a world-wide depression. But they complained about it, anyway.
Several of the candidates seemed to be rewriting history to justify their positions -- but then, we've got some candidates who've proven they don't have a good handle on history in the first place.
Right now, the major issue is jobs. In our opinion, every other issue must take a back seat to finding ways to greatly expand the number of jobs in this country -- and we're not talking bottom-feeding minimum wage jobs, but jobs that actually allow people to support a family. Last month's jobs report was terrible, and if McDonald's hadn't hired 60,000 people for low-paying wages it would have been in negative numbers. Relying on McDonald's wages to turn the economy around doesn't strike us as a firm foundation for the nation's economic growth.
None of the candidates Monday night, the president or Congress, seem to have a clear plan for how to get people back to work, and right now that's the most pressing need in this nation.
Perhaps other candidates will pop up between now and the primary elections who will have better ideas, or one of the existing candidates will spend more time working on a sound, comprehensive and workable policy than on sound bites and "marketing" their campaign. Platitudes won't solve the problem. Last night was not a great start on the road to a brighter future.