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Voters and Hip hop listeners share a short memory

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After overhearing my brother sing some Rick Ross lyrics, I repeated a familiar joke to him. “And you said Ross’ career was over.” During the time 50 Cent aimed at ending Ross’ career due to his previous profession as a correctional officer, many listeners, including my brother, counted Ross as down and out and unable to stay in the game.

“I’d shovel shit, I’d C.O.” Rick Ross on Valley of Death



Since then Ross got 3 gold albums, featured on several of the hottest singles and has a few of his own in the BIllboard Top 100, started his own independent music label, Maybach Music Group and signed hot rappers like Wale and Meek Mills; then was promoted and backed by P.Diddy, and got Jay-Z, Kanye and Wayne to spit on a few of his tracks. The latter two points are refreshing facts offered by my brother after explaining the only way Ross had a chance of survival was, precisely, with a big name such as Puff Daddy was remaking him and other popular rappers collabing. God Forgives, I Don’t, released less than two months, is already certified gold.

All such memories are forgotten or repressed by Hip hop listeners and DJs as they grunt “ungh” during inappropriate time among casual conversation with friends. Either hip hop listeners A) Don’t care about Ross’s previous profession, B) forgot, or C) don’t care.

Shortly after our conversation, a similar thought emerged in my head. American voters have extremely short memories, too.

Romney and Ryan are running a smaller government, “we aren’t Obama,” cut spending campaign. They say, as we often hear, the Democrats and Obama have ran up spending like the country has never seen before. Vote for them, allow the Senate to turn Red, and they’ll climb out of this debt hole and get America “back on track.” Or “get this economy running again.” Or whatever they chant now.

Remember the last time Republicans were in power? In 2004, with a Republican majority, the budget and deficit were at its highest ever, including a new prescription drug plan and a whole new department!

But, no worries. We have two saviors, two fiscal conservatives, who, once put in power, will grab–and has a record of doing so–Washington by the horns and make the tough decisions necessary to fix the nation. Strangely, or not, voters, too, have forgotten just exactly the ticket is guilty of: healthcare mandate, TARP and the 2008 bailout, the 2008 stimulus, three monumental, expansive, costly legislations that fueled the fire of the Tea Party and 2010 Republican House take over.

A few trillion dollars later, Obama was handed the debt, deficit and overseas disaster by a Republican president. Fast forward to now and it is evident that the economy is still in shambles and unemployment under 8% after the President’s stimulus. If you are like most Americans, having a job and being able to pay the bills is more of a priority than young adults being killed overseas or homosexuals getting married.

All such memories are an unimportant thing of the past as voters clamor over which party can deliver the country and improve the economy. Funny thing is, like Ross’ past, it doesn’t really matter, for both candidates fail to articulate the proper message and both of their solutions don’t and haven’t worked.

Here are the opposing solutions:

A) Obama is an ardent follower of the Keynesian thought. Before Congress passed the the near-trillion stimulus upon entering office, he promised it would lower unemployment to under 8%; last month it finally dropped to 8.1% but only because almost 4x as many people left the job market than entered. To Washington statisticians that is good news and makes a good headline. In 2010, Obama pushed for the passage of the $474 billion Jobs Act–extending unemployment, gave money to schools, etc. essentially a miniature stimulus–which is paid for by a millionaire surtax. Lastly, the Bush tax cuts were extended, further increasing the national debt.

B) Romney says he opposes government intervention to fix the economy but 1) he penned a column calling for the bank bailout and 2) his running mate voted for all the economic policies Obama holds as his shining achievements. He says he would rather cut taxes, slash regulations and allow businesses to grow on their own. Romney/Ryan has failed to name which loopholes they would close to allow a more fair and simpler tax code; their budget would increase spending and the debt precisely because they fail to cut anything.

As you see, both candidates philosophies to fix the economy and decrease the debt will not work. Since they both fail to support any major cuts, the debt will increase, and since Obama plans to “pump” more (fake) money into the economy, we will get the same results we’ve been getting since 2008.

Both party fans support their man, though; Romney supporters ignores his debt increasing plan and Obama supporters ignore the government-creating-money-scheme has failed since 2008 (not to mention period).

Will Obama’s tired message get to voters this time? Maybe. He has figures like Lebron James, Lady Gaga supporting him, and even has Tom Hanks narrating a video in support of him. If Ross can fool listeners, anyone can. Obama is attractive and sings on stage. Ross just looks “real.” See. Look at him, looking real.


Ross, busy looking real

I don’t know if Puffy carries more weight than Hanks but he certainly succeeds in listeners ignoring Ross’ contradictory past. Perhaps if Ross keeps trying to convince listeners he is like Biggie, and if P. Diddy stopped co-signing and defending such commentary, this gangster facade will work and he’ll get another ‘4 more years’ of success.

The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of Bab Adetiba. Check out his politcial and social commentary blog MindsAlike.