When I speak with my fellow college students about issues that affect our generation, one fact quickly becomes clear: We are overwhelmingly independent. The issues that keep our parents awake at night oftentimes do not matter to us, and it frustrates us that the issues we find important are held hostage by both parties refusing to budge.

For my generation, the memories of our parents reinforcing the importance of quick and efficient compromise are still fresh in our minds: “If you eat three more carrots you can watch 15 minutes of television.” Playgrounds and classrooms are dominated by the principle of compromise, a prerequisite of sharing and getting along.

Furthermore, we learned in our high school civics classes that Congress itself was founded on the Great Compromise of 1787, full of concessions between larger and smaller states.

In our two to three decades of ensuing life, we have witnessed and reaped the benefits of an extraordinary amount of creative destruction, as we become more connected and productive than was ever thought possible.

This makes it all the more difficult to understand when we see our elected officials spend time wrangling over language, doubting the possibilities of new technology or arguing with scientists.

Our concerns boil down to one simple policy: We want a prosperous future in a clean world where we can live comfortably with friends and family.

We are not scared by either big government or big corporations — although we recognize the shortcomings of both, we understand that the appropriate balance of power resides in the ability of our politicians to exercise common sense.

This is why my generation will be turning out to vote for Angus King in November.

Peter Drown

Orono 

I began volunteering for the Angus King campaign in June as a resume builder.

Like many Mainers, I had become so disenchanted with today’s politics that I harbored few real hopes that King was any better than the rest.

Sure, I knew he was a great governor and had heard his pledges to run a positive, honest campaign, but I assumed that this was just the same public political posturing that dominates our political system. Yet what I saw on my first day in the office shocked me.

King gathered all the interns and told us solemnly that he expected us to always speak about his opponents with respect, even in private. As he put it, respectful dialogue is not a part-time job. Negative politics will not bring effective change to Washington.

It was then that it struck me: There is only one Angus King. The King in front of the cameras holds and asserts the same values as the King behind closed doors.

I have seen firsthand that Angus King is perhaps one of the last truly genuine politicians, and for that reason, he has my vote on Nov. 6.

Josh Espy

Freeport 

Citizens United decision equates wealth with power 

The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision effectively defined the political power of the individual as equivalent to that individual’s wealth. A far cry from “one man, one vote,” we have seen the wealthiest fund and execute media blitzes that drown out the messages supported by the majority of American citizens.

Rather than “by the people and for the people,” this decision and the poor legislation that has been put into place to date have geometrically increased the influence of special interests and the polar extremes of both mainstream parties.

This is hardly a new development, but our country is faced with challenges that will call for the highest level of collaboration and sacrifice we will see in our lifetimes as we wrestle with developing a sustainable health care model, a realistic long-term energy policy and economic policies that will improve our level of employment while reducing our deficit.

Propelled by and supported by special interests our elected representatives speak in constantly escalating hyperbole, equating federal agents of the IRS with the jackbooted thugs who hundreds of Mainers died to defeat.

As I read the summaries of our senatorial candidates, only one calls for thoughtful reform that establishes a standard of transparency in election financing: Angus King’s belief that nameless, faceless out-of-state money should not drive our state and national election process. He calls for real-time mandated disclosure of just who is paying for the political media blitzes that now characterize our election process.

It will give Mainers and Americans an immediate awareness of exactly who is trying to buy our votes, and I encourage you to find out more about just what this candidate’s goals are.

Mark Carignan

North Yarmouth 

Time Warner should take care of longtime customers 

My wife and I recently dropped Time Warner Cable. We have been thinking about doing so for a long time, but the recent blackout of ABC pushed us to finally cancel our subscription. We had a $168-per-month phone, Internet and TV “bundle.”

When I called to cancel, the customer service rep correctly stated that I had a negotiated discounted plan of $138 per month. She then asked: If she could offer me $108 per month, would I stay? I considered this offer as too little, too late. I scheduled the disconnect as I originally planned.

We received a dozen or so phone calls from Time Warner Cable the day before the scheduled disconnect, according to my caller ID, with no messages being left.

When I answered the phone in the evening, the Time Warner Cable rep wanted to know “what she could do to keep me from dropping” the service before the physical disconnect. I said she could not do anything. She said she would offer me $75 per month, locked in for a year, for the same $168 bundle.

This infuriated me. Why should a longtime customer have to play these games? Time Warner Cable should offer people who have been loyal customers for more than a decade a longevity discount.

Time Warner Cable’s business practices are very short-sighted. Instead of offering deep discounts for new subscribers, it should look out for its time-proven clients. This would stop people from jumping to the competition every 12 to 24 months.

Ian Riddell

South Portland

 


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