POV and Tenses

I don’t normally like writing about writing on this blog, but at the same time, I don’t like posting non-story stuff on my other blog, so this is truly the best place for it.

Back on December 30 and 31st, I was inspired to try out a writing experiment.  Normally, when I write something, my default point of view is 1st person past tense.  “I went to the store and bought a large block of cheddar cheese.”  I have always felt that this tense brings you closer to the character telling the story, but at the same time, this character also rarely has deep insight into the thoughts of other characters unless mind reading is a major plot point of the story in question.

My writing experiment was a two-fold change.  First, the point of view went from 1st to 3rd person omniscient, and second, the tense changed from past to present (simple present and present perfect; I have no idea if it’s okay to mix the two.  It’s probably not.  I need to brush up on present tense grammar).  So now, my 1st person past tense phrase becomes “Philip goes to the store and buys a large block of cheddar cheese.”  This was very fascinating for me to implement as a writer.  I felt like I was released from some sort of 1st person point of view shackles.

If you are as used to writing in one POV and tense as I was, this isn’t such a simple change as it seems.  I kept finding myself randomly switching tenses while writing and completely unsure how to phrase certain actions.  This is why I’m still not sure if switching between present and present perfect is grammatical correct.

This change has been a good one, though.  I might actually prefer 3rd person POV now, as I basically haven’t stopped writing and it’s all in this wonderful POV.

The Future of the Republican Party

I’ve written a bit here about the current, bleak state of the political party with which I sometimes hate to associate myself. How about a more positive note, though?

The Republican party currently has a few groups within it: Neoconservative/establishment, tea party (honestly, I’m not sure what the difference is between the tea party and the establishment, but they’re often grouped separately in the media), and the Libertarian-leaning, Ron Paul Republicans.

If you take a look at poll numbers, Ron Paul consistently does well with the younger demographic of Republicans (17-30, I think is the age group I heard). Establishment candidates like Mitt Romney do well with the older age groups (the baby boomers).

I realize this isn’t an all-inclusive analysis, but voters in the establishment group don’t seem to believe in one person or cause – rather, they’re more concerned about electing “anyone but Barack Obama.” The Libertarian-leaning voters are different, though. They believe in something. They have a cause. They are steadfast and resolute in their beliefs. That’s why Ron Paul’s poll numbers are generally on the rise, and other candidates peak/surge and then fall when they come under scrutiny.

So what does that mean? Well, the biggest implication this has is that when the baby boomers are gone, the Republican party may suddenly shift from the current neoconservative establishment to a much more Libertarian-leaning party. Old people are the vast majority of the population that make up the socially regressive group. Young Republicans, like myself, are strong believers in personal liberty.

We approach the political institution with a strange, new outlook on the process – maybe we should listen to this founding document of our country called the Constitution? Establishment Republicans constantly tout being “Constitutional conservatives” but when you examine their record, this turns out to be factually incorrect.

This is why I see the future of the party as being different. We know how to research on our own rather than listening to mainstream media sources and hoping they’re telling the truth. We are the generation born in the information age. We won’t fall as easily for fast talkers and kind faces. Everything the candidates do, have done, and will do is on YouTube. I can see video evidence of Mitt Romney being hypocritical and uncompassionate, and I can see Ron Paul saying the same things in 1988 that he’s still saying today.

The future of the Republican party will be a much brighter place.