|Time to get out and vote|
The presidential election on November 6 brings to an end the most expensive and hotly contested race of modern times.
By the end of the campaign both tickets will have spent $2 billion in total trying to win the White House.
There are those who would argue that it is a colossal waste of money, that elections should be federally funded as they are in Europe in many cases, and that a level playing field should prevail.
Whatever the merits of that, it is clear it will not happen any time soon given the deep pockets of major players on both sides who are doing their best to help influence the election.
Likewise the dissatisfaction with the Electoral College, which can trump the popular vote, is something that has been evidenced since the Bush/Gore race in 2000.
Perhaps if Obama wins in similar fashion both parties will finally have reason to change a system that is not democratic in the true sense of the word.
It is ridiculous that vast areas of this country are not even considered worthy of visits from the contenders, so narrow and narrowing even further are the key states.
Then there is the length of the campaign, which seems to have gone on for two years at least since the first Republican contenders began to limber up to take on the president.
In another way, however, the sheer length is a good thing, helping to quickly unmask the pretenders and allow the most committed and hard-driving candidate to get to the top of the ticket.
Of course the ultimate aim is to get the American people to vote for their favorite contender.
Despite all the negativity, the numbers voting in recent years have been on the increase as the polarization of the electorate has led to more inflamed passion.
This year is likely to be a nail-biter again and will surely rest on a handful of votes across several different states.
It is still a remarkable moment when the greatest democracy in the world passes on power so unremarkably and so free of threats and bluster.
Whoever is elected will take over a country badly in need of strong direction and commitment, and an electorate grown weary of the finger pointing and lack of progress in sorting out the economic mess made after the Great Recession.
We wish the victor well.