Listen, my friend. Listen as if your world depended on it.

Because it's that time of the year again, when the haves are going to sell their hearts and minds and, yes, their souls to the owners. The owners are the ones who keep us, the have nots, from having a chance in this great land of ours. It's election time, and those with millions are going to use a few of those millions to elect a government that will see to it that those with millions are going to get more millions. Way more.

Because listen: does anyone really believe that a person, a place or a thing that gives someone millions isn't going to want something - lots of something - in return? Don't be absurd. You don't count. You know what your life and your problems are worth to the Biggies? Your life and your problems are worth this: Fake smiles. Empty promises. The old soft shoe. In other words, your life and your problems aren't worth a hill of beans. The owners don't care.

The elected elite tell you that they are going to stop corruption. They are corruption. Alabama ranks the fourth-worst state for corruption, according to national news magazines. We have for years. Nothing has changed.

They promise you they will improve education. They won't. We are the 47th worst state for education. We are 52nd in math. What? Aren't there but 50 states? True, but we rank below Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. For years upon years, the elected elite has promised it will fix education. We remain among the worst. We have for years. Nothing has changed. They don't care.

Does anyone believe it when they say they'll take care of you? That your health is of utmost importance? It's not. We are the 45th worst state for healthcare. The old and the poor and the feeble are discards. They have been for years. Nothing has changed. They will throw you away, just like they have for time out of mind.

Listen. Listen as if your future depended on it.

Alabama is one of only five states in this great land of ours that allows politicians to take unlimited contributions (and remember we are the fourth-worst state for corruption.) Coincidence? Sure it is.

The front runners in the gubernatorial campaign have a combined $20 million (or more) in donations. And the race is just heating up. It's just starting to boil. And the great maw of greed is starting to open wide to swallow us again. And there's nothing you can do about it. Or is there?

I’m running for governor for the first time. I have never run for public office.  And guess what else: I'm capping donations to my campaign at $10,000. That has never been done in the history of Alabama politics. Not ever. It's the first time.

And they'll tell you that because I've never run, and I don't have millions, that I don't have a chance. Not a chance in the hot place.

And here's the really bad thing. If I don't have a chance...

Neither do you.

Lew Burdette is running for Governor of Alabama. 1819 News does not endorse candidates for public office and welcomes the views of any candidate running for office in Alabama. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to [email protected]m.