Friday, October 04, 2013

Five for Friday

On this first (and hopefully, but unlikely, last) Friday of government shutdown, I offer five things our government ought to do, but does not. And if we hit another Friday, I will try to offer five things our government ought not to do, but does...

1. Pass a yearly budget.  But, of course, that would mean making actual decisions and putting it down in writing for posterity.  Better to pass a series of continuing resolutions, avoid those tough decisions, and enjoy the limelight of the media-feeding-frenzy and name-calling and dysfunction that a shut down can bring.

2. Spend within its means. People of good intent can disagree on with how our money ought to be spent. But does anyone outside of ivory-towered Keynsians or high-ranking government officials really think going into ever-increasing debt as a nation is a good idea?  It does not take a rocket scientist to know that it can be fun to run up debt in the short-term, but devastating in the long-term. 

3. Pass laws that apply to all.  It only seems reasonable that if you are going to pass a law for your constituents, it ought to apply to you as well, and indeed, apply to all citizens equally.  A law ought to apply to business tycoons and labor unions, rich and poor, without favoritism.  That is the only way the rule of law can actually be the rule of law.

4. Refuse to use lawful government institutions for political purposes.  No one who is lawfully paying taxes should fear the IRS.  No one should fear that the oval office will bug their campaign headquarters.  Such abuse of power should always be heinous to us and shock us.  And it should be unconsciounable to our elected officials.

5. Place the welfare of the poeple as their highest priority. I can see that our form of govenrment will of necessity require difference of opinion, and even, at times, a break down that would cause disruption in services while the differing views in this representative government work out their differences.  But when that happens, real leaders look for how to bear the brunt of the suffering themselves and spare those they serve.  They don't look for ways to shut down things that will get the most bang for the buck, despite the suffering it causes (ending NIH clinical trials for children with cancer comes to mind.)

Quite honestly, Gentle Reader, I am non-partisan in my current disgust with out "leaders", and will work to keep all of my elected officials from returning to congress. But even more than that, I am disgusted by us for putting up with them and not requiring more. 

1 comment:

New Mexico Nancy said...

You have expressed my thoughts exactly. Thanks.