Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Those Who Seek Careers in Government

As long as people with the qualifications of Katherine Harris, Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, Don Young and Michelle Bachmann are drawn to political life, we are in trouble. And we know a good number of Congressmen have the intelligence of a pickled beet. There may be a good number of wily politicians but there are too few elected officials with intelligence. And, by the way, it was Ronald Reagan, who made a career of maligning politicians while he made himself powerful as one, and went on to become president as he belittled the federal government and then used his presidential power to destroy unions and take greater power unto his own office. And to make the rich richer and the poor poorer. Yes, it is possible to be clever but not intelligent. And it is more important to have the bright ones in office.

But not only have our best and brightest been staying clear of elected office, but for at least the last generation or two, bright young people have fled to Wall Street as they deserted the traditional top dog medical school applications in the face of what they saw as intrusion into medical practice and decline of income for physicians.

Now it may be time, with the fall of Wall Street, to make our young people look at the path to government. We must convince our brightest young people -- the top graduates (yes, like Obama) to lend their intellectual gifts to making government work again.

Government is important. As the recent “tea party” demonstrated, without government, chaos ensures. Anarchy is not freedom, and making barrels of money doesn’t entitle you to just bury it in your backyard so you can keep it. Money is responsibility, and when people with money don’t accept their responsibilities, they begin to live in a cesspool instead of a country.

The place between freedom and repression has no meaning for some in public life. It reminds me of the Puritans who came to the New World after their long persecution, seeking religious freedom. They found it, and then went about setting up Puritan states in which everyone had to be a Puritan. Ironic, isn’t it? Reminds me of many right-wing conservatives who think that their way is the only way and that somehow being able to run things their way is freedom. Yes, it is. But only for them.

No comments: