There have been a few showdowns in the United States lately. First, it was Transparency vis-à-vis the United States Congress (both the House of Representatives and the Senate, not to mention the Administration found in the White House). What happened on that face off? Transparency lost. Then turn to our foreign policy and the long time Afghanistan conflict against the Al-Queda supporting Taliban Sharia/Islamic government– a conflict that even President Obama has declared a just action (especially in his campaign days). The battle there? Decisiveness concerning Afghanistan’s troop decision. Decisiveness lost (and is still losing). And today– the latest insult (I hesitate to say final, as today is Friday the 13th, and we’re only 10 months into the President’s administration)? The radical Islamist that masterminded and helped support the now infamous attacks on United States territory in New York City, Washington, D.C. (and the failed effort ending in a Pennsylvania farmer’s field) is not going to be tried in a military tribunal as participants of war and war crimes should, but is going to be tried in a civilian court for a decidedly non-civilian and decidedly warmongering act. Competence vis-à-vis the trial of Sheik Khaled Mohammed. You guessed it, competence lost.
Ever since the so called Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) that former President Bush and his Treasury Secretary (Henry Paulson) advocated, our government (assuming you’re an American citizen) has been bumbling, bungling and back-stepping on every statement of intent that they’ve uttered. By fiat, the U.S. Government has decided that TARP monies don’t have to be spent only on the so-called ‘toxic assets’, but could be spent to help shore up businesses that the Government (and only the Government) deemed ‘troubled’ or ‘toxic’– an action that flies in the face of the actual law that the representatives of the people passed. With lip-service only does the Congress and the White House practice transparency in their actions and decisions. Did you hear about the Deputy Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, Buffy Wicks, being involved, and making an obvious statement that intimated the clear understanding that a political push was being made, in a conference call with the federal agency National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and artists that it funds? I thought this would be the most ethical administration to step foot in the White House in modern times? Again, another battle, ethical leadership– you guessed it– ethical leadership lost.
Next, take a look at the United States Congress, especially the House, whose speaker is about as desirous of transparency (and apparently truthfulness) as Tammany Hall was in its hey-day of power. Over 1900 pages (that’s 20 pounds of paper), or five reams of paper that you have to pay $5 each for at the local Wal-Mart, and less than 1 day to read the darned thing. Is that evidence of a desire for transparency? As one who, although opinionated, can be objective to allow me to comprehend positions– to understand the paradigm of an argument that I may not support– because it allows me to understand my own positions as well as the perspective of others, I have to say, emphatically, that this demonstrates the exact opposite. This is not transparent, nor is it good government. Where are these lunatics in Washington taking our great democratic republic? We are giving up our individual rights for the sake of the Nanny State– a state where Government knows best, and the rights of the individuals are being sacrificed on the alter of the ‘Greater Good’. These philosophers of state are about as in touch with reality as Ted Kaczynski, or some lunatic who thinks The Matrix is real, and that Neo is out there, or that The Force and The Jedi really did exist a long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.
This whole line of issues has me frustrated– so much so that I think I’ve said enough, as the case for our Congressional and Presidential leadership’s lack of competence, transparency, and ethics is well made. I’ve got to go get a nice iced tea (black, unsweetened).
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