I’ve been lamenting for a long time the performance of our elected officials, and I mean almost all of them. I’m not overly pleased with what’s going on, and I’m not going to pick and choose who to blame. Instead, I’m going to castigate them as a whole for not doing what needs to be done to get things fixed.

What needs fixing? It’s probably easier to say what doesn’t need fixing. The economy isn’t snapping back all the easily, even though a stat came out a couple of days ago saying the economy has actually grown 19 months in a row. If it’s not noticeable then it’s not enough. Health care; will we have universal health care or not? Heck, is the plan we have good enough to even call itself “universal”? The environment; racism; sexism; protests; Iran; Iraq; Afghanistan; banking; corruption; immigration; illegal immigrants (yes, a different issue); FEMA; housing; etc.

Many people expect elected officials to sit down with each other and find a way to get things done. But that’s not how things are done in today’s world. Instead, it’s more about the party and not about people. It’s about getting elected, then reelected. It’s about planning how to get the newly elected person out of office as soon as they get there. It’s about gumming up the governmental process so nothing gets done. And it doesn’t matter which side you want to pick on or support; when the other side gets the higher number, the same thing seems to occur.

Politicians aren’t leaders because of what they have to go through to get the job. Right now the Republicans that are running for president are beating themselves up. Strange as it seems, they can’t get together to beat up on President Obama because they have to all find a way to separate themselves from each other.

Politics is a strange game that in its own way mirrors sports because you have different divisions and factions that have to play against each other, ponying up lots of cash, and then the victor has to court the support of the person he or she just beat, probably by saying a lot of nasty things, to move on to the next level.

Politics is uglier. In sports you don’t often hear athletes talking a lot of smack because they then have to get out on the field and physically back it up. Some do, but there are many examples of an athlete getting knocked out or hurt really bad by someone they talked bad about, or by someone else on the other team. In politics, at least in America, people don’t physically fight. They just lie and misrepresent and spend money and get others to spend their money trying to bash someone else instead of building themselves up. And if they get elected they start almost immediately because they want to stay in power.

But that’s not leadership. Leadership was President Johnson convincing southern Democrats to vote for a Civil Rights Bill in 1964. Leadership was George Bush the 1st increasing taxes and getting his party to support him, even though he promised he wouldn’t, because the country was in a financial mess. Leadership was Franklin Roosevelt pulling people together to pass the New Deal, then leading us through World War II when most people in this country wanted to adopt an isolationist policy.

Those example are far and few between nowadays, at a time when this county really needs true leaders that care more about us than just about getting elected, or than getting rid of someone who’s already got the job because they’re afraid someone else will get the credit for doing the right thing. Imagine if every business in every industry worked that way; where would we be?

Politicians as leaders; no, I don’t think so. What say you?
 

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