Too many politicians are profiles in discouragement

Posted 17 February 2021 at 7:53 pm


The efficiency of any car motor is totally dependent upon the quality of the parts it’s made from.

Sadly, after witnessing recent events in Washington, D.C., it’s obvious that the engine that runs our government consists of two-bit, penny ante politicians. Not all, but enough to gum up the works. “A chain is only as strong as its weakest link” sort of situation.

Altruism is reserved for saints. It would be naive to think otherwise. The thought of someone running for office with the intention of bettering the whole, regardless the risk it may present to themselves, is a pipe-dream. It’s a Hollywood script, filed under fiction. I get that. But, at least it’s a goal to set our sails by. Unfortunately, we’ve veered so far off course, I worry if we’ll ever find our way back.

We live in a “what’s in it for me?” time. Gone are the days of our representatives in government exerting effort without the expectation of a reward. Doing exactly what they were elected to do – for the people that elected them – is not a part of their newly, self-defined job-description. That’s because conventional execution of obligatory tasks is considered an option now; an option dependent upon further compensation – in some form or another. Not all politicians are like that, but far too many are.

The unabashed plundering of taxpayer dollars and the insult/ignorance to voters’ concerns are as rampant as the devastating virus that has altered our daily lives over the past year.

Blowharded speeches and pompous oratories abound from the highest offices in the land. Modern-day snake-oil salesmen, who preach deceit as loyalty and stupidity as bravery, have relegated pubic trust to the curb. If one’s pants really started on fire when they betrayed the truth, they’d have to put fire-hydrants up and down the House and Senate aisles.

Hypocrisy is the most brazenly used tool in Washington. And that tool is honed by the cowardice of its owner. An official voting for something that doesn’t personally reap an immediate reward – despite the fact that it is good for the whole – is as absent in today’s world as Mike Pence at a Metallica concert. Regardless if one took an opposing view in the past, it’s the particular benefit at a particular time that counts. Plain and simple.

How scary is it? The very essence of what happens to us – and to those whom we cherish – are in the hands of people whose words and commitments have a 24-hour expiration date. It’s in the hands of people who are willing to prostitute themselves at the mere thought of self-enrichment and/or simply to make the party-line happy. The very definition of an unscrupulous mercenary.

Think about that. Think about the abhorrent and unconscionable decisions some elected officials – who are entrusted by us – make in our name.

The voting system doesn’t need the overhaul, it’s those who run for office that do. Too many charlatans, literally, quit running as advertised once they are installed. Closer inspection is needed to keep our governmental engine from spit and sputtering the way it’s been prone to do lately.

Not all of them are clunkers, I remind you, but far too many are.

Tom Valley