Free Press Archives
CAN WE BE SAVED FROM OURSELVES
Nothing is of more value to the
country than an honest, skillful politician. That might not percolate
well in your personal prejudice pot but it is the truth.
We have done our country an injustice by letting ourselves believe too
much negative foolishness about politics and politicians. Like the idea
that they are more crooked than the rest of us. I’ve known a lot of
average voters and a lot of politicians. The percentages of crooks are
about the same in both groups. Which isn’t so strange when you
consider that average voters select and elect the politicians. Most of
the time we vote for those who are a lot like us.
I got to thinking about this stuff when I spoke a few words at Ruth
Harmon’s retirement reception at the courthouse. I praised her as a
good politician who had made good things happen for the people and could
see some listeners close down at the thought. We have a large mental
block against seeing any good in any politician.
Don’t close down at that thought. You will hurt yourself and your
government. Be aware that your only choices are honest, skillful
politicians or dishonest unskillful ones with variations of each. Unless
you have a strong appreciation for the honest, skillful ones you will
not really look for them.
If you ever find yourself with the painful predicament of choosing
between a dishonest one and a skillful one, I say vote for the skillful
one. By its very nature, greed escalates. The dishonest one will steal
more log chain than he can swim the river with. Crooks rise to the
surface like empty beer cans. They cannot hide themselves very long.
Nixon was a perfect example. He was a liar but we have had few
presidents with more political skill. He was a foreign policy wizard.
I’d much rather see him running the affairs of this country than some
honest but politically clumsy yokel who alienates our friends and whips
up the fury of our enemies. Now and then imagine Alfred E. Newman with
his finger on the nuclear button. It will make you more attentive to
intelligence in the political marketplace.
I believe Jimmy Carter has developed more political skills since leaving
the White House than he had while he was there. Someone said, “Oh but
he has become a statesman.” Isn’t that the best definition of a good
honest skillful politician?
We must study our politicians like we study the stock market or the NFL
playoffs. Otherwise our goose is cooked and if enough of our geese get
cooked, the country gets cooked.
Be suspicious of any politician who reaches inside your bile ducts and
plays with your prejudices or tells you nothing but the good stuff --
one who has studied what you want and put together a platform to give it
all to you. They are the phoniest of all. Remember Byron Looper here in
Tennessee? He actually had his name changed to (Low Tax) Looper
parenthesis included, then ran against popular state senator Tommy Burks
and when he saw he couldn’t beat him, murdered him. It looks
like “Low Tax” got elected by “low intelligence” voters who
couldn’t see the idiot bubbles coming out of both ears.
How daring to call the voters “low intelligence,” I hear someone
reply. Not daring at all. He legally changed his name to “Low Tax”
when he was running for tax assessor and under Tennessee law tax
assessors have nothing at all to do with setting tax rates. That proves
Loopy Loony Looper was smarter than the average voter.
Someone asked a voter how he felt about ignorance and apathy and he
said, “I don’t know and I don’t care.” It’s just a joke but it
is not a joke that only a healthy regard for honesty and political
skills in candidates can save us from our own lethargy.