November 17, 2003

Incompetency in the News

I read quite a few blogs, a few of them politically focused at least at times. While I can't claim to be as eloquent as Mac or Jane or Dawn, its become clear to me, reading the paper, watching the news, and taking in other people's opinions, that there's some great disconnect with respect to people's expectations. Its this:

Either the government itself is inherently flawed or our expectations are simply too high.

If you caught Mr. Brokaw this evening, you might have heard a story about how the government has let suspected terrorists not only live and thrive in this country but become American citizens. Is the government incompetent or do we wrongly expect the system to work well?

We raise millions of dollars a year to feed starving kids overseas yet 60% - yes, 60% - of kids under the age of 16 in the District of Columbia will go to bed hungry tonight. Is this the work of a government that doesn't know ass from elbow? Or are our expectations just too high?

Senior citizens take bus trips to Canada to buy prescriptions. And our own government takes steps to block these prescriptions from entering the country. Is government just so incompetent that it doesn't see a problem here? Should we even expect them to see the obvious?

A while back I was hiking in the Grand Teton mountains in Wyoming. I checked in at the ranger station to check the weather before I went up. While I was standing there a woman came up and kindly asked the ranger, "When do you bring the bear to the side of the road?" The ranger looked at me with a blank look on his face - I'm sure my expression was similar. He patiently replied, "They're wild animals ma'am. They pretty much go whereve they want." It was eye-opening. People think we live in theme parks when in actuality, we're out in the wild with the bear. We have to approach government the same way. The rangers are out there. They're doing what they can but really, they can only do so much. We've got to look out for ourselves.

Posted by Chris at November 17, 2003 8:09 PM

good point my man, good point.

unfortunately, there is no cure for stupidity other than education. but our education system is so screwed up too, we can't put faith in that either. the only cure for apathy is action.

Posted by: tj at November 17, 2003 8:24 PM

I am a Canadian so I really don't count - but Amen.

Posted by: Kimmie at November 18, 2003 10:50 AM