Some people may think that I'm hopelessly stuck in a mindset where elected officials should be accountable for the laws they pass, and that common sense is still the best way to solve a problem.
I won't deny it, that's how I feel and I'm not likely to change my mindset (not without being forced, kicking and screaming) anytime soon.
If I had to identify one aspect of our current political climate that gets my blood pressure up, it would have to be the way that our federal government seemingly goes out of its way to screw things up even worse than they already are, all in the name of "making a better life for our people."
For instance, it wasn't all that long ago that we were being bombarded almost non-stop about how our government was going to shut down completely if a spending authority measure wasn't reached. There were threats of no Social Security checks, no Medicare, etc. etc. if the government in Washington couldn't keep writing checks when the bank account was empty.
It's a lot like the old joke: "I can't be overdrawn, I still have blank checks!"
So what happened? "OK, keep writing checks, we'll extend the line of credit a few more billion."
And now, the whole thing is starting up again. Only this time, Warren Buffet, the man who could probably buy most of Nebraska, Iowa and other Midwestern states and start the nation of Buffet, told our President that he didn't think he was paying enough in taxes and volunteered to pay more income taxes.
But that selfless act is now drawing fire, because other obscenely wealthy types, such as oil company executives, still have a little too much greedy running in their veins and their lawmakers listen to them.
Can you say: "This train is going nowhere" on this deal?
Or try this.
The Environmental Protection Agency, the folks who are supposed to take care of our air and water, now want to limit how much dust a farmer can make doing his fieldwork. That limit would also apply to how much dust you raise driving down a gravel road.
Hmmmm. No dust or else.
OK EPA, can you guarantee timely rain to help alleviate dust problems?
In our area alone, the lack of significant rainfall has led to incredibly dry and potentially devastating conditions, as was evidenced in the past few weeks with the multiple field fires that broke out around the area.
I read a commentary a while back where the author opinioned that if the EPA had its way, pretty soon, all farmers would be out of business. They couldn't till the soil, plant seed, harvest it or even raise livestock. Farming would create too much dust (excuse me, particulate matter in the air) and raising cattle would create too much methane gas (when the cows break wind) in the atmosphere.
Ah, but don't worry, the EPA folks can still be chauffeured to work in D.C. in their big limousines that get three miles to a gallon.
All I ask is this simple question, and yet, no one really has the definitive answer.
What are the priorities of our government?
As I was taught, the government is a government of the people, by the people. Somewhere, over time, big business and special interest has been able to remove those factors from the equation, in my opinion. As I sit and look at our nation, I must admit, there are things that completely baffle me, and I'm sure leave many other folks like you and me shaking their heads as well.
If I could give just one message to those with the authority and the power to effect change, it would be this do what is best, and right, for everyone on an equal basis, not just for the wealthy or the high and mighty. Our nation started with simple people who fought disease and hardship in the hopes of being able to live free from oppressive rules and regulations. Let us hope we're not headed for a repeat of that initial voyage of the Mayflower.