Saturday, August 28, 2010

Caveat Lectores on Inexperienced Politicians and Insanity

Today’s Caveat Lectores Rant is specific to Florida, but I am willing to bet it applies in the other 49 states as well. If it does not apply to your state, please let me know so I can start plans for the move.

We have heard this before. It seems when some of the public becomes disenchanted with the current political climate, the cry is… “Throw the bums out!” The Lector could not agree more when I look at many of the current crop of incompetents and easily corruptible nincompoops who for some reason want to devote their professional lives to harming the best interests of me and the general public. BTW, not all are rePuPlicans. The Democraps are fully capable of some, though not all, of the insanity that comes from the heart and soul of a right wingnut.

While I am just as frustrated with the political climate and incredibly poor policy-making as anyone else, the anti-incumbent mantra has some real problems as does the notion that term limits is the answer. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a “career politician” unless that person is also incompetent and/or corrupt. Yet, this is the disparaging tag many are placing on incumbents as if experience is a bad thing. WTF is in their minds if there is anything at all?

Term limits are not the answer because it makes sure that inexperienced people will run government. Inexperienced people end up relying too heavily on cronies, staff and lobbyists for background to make good decisions. The very notion that someone who is incompetent can make sound policy decisions is insane. Who is at fault if the public keeps voting for the same bad candidates over and over again? Throwing the good elected officials out of office to get rid of the bad ones makes no sense. Term limits are fundamentally wrong because it is telling me who I cannot vote into office. It may not be unconstitutional but it is wide of the mark.

The notion that only inexperienced people with business backgrounds and no public policy experience will automatically be effective is naïve insanity. As soon as the neophytes assume office they become incumbents. If these people get elected and run government like so many businesses are run, we will go bankrupt for sure. If we start running government like GM, the financial industry or the textile industry, the country will implode in less than a generation.

In Florida, we have two candidates running for governor who, once we look at them, have “issues.” (There is a third candidate who does not count unless he decides to stay in the race and hurts Alex Sink.)

• My personal favorite is Alex Sink. She is a Democrat, competent and experienced. Her brief tenure as an elected official as the CFO of Florida does not qualify her as a “career politician.” She is from my home state of North Carolina which could be a negative since we both apparently are exiled in Florida. Her prior professional career was former president of Florida Operations at Bank of America. This has some baggage attached. Yes, she has vast experience in business, but it is an industry that I have lost all respect for because of the current mortgage fraud crisis that has threatened out economy. Was she a part of the problem or just incompetently ignorant of what was occurring? Even with her possible negatives, she is clean and energetic, rich but not too rich to take her daughter to a movie on a Saturday afternoon recently (I saw them), bright but not a nerd, shrewd but not a thief like some. We must not let the fact that she is not a dynamic public speaker get in the way of electing her. (She speaks with a NC harsh southern accent when she is excited)

• Rick Scott is the right wingnut rePuPlican candidate who came from nowhere and beat a career screw up by using his own money to buy the election. He touts his incompetence as a politician. He has promised to do everything in his power as governor to wipe out government, reduce service, lower taxes and annihilate that pesky government regulation that gets in the way of unlimited profit for corporations. That will make him the darling of right wingnuts, tea baggers, real estate developers, regulated corporations and anyone else looking for short term profit-making utopia. He is rich beyond imagination because of a career in an industry so dysfunctional and sometimes corrupt that it has condemned America to being nearly third world-like in its provision of healthcare. Scott was the CEO of a healthcare company that pleaded guilty to too many fraudulent practices charges to list here. “Scott was forced to resign in the wake of the initial fraud charges in 1997. ” His modern day political defense is that he was never personally charged with fraud. “He was the fucking boss. The question becomes. Was he a knowing conspirator with criminal culpability or an unknowing dupe with serious problems with his ethical accountability? Is he an unindicted criminal or an unsuspecting incompetent? Either way, he has problems that should disallow him from being elected to the highest position in Florida government …. Sure, he can run but surely no one would trust his ability to make good decisions. ”

And oh yes, have a nice Day?


Caveat Lectores by Jeff Carnes

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