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Political Leadership

I rarely write about government and politics because it is such a divisive subject. Today, however, I am going out on a limb. I’m writing about political leadership. You should know, my goal is not to side with democrats or republicans. It is to comment on the leadership of our elected government officials.

After watching the news today, I’m convinced the term political leadership is an oxymoron. Ever since bureaucrats gained the opportunity to remain employed by the federal government for a lifetime, leadership ceased to be pure. Those politicians spend far more energy on getting re-elected than fulfilling their responsibilities as leaders. It sounds cliche, but they spend more time trying to keep their job than do their job. That’s not leadership at all. They don’t do what is best for our country’s future but for their own future. While a huge percentage of American’s experienced pay cuts or job loss this past year, they voted themselves raises and bonuses. Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac got those bonuses too. The very executives that received bailout money–just got bonuses. That is not servant leadership as they claim to exhibit. This is self-serving leadership. Servant leaders make sacrifices on behalf of those they lead. I haven’t seen this in a federal government employee for decades.
The healthcare bill is just one vivid illustration of what I am talking about. If a politician actually cared about getting good healthcare to the needy, the last organization they’d hire is the federal government. The government has proven repeatedly they are horribly inefficient at managing money and executing results. Many government programs are laughable. They wouldn’t survive in the business world. In fact, while free enterprise is not fool proof, it is so far more productive at getting a job done than government programs.
Witness the U. S. Post Office. Earlier this year, I heard post office staff whine on the radio because people weren’t utilizing their services. They grumbled that they may have to cut a day of their weekly service to Americans. Question. Would this tactic work for businesses? Could a CEO whine on the air because Americans weren’t buying their products? I don’t think so. As far as I’m concerned, the post office got better when UPS, Fed Ex and DHL entered the shipping world. Competition makes us better and purifies how we spend of time, energy and money. Furthermore, the reason folks aren’t using “snail mail” as much is due to the electronic options for communication that are now available. Skype, text messages, Facebook, Blogs, Instant messages and twitters have furnished us with new vehicles. A sensible company would keep up with the culture and execute the most efficient ways to send a message, not simply do what they have always done. Businesses change quickly because they have to in order to survive. Government doesn’t have to change or be effective because tax money will come to them whether or not they are efficient. Once again, this makes political leadership impure.
Does our social security, welfare and healthcare system in America need to be improved? Absolutely. Just don’t count on the government to do it. They are unable. Why? They are not effective leaders. Let me toss out some ideas as to what might improve government leadership in our future:
1. Limit federal government election terms to one or two at the most.
2. Authorize the government to determine necessary programs, then outsource
the execution of those programs to private enterprise. Make sure there is
sufficient competition for each area.
3. Return to our roots and embrace the fact that we are not entitled to perks.
Even healthcare is a privilege not a right. In fact, every perk I enjoy is a
privilege. American’s will care for each other if it is in our hands to do so.
4. Welcome aliens into our nation, but only if they are legal. The moment we
allow for funding for illegal aliens, we’ve eliminated justice for all.
5. Remove any kind of tenure benefits for government workers. Income is based
on production not time in the system.
OK. I vented. I am begging for good leadership in this country. I welcome alternative views to mine…but only if you provide good rationale. Your thoughts?
Tim

1 Comment

  1. Brad on August 2, 2013 at 11:48 am

    Wow, you’re right to avoid politics as your thoughts on these matters show your true Republican anti-government colors. Government is not a business and it’s goal is not profitability. It is about serving the public interest — this equation has no relation to the “business” world because basic, essential services like healthcare should not be about profits. Do you ask the military to be efficient or “profitable?” What about the police department? The fire department?

    I would greatly prefer trusting the government with my healthcare over
    some slimy corporation. Likewise, I’d prefer to send a letter for 50
    cents instead of $12 using a union-busting entity like FedEx.

    I read some of your parenting articles and had the sense that you were right-wing (or at least libertarian) in your outlook. Glad to know this and I’ll be sure to avoid reading you again in future.

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Political Leadership