Ostrich Syndrome for America

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Posted by Ballpark Frank ( on 10:30:44 11/11/16

In Reply to: It is intentional posted by Granite Head

Granite Head,

I see a lot of naivete in Trump's support. Many people want to turn the clock back to the 1950s, when America was reaping the fruits of the post-war boom. Jimmy Carter came along to "rescue" us from our post-Vietnam War/Watergate malaise. He ran on his credentials as an "outsider". We already know what happens when the president fills cabinet positions and other posts with "outsiders". It becomes "amateur night". I have a very high opinion of President Carter as a person and a distinguished citizen. He was the skipper of a nuclear submarine in the U.S. Navy. He has done a ton of good in his post-presidency years via his high visibility voluntarism. That does not cloud my opinion that his presidency was a disaster. It was characterized by a combination of inaction, knee jerk reactions, and poor judgement. Our economy went to hell in a hand basket. Our foreign policy was an abject failure. Even the energy policy was poorly thought out. The national 55 mph speed limit put unjust hurt on rural families, farmers, ranchers, and other workers in the rural West. I fear we may be in for a "Carter-like" "Amateur Night" in the coming years, where "outsiders" take the reins of a variety of government agencies.

I am a rock solid independent, politically. I recognize the good and the bad in each administration, regardless of political party. I believe that Ronald Reagan accomplished many great things. Part of his greatness was his seeking out the best candidates he could find to staff key positions in his administration, and then empowering them to make decisions. That is what some of our most successful business leaders do. They delegate and empower; and they have a disdain for "yes men".

I'm not blind to which political party has gotten us into insane armed conflicts during my lifetime. Actually, in my opinion, the score is: Democrats-1 (Vietnam), Republicans-1 (invasion of Iraq). What common attribute have I found in these two fateful actions? The presidents were both Texans! Obviously, a sample of two is impossible to draw a statistically significant conclusion from; and some would argue that Vietnam had its roots in JFK's actions in southeast Asia. All I know is that both actions were very bad for America, and they cost a lot of lives.

Trump, during the campaign, said he wanted to eliminate the EPA. Scary prospect! Sure, the EPA has some highly visible mistakes, but trusting state governments to protect us from environmental hazards scares the hell out of me. We have to remember that Love Canal and the lead poisoning in Flint happened under the EPA's supposed surveillance. Now, given the role that Michigan's state government played in the Flint disaster, do we really want to trust each of 50 states to take this on?


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