Within the currency of American values, none has been devalued more than honesty. It’s become okay to lie, especially within one of America’s great institutions, our political process.
A lie, according to Merriam Webster, is to “make an untrue statement with the intent to deceive.”
A scholarly analysis of lying produced at Michigan State University cited this definition:
“Simply and broadly lying occurs when a communicator seeks knowingly and intentionally to mislead others….” and another conclusion: “Thus it is not sufficient that something is false for it to be a lie; it is the intent that distinguishes the lie.”
But in politics, as in life today, lying is becoming commonplace.
“Do you ever get the feeling that the whole world is a tuxedo and you are a pair of brown shoes?”
That was comedian George Gobel’s quip after he was upstaged during a 1969 Johnny Carson Show by the unscheduled appearances of Dean Martin and Bob Hope.
Forty years later the whole country is a tuxedo and Washington is a pair of brown shoes–out of step, out of fashion, out of vogue and out of touch with the realities of governing the country. Continue reading →
I had the distinct honor and privilege recently to introduce two talented men with high levels of expertise in the private sector who willingly straddled the line between private and public life early in their political careers and then devoted themselves completely later to serve our state and nation, former North Carolina Governor Jim Martin and Congressman Alex McMillan.
The event was the First Annual Mecklenburg GOP Martin-McMillan Day which is a fitting title given that both men served on the Mecklenburg County Commission before Mr. McMillan followed Mr. Martin as the Representative of the 9th Congressional District when Martin ran for Governor in 1984 and served for 2 successful terms.
The lists of the accumulated achievements of both men would take too long to recount here. Suffice it to say: ‘We were all fortunate they chose to take their private sector expertise into the political arena and serve us in the public trust.’ Continue reading →
President Barack Obama’s speech wasn’t awful. It wasn’t great. It had some excellent lines “Last thing [vets] should have to do is to fight for a job when then get home.” It some tired union-soothing rhetoric.
At 7:35 Eastern I Tweeted: “Officially bored. This could have been a 20 minute Oval speech.” True.
Here’s the thing the President left out: He never told us how many jobs this would create and how far down it would bring the unemployment rate. Let’s spend more money and hope for the best. Having listened to the 127 times President Obama said some variant of “pass this bill” I pinged a leadership staffer office only to find there IS no bill. No paper. No package. No nothing. Here’s the text of the email I got having asked if the President dropped off a bill on his way into the House chamber:
“Of course not – no one has seen it. No consultation with House or Senate GOP. No Pay fors [identified]. Just more of his “I decree” this is the plan and [is, therefore] bi-partisan.” Continue reading →
I woke up early yesterday morning to follow the story of the continuing drop in the markets following the S&P downgrade of U.S. sovereign debt from AAA to AA+. It occurred to me that, as we enter the second week of August, this may be the most arcane “August Story” in my experience.
Anthony Weiner is the typical August story: Public official, sex, denials, resignation. That it happened in June was just one more reason to not have any sympathy for Weiner.
Last year, every visit to that new office Keurig coffee machine included a discussion about the state of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, brought to you by BP. “Junk Shots” and “Top Kills” sustained us throughout the summer before a relief well was finally completed in September.
On the campaign trail, one of President Obama’s favorite speech lines has been about Republicans driving the economy into the ditch. He claims to have spent two years trying to get us back out of that ditch, but makes certain that his audience understands that the Democrats did not put us there.