Color me naïve but when I was attending high school and college taking those government classes I was taught that government officials were the servants of the people. They were elected to office to protect the interest of and represent the little guy.
Over the years our “public servants” have forgotten that they at one time actually lived among the little guys. By little guys, I mean the backbone of this great nation, the hard working middle class that pays taxes and at one time sincerely believed that the money taken from his or her check for Social Security would someday be returned to them and their tax dollars would go to build better highways and fund education.
Color them naïve also.
To say that public officials today have a tarnished image would be a gross understatement. Let's face it the little guy doesn't have any friends in government anymore on any level. And there is more truth than fable in the old saying “you can't fight city hall.”
The problem: simply too much politics.
What is frequently referred to as “good ole boy” politics dates all the way back to beginning of our country. In simple terms, the “good ole boy” system is defined as “I'll scratch your back and you scratch mine.” Unfortunately, the system still exists today but rarely crosses party lines.
The President and Congress squabbled over the tax structure for the middle class. It got nowhere until the eleventh hour because the Democrats would not accept any proposals by the Republicans and vice versa. Meanwhile, the taxpayer was left dangling over a “financial cliff.”
Well, the politicians finally cleared that hurdle but neglected to compensate for a rise in Social Security withholding. That oversight left me with what amounted to about a $40 a month reduction in take home pay. It will probably mean even more to others.
The political problem hits even closer to home. For the past several years the mayor and city council have not been able to see eye to eye on almost any undertaking. According to my reporter, the council sessions have turned into a 3-ring circus.
The city has had tough financial problems the past several years. The city is facing a very serious problem of an ever-increasing crime rate and literally no money to fight the situation. Too much money is going to pay executive and attorney salaries at the expense of our police, fire, sanitation and other city workers.
I will credit the council for overriding Mayor Willis' veto of a motion to suspend payment to city department head who is facing serious felony charges. Certainly, I believe that a man is innocent until proven guilty but under the financial stress the city is currently operating it simply does not have the luxury of paying out funds for no services rendered.
Page 2 of 2 - Changes have got to come. Somehow, someway, our government leaders are going to have to quit dividing over such matters as politics, race and religion. Decisions must be made in the best interest of all people. Right now, the little guy needs all the help he can muster.
I am no longer naïve. I now realize that what was once a nation based on the premise “By the people and for the people” has evolved into a government of “By the fat cats and for the fat cats.”