My Work

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Are We Off to See the Wizard?

I’m sitting in the office looking out a large south-facing window into several inches of fresh snow coating everything in sight, wondering what might our future hold, as a nation, as a people? This little entry in my blog-world isn’t going to be political nor will I reach any conclusions, but, hopefully may evoke some thought.

I’ve been around for many years, lived through ten different presidencies so far, and now the eleventh is taking his turn amid considerable turmoil. The last president we elected who did not come from the ranks of politics was Dwight D. Eisenhower, who came from the battlefields of Europe. Donald Trump is coming from the boardrooms of big business.

That means that nine of our last eleven presidents were professional politicians. Harry Truman had a limited small business background and Jimmie Carter had a farming background, as well as a military background.

What does any of that mean in regards to Mr. Trump? We’ll simply have to wait and see. There are strong forces that believe we are going to be fine, that our future is rosy, that the economy will spike, and all will be sugar and sweet cream. There are equally strong forces that decry the election as bogus, false, ugly, and will lead to the destruction of our country.

Too often we tend to forget that our constitution was written by men who seemed to foresee many of the problems that have cropped up over the last many centuries, and wrote the document in such a way that the president doesn’t really have as much power as we think. Obstacles such as congress and the Supreme Court tend to slow a president’s arbitrary moves more often than is supposed.

The economy has been lethargic for some time and needs a good kick in the butt. Can Mr. Trump’s business background bring that about? Will he come up with programs that small and large businesses can get behind? Wages have not kept up with inflation for many years while top executive and management incomes have risen dramatically. Is that a problem the president should address? If it is, will he?

For a generation, since the presidency of George W. Bush, this country has been at war. For more than sixteen years, many believe, this country has operated without a firm foreign policy, and our population has been fed war-fodder lies, according to many. Is President Trump going to be able to formulate a foreign policy that the population can be proud of?

The questions of our military attacking people in foreign countries that we are not at war with need to be answered, according to a large percentage of the population. Questions of the CIA acting as a military force in foreign countries we are not at war with need to be addressed also according to many.

These are the kinds of questions that our working press should have been asking of all those men and women who attempted to run for the nation’s highest office in this last election period. Our free press has failed miserably in my opinion, has too often become the mouthpiece of one side or another, and not lived up to the high standards we should demand.

Another failure that we have had to endure for too many years is congress. Our representatives in the house and senate have abrogated their basic responsibilities, allowed several administrations to bully their agendas into practice, and not acted in a responsible manner. Will a congress and presidency representing the same political philosophy help or hinder during the next four years? It hasn’t always been helpful in the past.

We’re entering a new concept in American government, one not fully supported by a strong majority, and questions of race relations, education, economics, and foreign intrigue dominate. Mr. Trump is the president of the United States. I’m thinking it might be fun to save this little missive and reread it four years from now and see if any of these questions have been answered.

Until next time, read good books and stay regular

Johnny Gunn
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