2013-06-27 / Letters

Government Scandals A Result Of Not Paying Attention

To the Editor,

So there I am, watching a panel discussion on my favorite news show, shortly after the first three government scandals came to the light of day. The conservative host asked a specific question that a reasonable person could assume would be met with a specific answer. The panelist on the other side of the fence responded with something like the following: “Polls show that the American people don’t want to talk about these scandals! They want to talk about the economy, the deficit and ... . ” I have my doubts that there even is such a poll, and I was somehow reminded of the old line from the “Wizard of Oz.” “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!” This, while Dorothy and company are quickly coming to the conclusion that the Land of Oz is run by a self-aggrandizing phony instead of the great wizard they’ve come to believe in. Then, there was another one who actually maintained that the Republicans “dreamed these scandals up!”

If you have watched enough of these, this song and dance has to look familiar. It’s the standard bit. Cover it up, confuse the issue or, turn attention to anything other than the subject at hand. They are thoroughly convinced that we are stupid enough to buy the same foul-smelling load over and over again. The shame of it is, we have just not been paying attention. The wizard is still behind the curtain.

As for the scandals themselves: Benghazi, the IRS targeting conservative groups, the DOJ spying on reporters, etc., etc., it is painfully obvious they are born of a culture that promotes this sort of behavior. Once again, that culture now exists because... we have not been paying attention.

There is a flip side to these scandals. They cannot be defended. That being the case, we are watching those who would defend them anyway, dig themselves into deeper holes. The verbal sleightof hand is beginning to draw groans and eye rolls instead of mindless nods of approval.

Another thought occurs here. The officials who now find themselves under investigation must have known their positions were wrong. Right? Otherwise, why would they be trying so hard to hide them?

Bill Watson


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