For me, an uncomfortable byproduct of vacations is lack of constant news updates. Most folks continually stay connected to info faucets via cells, pads or notebooks. I’m essentially tech ignorant and, therefore, wander around in the dark without Bill O’Reilly when away from home.
So for a couple of weeks I was cocooned in an informational black hole, albeit a very beautiful hole called Italy. One of the first things I did when we got back to the USA was to re-establish my current events routine.
I expected something of note to have happened when we were gone, but it was like skipping two weeks of soap-opera drama where events move at glacial speeds, barely inching along between commercials and previews. Of course one revelation grew serious legs — the IRS targeting scandal.
It somewhat surprised me because I’ve been a fan of the IRS. That may sound weird coming from an accountant, but audit encounters I’ve had have always involved competent agents trying to do their jobs. Once you exhibit respect for their intelligence by being straightforward and truthful, any roiled waters typically smooth right out.
Notwithstanding these startlingly bad behaviors, I retain confidence that rank-and-file field workers are mostly good, honest and dedicated people. The concept that "A fish rots from the head down" has never been more applicable than in government bureaucracies.
Obama spouts lies with rehearsed ease and surrounds himself with like-tongued people, thereby setting the tone of his administration. I believe nothing he or his minions say.
If I were his dog, he’d have to hire somebody to call me. Come to think about it, I’m sure a "Puppy Czar" isn’t outside the realm of possibility for this guy.
In his game, politics trumps truth so with such a rotten noggin at the very top, it’s not surprising honesty has been moved to the back of the bus. And everybody knows what flows downhill.
Last week came another Baby Ruth rolling into the pool. Apparently government has cast a very wide net over our phone and Internet activities.
Back in the day when we could have faith in the institutional integrity of those analyzing this information, I’d have no problem with it. But now every agency is suspect.
Throughout my vacation, it was quite nice not seeing or hearing the president. I did catch some video of him in our hotel room, but it was dubbed into Italian. He looked like an actor in a bad Japanese movie. Where’s Godzilla when you need him?
I guess I should take a clue from the respite and wean myself away from all TV news programs. This nasty circus has three years left on its engagement. Then the cleanup can begin.
On the plus side, there’s a personal silver lining for us older folks. We’re pretty much bullet-proof because liberals can’t ruin a life already lived, and most of mine has passed.
In the minus column, today’s young folks don’t seem to have — or want — a clue. Have you seen random street interviews of average college students? Scary and sad.
Otis Gardner’s column appears here weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.