So you’ve probably heard or read about the ‘frog in a boiling pot of water’ analogy. You take one frog and try to cook him (lets pretend you’re French for half a second). First, you try the boiling hot water. You drop mr. froggy in and guess what happens? Its hot so he jumps out.
You now take the same frog and this time put him in a room temperature pot of water. He does fine, he’s comfortable, but you’re not cooking him. So what do you do to keep him from hopping out? You turn up the heat slowly so that he never notices that its getting hotter and hotter until its too late.
The ever ubiquitous and scary ‘they’ say that the pot of slowly heating water is our political process and that we the tax-payer are the unassuming frog. Slowly but surely, poor government at every level and in many forms is turning up the heat on us:, taxes, bad policies, bad bailouts, corrupt/inept government, etc, etc. We are getting so used to it that we see ridiculous laws being passed and terrible deals being cut on our behalf and we do not realize that these decisions are turning up the heat and that we are slowly being cooked….
On one front that is nice, and maybe it applies to some people that care, but I truly believe that the sad state of government that we see before us right now actually has a lot more to do with us than just being an unassuming and passive frog. That’s too forgiving…so now my dear readers, you’ve seen me rail against bad government and bad policies, I’m going to ask you to look in the mirror real hard for just a moment.
Many of us tax-payers just don’t care – and that is a serious problem. The argument is that our lives are too busy, we work too hard, and in this bad economy, it is all many people can do to survive much less be civic-minded. We feel that government isn’t going to listen to our concerns, so we stop watching and stop really caring – and that is when we really give control up – and most have. You’ve got to educate yourself on the issues and talk about them. That is part of the burden of being a citizen. It is a priveledge to be a citizen of this great nation and most don’t appreciate it enough to make their voice heard. You’ve got to know what your stand for (even if you disagree with my politics), because if you believe in nothing, you’ll fall for anything.
You have the time too, don’t tell me you don’t – but its more fun to watch sunday football than it is to read the paper online or watch the nightly news. WE ARE ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL and we are the only ones that can correct the course – Washington is happy with the status quo, they don’t want you to do anything. They know that would take effort on our part and they are counting on it.
The second group is a vocal minority. They are educated on the issues of the day and they do care. Sometimes they even get together and protest or demonstrate…but what happens? Because the first group doesn’t really care and is implicitly okay with the terrible path our country is set in, this group never gains any traction. They swell to a certain size which is less than a critical mass, but then outrage fatigue sets in. They see that despite their protests, letters, and general civic activism, the same inept and corrupt politicians still pass the same crappy laws that I mentioned above.
My solution – just care a little bit folks? How hard is it to do that so that you can make this nation a better place for your pocket book and for your childrens’ futures? Mute the drivel from MTV or E! or whatever mindless show you fancy and read just ONE article from your local newspaper. Beware of bias – its easy to spot, but you have to know that spin does exist before you can really spot it. Also, try www.economist.com. The Economist is a great magazine that has an on-line edition. Just read something, anything. Get mad about something, but you don’t even have to go that far. Just care about something larger than yourself for five minutes. Trust me, its worth it both for you and for the children whose care you are leaving this country in one day. What kind of country do you want your children to live in. Is it the one whos course we are on right now? Do you really want your response to be ‘sorry this is how I found it but other things were more important at the time…’
Tag you’re It America. Wake Up.