Political Marsupials

ThinkerI had it in my mind today to share some thoughts about getting to the root of problems and then solving them at the point where they began. It is that type of critical thinking followed by action that our Washington politicians greatly lack.

I started my problem list with the oil spill, for example. Find the root of that problem if you are interested in such a drill. Pun not intended. Start by asking why we are drilling for oil a mile beneath the surface of the ocean when there are many completely safe places to drill for it. Then work your way back from there. Eventually, you will arrive at a stalemate between ideology and common sense. Unfortunately for us commoners, those of us who actually rely on a productive carbon fueled economy, the politicians are rarely on the side of sense, common or otherwise. They live at a dogmatic juncture where utopian ideals are frequently overcome by reality and where problems are never solved.

As you can see, my self-diagnosed attention deficit disorder kicked in and my mind side tracked a little, or maybe, depending on your perspective it tracked.

Snarky little men perched on a dais looking down upon others, asking them questions that should be directed into the mirror and feigning outrage toward the television cameras are frankly incapable of solving problems. By their actions, I must conclude that their objective is something other than solving a problem. Any problem.

The “damned hole” will never get plugged by even ten thousand sessions of Congressional Kangaroo Court, especially when Washington’s marsupials are only interested in how to benefit politically from the real human suffering that the disaster produces. (Kangaroos are marsupials, not the typical political order of Rodentia found in Washington, but I’ll get to that in a minute.) Certainly, by their method they will never find their way to the root of the problem and then solve it.

In the President’s Oval Office address on the oil spill he summed up the challenge of moving our nation from carbon based energy to green energy by stating, “Even if we’re unsure exactly what that looks like. Even if we don’t yet know precisely how to get there. We know we’ll get there.” Let me interpret that into English. We are on a trip. We do not know the destination. We do not have a map. But, we are going there as fast as is politically possible. That is typical political problem causing rather than problem solving. I am not a czar of any kind, but I believe I can fill in the blanks for the President. If we hold hands and leap from a tall building, we know we will get to the bottom. I am also fairly certain that we know what that looks like. I also believe we will know it when we get there, even if it is for only a tiny fraction of a second.

Marsupials are interesting critters. They give birth to immature young and then have them fully develop in a pouch on mamma’s belly. Political marsupials are much the same. They have their pouches full of what is the beginning of many major problems. One must only look around to see the matured ones. A failed energy policy, Fannie and Freddie mortgages, labor unions, financial crises, out of control budget deficits, etc., etc. The mamma marsupial turns her mature offspring out when they are ready to care for themselves. The political marsupial nurses his immature problems along until they develop into calamities. Then he starts wagging his self-righteous finger while glaring from the dais across the top of his glasses and demanding to know why the target of his ire is unable to solve the problem he created. It makes perfect sense.

Let’s see now. What was I talking about? With all of the grand examples we have of ethical men of integrity solving our Nation’s problems that is on display in Washington, I want to wish all of you Dads a Happy Father’s Day.

© 2010