"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Bureaucrats Stay Home

Back to the daily routine after a week and a half of Christmas vacation, and back therefore to the daily dose of drive time local talk radio. So what was the big controversy this AM? Whether closing the federal government to mourn Gerald Ford's passing was a fitting mark of respect or the end of civilization as we know it. (DC talk radio thrives on this sort of logical fallacy.) Many opposed to the closure thought it was a waste of resources. These people must not ever have actual dealings with the federal government. Any day the gray buildings of Independence Avenue are shuttered is a day some bossy GS-14 who thinks his MPA is a license to pester ordinary folk can find something better to do for 24 hours. National productivity probably soars on federal holidays like this.

Not that I feel any great grief at the passing of Gerald Ford; I'm sure he was a great guy and did his best under trying circumstances, but all I really remember about his presidency are those silly Whip Inflation Now buttons and how my goverment teacher looked like his head was going to explode when told us Nixon had been pardoned. But just to show my heart's in the right place, I propose to observe a period of penance today for the sin and stupidity of voting for Carter in 1976. I'm sorry, Gerry. You're in a better place now and I'm sure you've forgiven us, but you could have been an utter scoundrel and still not have deserved to lose the White House to that sanctimonious creep.

3 comments:

Jay D. Homnick said...

A mere stripling of 18, I stood quivering in the booth on that fateful day in November of 1976.

I confess that I had a momentary impulse to vote for Carter; I lusted in my heart, as it were.

But sanity prevailed and I rejected the Philistine notion of having a President named Jimmy. Yet, had I known I was casting a ballot for Leslie, I might well have reconsidered.

Evanston said...

I was 15 then. I could barely tell the difference between Carter's politics and Ford's. Since my father was a Republican, and I'm from the Midwest (Chicagoland), I favored Ford over the weird hick Carter. But honestly, did anyone have a clue regarding what Carter would do? And as others (NRO?) have said, Ford was good at finding the political center and compromising. The only thing I remember him doing was pushing WIN (Whip Inflation Now) buttons, a pathetic measure if there ever was one. Reagan came along and changed the political center, but was only able to do so when it became quite obvious that the likes of Ford, Chuck Percy, and other country club Republicans were little more than Democrat Lite. Ford enjoyed his pension and mostly kept his mouth shut after leaving office. This is the only part about him I find particularly praiseworthy. And for the record, I backed Anderson in 1980, not Reagan. Reagan, the "B" movie actor and seeming doddering fool, changed everything.

Tom Van Dyke said...

I confess to Anderson, too.

Well noted, Kathy, and the government could use at least one more day off this year, if you know what I mean.