Something’s missing here.  You know what it is?

Accountability.

It’s something I learned about early on and is a trait I have endeavored to enhance in myself.

I think that is what the American people need most. A lesson in accountability. It seems a large portion of our eroding moral fiber is a direct result of a lack of accountability. Everyone wants to blame anyone else for their own actions. It’d be easier to immediately admit wrongdoing, and do what you can to minimize the damage. But we’d rather someone else be held accountable, just so long as it isn’t us.

And who can blame them? When Insurance, and Big Tobacco, and Big Oil, and Health care, and the financial and banking industries, and you-name-it refuse to accept responsibility for their actions, why shouldn’t we? Insurance companies fight tooth and nail against all kinds of legitimate claims.  Hospitals deny removing the wrong body parts. Chemical companies deny responsibility for poisoning our environment and our bodies. Tobacco companies deny using chemicals to make us more addicted to their smokes; deny marketing to young people and children. Hell, they even denied that smoking was bad for you!  Banks and the financial industry…where do I even start?  Time and time again we find ourselves sucking up the negative affects of their bad decisions, funding their bailout because they’re “too big to fail” and then watching in helpless horror as the captains of their miserable, greedy, manipulative industry walk away with tens of millions in bonuses after bringing the world to the brink of economic collapse.

But then, who can blame THEM? When our government is obviously incapable of holding itself accountable for anything.

So that’s what I think we REALLY need now. A government that is truly accountable for its actions. Now there are plenty of other things that tie into that, honesty, responsibility, logic, humanity, etc. But overall, right now, what America needs is a government that can be held accountable for its successes (which quite frankly, we’ve had very few of recently) as well as its failures (which we’ve had more than our fair share of over the last 30 years).

I’m truly not talking Republican/Democrat here. I don’t see the necessity of such ridiculously over-simplified labels in this issue. No, I am talking about GOVERNMENT. The whole stinking, rotten, filthy mess.

Do we want our government to behave like the Catholic church, which took nearly 700 years to admit that the inquisition was “a morally unsound” occurrence? Though they’ve finally admitted to that (I’m pretty sure the statute of limitations on stake-burning had run out) they obviously still haven’t grasped the concept of accountability. Their lack of enthusiasm in investigating and disciplining pederast priests is indicative of that. I mean, if you won’t castrate them, then at least excommunicate them!.

Or how about Baghdad Bob? Who continually announced to Iraq’s citizens that the Infidel Invasion was being turned back, meanwhile nearly being run over by a Bradley Fighting vehicle.

If nothing else, I want my government to be able to say, “Okay look, we made an educated guess. We took a chance, and it backfired on us. We screwed up. Now we’re going to try to fix it.”  But that isn’t what gets said. Instead we get, “That wasn’t our fault” or “It was due to other uncontrollable circumstances” or more recently, “Nothing went wrong. What could’ve gone wrong? Why do you hate freedom?”

But we’re the ones to blame. We’ve put up with it for so long we practically ask to be lied to now. Aftre all, there are still a considerable number of Americans who think the Vietnam war was a success, who believe Nixon wasn’t a crook, who think that Bill Clinton never lied to the American people,  who think that Iraq blew up the WTC and had weapons of mass destruction (just ask Joe Lieberman).

But the truth is, what the American people needed to hear, in all of those instances, was the truth, even after the mistake had been made. “It’s true, Vietnam was a waste of time, money, and human life.”  “I broke the law for political gain and then lied about it to the American people.”  “I received a blowjob in the oval office and I loved every minute of it!”  “We need oil, BAD.  And we’re going to try to dethrone our old ally/enemy in order to get more of it.”

Now THAT is the sort of honesty I can get behind.  I may not like the person.  I may not like the party.  I may not like the policy.  But at least I don’t have to doubt their motives, or be suspicious of their tactics, or get sick when the republicans put a talking head on television who dodges questions, misrepresents policy, and ignores facts just to further an ulterior (and likely corporate-influenced) motive.

For the love of PETE!  Half of what our problems are relate back to us not being accountable. So do us a favor: straighten your tie, bow your head, step up to the mic, AND ADMIT WHEN YOU’RE WRONG!

In the words of Jack Burton, “Tell me the truth.  I can take it!”

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