Thursday, January 22, 2009

Change--Honestly


The new White House web site is a thing of beauty. Not like any presidential web site I've ever seen, that's for sure. I'm sure it has its critics among the geek classes--they're always bitching about something. But I bet there's a lot of regular people like me who are impressed.

I wasn't born a cynic, but my almost 50 years of observing the national government in action, have made me one. I can remember all the way back to JFK, and from that administration to the late-lamented departure of the vile little fraud who was president for the last eight years, when has the national government not lied to us? Just off the top of my noggin, I cannot recall anything Jimmy Carter lied to us about. In fact, I remember him trying to convey to us some hard truths about the consequences of our so-called "way of life," and all that got him was constant criticism. But the others? Vietnam, Watergate, Iran-Contra, Gulf War, Clinton, W--a passel of lies and liars, a sea of lies, lies stretching to the horizon.

Do I dare believe that change has really come to America? That this web site is its harbinger? That transparency and accountability will actually be installed as pillars upon which the Obama administration will stand? I'm not ready to go that far yet. But obviously they have something to do with the presidential web site. And the new president's first two executive orders, promulgated on his very first full day in office, certainly give me hope. The first one has to do with the disclosure of presidential records. Unless they are covered by the usual caveats about national security or law enforcement, they're going to be public. And that covers records of previous presidents, too. Claims of executive privilege go through a vetting process described in the order. The second executive order puts the kibosh on the gravy train enjoyed by lobbyists working for the executive branch. This is a train that goes back for miles. The revolving door has been firmly nailed closed, and gifts are gone, too.

How refreshing. No more fat pigs from the executive departments with their snoots in the public trough. I've forgotten what that even looks like--the pigs not being there, that is.
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