Friday, November 11, 2016

longterm communal good?

Washington’s Zero-Sum Game

somehow, somewhere,
we lost common destination,
it used to be, I think,
that we would agree on where we needed to go,
and we could disagree on which path was best to get there:

global climate change as a real problem, 
and the solution to it?
maybe government regulation,
maybe incentives to enlist private companies in the solution,
the argument over the tool, not the result needed,

even then, though, 
we could disagree as to whether there is a problem:
whether government needs to regulate the environment,
to regulate minimum wages, maximum compensation, 
use taxes to fine-tune the common good,
or whether to just trust a mythical “invisible hand”
within unbridled private desires,

anyone who knows bureaucracy can fear government,
anyone who knows greed can fear its touch on the soul,
the super-ego needs the id for its power,
and the id needs the super-ego to temper its excesses,

our national government has become dysfunctional,
and I blame the zero-sum game 
of mistaking short-term partisan victory
for longterm communal good.

by Henry H. Walker

November 9, ‘16

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