Leaders that Sacrifice the Future

I don’t rant often on this blog, but I had to let this out.

We have many leaders whose great skill is misleading us, by exploiting our fears, dreams, and beliefs. Many untruths and much corruption will be exposed by the financial crisis of 2008.

Economic reality is not altered, in the long term, by the self-serving words of politicians and CEOs. They must have a messiah complex to think that what they say will magically come true when they are just hoping to suspend the natural laws of economics (again).

They use charisma and mass psychology to get trusting people to believe their words. These trusting people are finally seeing that many of our leaders are looking out for themselves, greedily plundering organizations large and small to enrich themselves and their cronies, to the detriment of the electorate and investors.

Voters and stock holders have believed and trusted their leaders (who seem to know how to exploit every crisis for their own personal gain) are depressed by what is happening. When enough people get depressed, the economy will follow.

Do we get the leaders we deserve? I encourage every one to ponder that question.

Do corrupt leaders get what they deserve? Some do, but many don’t. Why? Because often they make the rules or can avoid the consequences.

Let’s all pay more attention to the slogans, excuses, explanations, and scapegoating offered by leaders at every level. We can’t afford to be misled any more.

Leaders

Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on….or by imbeciles who really mean it.

Mark Twain

via James Quinn in Looming Financial Catastrophe: A Real Inconvenient Truth

Example cited:

The Bush Administration recently announced that the budget deficit for FY09 will be $482 billion. White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said President Bush is determined to enforce greater fiscal discipline while pursuing a pro-growth economic strategy…. He has 4 months left in office and NOW he wants to enforce greater fiscal discipline. The $482 billion doesn’t include the $180 billion per year being spent … in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Lee Iacocca: Where Have All the Leaders Gone?

Excerpts from Lee Iacocca’s book published in 2007. Apparently he was right on the mark and we’re seeing the results in 2008

Link: Iacocca: Where Have All the Leaders Gone?.

Am I the only guy in this country who’s fed up with what’s happening? Where the hell is our outrage? We should be screaming bloody murder. We’ve got a gang of clueless bozos steering our ship of state right over a cliff, we’ve got corporate gangsters stealing us blind, and we can’t even clean up after a hurricane much less build a hybrid car. But instead of getting mad, everyone sits around and nods their heads when the politicians say, "Stay the course." Stay the course? You’ve got to be kidding. This is America, not the damned Titanic. I’ll give you a sound bite: Throw the bums out! You might think I’m getting senile, that I’ve gone off my rocker, and maybe I have. But someone has to speak up. I hardly recognize this country anymore.

I’m going to speak up because it’s my patriotic duty. I think people will listen to me. They say I have a reputation as a straight shooter. So I’ll tell you how I see it, and it’s not pretty, but at least it’s real. I’m hoping to strike a nerve in those young folks who say they don’t vote because they don’t trust politicians to represent their interests. Hey, America, wake up. These guys work for us. Who Are These Guys, Anyway? Why are we in this mess? How did we end up with this crowd in Washington? Well, we voted for them, or at least some of us did. But I’ll tell you what we didn’t do. We didn’t agree to suspend the Constitution. We didn’t agree to stop asking questions or demanding answers. Some of us are sick and tired of people who call free speech treason. Where I come from that’s a dictatorship, not a democracy. And don’t tell me it’s all the fault of right-wing Republicans or liberal Democrats. That’s an intellectually lazy argument, and it’s part of the reason we’re in this stew. We’re not just a nation of factions. We’re a people. We share common principles and ideals. And we rise and fall together.

Where are the voices of leaders who can inspire us to action and make us stand taller? What happened to the strong and resolute party of Lincoln? What happened to the courageous, populist party of FDR and Truman? There was a time in this country when the voices of great leaders lifted us up and made us want to do better. Where have all the leaders gone?