I have been awake now for 26 straight hours. Late Friday night into early Sunday morning, most of this time spent working. I am developing an odd hybrid narrative on American history since the founding and through every presidential administration we have known. I find myself increasingly appalled by the actions and mistakes and arrogance and stupidity of nearly everyone who has served in this office. We can exclude Washington from this, because he really never wanted the job, and then there are those who died too quickly to learn just how terrible a job it is (William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor, James Garfield), and a handful (though certainly not all) of the kindly do-gooders (Benjamin Harrison, Theodore Roosevelt, mostly). It is a job that attracts mostly the worst sort of power hungry people. When is the last time a President stood tall and strong in the idea of serving the nation? Is anyone any longer willing to risk the future in order to save lives and make the world a more livable place? Has all altruism, all the good of government, of any form of human civilization, become merely about the self and some sort of bottom line?
It seems that way, doesn’t it? And so the bitterness of the outside world consumes us and we can only blame everyone but ourselves. Is this how we choose to live?