Robert Young wasn’t a doctor, he just played one on TV. Politicians are also actors, in a way. Like the rest of us, they probably are pretty knowledgeable in one field or another. But they act like they know everything. And that can be dangerous.
In his book The Trust Committed To Me, citizen legislator Mark Sanford tells how easy it is to get drunk on all the attention accorded to those who achieve high public office. Once you’re elected to Congress, the media start peppering you with questions, demanding your opinion on anything and everything almost as if you’re the universal expert. Then there’s the special deference everyone gives you, the limos that pick you up and drop you off, the lobbyists and constituents who hang on your every word. “If you weren’t careful you’d start to believe your own press,” as Sanford puts it.
Congressman Sanford was able to remain just a regular guy, and step down from power after his third term just as he promised he would. But not everyone has that kind of moral fiber. It’s easy to understand what happens to folks who stick around Washington too long. Because you have power, people treat you as if you’re the man. As if you are now very, very, but very, very, very important. The guy who knows everything. The god who walks.
But politicians don’t necessarily know what’s best for you and me. They don’t know everything. And none of them is a god. They just play one on TV.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.