Pascal said that â€œAll menâ€™s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone.â€
Iâ€™m thinking that the problem of politicians is that they cannot sit together without spending increasing amounts of money.
In his final State of the Union message, with Senators and Representatives gathered round, President Bush did what Iâ€™d hoped heâ€™d do: Proclaiming he would issue an Executive Order to not spend the money directed by Congressâ€™s earmarked pork spending.
But was that merely a sop to responsibility? The sum total of the rest of his suggested new spending netted out to nearly $135 billion. That is the most heâ€™s ever proposed in a State of the Union address.
Itâ€™s still not half what Bill Clinton asked for in his final State of the Union speech, and Clinton didnâ€™t have a wartime excuse. But do you see the pattern here?
The longer a president is in office, the more he wants to spend.
Thereâ€™s something about sitting in a place of power that whispers to politicians one clear message: spend, spend, spend.
The longer in office, the more they obey that message.
Monks in monasteries talk about the need for spiritual discipline. Hmmm. What discipline might help politicians cope?
Well, the President serves under term limits. Increasing urges to spend get cut off at the end of the second term.
Too bad our Senators and Representatives donâ€™t come up against a similar cutoff.
This is Common Sense. Iâ€™m Paul Jacob.