Local opinion columnists

Thought for the day: Political accountability

By From page A9 | July 27, 2014

My wife and I had lunch at Texas Roadhouse. Since living in Fairfield since 1968 and being a member of the Fairfield Fire Department, I find it important to support our local businesses.

When their table in back was ready, a smiling young group of 35 to 40 uniformed men and women passed by us and judging from the gifts they carried, some sort of achievement was being celebrated.

Seeing these brave young men and women, I began to think about how fortunate we, in America, are to have so many people using their free will to volunteer to defend our nation and our way of life.

As I was admiring their courage, I could not help thinking about several issues that affect their service and ultimately their lives. Our administration, in its infinite wisdom, has chosen to cut back on hazardous duty pay to include areas in the Middle East. Never mind the infamous five-for-one trade of terrorists from the Guantanamo Bay detention facility for a soldier who may have walked away from his post in Afghanistan five years ago, thus making the military fair game as high value targets wherever terrorists are.

The ongoing Veterans Affairs scandal surrounding bonuses paid to upper management for “cooking the books,” shakes me to my core. We may never know how many of our honored veterans died so that some scheming desk-jockey could pocket a hefty bonus. Our administration has set the bar so that it is more important to produce good numbers than to do their jobs.

Can you imagine the city of Fairfield offering a bonus to fire or police supervisors to “cook the books” to make the mayor and/or City Council members look good? We suppose that all public agencies pay a good wage to their employees with the understanding they will do a good job.

Watching the news from the Middle East causes me to wonder: Since President Barack Obama admits that most every scandal surrounding his White House is a complete surprise to him as he finds out about them in the press, could it be that he has missed the biggest problem yet?

Let’s take a walk back to the first part of the last century:

  • World War I started in Europe after the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand and family July 12, 1914, by five Serbs and one Bosnian Muslim. The U.S. took little notice, not wanting to get involved, until we were attacked on the high sea when the Germans violated their pledge to suspend unrestricted submarine warfare in the North Atlantic and the Mediterranean, and also tried to entice Mexico into an alliance against the U.S. President Woodrow Wilson lost his attempt to keep us neutral.
  • World War II started with a mad man’s alliance with two other countries and his taking land back that was lost during the previous war, while the U.S. made every attempt to stay neutral again, until Pearl Harbor.
  • Our present conflicts, in my opinion, started during the Iran hostage situation during President Jimmy Carter’s do-nothing administration. Having been attacked several times in the intervening years and in different venues, it took the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to connect the dots.

You may recall the words of President George W. Bush saying that we were in a “new kind of war that would be long and unlike any war we had seen before.” He was right, and was determined to take the fight to the enemy, rather than let it come to our shores again.

I question whether President Obama notices what is happening in the Mideast. Israel is being attacked from both sides and he says the Israelis must show restraint. In my opinion, World War III has begun, but the memo was probably on Lois Lerner’s computer.

You really can make a change?

  • Get involved, talk with friends and neighbors.
  • Study your candidates and ask what their long-term vision for the city is and what is their true agenda after elected.

We must hold all of those we put in office responsible for those irresponsible things they do while there.

Rod Keck is a resident of Fairfield. Reach him at [email protected]

Rod Keck


Discussion | 8 comments

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  • CD BrooksJuly 27, 2014 - 6:17 am

    Wow Rod, you probably should have eaten elsewhere...You may recall legislation in AZ along with other states signed by the GOP to promote "religious freedoms" that guaranteed and made legal frankly, discrimination against American Citizens. Where's the accountability there Sir? Never mind.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • FDCJuly 27, 2014 - 7:41 am

    Attaboy, CD: Change the subject, redirect the discourse and try to confuse the reader. Typical of you, CD.

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  • Voter IDJuly 27, 2014 - 9:42 am

    Just another useless rant by CD. How about demanding that every one that votes shows a valid ID to prove they are who they say they are.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Rick WoodJuly 27, 2014 - 11:33 pm

    What do you do about vote by mail?

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  • Jason KnowlesJuly 27, 2014 - 9:59 am

    Our current problems started with Jimmy Carter? Are you sure it wasn't the CIA-backed coup of Mossadegh in 1953? Or the auspices of the Balfour Declaration? Or religious tribalism that dates back thousands of years?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Jason KnowlesJuly 27, 2014 - 10:03 am

    The 1953 CIA-backed coup of Mossadegh? The Balfour Declaration? Religious tribalism that dates back thousands of years? You don't think those contributed, Rod? No, just blame a Democrat that was in office at the time. True, Carter did not want to intervene militarily at first, but to blame it all on him is partisan and inaccurate. You're better than that, Rod.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Salty DogJuly 27, 2014 - 10:19 am

    Jason do you mean like President Obama and the Democrats were blaming former President Bush. You liberals have no shame.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Jason KnowlesJuly 27, 2014 - 10:48 am

    The Dems who voted to authorize war are complicit. I'm arguing history and Keck's assertions regarding Carter. I'm not a Democrat, Dog.

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