Monday, July 9, 2012

Partisanship is a good thing

Here in the States we've recently had our Congress hold the Attorney General in Contempt of Congress for failing to turn over documents relating to a weapons walking program that the ATF was running.  Basically, the ATF lost track of a goodly number of the weapons and at least one of them was used in the murder of a Federal Agent.  Not too surprisingly, the vote went largely down party lines, although several Democrats defected and if I recall correctly one Republican abstained.  The cries were raised, even before the votes, that partisanship was rearing its ugly head again, and the people should be outraged.

Personally, I'm deeply thankful for it, and I rather wish we had more of it.
Now, I'm not advocating for the return of the days where Representatives would bring weapons to the floor of the House, but a good amount of partisanship leads to a healthy Government.  I've always been a believer that Government should be scared of the people, not the other way around.  Sadly, with the influence that political parties bring to the field, having only one party brings with it corruption, not cooperation.  We need to have different parties in power trying to score points off each other, if only so we can truly know what is going on.

Now, I'm not saying that a crime has been committed here. I don't know enough about the laws regarding things like this, nor do I pretend to.  Beyond that, there have been no trials, and I still stand by the presumption of innocence.   I do feel that it is worth investigating, and from what I have been reading it does appear that the Justice Department has been wrongly withholding documents that were legally requested by the oversight committee.  I feel the American People have a right to know if their public officials are doing a good job, and if they are not they should be held accountable both in the political and criminal arenas if necessary.  While I can understand protecting yourself from legal repercussions, I have higher standards for people when they choose to serve the Government.  When you choose to serve the entity who enforces the laws, you had best be willing to follow them as well.

Our short history is littered with incidents like this one, where in the name of scoring political points scandals and wrongdoing have been brought to light.  The cry always goes up from the offending side of partisanship and how it's only being done for the sake of politics, and far too often the people swallow this line and believe it to be a bad thing.  Personally, anything that makes Government more accountable to the people can only be a good thing, and I wish we had more people in Government willing to make waves even within their own party. 

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