In reading this BBC opinion piece on American healthcare reform, what struck me more than the actual topic wereÂ its views on how careful politicians have to be.
They can’t try to teach the people – or they’ll sound condescending.
They can’t assume the people have a basic understanding – because they won’t.
Depressing. But, I think, true.
I don’t know much about politics on purpose – becauseÂ it depresses me. I realize that’s an appalling reason not to get involved – that I feel it’s beyond hope. But let me explain.
From what I know, our country was founded with the tacit understanding that our leaders would be part-time politicians. You’d go serve your time helping run the country, and then you’d go back to your farm. But that’s completely upside-down now.
We not only have career politicians, we have dynasties of them.Â These people can’t possibly understand what it’s like for their constituents. That’s not a crack on them – I think most of them are brilliant and well-intentioned. But they’ve spent their lives on the Hill: the outside world is foreign.
Our democracy was meant to be “of the people” but it’s now run by a group of ultra-specialists.Â How can a leadership that insular function in our best interests? And how could we change that, when it seems so inherently incapable of working?