What has become of our government is a question asked many times lately. The emphasis is on our federal government as the media and bloggers debate its actions. Those of us here in Minnesota are thinking the same thing along with some other states around the country. But have any of us taken a good step back and looked at our overall government? What is the state of our governments from township, to city, to school board, to county, to soil and water boards’, to chamber of commerce, to state, to federal? What have we, the citizens, gotten ourselves into in electing the governments we did?
The loss of mission oriented minds replaced by task oriented. And then there is favoritism. Now I use the word favoritism because of local elections that don’t have the billion dollar budgets like some federal elections do but favoritism still goes on. To give you a little example let me tell you a story about city, a county, and a state.
The City is on the edge of the metro area, farmlands still managed but being lost to subdivisions. This is a renewed city that is going from old to new government, budget, cooperation, but somehow the same political bias. I came from a city like this many, many, years ago. We elected a city council but unfortunately a large car dealer, the one large Lutheran church, and 2 or 3 doctors in town ruled instead. I am seeing the same thing in this town. We have an implement dealer, a church, and 2 or 3 old timers whose families have been here since the beginning. There is one sentence I here over and over “But we’ve always done it this way”. That may have been well and good 20 years ago when we were a township, but we are a city now and the way government spends, taxes, and what we are responsible for has changed. Getting the public to understand that would be easy if we didn’t have the “dirty dozen” out there saying “but we’ve always done it this way”.
Now being a city we are now responsible for security, for roads, for fire, for parks and trails, for taxes, and for the burden the county puts upon us because they no longer feel it is their responsibility (i.e. they can’t afford it). This is what is happening to every city across Minnesota, the crap is rolling off one back and on to another and ends up falling on the cities and townships and has nowhere else to go. Some of us are starting to say “No”.
School districts are asking for levies, bonding money every election year. We vote and most times we say yes. We here in the Anoka Hennepin School District 11 have yet to stand and ask “cut our administration cost”, “cut our sports costs”, no, instead, the first cut is teachers, classes, and education. Why do we have 4 principals for each school? When I was in school with the same amount of kids I had 1 principal and the kids were kept in line. We had a full-time nurse. We had a full-time counselor. We had bands for middle school and high school. We had art for middle school and high school. We had industrial arts and metals for high school. There is too much Administration in our schools, just like there is too much administration in Hospitals, and too much administration in our law and fire departments. We here in A-H 11, have a school board that is ruling by personal interest and not by student interest. During the last election, certain candidates endorsed by groups that should have never endorsed such anti civil rights candidates. These supposed “liberal rights” groups endorsed these candidates just because they were female or just because they had other endorsement coupons. What these “liberal rights” groups endorsed was bullying, hate, and suicide.
Last but not least, schools are responsible for teaching not disciplining. Parents are responsible for disciplining. If this is something parents are not responsible for then the courts will find someone responsible for them. Parents thinking that schools are a concrete box for babysitting. Schools are for educating and protecting children. If your child is an asshole, that’s your fault for not raising them correctly. And the excuse of “but I work too much to support them” is bullshit. Then you find “family”, neighbors, church, programs, etc. to help. Your child is your responsibility not the schools, but to teach him or her for the hours they are there.
The County: the County, what can I say but caught in the middle. Trying to support a structure between 21 cities, 5 school districts, a sheriff’s department and at last count I think 8 city police departments. Not to mention miles of roadway, bridges, trails, parks, and other public land. But once again, why aren’t the commissioners publically fighting back? Why are they not calling for an end to cuts to law enforcement, to education, and to transportation? The buck, or crap as I have called it, has to slide somewhere and it does not roll up hill.
The State: Where do I start; a legislature more interested in who I marry and my uterus than our debt, our economy, our children, our safety, just to name a few. We voted these people in. WE VOTED THESE PEOPLE IN! It’s our fault our state is in this mess along with our nation. Our vote put these people in power, from the smallest township to the biggest office in government and they are all connected whether you want to believe it or not.
So, what was the question? Oh yeah…“how did we get this way?” is easy to see when you look at each form of government. Too much emphasis by our media, by our money, and by our “party”, is on federal and state elections, and not even all state elections get noticed. Local elections make huge impacts to what happens further up the chain of command. It’s time to demand the chains of concern start doing their best to make sure the worst are out of the running.