October 10, 2011

Mitt Romney or JFK, Jr.?

Something really rubbed me the wrong way about Mitt Romney’s facile and understandable but cynical joke at a girl the other day {video}. Watching John F. Kennedy, Jr. {video}, a few days later, I realized why.

Two conceptions of Politics:

Sleazy/Corrupt/The Man/Stay out of it


Noble Profession/Public Servants/Get involved.

I’ll go with option two.

Romney: get into the world of the “real economy,” get rich, then do it if you like.

JFK, Jr.: JFK inspired a generation to get involved and serve.

Without citizens getting involved and raising the bar, the bar gets lowered, and politics becomes about corruption and incompetence instead of getting-things-done-for-people and inspiration.

It’s a self-fulfilling cycle, either way.

As JFK Jr. says below, it’s natural and healthy to be skeptical, but it’s important not to get cynical.

I can’t blame Mitt, much. It’s an easy, lazy joke to make…that’s disingenuous, if he considers his ambition to be about service, not power:

But now listen to JFK, Jr. Part one…

…and all of Part two address the notion of public service as a worthwhile calling.


It’s a false sense of shyness that lowers the bar and says: stay out! It’s an upright sort of peaceful warriorship that says, no! This is and could again be a noble profession, an opportunity to serve: get involved!

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