Incoming House Speaker John Boehner and his Republican colleagues are intensely aware of public fury over how Congress operates. But following a lame-duck Congress that continued with business as usual, will this new Congress finally get it right?
As the 112th Congress officially convenes this week, the questions most of us have on our minds are: Will it finally...
--Reduce government spending?
--Reduce the national deficit?
--Reduce the national debt?
--Reduce earmarks and pork?
--Reduce briberies by lobbyists and special interests?
--Reduce Americans' taxes?
--Reduce illegal immigration?
--Reduce our foreign entanglements?
--Reduce government overreach into our lives?
--Reduce government lying, cheating and corruption?
--Reduce constitutional disobedience?
...And so stabilize the nation and economy?
Nov. 2 was undoubtedly a reprimand and a repudiation of the direction Washington is going and how it is conducting government business. But it was also a big renunciation of who our politicians have become.
Getting government right isn't merely a matter of knowing how; we've had plenty of that type of politician who have screwed up our country even worse. In fact, there has been one prevailing element that has been missing in recent recipes to reawaken and rebound our republic. It's the last "E" in the three E's to a successful government: expertise, experience and a good set of ethics.
For example, President Barack Obama made the audacious claim in the beginning of his presidency that his administration would "clean up both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue" with "the most sweeping ethics reform in history." He repeatedly pledged that "an Obama administration is going to have the toughest ethics laws of any administration in history."
But what we've seen from his administration is more of the same old government corruption -- back-door deals, sidestepping constitutional protocol, manipulating the American public, buying votes, compounding broken promises, perpetuating Chicago-style politics, etc.
Good morals precede good laws, which is why government isn't much help. Unless the people and their legislators are grounded in morality, the best of laws will be broken and the worst of laws will be made, legalizing immorality.