Takes a lot of time (to do nothing)

Published 3:59 pm Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Let me begin by saying that I enjoy writing humorous and light-hearted columns. I appreciate and take seriously this opportunity The Post Searchlight gives me. It is also very gratifying when so many of you tell me how you have enjoyed this pleasure of mine.

I had been thinking of a humorous column for this week and will get to it shortly, but the events of this weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, make it hard to think humorously and lightly. It’s very sad to see what is happening to our nation.

At the same time, if you watch television at all, especially the news, you have already seen and heard enough about it. I don’t mean to stick my head in the sand, but I don’t really know what to do. It’s a spiritual problem and will never be solved by talking heads on television telling all of us, no matter the color of our skin, what we should be thinking or doing. All I can say is that we need to be praying for our nation.

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Meanwhile, a week or so ago; it’s hard to keep up with time when we have a weekend like this past one. It seems all that matters is what happened within the last 24 hours.

A little over a week ago, the President and his party’s Majority Leader of the Senate, Mitch McConnell, had a little row, and got into a little back and forth. As you have noticed, this president doesn’t mind ruffling the feathers of just about anyone.

Trump was commenting on how McConnell, the Majority Leader, ought to “get to work and do something.” Those are my words. I think he might have been alluding to the lack of progress in the signature promise of his campaign, the repealing and the replacing of Obamacare.

Mr. Trump’s past experience as super-“bidnessman” had led him to the expectation of getting everything he wanted and pronto. He did not have any appreciation as to how government works. I’m thinking of the Merle Travis song, “Nine Pound Hammer.” Lordy, don’t the wheels roll slow!

Mitch McConnell could be known as Mr. Senate. He knows that political business and told a Rotary Club in Kentucky that Mr. Trump didn’t understand “this line of work,” implying that the President should do his job and let the Majority Leader do his.

I got to thinking about what McConnell was really saying and I think it was this. He was trying to tell the president that the work of government was not like business and that he, the president, was going to have to understand that it takes a lot of time to do nothing.

Does that sound funny to you? It takes a lot of time to do nothing. It does to me, but the more I think about it, the more truth I see. Try to think and answer this question.

What has the government, for all the time and effort and money spent, accomplished this year?

To be honest, the President probably doesn’t understand the line of work of the Congress. I’m not sure that is good or bad, but it does set the two at odds. Mr. Trump is used to a boardroom where he holds court and, if someone disagrees or isn’t getting the job done, hears those famous words, “You’re fired!”

Maybe the President thinks too simply. He expects that if a promise has been made, it ought to be acted upon. He doesn’t understand that it takes a lot of time and creativity to do nothing!