Friday, May 19, 2006

Did You Take The Time To Find Out?

One of my pet peeves is listening to those who are always bashing the current government; listing the endless complaints of what the government is either doing to (excuse the expression) screw them in some ways or what the government isn’t doing to make people’s lives better.

The first question I ask these individuals is “Did you vote in the last election?” Often the answer is “No”. Do they take responsibility for finding out the ins and outs of how government and the political world work and where they have power to implement laws, policy and change? No. But complain, and often, they do.

Another pet peeve is listening to many who snicker and ridicule bureaucrats for working half days, never getting anything done, living off taxpayer’s money etc. Again, do they take the time out to know what bureaucratic process is like? Not usually. There are checks and balances put in place to deal with ethics, accountability, etc. especially in last couple of years or so. My clients work long hours. Most are at work before 8:00 am, many before 7:00 and they work through to 6:00 or 7:00 at night, more often than not taking work home for the evening and almost always on the weekend.

With the advent of the BlackBerry it is assumed and, in many cases, mandated for them to be accessible at a moment’s notice. They work long hours and work hard, and every one of them that I have worked with are doing what they do, not for the money as they would make a great deal more in an equivalent job in the private sector, but for the good of the country and its citizens. How often does the general public really look into the level of expertise and integrity of most of their high level government officials? Yes, there will always be scandals one will read about in the papers, however I think you’ll agree that it’s a very small number who do something unethical, yet that brush seems to paint all bureaucrats the same colour.

In the scheme of things, when you hear “All ----- are the same” putting any word you can think of in that sentence….. Are all anyone one kind of people, professions, religions, etc the same ever?

An individual without all the information can’t take responsibility for change, however that same individual who chooses not to know or find out that information is giving the power of their destiny over to someone else, often one they don’t even know. It’s all about taking responsibility….for yourself, for what you know or finding out what you don’t to make informed decisions.

Just as, for example, people who read and don’t are functional illiterates, those who complain without even knowing the facts are prisoners in their own worlds --- by choice.

Something to ponder perhaps…

Donna Karlin

*Note: Welcome subscriber from Ghana. People from 85 countries and counting!

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