Municipal Government

America’s Leaders Have Abandoned Their Posts!

September 28, 2015
By Thomas J. Mackell, Jr., Ed.D

Thomas J. Mackell

North Bergen, New Jersey – Anyone who has been in the military is very familiar with the term AWOL–away without leave. Someone who goes AWOL will be apprehended and incarcerated for leaving his/her post. This is an activity which is serious and is given little sympathy by military leaders. It is intolerable and seriously punishable.

Well, I have some news for you. While we have all been going about our daily lives of earning a living, taking care of our kids, attending to an aging parent, participating in our communities–namely living life and working to survive–there has been a group of folks who have gone AWOL.

They are the members of the U.S. Congress. Oh sure, they go to their offices occasionally and  appear on the TV talk show circuit to seek exposure and garner sound bites. But they are not on the scene doing what they are suppose to do for their pay.

They are AWOL. Why bother to govern when you can spend your time searching for scandals? Or why bother to govern when you can wrap yourself in an ideological shawl and snipe at your fellow members of Congress or the President. The net result is that they have left their posts–they are AWOL–and we are left vulnerable.

Vulnerable to the wicked ways of economic conditions, to the folly of corporate leaders or their flush-with-cash lobbyists, to the absurdity of their activities in the legislative halls where they defend the rich and rage against the 99%ers and their  "entitlements."

Entitlements like Social Security and Medicare and food stamps that are designed  to keep people from slipping through the cracks into a hell hole of deep economic malaise from which most will never return.

When they do appear to do their "work," it is typically designed to take something away from working Americans. Like the "entitlements" mentioned above,  or the right to organize unions or to negotiate collective bargaining agreements in order to protect their jobs, working conditions, foster safe and healthy workplaces, or protect their health and pension benefits.

In our current economic climate financial instability abides. I think that it is a safe bet to say that many of those candidates aspiring to be president are Ill-equipped and Ill-prepared to deal with a financial crisis equal to what we experienced in 2008.
Why, because, they have not been doing their jobs and are like truant students who are now required to take their final exams without having studied.

It's time to apprehend this group of do-nothing's and take them to task.

Work on nurturing people who give a damn and will work on behalf of working people. Vote the losers out of office.

It will require hard work but if we care about our country and its legacy and its future we will act.

*** Thomas J. Mackell, Jr., Ed.D. is Special Advisor to the President of the International Longshoremen's Association and can be reached at 202 297 1935 or

September 28, 2015

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