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It’s Not About Issues

A doctor, a teacher, an engineer, an accountant, and a firefighter are all sitting in a bar in the early afternoon.

The bartender realizes this, and asks all of them the same question. “Why are you here instead of working?”

It turns out they all have the same answer. They worked hard to get into their careers and then served for a few years, but then—-just as they were hitting their stride—-each forced to quit and find other forms of employment.

“Oh, I get it,” said the barkeep. “Term limits.”


This is not a funny joke. It’s a more of a little lesson. Term limits for politicians is one of the most popular policy ideas in modern history. But obviously, we like our doctors, teachers, engineers, accountants, firefighters, and everybody else to be able to get a decades plus of experience.

So why not politicians?

Oh, right. Because we don’t trust politicians. So nearly all of us want to limit their time in office.

This leads me to a point. Which is also not funny. Why are we talking about term limits, when we could be asking why can’t we trust our elected leaders?

Maybe we need to figure out how trust works first. That’s why I am starting right here, writing to you.

Let’s figure our how we can trust each other.

1 Comment

  1. Scott

    Reagan’s Trust But Verify line springs to mind; how about Measure and Publish? E.g. Politifact, https://guides.stlcc.edu/fakenews/factchecking

    I like the idea of term limits, but they turn out to be a bad idea: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Term_limits_in_the_United_States#Impact

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