Thursday, 6 January 2011


Politicians throughout the world spend outrageous amounts of taxpayer money for their own entertainment, vacations, and personal lifestyles at a time that they are asking the general population to tighten its belt. I remember the press making a major issue of how much Pres. Obama spent on his recent trip to India - reportedly several tens of millions for a few days. Maybe part of of that was hype or misinformation, but there seems to be a pattern of very high spending with a President who came to office amid very hard economic times.

High spending of taxpayer money for personal matters (trips, parties, etc.) is taking place not just among both Republicans and Democrats, not just in the US but in most countries around the world where politicians enjoy ostentatious lifestyles befitting of the "rich and famous." In fact, the lines between modern politicians and movie stars or rock stars has blurred to the degree that political leaders go out of their way to live and behave like movie stars or rock stars.

The symbolism of such conduct just strikes people as "plain wrong," undemocratic, because their politicians project the image that they are closer to the "rich and famous" than to the average citizen who has to work for a living; this at a time of global recession and high unemployment when people who want their politicians to set the example of "proper conduct" in all domains for the rest of the nation. Having said this, I do not mind if they live like the "rich and famous," provided they pursue policies designed to benefit people in all respects from creating higher paying jobs to social programs.

No comments: