Who can we really trust anymore?

by Captain Bradley

You can’t be breathing and be void of “issues”. From how each of us were raised to how we each continue to grow up, or not, our respective issues pop up everyday.

Trust has always been a touchy subject with me. Who can you really trust anymore? In personal relationships, many talk a good game, but very few deliver. Even marriage vows to God seem more than flexible. In business, it’s been proven that “what have you done for me lately” beats loyalty and trust over the long-term ROI. In politics and government, trust seems to be invested most in the few people and groups who make sure career politicians get reelected, move up the ranks, like promotions in business, and do the bidding of the same few.

From unreal violations of trust on a global scale, as in the Secret Service mess that keeps unfolding to our consecutive City and County administrations, remarkable shortcomings and failure of trust has had quite a run this year. A top City official of 2 administrations, well-known for his colorful shoplifting past, denies knowledge of poorly spent tax-dollars with our local tourism organization. This 501c3 non-profit Board paid over 10% of a $4 million budget (staff of 28) to their CEO. The IRS should be pretty interested in that “non-profit”, for sure. Our County Mayor recently denied any knowledge of his good buddy’s indictment for fraud, after he hired him to be the county’s new Finance Director. Now, that same Mayor is being sued for divorce for inappropriate conduct outside of marriage. We may never know what that means. Seems to be a tradition, since the previous County Mayor had similar issues, divorced, and recently married the one he violated various trusts with years ago. What is it about the parallels of high office, concentration of power, and failing trust on a frequent basis? Moreover, what does this behavior at the top encourage in the daily behavior and performance of the organization that he or she oversees? Leading by example cuts both ways.

From the John Edwards trial going on right now to the Vatican of decades past to our own City-County building this year, what will it take to welcome genuinely trustworthy people to temporarily serve, protect, and improve the public-trust of powerful institutions and all each means to various stakeholder, families, and those job-creators who benefit our local economy everyday?

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