Tip O’Neil was noted for saying “all politics is local”, and wrote a book with that title.  Apparently many local leaders feel the opposite.  Local issues are rarely partisan; it is about he mundane tasks of maintaining roads, funding firetrucks and meeting payroll.

Victor Davis Hanson effectively makes the point that the more the local leaders focus on the larger issues, the less likely they are to accept the responsibility for their task at hand.   In The National Review January 20,2011 from his article, The Bloomberg Syndrome:


It is a human trait to focus on cheap and lofty rhetoric rather than costly, earthy reality. It is a bureaucratic characteristic to rail against the trifling misdemeanor rather than address the often-dangerous felony. And it is political habit to mask one’s own failures by lecturing others on their supposed shortcomings. Ambitious elected officials often manage to do all three.

The result in these hard times is that our elected sheriffs, mayors, and governors are loudly weighing in on national and global challenges that are quite often out of their own jurisdiction, while ignoring or failing to solve the very problems that they were elected to address.

Quite simply, the next time your elected local or state official holds a press conference about global warming, the Middle East, or the national political climate, expect to experience poor county law enforcement, bad municipal services, or regional insolvency.