Is it honorable to serve?

We have watched a parade of candidates prostrate themselves before our future king, desperate to get a position in the new court. When the more normal or decent among them is asked how they feel about working for a person they openly denounced, they tell us they must think of their country first. ” It’s the honorable thing to do.” Is it?

This is rather easy to resolve. What if the worst moron or tyrant were elected? Should we try to get involved to offset his malevolence? Let’s say we succeed in our little area. Perhaps we provide good economic advice or we help foster a new diplomatic relationship with a former enemy. The credit for all that would go to the tyrant and would help him achieve his other malevolent goals. Great, the economy is humming along. Now he can give tax breaks to friendly billionaires or spend the money on bombs. If we negotiate a new peace with country A, he can invade country B with less or no risk.

Who remembers Dr. Hjalmar Schacht, Hitler’s economic minister? He performed something of a miracle by stabilizing the disastrous economy after a brutal case of hyperinflation. The rest of the world was in the midst of the Great Depression. Wow. All this work facilitated the rearming of the country. Schacht served the people well and the tyrant benefited.

Would the Vietnam war have continued if everyone in Johnson’s cabinet who knew about the scam in the Gulf of Tonkin had resigned? What if Colin Powell had resigned and admitted he had been conned by the CIA and made to lie by the administration? Did he help his country by staying the course?

The worst excuse is to argue that someone else will do it if you don’t. Let some other corrupt sycophant take the job. His failure means the tyrant will fail faster.In the end the new king won’t thank you anyway. He thinks every win is his work. Did Colin Powell retire with dignity? Did Robert McNamara?

In the end good people will never change or improve the idiot king. They are far more likely to be dragged down by him.

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