GAMBLE: Americans down to two ugly choices

Opinion column

The 10-year-old Princess and the 8-year-old Hurricane were on their way to school with me. It was a typical early morning getaway.

“I can’t find my book bag and don’t know where my homework sheet is,” exclaims the Hurricane. It is, of course, where it has been since 5 p.m. the day before — in the middle of the foyer.

The Princess isn’t sure if the shirt she had on is too tight and maybe she should go inside and change it, never mind she has had it on for 45 minutes and only now when five minutes late leaving does the thought enter to change.

So, we rush out the door with the Hurricane strewing paperwork as he leaps in the car and with the Princess looking, oddly enough, like a freshly opened can of biscuits, albeit a very pretty can of biscuits.

It does not take long before the mandatory bickering begins.

“Leave my iPad alone. I’m sick of you,” says the Princess.

The Hurricane, being the strong silent type, says nothing, but continues to wave his hand over the computer screen for no apparent reason other than to annoy his sister. If that was indeed his goal, I must rank his efforts an unbridled success. The Princess then responded, “You are stupid and you don’t even have a girlfriend.”

I really must speak to my daughter about this type behavior … not about calling her brother stupid, but rather to explain I seriously doubt the Hurricane cares whether or not he has a girlfriend and maybe she should accuse him of being a nerd or something instead. He replied, “Well, you don’t have a boyfriend either.”

“Well, I have two boys in my class who like me, Sam and John (names changed to protect the innocent),” she replies.

The Hurricane, now brought to a roar, answered, “Yeah, and they are both unattractive.” I rode the last few minutes in peace as the Princess stewed and the Hurricane basked in the glory of a well-timed comeback.

I think the Hurricane may have hit the nail on the head about our country’s current leadership crisis as well. We have two choices and they are both unattractive. Republican or Democrat, either way seems to be made of bumbling self-serving idiots that could not run a fruit stand, much less the government.

The only problem is, we keep re-electing ‘em. Both sides say they know we cannot continue to spend more money than we take in. Both sides keep voting to do just that. Just raise the limit on how much we can borrow and then next time, I really, really promise we’ll quit spending more than we have and get things under control, they say.

Try that maneuver at the local bank.

“Bank President John, I can’t pay back my $200,000 loan, so I was wondering if maybe you could increase my debt to $300,000 and I promise next month to try and deal with my spending habits, but to tell you the truth right now I’m having so much fun I just can’t stop.”

“I understand, son, it is not your fault that you spent more than you took in. What the heck, let me increase it to $400,000 and if you can’t pay that back, come on back in and I’m sure we’ll be able to give you some more. After all, it is only money.”

“Why thank you, Mr. President. I was afraid I might have to cut off my cell phone and quit eating steak for breakfast. Come on, honey, let’s load up the kids. It looks like we can go on that two-week trip to Disney World after all.”

Yep, two choices and they are both unattractive. Keep picking ‘em and you’ll keep getting ‘em.

Email T. Gamble at wtg@colliergamble.com.