The attentive reader will have noticed that the title of this column did not include the phrase, "Government Service". That's because my largely American readership does not like the word "government". I didn't want to turn people off by committing a party-foul. It's a cultural thing.
Therefore, even though the subject is 'government', I employ the euphemism of 'public'. After all, doesn't every close student of current politics appreciate how much better "public health insurance" and "public option" sound as opposed to the alternate phrasing preferred by the Party of NO?
But this is almost beside the point of today's column.
The real point is that my favorite blogging acquaintance de jour, Stimpson Writes, has generously introduced to all of us a wonderfully timely and important resource, Government Is Good.
I, in turn, will do as much as I can to promulgate awareness of this site and its Unapologetic Defense of a Vital Institution. At first glance, this site seems to me to be where I should spend my reading time while I should be working.
The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who loves his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.
Reverend G R Gleig, survived the First Anglo-Afghan War to write in 1843:
...a war begun for no wise purpose, carried on with a strange mixture of rashness and timidity, brought to a close after suffering and disaster, without much glory attached either to the government which directed, or the great body of troops which waged it. Not one benefit, political or military, has Britain acquired with this war. Our eventual evacuation of the country resembled the retreat of an army defeated.