Keeping an Eye on Uncle Sam

Say this about Americans: we are generous — very generous. You name the calamity, we're there with open wallets to make good after the calamity.

Give now. Ask questions later. The problem is, a lot of us don't ask questions later. We give, assuming "they" get. But sometimes "they" don't.

I don't take anything away from giving to disaster agencies. The Red Cross and Salvation Army, for example, have a long and admirable record making sure those who need help, get help.

But entrusting our government to do the same is quite another issue. Yet our government also feels compelled to give much and not check back to see whether it is getting much.

Nearly $62 billion dollars has been committed to Katrina (search) relief efforts. That's a lot of dough: about 700 bucks for every man woman and child in this country.

I don't fault Uncle Sam's kind intentions. I do fault his results.

The landscape is littered with failed social programs that did more to help the bureaucrats who pushed them than the desperate folks who needed them.

I say, let's check them and watch them.

Let's make sure areas that need rebuilding are rebuilt, that levees that need re-strengthening get re-strengthened and that folks who need food and sustenance during this very long transition period get food and sustenance during this very long transition period.

Measure it. Monitor it. Count it. Make sure of it.

We give until it hurts in this country. Let's make sure we're not hurting all of us in this country. And let's make sure our hearts aren't bigger than our heads. Take it from a guy with an exceptionally big head.

Demand action from your heart. Demand results from your brain.

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