What government does for us

In a quirky juxtaposition, this morning I encountered an earnest Department of Agriculture guy at our front door. Department of Agriculture in the West Village?

Yes. The DofA is inspecting all trees for a nasty-looking Asian long-horned beetle that is waging war on our flora. I can testify to its nastiness because the DofA guy put a vivid portrait of the beetle on our front door — although I bet my biologist friends would think it gorgeous.

The DofA man needed access to our house’s back garden where he knew there was a tree.

Though I couldn’t give him the access, I was thankful for this example of Big Government at Work.

And immediately I mentally placed it against a powerful piece in yesterday’s New York Times, about how Wilmington, N.C. is faring in this suicidal Cut Government era.

Did you read it? Quiet journalism but as devastating as any story about tornadoes and hurricanes and oil spills in our waters. Because it’s what happens when a recession-depression is destructively linked by demagogues to a punitive no-tax agenda: citizens are deprived of the government services they need more than ever.

And small cities like Wilmington, N.C. disintegrate.

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