Mr. Gloom and Doom

A few people who are close to me have mentioned that they've noticed a profound change in my mood and demeanor over the past few months. I'm walking around pissed off a lot, I appear depressed and I dwell on the negative. I can't argue with this.

At the same time, I can't imagine that a person who reads as much as I do about world affairs, follows major stories and offers up a bit of opinion on them would not be affected in some negative way about what's transpiring in the world. I'm seeing a huge trend toward lack of accountability, hypocrisy, corruption and lack of ethical thought in a lot of the things going on in the world. Can you blame me if I act a little depressed because of it?

Take the UN Oil for Food scandal, for instance. If what we've read so far is true, people we trust to do the right thing not only elevated their personal gain above their duty to do the right thing, but the people we trust to inform the public and elevate the issue to the public agenda are also either asleep at the wheel or have hidden motives for not doing what they should be doing right now.

Most of my friends haven't heard of the Oil for Food scandal. Most of what I tell them about allegations and facts that have emerged comes as a total surprise to them. You could argue that they're not reading the newspapers and whatnot, but you also have to admit that the mainstream news media have not given this the level of coverage it deserves. If the allegations are true, or even partly true, this could be the biggest financial scandal in the history of the world. And we're not talking about investors losing little Billy's college fund to crooked corporate executives here. We're talking about people's lives at stake because they weren't getting the food and medicine they were supposed to, while the people who were supposed to be safeguarding the money earmarked for this food and medicine were profiting personally by shirking their responsibilities.

Why does Enron dominate the news agenda and much wider-reaching scandal of a higher order of magnitude not warrant at least the same level of attention? Call me Mr. Gloom and Doom, but I think it's appropriate for me to be feeling a bit upset about this. And yes, it's going to continue to affect me until I see some changes that will bring about accountability and will affirm that we're not going to let this get swept under the rug.