Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Naughty and Nice

I don’t envy Santa’s job of deciding who should go on the naughty list and who should go on the nice list. That’s got to be a tough job. For instance the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at President Bush? Which list would you place him on? Although the President laughed it off, some people in this world would put that guy on the nice list. Probably not the U.S. Secret Service.

Test yourself with the following examples. Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich? His foul-mouthed wife? Big Three automakers executives who went to Washington in their corporate jets during their first request for a bailout? Big Oil company executives? Okay so those are probably clear-cut naughty list entrants.

Every situation also has to be scrutinized. Let’s ponder the Brett Favre retirement saga from earlier this year. Should Packer officials have been placed on the naughty list for not allowing him to return to the team? What about Favre himself?

Locally there were a few fine lines this year as well. Bars and restaurants in Fond du Lac who have to deal with a smoking ban at the end of next month probably would like to put City Council members on their naughty list, but health advocates would probably place those same Council members on their nice list. People would also probably be split on the Council not allowing a question about fluoride in the City’s drinking water to go to a referendum question.

Some decisions aren’t as tough. Anyone who provided some assistance or help to their neighbors in the wake of June flooding would go on my nice list. Any group, organization or individual that has helped out the needy during the downturn in the economy makes the list. Any employer who has struggled, but made sacrifices to keep workers on makes my nice list.

The nice thing is the redemption factor. Even though someone made the naughty list this year, they can redeem themselves next year. That’s the nice thing about the naughty and nice lists; they aren’t permanent. Hopefully you’ll end up on someone’s nice list this year. You’ve already made mine for reading this blog. Merry Christmas!

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