Missoulian mailbag

Loved old TV westerns, where a medicine wagon pulls into town. Folks gather to hear a pitch for "a cure-all for what ails ya." The spiel's convincing, perhaps aided by a shill in the audience claiming "it worked" for him. The gullible succumb, parting with hard-earned cash. Gratefully, justice prevails as the quack is run out of town.

Times have changed. "Snake oil" is still being sold. The medicine wagon has been replaced by the internet. The crowd has grown from a handful to a country-full.

"Justice" is complicated. President Trump has a bigger megaphone. Congress is desperate to pass something quickly rather than develop an elixir that will benefit the middle class long-term. They are hopeful that voters will be just gullible enough, just long enough to return them to office. If "trickle-down" was truly effective, support would be bipartisan.

Want to stimulate the economy? Put money directly into our pockets. We will purchase goods and services; "percolate it up," nourishing the economy quickly. No "smoke and mirrors" required.

Our "medicine man in chief" tweets empty promises and threats in order to cobble together enough support to squeak through with a victory.

The Trump presidency: "The Art of the Scam."

John Ilgenfritz,


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