DeeDee and I just returned from a 16 day trip to the Old World, Greece and Rome, plus a couple of days in Croatia. We had a great time visiting the birth of Democracy and the aftermath of the Roman Empire. First, I must say that seeing the ancient sites and seeing the current economic and political situations was so enjoyable. Seeing up close and personal the Acropolis in Athens, the original Olympic Sites in Olympia, the Coliseum, the Forum and the Vatican are memories that we will always cherish.

With all the physical sites I still could not help but think about the political and economic conditions and how they compare to what we have here in the USA and Idaho. We have all heard about the economic troubles of Greece and to a similar extent Italy. From our hotel in Greece and many other high points we noticed that most every home had a solar panel, while at the same time we were warned not to flush toilet paper down the toilet, but to place it in a can next to the “John.” It is interesting that they will invest fortunes in offsetting “Manmade” Global Warming, with questionable solar technology, yet retain inadequate wastewater systems.

Having just finished reading a book on Global Warming, I was not too surprised, but to see the kind of investment in solar panels while the country is bankrupt and their unemployment rate is double digit, it makes you wonder… What happened to all the innovators of science, philosophy and democracy? There was definitely evidence of a glorious past, but the present did not generate much for a future.

Maybe the greatest gift was Democracy, which I hope does not take a step back this week in McCall.

Originally published in the Southern Idaho Republican Women newsletter, June 2013.