I'm turning Biblical, start running now. One of
the more interesting books in the Old Testament
says all is vanity, nothing new under the Sun.
(Except for the clothes and gadgets, that is.)
But we are encouraged to enjoy the fruits of our
labor nonetheless. In Chicago, the political scene
is largely about vanity, not reform, ambition, not
the greater good.
Heralded all over local Chicagoland media is our
"new day", because the City Council and the Mayor
are sporting new faces. Yet the "dreams", problems
and goals are the same compelling ones that have
preoccupied us for many decades. Who is OPPOSED to
better education, no/low crime, balanced budgets, etc.?
Rahm Emanuel emphasized these during his swearing in
today down by the lake. Chicago's Mayor will not likely
fix these matters. The causes are cultural, economic,
endemic and long standing:
(1) EDUCATION: Most kids (and their parents) simply
lack gravitas, meaning, in America it's practically
a federal offense to basically be a serious, goal-oriented
person. The never-ending search for gratification and
novelty often sidelines serious research, serious productivity,
serious problem-solving. (By the way, I hate fun, and you
can quote me.) Recalling the high rate of substance abuse,
divorce, crime, etc., it's very hard to be optimistic.
Whatever "reforms" are enacted, given this cultural context,
how are we going to make the kids do their job, which is to study?
Tackle THAT one, Rahmster Monster.
(2) BUDGET WOES: Who will be stiffed, left out, victimized
by benign neglect? Will pensions be funded? Are certain
unions really expecting too much? Should teachers be required
to keep up since their students are? (-Don't worry, many more
questions could be inserted here, but I'll refrain....) Then
there's the ugly phenomenon of NIMBY, i.e., you won't be making
me sacrifice in MY backyard, noooo....
Time to recur once again to the Good Book. I'm hoping to
escape all the hackneyed phrases and promises designed to
soothe our troubled minds, but I doubt it; humanity hasn't
changed markedly in 2,000 years.
When God or Jesus speak I see sense.
And you can quote me.