“Were you raised in a barn?” I hope so.

This blog may ramble a bit, so bear with me.  There are so many things rolling around in my head it’s hard to keep them in order. 

I’m really amazed at the slowness of some people.  I’m not talking about those with disabilities or developmental challenges. I’m talking about those who just refuse to see the world in front of them because it looks unfamiliar.

We have politicians voting 33 times to stop a rule that has been determined by Supreme Court to be acceptable, because they didn’t think of it. But wait, they did.  They just didn’t succeed at the time when they first suggested it. Once it was someone else’s idea, it was a bad idea. Meanwhile millions of people are looking for jobs, and the House votes again on health care..

We have states trying to ban types of dogs, rather than focusing on why the dogs are turning out as dangerous.  Even Lassie could bite. He just was taught not to.  But now the USDA wants to make it impossible for a small farmer to ship puppies to their new home because they weren’t raised in a stainless steel cage with 24 hour veterinary care.  They were raised with love, in the environment they were going to live in, and received regular veterinary care, but not in an industrial environment.  Which would you rather have, a pet shop dog, or one raised in a loving home? But the USDA can’t control thousands of small breeders, so they try to limit the numbers to those who care more about “stainless steel,” than they do about socialization and love.

There are millions of angry people calling for a return to “normalcy,” seeking jobs that are no longer available.  People are angry because our economy changed and no one tried to adjust as it was doing so.  We had pundits explaining that the majority of jobs were in the “service sector,” but then complaining that wages at that level were not “living wages,” that allowed people to meet their financial needs.   We had parents working multiple jobs to put a roof over their children’s heads, leaving them unattended with little sense of community or family.  Now people want to return to that?  I hope not.

And now we have a credit union that is paying taxes, utilities and snow plowing fees on an empty set of buildings, which are degrading in front of their eyes.  They have a non-profit organization that can take those bills off their hands, fix up the buildings, bring new business to the region, and give people tools to improve their lives, but they feel that they need to hold on to the buildings until they can get a “fair price.”  As the buildings site, that fair price gets lower, the needs get more dire, and the non-profit struggles to raise those funds, because they have a new idea, based on old ones, but it’s new again, and that’s scary.

Finally we have people running for President who are fixating on how much money they can raise for advertising.  I don’t care about the “fundraising race.”  I care about what those men would do with that money.  I would pay more attention to the one who looked at using the money to help the most people, either in using it to help non-profits, or using it to create programs that help people.  Everyone knows that word of mouth speaks louder than TV ads. Wouldn’t it be more effective for people to be talking about a candidate’s good works than hearing about their fundraising?  I know that running for office costs money, but President Obama won last time because he reached the “every man,” and gave them hope for change. Some of that hope was implausible, but I think just recognizing the everyday citizen was his strength, not his money.    Showing innovation and engagement reaches more people than an empty ad does.

I know this getting long, so I’ll conclude.  But these times require new ways of thinking.  There will always be competition, but let’s keep in on the ball field.  But we need to learn to collaborate and cooperate. We need to look at what we do have and see what we can do with that, instead of looking for someone to come give us the tools that we dream of.   There is work to be done, and we need to get to work, instead of waiting for do it for us.  NCSC wants to do show how that works. It’s not rocket science, but it’s reliable.  Isn’t it time we started recognizing the wisdom of the centuries instead of the words of the wealthy or new?  One has been time tested, the other has just been surveyed.Image