We’ve been in a two decade state of denial about fixing our problems at home, focused on the global because somehow, we thought (convinced by tools like Thomas Friedman) that we lived in a flat world of olive trees, and we could all drive a Lexus.
With the implosion of the global financial realm, people that pay attention to things are now recognizing that taking care of our home turf might be the best approach–think, back to the future!
This week, political types, at least those that care about Republican politics, or politics in general, have been all gaga about the convention taking place in Tampa. I’ve watched about 4 minutes and 37 seconds, which is all the investment I needed to make to know that two-party politics and the attendant either/or nature of the narrative was more of the same old rhetoric. As some people have posited, “if voting changed anything, they’d make it illegal. ” Actually, I think it was Emma Goldman, the type of free-thinker that I have more in common with than Romney, Obama, and the other pols that promise, promise, promise, and never deliver a damn thing!
A few years ago, there was a saying that got plastered on bumper stickers, and seemed ubiquitous; the saying/phrase was, “think globally, act locally.” I prefer to think and act locally. Appeals continue to be made about the globe, but thinking about the world is too abstract. Local things matter. I know local people, I care about their issues. Even better, I have seen local initiatives work, while statewide efforts tend to falter–I’m not even interested at the moment in taking it beyond that to the national and international.
If you want to change the world, begin with yourself and then work outward to the people closest to you; when you solve all those immediate problems, then maybe (if you still have time) you begin fixing things beyond the corner where you reside.
But of course, it’s so much easier to lob volleys at distant bureaucrats in Washington and other faraway places, or worse, imbue them with magical power.