Tuesday, May 31, 2005
We wannabe...free of our wannabe
The Vilsack policy legacy shines up nice for the bi-coastal money types, which is good, because after everyone calculates the cha-ching to the average Iowans’ tax burden, he’ll need his out of state friends.
We couldn't do with out the massive and overwrought teacher pay policy extravaganza of the early Vilsack years; cha-ching for the Milken money. That early win emboldened the policy wonk, activist agenda just itching to bust out of the country lawyer from Mt Pleasant. Moving on, Vilsack, in a claw-back -free push to the bottom, was inspired to dream up the Iowa Values it-really-looks-like-corporate-payola Fund, which, essentially, bankrolls any neat idea that gets painted up enough for potential gubernatorial candidate Blouin to bat his eyes at. And then, this year's policy genius: the repackaging and increased funding for existing early childhood programs; cha-ching for the Rob Reiner Palm files. I guess our gov has a thing for those
It makes sense that Vilsack is sending out this legacy talk; take credit before it starts to tear at the edges. And, soon enough, this paper tiger of a legacy will burn, because no one, not a soul, wants to pay for any of this good government policy making. Realistically we can’t afford it—our tax capacity (that is the ability to take a reasonable (gulp) portion of the private sector money out of the economy to fund government programs) is rather thin. Even if we tax people at the highest rate tolerable, we still can’t make up the difference in taxable income between our growing population of temp and service workers at $11.50 an hour and the handful of leftover Maytag lifers at $20.00 plus an hour.
Thursday, May 26, 2005
cyn·i·cism - a list of antidotes...
cyn·i·cism () Pronunciation Key (sn-szm)
- An attitude of scornful or jaded negativity, especially a general distrust of the integrity or professed motives of others: the public cynicism aroused by governmental scandals.
- A scornfully or jadedly negative comment or act: “She arrived at a philosophy of her own, all made up of her private notations and cynicisms” (Henry James).
- Cynicism The beliefs of the ancient Cynics.
10. download as much U2, Kenny G. (just kidding), sober r.l. Jones & BNL into your iPOD
Unfortunately, things in life can happen to you or loved ones that sort of shakes down your sense of how the world is supposed to work. The sort of things that make you wonder what kind of parents these people had...And then I remember the runts from the waitressing job at the Country Club and how awful their parents were.
So, we are always in need of antidotes to cynicism, and it gives me an excuse to construct my first list. The top ten cures for a bout of the cynical blues:
9. spend uncountable hours on the treadmill with the noted iPOD attached to your head
8. weed -- pulling preferably, but it's your call
7. meditate on the genius of Napoleon
6. don't lose the will to live, just wear it
5. attend as many rookie little league games as possible
4. find the frozen custard stand where the butter fat sticks to the roof of your mouth
3. plant your flowers without your garden gloves
2. memorize and repeat the following: "it is only Other People's money"
1. try something new
Why things go round and round? Might be one thought someone might have when clicking through this blog. No big deal other than it seems an appropriate descriptor for what generally happens in life.
Everything about a life has a routine, a circular, if you will, flow that takes you along. Sure we change up now and again, but the basics remain - since birth; we sleep, we eat, we poop and communicate. It's probably the conceit of age that allows us to assume our lives change dramatically when all that really changes is the who, what, when, where and how of communicating. And in the end, a number of people end up in a very similar state of life as when they began it.
This leads to my erstwhile point of starting this blog, and the title. I guess it is a way to communicate – I promise not to bore with stories of sleeping, eating or any sort of bathroom events, what so ever. I will figure out a way to say things about the world in general and issues specific. If I am lucky this stuff will be mildly entertaining and provide the occasional reader with the chance to think about things in a new way.