At the risk of offending someone:
It’s election day. I’m “watching” returns by refreshing and refreshing four or five news sites. It’s depressing. And it’s frustrating.
On the radio today, there was yet another bit of predictive reporting, detailing how the Democrats were going to lose their majorities to conservatives who have campaigned on undoing everything from the past two years. Conservatives who are endlessly in favor of reducing government, reducing taxes. This story was immediately followed by a conversation with someone from the Army Corps of Engineers concerning the weak and damaged status of many river levees in Washington state.
My takeaway: Our physical infrastructure is falling apart. The levees are likely to fail in even a minor flood event (and the forecasters are talking up a wet and crazy winter for the Pacific Northwest, so it seems likely that something, somewhere is going to flood). We have floating bridges that need to be replaced before they up and sink. There’s a viaduct that very likely will fall down should we have an earthquake of any significance. Not to mention roads and schools and law enforcement and libraries that all need help and attention.
That’s just here, in the Puget Sound area. I’d bet that this situation isn’t confined to or unique to us. I’d bet every place around the country has a similar list, and a similarly deficient budget.
And what have we, as a country done today? Stood with the folks who want reduce government spending. Turned down reasonable propositions for expanding government revenue sources.
You just can’t starve the civic structure and then expect it to take care of you. When the infrastructure fails and lives are lost and millions and billions of dollars in property and businesses are lost and there’s an enormous cleanup to do and to fund, I’ll be over here, saying “I told you so.”