Down The News Cycle
It seems natural to slow down on our local news cycle this time
of year. Now, and further on in March when the mud season’s
supposed to hit, everyone seems to hunker down, both in terms
of activity and, it seems, in terms of mental and moral acuity.
Just look at some of the stories being bandied about these days
There’s a predicted conservative reaction to the new blockbuster
Hollywood hit, Avatar, that after failing to ignite a boycott
of the film now equates its message to being as if its makers
were urging us to forgo modernity and side with Native Americans
and indigenous folk galaxy-wide against colonists. As if empathy
itself were a problem. When really, the cables news cycle may
actually be more to blame.
New talk in Albany is for scuttling a host of agencies, from
those overseeing domestic violence problems to our much-heralded
state arts council, to balance our budget and shift the priorities
by which we spend money. Included in that are signs of a strengthening
push to sell off Belleayre and other state-owned ski areas.
On a county level, Republicans in power after two sessions out
are talking about strengthening their branch of government over
the new county executive, despite savings and other benefits
gained over the past year since Mike Hein’s filled the
latter position. All on the verge, mind you, of a mandated shrinking
of the legislature’s size.
Locally, in our and other towns, major infrastructure projects
are being scuttled and budgets balanced on higher deductible
insurance plans that are betting folks don’t get sick
much this year. Forget any new strains of flu… or the
idea of spreading wealth around to keep our local businesses
It seems everyone’s thinking that money is as substantial,
in the big picture, as earth. And not a man-made medium of exchange
whose basis can be shifted to fit changing, or changed, realities.
We suggest everyone breathe deeply this month, and in March
– allowing themselves a full February to keep up with
business – and reassess where we all really are. Is the
world as bad as some say, or as rosy as our kids inevitably
see? Probably in-between, which leaves us plenty of room to
live it, and love it. Especially at this time of year where
most of our news is just about people chattering, what we wish
and/or fear, or the weather.
See you next month… and have a great Martin Luther King
weekend, remembering his great messages of hope and the endearing
power of mankind’s will to be ever better, and not sunk
by our unfortunate prejudices.