Happy Monday everyone! As usual, Monday’s article is by Stephen Hall. Thank you Stephen!!!
This weeks news brought up the concept of infrastructure repeatedly. The reader may be instantly transported to the situation of relief efforts in Puerto Rico and the name calling matches between local democrats and the President. Here in West Virginia, we are contending with a special vote for road bond and levies coming up this week, accompanied with the advertising that this will create jobs.
The nature of infrastructure is of such a nature that many are under the impression that government services and spending is the source of economic growth and productivity of society itself. These are the same type of people who think that federal government medical care is no different than city police or fire services.
Infrastructure is the underlying foundation or basic framework ; People mistakenly limit their conception of infrastructure to the physical constructions of roads, bridges, railroads, electrical grids, water pipes, sewer systems, and communication systems.
Social structures and moral systems are also an integral party of the infrastructure, the underlying foundation and basic framework, of our society. A well functioning society is as important to dealing with disasters, both manmade and natural, as any amount of material assistance.
One of the glaring problems in Puerto Rico is that the Hurricane pretty much obliterated the roads, electrical grid, and the harbors. This makes distributing aid relief very difficult if you cannot get the relief goods to where the people are.
Trump’s Fema and armed forces are criticized for a lack of aid by a mayor standing in front of stock piles of disaster relief. The media acts as if there has been no aid sent at all because the lack of a distribution network which bottlenecks the relief effort as these systems will need to be rebuilt or bypassed entirely.
Amidst this are stories that the local truck drivers are refusing to distribute the relief because of a recent vote which did not support their union. Which appears to correspond with Trump’s ham-handed criticism of the San Juan mayor not being able to get the people of the island working to distribute the relief supplies.
Contrast this to the brigades of people volunteering in Texas and neighboring states in private fishing and recreational boats to deliver aid, rescue people, investigate, and inform on the situation. An amazing well-coordinated cooperation between private citizens, state, and even federal relief efforts.
Then look at a number of liberal cities without any natural disaster, with crime rates vastly higher than the rural areas just miles away, riots in the streets, destruction of public monuments. Flint Michigan’s lead levels in their public water system where the citizens can’t get clean water and don’t know how to do so without government help.
The West Virginia politicians pushing another tax to build road for businesses which do not exist on the hope that if they build the roads the businesses will flock to the area like pigeons in the park congregating to get free food from the old folks throwing out bread crumbs.
While the physical infrastructure is vital, they are built to support the populace and the businesses.
While the Romans are praised for their organized system of roads which have outlasted their empire by 1500 years, so far, the archeological evidence is showing that the Celts had an extensive road system before the Romans but that they followed the trade routes and fell into disuse after becoming part of the Roman empire.
Why bring up this divergence into ancient history? Because it shows that the infrastructure follows the needs of the people of the society; and that infrastructure gets built even without the organization of a central governmental authority.
America had roads and bridges before it had a department of highways. The electrical grid was largely built by private companies. The nation was well educated long before the government started getting involved and taking over.
All of the physical infrastructure is built by people working in cooperation, that is the very reason we get together to build companies or to build governments. You or I cannot build a road, but you and I can.
Relief efforts are no different, they require a collective and concerted effort to overcome the obstacles which plague a devastated people. Even without government, a healthy society of people will organize their efforts to support each other to procure and produce the necessities of life.
That people cannot so organize, whether in Flint or in Puerto Rico is a sign of a fundamental problem in segments of our society. Our political and philosophical infrastructure has been being broken down by corrupt outlooks and discordant philosophies.
That fomentation of hatred through identity politics combined with anti-capitalist propaganda supporting those identity politics as various shades of socialism has created a culture of people who would rather protest an imagined lack of response to a natural disaster than to actually help in the relief of that said disaster.
I am reminded of the Linda Sarsour’s efforts to divert contributions which would have gone to relief efforts channeling them into political activism promoting identity politics. Politics taking precedent over actual relief to people is not the philosophical sickness, it is but a symptom.
Our nation’s most vital infrastructure has broken down, that of the people’s understanding of civics and the values which have not been taught to the last two generations. It is said that a nation can be lost if it fails to teach its core values to the next generation. I would modify that to the idea that it takes three successive generations for a nation to be totally lost.
There are generally three generations of adult age at any one time in a society with a life expectancy of about 80 years, a generation being about 20 years. As long as one generation holds to a particular philosophy, that philosophy is not lost. We are fighting for the post-milleneal generation to renew our philosophical infrastructure.
When we declare that our nation’s infrastructure needs to be rebuilt, let us not neglect the intellectual and social infrastructure of the American society. If the corruption of leftist socialist ideology makes our people incapable of responding to a natural disaster and man-made disasters, then that corruption poisons our nation and may destroy it.
Governments are built by men to aid in organizing those same men, it is a means, not an end in and of itself. Puerto Rico needs to rebuild its physical infrastructure and quickly, but it also needs to rebuild its societal infrastructure if it is so divided that the people will not help their neighbors out of pure spite. West Virginia needs to rebuild its educational infrastructure if it thinks that building roads promotes business rather than building businesses which can pay for the building of roads that they will then need.
Watching the political hatred against Trump by Democrats, against Democrats by Trump fans, and against conservatives by both sides, I am not watching politics as usual. I am watching the disintegration of our social and political infrastructure where our Roosevelt’s“fellow Americans” have become Obama’s “bitter clingers”, Hillary Clinton’s “enemies” and “deplorables”, and Antifa’s “Nazis”.
Our nation’s “underlying foundation or basic framework” is more than roads and bridges and power lines, it is the connection between people.
(On a side note, this would be an opportune time for Puerto Rico to make their power grid and underground system so as to avoid such calamity during the next hurricane. There will be more.)
PS from your Queen: I’m sure we’ve all heard about the shooting in Vegas by now. Please keep all involved in your thoughts and prayers.