Monday, September 3, 2012

That Guy's a Prick

How many times have you heard that said about someone who is successful?  Ever wonder why it is that successful people often seem to be the biggest jerks?  I think it is because they learned something I can't seem to; when you try to do something good for or help others, somehow you end up screwing yourself.  Yeah, I can see it but I just can't do it so I guess I'll just keep putting myself at the end of the line.  I do have to admit though, it's growing old rapidly.
I would love to see these start showing up in government restrooms.
In recent months, our community leaders rolled out a shiny new economic development plan. In that plan, among many other things, we were amazed to see “Attractive tax benefits available to aviation interests”. Well, it is very close to a quote if not perfect. Anyway, we were amazed because we once had to fight the county in court to get these benefits. Yet, I must also say, the people in charge of this part of our leadership today have been very helpful. Unfortunately though, the two hands of government are fighting each other. What one hand offers in benefits, the other takes away in petty harassment. In the end, economic development happens elsewhere. Our poor county just can’t seem to get out of its own way and it vilifies anyone trying to make it better. Sound familiar?
Maybe you remember earlier in the year when Ginger, myself, and some friends took up the charge against our local health department which many people felt was harassing our neighbors hit by the tornado. If so, you’ll remember the outcome was a positive one with one exception, it put us at the end of the line for contractors (as yet, no damages have been repaired). Oh well, all is good right? Wrong.
Now, after never once hearing a peep from our local health department in sixteen years, that same health department seems to be hell bent on harassing us about our fundraiser event. They’ve even gone to friends who were volunteering for the event, and without specific knowledge of what those friends were actually going to do while here, made them decide to back out of volunteering for the event. It is a classic small town story where nobody wants to get on the bad side of the health department because then their business might be the next victim.  And you know what, I can’t blame them.
That said, the next time one our community leaders gets all pissy with me for trying to point out a serious roadblock to attracting economic development, it is going to get ugly.
Note: After recent changes at the health department, Ginger and I had actually decided to move forward with further development of the airport. The health department had always been the biggest obstacle to any advancement in our area and we were looking forward to getting back on track with the field. I guess we were wrong. If anyone in Jefferson County Indiana is reading this, please ponder the notion of how much real economic development our community leaders have run off with nothing more than allowing the status quo to reign supreme.

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