February 6, 2023
It’s 2023. The candidates are lined up to become or remain Mayors of Indiana cities. There will be primaries where these primates have contests within their respective parties. Some good people and some ridiculous bipeds will be nominated for the November elections.
What’s going to happen between now and then? If the incumbent Mayor is running for reelection, your favorite pothole will be repaired. Yes, that pothole you dodge eastbound on that very busy street, it will be filled, flush with the surface around it.
If the incumbent is not running, an eight p.m. candlelight vigil will be held hole-side by the candidate from the “out” party to bemoan the condition allowed to desecrate your neighborhood by the out-going administration.
Likewise, if the incumbent is not running, the candidate of the “in” party will hold a fiesta at the site, complete with a mariachi band to celebrate the placement of that very pothole atop the priority list when said candidate achieves office.
Similar events will take place where street lights have been burned out or gunned into submission by neighborhood juvenile or adult miscreants. Electric service will be interrupted during the hottest days of July and August as the utility clamps down on usage in order to obtain higher rates for “imperative repairs” occasioned by global warming. Your gas stove will be temporarily without fuel as the gas executives hold a pity-party for their beloved natural product.
In the next few weeks you must get your priorities aligned with the candidates’ priorities. Take your cell phone with you. Make sure, when you leave the presence of the sacrificial lamb, you have a selfie with the candidate and a recording of the response to your pleading for action.
Make copies of this documentation. Distribute those copies to like-minded neighbors, the surviving local news media, and put one copy in a bank safe deposit vault, if your bank still offers such service.
Why are Indiana streets still in need of repair? The current administration will tell you the state legislature is ruled by ruralcrats who discriminate against urban areas of all sizes. That is the truth.
In addition, your local public works chief will point out the bureaucratic nightmare of getting approval for all repairs from the Board of Denial, that agency in your town which is in constant dysfunctional disorder because it must interact with private sector contractors.
Where local government employees are the maintenance crews, the problem lies with the dyspeptic union leaders and their psychologically impaired followers who refuse to work for incentive pay. Such pay, they consider, is an insult to the dignity of labor where each worker has such pride of achievement that bribing them is repugnant.
Now if we could find companies that reject state and local bribes in site selection……
Morton Marcus is an economist. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him and John Guy on Who Gets What? wherever podcasts are available or at mortonjohn.libsyn.com