Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Promises, Promises?

This is the day the waters rose, the day after we dodged the bullet.  The day the Army Corps of Engineers' promises and levees failed.  They had said we were protected from a Category 3 storm, that is what we got; they were wrong.

But now, at least, they have learned their lesson.  Having almost completed 14 billion dollars of work on improved protection, they don't promise us much.  Yesterday the paper was filled up with a flood of information on ways the whole system can fail in the face of rising sea and river levels, as well as storm surge.  So, there you have it, no promise, no delivery, no responsibility.

Meanwhile, our no drama President is also proving happy and content not to rise to the challenges in his line of work. Umm, that would be figuring out ways to make sure we can get into or stay in some line of work of some sort, preferably one which at least pays the bills.  When elected, he said he would do just that, he has not.  Now, he has promised to promise us something after Labor Day. Uh, huh. His recent new appointment to head the Council of Economic Advisors promises only more of the same.

So, here we are.  I don't know quite what to make of the promise to be promised something.  Never heard of such before.  But I do know the promise of more of the same means a lot more of less.  The temptation is to say, we're all through with promises, promises.  But not so fast.

Even broken promises, like the broken Corps of Engineers' levees, are better than none at all.  I can promise you this:  Every promise may not produce performance, but performance itself only comes from a promise.

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