A different view of potholes

Each day it grows.  I drive around it and think how much it brings to mind what the great valleys of earth must have looked like in the beginning…at least in miniature.

The cracks in the road were not particularly noticeable in the beginning, but then the cracks started to widen.  When it would rain, I would notice the water accumulating, but I could still drive through it with little fear.

And I waited for the hole to be repaired.

The hole deepened and widened so that if you hit it, you felt it, forcing you to consider how to avoid it.

But hold on, avoiding this hole necessitated navigating around other developing valleys on the street.  My car is getting a bit older so I really have to pay attention to these holes, but the way that they are enlarging, so also do folks in their new BMWs.

Who’s responsible?

And I waited for the hole to be repaired.

Each day in looking at the hole I found myself thinking about the calculations that the local government makes in deciding when to repair a pothole. With the public sector being strangled by tax restrictions led by anti-government forces on the right-wing, local governments have to figure out if and when they can actually make a repair.

I then wonder how many drivers stop and think about the anti-tax platforms of this or that candidate and the connection between fewer resources for the public sector and the developing great valleys in our streets.

Rich not paying fair share
So, each day I watch the valley expand and deepen.  I keep wondering at what point it will be repaired, or whether it will ever be repaired. Or, perhaps they will just throw something into the hole to temporarily patch it the way that you might stitch some clothes so that you can at least wear them one more time.

And I keep wondering why someone would curse government for not doing its job while at the same time not stopping to ask why the people who have the money are not paying their fair share so that, among other things, we do not need to say the Lord’s Prayer each time we drive down a street, cross a bridge or drive through a tunnel.

Maybe it is just me.

Bill Fletcher, Jr. is a Senior Scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies, the immediate past president of TransAfrica Forum, and the co-author of Solidarity Divided. He can be reached at papaq54@hotmail.com.



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