The Glass Half Full

Many years ago I was fortunate enough to vacation for a week in Nassau, the Bahamas. One thing jumped right out at me; it was very, very easy to get a ‘cab’ ride to anywhere. It seemed like every other car was ‘hacking’.

I came to the conclusion that every other car was hacking. In general, people who owned cars there had to in order to be able to pay for the luxury of owning one. Those who didn’t took one of the many buses in the city. The ready availability of public transportation was, for them, a symptom of poverty (perhaps, not dire poverty, but poverty none-the-less).

And isn’t that odd? Wasn’t public transportation a sign of prosperity? Well, um… no.

And it’s starting to become obvious that public education is the same phenomenological type. If, as I believe, the very best education is one-on-one, done in a loving environment by people who truly care, then the very best education is home-schooling. That is, if we can afford it as a society, and if the teaching-parents are educated themselves, then it is. Public schooling, then, is also a symptom of impoverishment, and not the institutional product of abundance (even if it once was).

And care for the elderly? We all imagine that we would prefer to spend our dotage, not in a subsidized elderly care facility surrounded by strangers, but home with loved one. But can we afford it? Many are struggling to do just that, and more are willing to try every day. That we can contemplate wave after wave of individuals and families doing (and doing well) the functions formally performed by government institutions is an indication of a wealthy, intelligent and motivated population, not an impoverished, overworked people.

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