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BTW, it doesn't help your position by calling people "liars." Just stick to the facts, science, and engineering and you'll be far more persuasive. I'm looking for the "right" answer in this debate, not name calling.
I let me comments go astray into my own rant about socio-economics.
But this comes with problems: (1) It's more expensive for us -- but that is the point, in part. If we want manufacturing workers to be paid an honorable wage in honorable working conditions, then we need to be prepared to pay the cost of that. (2) It can be difficult to find honorably-made products. Is the toy I'm buying at Finnywick's made in honorable conditions? I don't know. (3) Our society's pressures are cheaper, cheaper, cheaper and not more honorable, honorable, honorable. It will take a shift in mind-set (and politics) to change our society. (4) Many more problems I can't think of at 7:00 am.
Each of us needs to decide what standard of living (and working) our society should and can support such that EVERYONE in the world can enjoy the same. Ask yourself: are you already above that standard? If so, are you there because you are subsidized by the work of the people living and working below that standard? What are you going to do about it?
Abraham Lincoln said:
"That is the real issue. That is the issue that will continue in this country when these poor tongues of Judge Douglas and myself shall be silent. It is the eternal struggle between these two principles -- right and wrong -- throughout the world. They are the two principles that have stood face to face from the beginning of time, and will ever continue to struggle. The one is the common right of humanity and the other the divine right of kings. It is the same principle in whatever shape it develops itself. It is the same spirit that says, 'You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it.' No matter in what shape it comes, whether from the mouth of a king who seeks to bestride the people of his own nation and live by the fruit of their labor, or from one race of men as an apology for enslaving another race, it is the same tyrannical principle."
--October 15, 1858 Debate at Alton
Still true today. Still true here.
But WalMart's impact on small communities is large and -- at best -- mixed positive and negative. Rather than welcoming WalMart's expansion in Fairfield excitedly, we should be quite cautious.
I recommend these two readings:
1. http://www2.econ.iastate.edu/faculty/stone/10yrst... which says, "Studies in Iowa have shown that some small towns lose up to 47 percent of their retail trade after 10 years of Wal-Mart stores nearby."
2. http://www.ihsglobalinsight.com/publicDownload/ge... which says, "The introduction of a Wal-Mart supercenter into a county in a relatively rural state such as Mississippi has major repercussions. There are both positive and negative impacts on existing stores in the area where the new supercenter locates. "
Is it only the educators' responsibility? Perhaps Sternberg will find more fertile soil in the homes of America vs. in the schools.
In answer to your question: YES, emphatically, Fairfield is worth the long-term commitment. In fact, I think Fairfield has the potential to be the model of American living: low-density, sustainable, self-sufficient (not yet, but potential to become), low-crime, mix of rural / urban. Plus small towns give us the opportunity to meaningfully influence local government.
Given my druthers, I'druther stop the long-term commitment to America's big cities.
I rarely bike anymore, but I commuted by bike when I was in college. There were no bike lanes and I usually rode on busy streets not unlike Burlington. It was sometimes hazardous. But if I didn't like it I could have always taken to the side streets.
My question then was, and is now: Why put bike lanes on the main streets? Why add more complications to the traffic mix instead of putting the well-marked bike lanes on the less congested alternate routes?