I was talking to a fellow that I know…nice guy, used to be ‘salt of the earth’ or some such. You’ve heard of his type, if not of him. Born to a family of extremely modest means, but a smart boy with a head for numbers. Made it through school, made it through high school, jined the Air Farce and went to college. Din’t go to Vietnam, cause he was in college, so he graduated and flew fast jets with big bang-sticks off airfields in various places around the world. The Air Farce is really interested in higher creditialization so they paid for him to get a Masters in some math field, then paid for him to get a doctorate in another math field…this boy knows math as she is taught. Matter of fact, when I want to know how you get from this number to that number I call this ol’ boy and ask, “How’d they do that?” He’s smart like that.
He left the Air Farce right before the first Gulf War, because there ain’t no sense in flying jets into harm’s way when you get the same juice just flying jets will-he-nill-he. Flying jets be hard. Be even harder when folks be shooting at you. Same pension, might as well be drawing it. Did I mention that he’s a smart boy?
So he’s been looking for a place to live. Lived in Carolina, but that didn’t take. Moved to New York state, and that didn’t take. Moved to Baaaaahstun, and that didn’t take. Worked in high-tech all the time, don’t get me wrong; he be working. Moved to NWArkansas and that didn’t take. Moved out to the ‘golden triangle’ and…er….it didn’t take. Moved to freaking Utah and it didn’t take. So he moved down to southwest MO. It seems to have took. He hollered and said, “come up and see. Give advice. What now?”
I look. Bought 80 acres on top of the hill. Good. Soil about a quarter inch deep. Bad. Almost a hundred miles from anyplace that you ever heard of. Good. Close to hydopower. Good. Electricity on Co-Op? Good. Roads in poor to poorer shape…I count that good, though you might say bad…almost totally White population?…Kinda good, since I’m more into results than diversity…water is iffy, best dig that well deeper…couldn’t grow a garden to save your life…bad…bought on the very top of hill instead of lower…bad…but the thing is, he now has a place that is away from everywhere that you would want to be and he’s feeling secure. That’s good.
Here’s the thing. He has lived around the world and thinks that America is going to become just like the rest of the world. He doesn’t think that that is good. Too bad.
You can build that shining city on the hill, but once the whole world is camped around that hill it becomes damn near indefensible.
That’s a shame. What’cha gonna do? You been doing diddly-squat. Is that what your plan for the future is? I’m just asking.
Has your life been a waste, up til now? Because it seems to me…fast jets don’t matter…big bombs don’t matter…machiney guns don’t matter…what matters is are you willing to use those things. We’re not.
We don’t think that it’s worth it.
We might be right. I don’t think that we are.