Monday, December 21, 2009

For true reform, we need merely look in the mirror.

"It is, of course, an unrealistic dream. Politics, image-making and sloganeering are easy. Governing - especially the nitty-gritty of state and local government - is hard. It has a way of tarnishing the veneer of idealism. And political idealism raises expectations that are almost impossible to fulfill, leading to disillusionment. Once the original idealism fades, as it did for Lindsay and Schundler and appears to have done for Suozzi, it is difficult to recapture.

The old Tammany Hall politician George Washington Plunkitt put it best over a hundred years ago: "A reformer can't last in politics. He can make a show for a while, but he always comes down like a rocket."

Of course a "single" reformer will ultimately fail if his or her reform is based upon personal charisma.

Where there is no structural reform, failure is almost always certain.

Where there is no participation by the governed, reform will almost always fail.

This is a story as old as recorded history, yet somehow we cling to the concept of being "saved" by an individual.

If someone wishes to show true reform, create a system where collaboration and the free exchange of ideas and methods is made dynamic and simple. "One Long Island" is an attempt at "creating" this type of system.

True reform will break the "cycle of stagnation" we currently find ourselves mired in, on Long Island and in the country in general. True reform will assist the public in creating a fair, just and efficient society in a way that no top down dictate can.

We are the "reformers."

For true reform, we need merely look in the mirror.

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