Frustration Friday: Blast Away From The Past

Note to pundits, writers, politicians, political leaders, and general online ranters.

Please shut up about the good old days about the economy, jobs, what have you.

First you can shut up because odds are they weren't as good as you think, and if they were good, they apparently didn't last.  I'm used to people talking about the "good old days" while displaying an astonishing level of historical ignorance, and I'm a bit tired of it.  You can double my derision if you didn't even live in the time you're talking about being so good.

Secondly, you can also shut up for another reason – even if you're right, they're not coming back.

The jobs we had aren't the same.  The economy isn't the same.  The world isn't the same.  It's not going to ever be like it was – it might become like it was, but that's A) not the same and B) see point number one.

The idea of some past wonderful time is fleeting, and often terribly wrongheaded and misguided.   Even if there were great times, things aren't the same, and sometimes they're not the same for the reason.

What we can do is not worship the past, not live in the past, but learn from it.  We can build on what worked, discard what didn't.  We can think about the future and make it happen.

But we won't get there living in the past.

So it's my hope as we enter the last quarter of this year, enough people start thinking of the economic future and building it.  Talking about how great things were, even when right, is just talk.

It'd also be a heck of a lot less annoying.

Steven Savage