One thing conspicuously missing from Kate Bramson’s article today, titled, “GrowSmartRI summit: Speakers share revitalization success stories,” is any statistical evidence that the stories are, indeed, about successes. Oh, sure, when government agents and activists push hard enough, they manage to fund projects and (eventually) bring them to completion, but when most people hear the phrase “revitalization success stories,” they are likely to expect that the areas were revitalized. The fact that three “relatively new” restaurants open their doors each night in Attleboro doesn’t tell us much.
This lack of substantial evidence relates to another giant omission in the article — namely, further explanation of this disturbing opening:
Patterns emerged Tuesday as government leaders from three smaller, northeastern cities shared success stories about their revitalization efforts.
Longevity — of elected leaders and employees working for them — was one of several themes that arose before an audience of about 200 business and civic leaders at a summit hosted by the nonprofit GrowSmartRI.
So, “revitalization” requires that voters elect the same officials repeatedly and that the bureaucrats keep their jobs, too? Well, how convenient.
It’s also obvious. The entire motivating philosophy of GrowSmartRI, the Brookings Institution, the RI Foundation, the Raimondo administration, and the broader society of progressive elites is that one of government’s central functions (probably the central function) is to plan out the future and enforce that plan so the grimy masses aren’t really free to shape their communities.
When your organizational motivation is to tell other people what to do and how to live, you can’t really abide such disruptive things as individual freedom or the inevitable change inherent in representative democracy. The goal is to take the permanence that we used to apply very narrowly in a Constitution and Bill of Rights and apply it expansively to minute details of how all we should live.