I used to work for a local petrochemical company that specialized in small projects. They did a lot of little jobs for the small refineries that dot East Texas, adding valves and controllers and all the little things that need to be upgraded and maintained.
They were very good at what they did, and were very successful– but then they got greedy. “Why make small profits at small jobs?” they thought. “Why not make BIG profits at BIG jobs?”
The problem was, the people needed for small jobs were engineers that could dive into a problem and solve it themselves. The nature of the work required a certain take-charge go-it-alone initiative. They were good men and good engineers, but ill suited for bigger jobs that required scheduling, coordination, cooperation. They didn’t have the right temperament.
The company went bankrupt within a year.
And I wonder if that’s not similar to the root of most of America’s current problems. It’s a new world. Maybe the type of person required to build a new country is different than the kind of person required to maintain it. Maybe instead of people who bend the world to their will, we need the kind of people who can bend themselves to fit changing circumstances.
Once the current political tantrum subsides, changes will have to be made. Denying a problem is not the same as solving it, and the world has not historically been kind to slow adapters.