With the advent of every January 1st comes the opportunity for all of us to avow to ourselves that we will indeed do things different for the coming 365 days. Besides the staple resolutions to lose weight, eat better, and exercise more, there may be items on your list you’ll actually follow through with.
Some people do set realistic goals. “Starting this week, I shall only eat three bowls of ice cream per week instead of four. And I’ll only use the chocolate syrup two of those feedings.” Or, “When I go to the grocery store, I will park in a normal spot and not the one reserved for Expectant Mothers.” Or even, “No matter what Donald Trump tweets, I won’t let it affect my blood pressure . . . by more than 40 points.”
Personal resolutions are all well and good and probably should be encouraged. Trying to make ourselves healthier and more tolerant of our fellow man (and woman) are good goals. But it occurs to me that governments and corporate entities might also benefit from writing down some changes and aspirations for 2018. For example:
- The City of Atlanta, in conjunction with the Hartsfield/Jackson Airport Authority, might want to look into purchasing one or two more back-up generators. It’s really not a good thing to have the world’s busiest aerodrome be in total darkness and without power for 24 hours plus. Home Depot has all the 4000-watt auxiliary boosters that might be needed, I think on aisle twelve.
- Countries in general, but Venezuela in particular, might want to steer clear of “socialist paradises,” to quote the late South American leader Hugo Chavez. Back in the early 2000s, he led Venezuela in nationalizing industries and multiplying government handouts exponentially. And how’s that working out? Well, the current Venezuelan government doesn’t have any cash, so it just prints more currency. Last year at this time it took about 3000 bolivars to equal one U.S. dollar. According to recent reports, it now takes more than 100,000 bolivars to equal a greenback. You could be a bolivar millionaire and still have basically the equivalent of ten bucks in your pocket.
- Given the $20+ trillion the U.S. currently owes, perhaps it’s time to institute the “spend a dollar, save two” economic approach. You know, like taxpayers tackling credit card debt. If Congress insists on buying something new (or paying off a staffer to not sue for sexual harassment) with taxpayers’ dollars, it should figure out how to stop spending elsewhere. Rumor has it there’s a little bit of fluff in virtually every federal department.
- Throttling back on the dispensing of opioids as a resolution should kind of be a no-brainer, shouldn’t it? If the epidemic of overuse and addiction is as rampant as we’ve been led to believe of late, shouldn’t there be some alternatives to drugs to make one feel better? Chocolate comes to mind. Good dark chocolate preferably. It may not cure all ills, but it can definitely brighten your day for at least a little while.
- Hackers need to use their powers for good. Instead of figuring out how to read classified emails and checking out credit reports of people struggling to make ends meet, as challenging as that might be, why not go after others of your ilk? Imagine the feeling of power when you prove yourself the baddest hacker of them all by exposing the personal information of other hackers. And we who are computer-challenged would really enjoy watching the mad-skill modem operators among us squirm and sweat. Go after your own kind. Put their bank account numbers and passwords online for all of us to enjoy. Think of the satisfaction you would receive by totally wiping out a peer.
But those are just some suggestion starters. I’m sure there are many, many more New Year’s resolutions that will occur to you. Feel free to be creative. You might even come up with one or two that have a chance of succeeding. One suggestion: Don’t come up with any ideas for your spouse or significant other. That’s bad form. Children are fair game, however. It’s always accepted practice to at least make a personal New Year’s resolution list, even if you have no intention of following through on even one thing on it. Just the idea of a clear slate helps the psyche and, as it does for all baseball teams in March, hope springs eternal that this is the year for success. Good luck.
©MMXVII. William J. Lewis, III – Freelance Writer in Atlanta