The Gallows Humor of Madness

Alan Nelson

The Gallows Humor of Madness | dogma, science,

I still snicker, but I fear a dangerous time has crept upon us.

From Lubbock we have county judge Tom Head (not an attorney) who asks for a tax increase to fund an armed rebellion if President Obama is reelected.

Yes, it seems laughable.

From Austin, we have a governor who ran for the Republican nominee for president who has suggested that secession from the union is a viable option.

Yes, it seems ludicrous.

Again from Lubbock, we have a $3.5 million chapel named for the sitting Texas Tech chancellor on the campus of a state school.

Yes, it seems absurd.

We have a $750,000 Jumbotron screen being installed at a public school’s football field in Carthage when Texas public school teachers lost their jobs by the thousands this year.   

Yes, it seems ridiculous.

In fact, the football budgets of the state appear robust compared to the rest of the public school system that is being allowed to flounder and fail.

Yes, that seems silly.

It’s been a long time coming.  We allowed it with our move many years ago to move from a government and economy based on markets, evidence and analysis to diverting funds and resources to faith-based decisions and tribal loyalty. 

We can’t afford to continue spoon feeding our pride this propaganda about how great and good we are.  Our economic lives depend on strategy and tactics, not propaganda.  And strategy and tactics live or die on education, study, training and data.

We must push aside well-intentioned but irrevocably destructive actions that stir our worst instincts.  

Otherwise, Texas will continue to dwindle to a joke.   We, however, will not laugh.