Omdahl: Simple solutions for complex problems
Our fast moving society demands simple solutions for complex problems. Even if they are wrong, fast poor solutions, given the proper spin, are accepted more quickly than good thoughtful answers.
Tackling the obesity crisis – This problem is not being solved with carrots. Therefore, the stick must be applied. We should revamp the income tax so tax is determined by body mass the greater the mass, the higher the tax. A pain in the pocket book gets immediate attention every time.
Solving the immigration problem – Even though compromise has become a bad 10-letter word, we need it to deal with the 12 million illegal immigrants. Tell them we will give back Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and lower California, all of which we stole in the Mexican war. Suddenly, most of them would not be immigrants. They would be back in their own country without moving.
Poverty program declared a failure – Some say we should quit the war President Johnson declared on poverty because the level of poverty has not improved over the past 50 years. We have had national prayer breakfasts for the past 50 years with the same results. Do we quit everything that doesn’t work in 50 years?
Keeping states united – Counties in California and Colorado have been voting to secede and create their own states. If counties in the Bakken get wind of these movements, they may do the same. The benefits of being a part of North Dakota are diminishing with every million barrels of oil.
End school lunch grumbling – The federal government doesn’t want to use tax money to create more obesity so it has prescribed a more healthy diet for the school lunch program. The obesity-bound kids and their parents – are complaining. If the kids insist on becoming obese, let them bring their own lunch.
Stemming the divorce tide – In Colorado, an organization called Kids Against Divorce is initiating a ballot measure requiring education classes as a prerequisite for marriage. According to one study, divorce costs taxpayers $112 billion. What would happen to those who flunk the course? Take remedial Marriage 101? From the taxpayer point of view, a better solution would be requiring marriage insurance, with the government as beneficiary.
Meddling in higher education – Before being allowed to introduce a bill meddling in higher education, the sponsoring legislator should be required to recite from memory the section of the state constitution empowering the Board of Higher Education to run the university system.
Setting date of school opening – One of the most contentious issues in North Dakota has to do with the opening date for schools. The 175 day requirement doesn’t fit between Labor Day and Memorial Day. To satisfy everyone, we need to squeeze both ends. We could extend each school day, reduce the amount of learning, add a week in July, abolish vacations, or reduce the school year by five days. You choose. I’m not getting into this one. I’d rather negotiate with North Korea.
End binge drinking in colleges – Students at our institutions would rather fire presidents than forfeit opportunities to binge drink. Whenever a student is charged with drunkenness, a press release should be sent to their local newspapers. We do things in college we would never do in our home towns.
Hedging oil turndown – Some economists are predicting that oil will drop as low as $20 due to the glut on the market caused by increased production in the United States. If we follow the suggestion to send Texas back to Mexico, it would help solve both the immigration and oil glut problems.
For all solutions offered above, I will leave implementation to you. I’m just an idea person.
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