Thursday, September 08, 2005

Could have, should have

I'm hung up on this post by Echidne of the Snakes which shows that the parishes listed in the emergency declaration on August 26 are in the 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th Congressional Districts represented by Republicans. The remaining parishes, the ones most affected by the hurricane are represented by Democrats and were listed in a later declaration on August 29th.

I'm kind of bored by the "They didn't do all they could have" ranting. The fact remains they didn't do what they should have. They didn't have the skill, ability, information, will or priorities to do what should have been done. And then let's drop the we/they dichotomy. Tho' some of us were trying harder than others, we all failed.

It reminds me of the dreaded report card day when your mother (or in some cases your father) says, "Well, that B is good but why didn't you get an A?" Does anyone ever think, while you're partying, that someday someone's life will depend on what you might have learned in the class you're going to miss in the morning?

Pop psychology has been telling us not to burden ourselves with "should". I should lose five pounds but I can't or it's too hard or I'd rather go to the movies. I should vote but I'm too busy or it doesn't really make a difference or I'd rather go to the movies. I know my kids hated it when I always expected a little more. And they were (are) great kids who accomplished a lot. But yes, I always hope for a little more. And I hope for it in myself, too.

I deal with the "shoulds" on my to do list by trying to force them into either the "want to" or "have to" categories. Either way the problem is short-sightedness vs. taking the long view. I rarely actually want to wash the dishes (unless I'm doing to avoid doing something else I like less.) But tomorrow I'm going to want the kitchen counter to be clean.

So, right now I should go clean up so I can take Bill to the library. Here I go... See me going...

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