It is impossible to know what exactly the future is before it happens.
This is not exactly anything most of us living our lives are unaware of.
Yet such bits of basic wisdom are sometimes lost on all of us who pay little to no attention to reality, and who transit through our lives with our eyes only half open.
The future of a community such as ours in Everett is also unknown although the future usually tends to go upward instead or the other way.
For instance, the future can be retrograde or downward, or heading in the other direction as I so often like to note with my writing.
Not many people living in Everett in October, 1929 had much of an idea or even a feeling that the October crash of the stock market would signal the end of the Roaring Twenties and the end of prosperity, of upward trends, of great hopes for future successes and on and on.
Three years after the crash of the stock market, the nation was reeling. In 1932, when Franklin Roosevelt took the oath of office as president, the banking system of the United States had closed down. It had collapsed. The economy was nearly dead. The nation teetered on the edge of bankruptcy. In Everett, the city went from prosperity to subsistence living, from a bright future to no future, nearly overnight — as three years is not a very long time during any decade.
Fast forward to the present day.
Everett survived the COVID shutdown – not perfectly, but imperfectly. In this respect, Everett is like nearly every small city in the nation today.
Everett is moving forward.
We have morphed from the citywide shutdown caused by the economic catastrophe the COVID resulted in, to another great step forward that has followed with the reopening of our economic life.
Now we are not suffering from a lack of money. We are suffering from inflation and too much money.
The effort by the Federal Reserve Board is to slow down the economy…if you can imagine that!
Never has there been development in Everett as there is today during a time when development has never meant more.
We suppose Everett might be better if the city ordered developers what to build and where rather than being told what will be built and where by the developers.
Are the developers greedy?
Of course they are. That’s why they’re developers.
Very few other communities in the state operate the way Everett does.
Here, we take the development as if it is a savior.
In other words, let’s take the new development no matter what it is because development is good, is the Everett city mantra. Whether or not this will ultimately serve the city as a savior or not remains to be seen.
The casino and hotel are right now roaring with income and planning vast expansions that might have no end on lower Broadway.
Is this good?
Of course it is.
Mainly, it is good for the owners and operators of the casino and hotel.
It is only good for Everett if the city receives more money from the casino and hotel.
There must be a sharing of sorts to make all of this complicated mess seem worthwhile.
What to do?
In order to predict the future here Everett must exert some control of that future – as the future is unknown, as we wrote at the beginning of this editorial.
When you come right down to it, as a people we really don’t know what will happen tomorrow, let alone three weeks, three years or 30 years.
That being said, we believe it might be a good idea for Everett to take a closer look at itself and to plan for a future it can control and which will benefit not just developers, but all the residents of the city.
One of the great voices of the Depression era was the humorist Will Rogers.
His name means nothing to most of our society at this point. But he coined a phrase about the era that will go down through the ages.
“Americans are the only people in thew world driving themselves to the poorhouse in an automobile.”
More importantly for those of us cruising through our lives during this modern era are his words about resilience.
“ The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”
Everett is rising but to what, and for whom?