As we continue in this new century, we should continue to expect disruptions, shocks, and other unforeseen occurrences within various sectors of the economy. Similar to the collapse of the major banking and investment houses, other crises are poised to hit. Unfortunately, our present economic models have created an unsustainable economic environment. The current policies makers have done very little to develop flexibility and resilience within our local economies; instead, our local economies are quite brittle.
To protect ourselves, we must develop resiliency to these oncoming shocks. I am sure most of you have seen this commercial:
Our local economies must mimic this mattress. Although crazy and reckless things will happen in Wall Street or London or Tokyo, our local economies should be so well developed that, while we might rock a little from the recklessness, our local economies never tip over. We have seen how critically vulnerable our job security has become. From Randolph County, to Clay County, to Chambers County, to Lee County, jobs vanished over night and communities entered a death spiral. Because of events and decisions made without our input or concern for us, the economic security of many families crumbled.
The twenty-first century demands new ideas and strategies, a bottom-up approach, for enabling our local economies to flourish despite the craziness within Wall Street and global trade markets.