Believing the status quo is a baseline from which to progress is common, but wrong.

This flaw of inexperience among the young (and progressives) has become far too pervasive in our society and is particularly notable in Rhode Island.  People seem to think that the current state of affairs has been established and will continue indefinitely, so we can shape it like clay to the future we want to see.  Investors will continue to build businesses… producers will continue to produce… minority parties will continue to fight the good fight to keep representative democracy honest.  And so on.  That’s not how reality works, though.

The above was my reaction to this tweet from left-wing Democrat state representative David Morales:

DavidMoralesRI: Let’s be clear, the next CEO of RIPTA must be a transit professional with the lived experience of using public transportation daily!

It might be nice to hire a chief executive with intimate and specific experience with the product, but past experience as a customer is not typically an overwhelming advantage and certainly not one that can’t be compensated once in the role (not least because customer experiences differ).  Morales’s underlying assumption is that there is a pool of indistinguishably high-quality candidates for the role, so adding a mandate won’t have any negative effects.

The more likely outcome, from which Rhode Island increasingly suffers, is that the pool of candidates will be so uniformly unqualified that additional requirements won’t make things notably worse.  The first step to fixing this problem is a more mature understanding of how reality actually functions.

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1 month ago

[…] I suggested in a post this morning, it’s an error to think we can impose requirements on the status quo and not […]

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