James Fallows on ‘Eleven Signs a City Will Succeed’ (Part 1)

Over at The Atlantic, and connected to that publication’s American Futures series, James Fallows writes about ‘Eleven Signs a City Will Succeed.’  Today, I’ll list Fallows’s eleven signs, and tomorrow, I’ll write about whether the list applies to Whitewater, and how Whitewater fares to the extent that the list is applicable.

(The list is sure to excite superficial policymakers, eager to claim credit for headlines that actual conditions belie.  Using a happy headline out of context has been the modus operandi of the Whitewater’s leading exaggerators for many years now. “We’re all those things: Mission Accomplished!”

Where many weak assessments end, the real discussion only begins.

Still, considering the list seriously, rather than superficially, will be useful to see where improvement may be made.  Fallows explains briefly in his essay what he means by each of these signs, and those explanations are useful to consideration our own situation.)

Here’s the list:

1. Divisive national politics seem a distant concern.

2. You can pick out the local patriots.

3. “Public-private partnerships” are real.

4.  People know the civic story.

5.  They have a downtown.

6.  They are near a research university.

7.  They have, and care about, a community college.

8.  They have unusual schools.

9.  They make themselves open.

10.  They have big plans.

11.  They have craft breweries.

See, in full, Eleven Signs a City Will Succeed @ The Atlantic.

Tomorrow : James Fallows on ‘Eleven Signs a City Will Succeed’ (Part 2)

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