Here’s the twelfth annual FREE WHITEWATER list of the scariest things in Whitewater. (The 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 editions are available for comparison.)
The list runs in reverse order, from mildly scary to truly frightening.
10. Illuminated Signs. There’s a nice-looking new sign in front of our high school, with an illuminated message board, of the kind that ones see in front of schools, business, and even churches. The sign here, unfortunately, met unnecessary delay and fuss before its installation this year, as though it were something mildly scary. It’s not – it’s a nice-looking sign.
9. Cravath. Someone’s going to have to reclaim Cravath Lake somehow, but for all the talk about how to drain the lake, no one seems to have considered that there might be something worse than fish waiting at the bottom.
Good luck to all concerned.
8. One’s Own Eyes. In nearby Jefferson, Wisconsin, a bottom-shelf festival has received more favorable press than Ringling Bros. Greatest Show On Earth® ever did. A local newspaper wants readers to accept its mendacious accounts over what anyone can see with his or her own eyes.
7. Competition. If someone wants to sell a new toothpaste, no one would form a Toothpaste Preservation Committee to keep out the new product. And yet, if someone wants to build a new residential complex, the local business league conveniently supports ‘neighborhood preservation efforts’ that have as a key objective keeping out competitors to the incumbent landlord that runs the local business league. It’s an obvious anti-competition tactic.
6. DYKWIA? Some still have the bad habit of expecting the community to follow the lead of a few supposedly prominent people because they are, well, a few supposedly prominent people.
And yet, and yet – if these prominent people were what they say they are, then there wouldn’t be need of any other people in town. But there is, and so they’re not.
5. Community as Horde. A real scare here – using ‘community-minded’ appeals to call forth a complainant-ignoring horde to flack for some official or another.
4. Stagnation. Whitewater is a low-income, economically-stagnant community. The one thing Whitewater’s Community Development Authority has not developed is what matters in a productive, free-market economy: gains in individual and household income.
3. Bad Practices. In nearby towns (Milton & Jefferson in particular), one sees bad examples of closed-government, endless squabbles, and boosterism on behalf of their own officials.
2. Trumpism. A bigoted, ignorant, autocratic politics of nationalism holds this nation’s federal government in its fleshy grip.
1. Harassment and Assault. For two university administrations, harassment and assault – of real people in this city – has been ignored or rationalized for the sake of ambitious but amoral leaders. There is no right without an individual redress. Whitewater draws closer to becoming Missoula or Steubenville with each passing day. There will be no relent on this matter until there is wholesale change.
This last year has been difficult for many of our fellow residents, but Americans are a resolute people – we will see this through.
Best wishes to all for a Happy Halloween.