Lance Scranton: Pull up to the table
September 29, 2015
It's been a good two or three weeks with various government and judicial rulings making life in an energy town a little less worrisome. The mining lawsuits seem to have slowed down but more will be on the way, I'm certain. The sage grouse will not be listed as an endangered species but other regulations may make energy exploration and development fairly laborious and difficult.
Then you read about Shell Oil pulling out of the Arctic and you start to wonder. You wonder if good news is really good news or just news along the way to something that won't be good! Speculation runs rampant every time I pick up the newspaper or read through the headlines about our economy, our politics, our country and our place in the world. It can get overwhelming and you start to wonder if we just forgot how important our place at the big table was to the rest of the world.
Like losing a steady friend, the dynamics change and adjustments are made when security and relationships are threatened and people need to find new allies and protectors. Lines get drawn differently, alliances shift ever-so-slightly and people begin to wonder if the world can ever be the same after long-time relationships are severed. Power "loves" a vacuum and it appears that the players are stepping up to the plate to become the newest and latest steady friend who will protect the interests of those who offer the best deal.
We used to understand that pushing away from the table had consequences, especially when so many have pulled up to the feast over the last 10 years. The table-setting has definitely changed and maybe what they're serving isn't palatable to us anymore but we used to at least ask for a different menu! Sure, we didn't always get what we wanted but if we spoke up, it empowered others to speak up as well.
Maybe the table is just a bit too crowded right now, but I hope we will figure out a way to find a place and let everyone know that the feast they are enjoying was made possible by us and that there is no such thing as a free meal. We pay the price for the ideas and values we hold dear, and it's why so many voters are tired of the people we have sitting at the table and are hoping for someone new to have the courage to pull right up to the table and announce that the menu will be changing. We are going to play a large part in deciding what will be offered. Yes, we'll help pay the bill, and we're generous with a tip as well!