Pre-Exisiting Conditions

April 27, 2020

“You may delay, but time will not.”
-Benjamin Franklin

Around the world, the doors of local businesses are slowly creaking open. Government and business leaders are inching forward, walking a fine line between public health and a functioning economy. This slow, methodical process is juxtaposed against the urgency of the socio-economic crisis unfolding in our communities. Opposing forces will continue to play out as we seek to reach new milestones along the path to economic stabilization and confidence in health.

The current global health crisis has exposed many pre-existing conditions. Conditions we knew of, yet functioned with, for decades. Some industries were on the verge of great changes that have only been accelerated by this crisis and academia has been evolving towards online education for years, only to have to suddenly adapt within weeks.

As we move ahead, we have an obligation to address these conditions and emerge stronger. As we address a path forward, some food for thought on where to invest our dollars, time and energy:

  • Increased national investment in science and technology to solve the world’s existing and emerging problems. The solutions to this and all future crisis lie within our research in health, energy, and the environment.
  • Increased time and investment in our minority community’s health, education and housing. Communities are only as prosperous as their most vulnerable people.
  • Increased investment in financial literacy early and throughout life to protect families and unleash additional capacity to build wealth across all communities and generations.
  • A commitment to building the most competitive businesses in the world. We must protect, understand the needs of, and aid private sector businesses to build resilient communities.
  • High-speed broadband and internet access for all children and families. Access to education and public resources is dependent upon it.
  • Smart investments in international, relationships, trade and the attraction of foreign investment. This crisis is both local and global. We must increase, not decrease, our international networks. Physical, intellectual, and cultural diversity equals greater resiliency.
  • Modernize tax and regulatory systems for the economy that is being built to ensure stable revenues and unleash growth and innovation.
  • Increased investment in technologies that deliver government services in order to increase service and to reduce the overall cost of the system.
  • Incentivize citizens, businesses and institutions vastly reduce the skills gaps that remains in technology and manufacturing.
  • Invest in the culture, programs and places that enable and accelerate entrepreneurial activity.
  • Build a more resilient energy framework to power business and communities.
  • Invest in cyber literacy to keep our citizens, businesses, and democracy safe.
  • Build a more accessible and innovative academic framework to decrease inequalities and increase competitiveness
  • Invest in public leadership – the world is getting more complicated, not less.
  • Build and invest in comprehensive economic development strategies and community development resources, both public and private.

The present crisis is forcing us to address hard truths. We are only as prosperous as our most vulnerable people, businesses and communities. Let us welcome the challenge to prioritize, invest and improve what we have already been doing.

Perhaps you would add to this list of investments, or develop a completely new one. If so, we welcome the feedback. The conversations that we need to have to address – and act upon – issues we’ve been putting off is something we should embrace and welcome.

-Kenny McDonald