By Patrick F. Cannon
The New Year is upon us. What we do in the next 12 months may well alter the course of human events for all time to come, or at least for a day or two. As it is customary for delusional people like me to make resolutions, I offer these. Please feel free to adopt some or all for yourself; no royalties will be charged. Some depend on the resolve of others, for which I have usually hoped in vain.
As politicians at all levels continue to fail us, I am going to ignore them as much as possible. I will only get involved when I have an opportunity to sign petitions limiting their terms of office or taking away from them the power to gerrymander electoral districts to insure their reelections.
For the first time, I am unable to hope that the Chicago Cubs will finally win the World Series. Cubs fans may not know this, but the Chicago White Sox won this event in 2005. Now, we can dream that the two teams, joined as they are by the El’s Red Line, will soon meet in a “subway series.” I dare not imagine this will happen in 2017, but a recent trade gives hope that the Sox may only be a couple of years away from contending. Let us hope that their rise isn’t matched by an inevitable Cubs decline.
Staying in sports, we can dream that the McCaskey family will finally sell the Bears, thus giving hope that a new owner might emulate what the Ricketts family has done for the Cubs. The McCaskey clan seems only interested in providing a place of employment for otherwise unemployable members of their own family. I urge them to take the money and run before their fans get the jump on them.
I resolve to keep reminding my fellow citizens that facts are pesky things and often contradict their most cherished beliefs, to whit:
- Government intervention can reverse the tides of history and return manufacturing jobs to America. Most of the lost jobs are now done by computer-driven machines. They cannot come back because they no longer exist. Be wary of politicians who tell you otherwise.
- Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) will destroy life as we know it. Many so-called “environmentalists” peddle this nonsense despite numerous studies that have proven that they are not only safe, but many will reduce the need for chemical fertilizers and weed killers. Avoid buying products that pander to ignorance by advertising their products as “GMO Free.”
- Illegal immigrants are flooding over the borders and stealing jobs from the natives. Actually, the number of illegals has stabilized in recent years, with the number from Mexico actually declining. The percentage in the work force is about 8 percent, down from the peak of 8.3 percent in 2008. By far, the highest percentages of illegals are in agricultural related jobs, mostly the kind of stoop labor Americans refuse to do.
Finally, I resolve to think as little about Donald Trump as is feasible. He is an ignorant vulgarian and will try to haunt my every dream. I am further resolved to let the other branches of government do what they were designed to do and hope for the best.
Copyright 2016, Patrick F. Cannon
 This is my first footnote, and therefore historic. When you see one, if you’re already bored, you may safely ignore it. In this case, I would just add that during the election both candidates railed against the trade agreements that have reduced abject poverty around the world. They claimed they wanted to “save” American jobs. The classic case of doing such is the Smoot Hawley tariff of 1930. It drastically raised tariffs on foreign goods, which caused other countries to raise their own tariffs on ours. The unemployment rate in 1930 was 8.7 percent, in 1931, 15.9 percent and by 1933, 24.9 percent. What do they say about history repeating itself?