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Common Sense Revisited

We live in an era of psychological abandonment. The moral and intellectual compass that once guided our nation veers madly off course, and common sense has been the innocent victim through it all.

Seas of homeless crowd some major cities and waves of undocumented, illegal immigrants strain our capacity to process them all. We realize there isn't enough money in the world to solve these problems. Discontent plagues both the middle class and the wealthy, ever striving to climb some invisible ladder of materialism. The principles of success punctuating our nation's formative years now seem elusive. We feel robbed of our legacy of a better tomorrow. The world our forefathers created lies bereft of their sense of rightness and manifest destiny. Perhaps we lost our footing when we lost our common sense.

After watching Bathtubs Over Broadway last night, I went to bed with thoughts swirling through my consciousness. Forget sleep. First and foremost: How did businesses afford such huge productions and lavish sales conferences and still record profits each year? A theme emphasized in the production was the hope characterizing our national outlook in the '50s and '60s. Unprecedented prosperity swept the nation, and was it because we thought we could, so we did? What other factors came into play? Was our WW II success a part of that national consciousness? Was our economic platform that different?

Yes, it was. It was a time when manufacturing boomed, and we were a nation producing things, not just ideas. The Business Insider in January of 2012 cited a loss of 56,000 manufacturing jobs in 2011, and since then, the preponderance of jobs shifting outside our borders has only exacerbated the problem. It's just common sense: if we now have to buy from others what we once produced, and if our salaries are now going to others instead of our own citizens, a recipe for disaster is being stirred in full view. Is anyone paying attention?

Once during the production the camera panned an audience of white men obviously dominating their company and it caught me off guard. I'm not suggesting we return to prior years of oppressive views, but certainly, our present enlightenment produces little economic prosperity. It's true. The influx of progressive views we pride ourselves for espousing generate no tangible monetary results. The tug of war by each social community trying to regulate commerce isn't helping. Rather, we are swimming in an ocean of debt as we try to legislate each platform's right to a piece of the pie. It's just common sense: We need to have the pie first, before we begin to argue over slicing it fairly.

Documenting the process in which Steve Young, the long time Letterman comedy writer, collected all these records took the viewer on a quirky voyage into the mind of a creative genius. Arguably, the same mindset of the '50s and '60s resonated within him as well. Here a man hummed the old tunes, sang the forgotten lyrics, and recognized the voices of the genre like he lived it, and in a way, he did. Immerse yourself in a field, and it permeates your mind. It keeps you awake at night. It becomes your mindset. It's common sense: flood our national consciousness with the strategies employed in the post war years rather than the wrangling over the civil liberties of minorities, and a new mindset emerges.

Could a return to a bygone era of hope be just that simple? If we all collected rare albums of corporate musicals, could our nation regain that elixir of confidence we now lack? And is there another pathway to confidence? Of this I am sure: it won't come by legislation. The stalemate in Congress and the division mirrored throughout our nation will produce nothing but stagnation. What we need is a silent majority to regain a sense of purpose, national identity, and to put it into play. What we need is a growing body of entrepreneurs who manufacture goods. What we need is common sense. #hope #bathtubsoverbroadway #commonsense

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