The Star-Banner is constantly writing about the water management problems of the state and counties and the actions of various water management boards, when this may not be the problem at all.
The main problem may be growth and the builders whose very existence depends on growth. Just as President Eisenhower was afraid of a "military-industrial complex" overtaking and dominating the federal government in the 1950s, we have been taken over by a growth-construction complex at both the state and county government level.
Florida may be full, even though there is room to build more houses and roads. We may have reached the limit of our natural resources to support a continuing expansion of population without suffering a decline in our living standard, much as India and China have done.
Long-range plans are of little use when we don't know where we are going. The County Commission is easily influenced to cut up more farmland and turn it into building lots, even though there is no shortage of vacant lots now. The pumping of our rivers to supply water for these future houses is only a temporary expedient till the rivers are gone, just like the swamps are now dry.
We build more roads when we can't maintain the roads we have and the very proliferation of the automobile (as we know it) is in doubt.
Our public schools can't handle the education requirements of our young citizens. There is insufficient employment to provide a good living standard for all, yet we build.
It used to be we purchased a house for a home and planned to live in it the rest of our lives, or as long as the job held out. Now we buy and sell to make a profit and move to a bigger house. That is where our present banking crisis came from. The debt we have acquired came from the housing construction that was not for homes but for profits. The bailouts came from this debt that we can't pay without spreading it over the long-term tax load of the future.
Turn our construction dollars into maintenance dollars that still generate jobs. Lots of existing housing needs to be upgraded rather than abandoned to become slums. The same goes for new business buildings, while many buildings are abandoned.
Fix our bridges and roads rather than build more that we won't maintain. Stop spreading our school system all over the surrounding farmland and having to build the biggest bus system in the world to get students to them.
Stop planning to grow at the expense of a good life for all. Look no farther than downtown to see what the present unlimited growth has already created and what the future of our present new construction is. Look at Tampa and the areas that were very nice in the 1960s (when I lived there). Try to drive through Tampa to get to the airport. Think if this is what you want for Ocala.
Robert Logston of retired telephone company engineer and lives in Ocala.