A virtual vision of 20/20 and beyond

Hugo Buchanan

Once upon a time, allow one to have a virtual vision of a city named Payback, in a state, where there were many rivers, and tributaries. The country was going through a weather cycle of torrentially heavy rains, during each rainy season, And each rainy season seemed to be extending each year.  There was a river that flowed directly through the middle of this city, and the name of the river was Payback River.  No one seemed to know where the name Payback came from, and even though historical records had the city and river shown on all city maps, there were no records of where the name Payback came from.

There were many tributaries upstream of Payback River, in different states,  mainly Lexico, Mondurous, El Talvador, and Buatamala.  The city had built a embankment dam on Payback River, and the heldback waters has deposited a beautiful lake, named, appropriately, Payback Lake. Properties on Payback Lake were at a premium during those days, and many expensive homes had been built.  It was a beautiful area of the city.

The extended heavy rains were getting worse, and the entire city was concerned that the Payback Dam might burst, and not hold back the water from the many tributaries.  A few years earlier, the city had the experience of a new family that had moved to Payback, and the father in the family had taken a strong political interest in the city of Payback.

His name was Kermit Kerplunk.  In no time at all he had gained a seat on the city council. At council meetings, the main topic that always overshadowed all other topics, was what to do about Payback Dam, and the threats of heavier rains bursting the dam.  Kerplunk always said he had a master plan, to replace the entire Payback Dam with a beautiful concrete dam. It would most certainly  hold back the heavy rains from upstream. But Kerplunk was having trouble convincing other council members with his master plan, and they were certainly not in agreement as to how this project could be funded, and weather or not a concrete dam was actually needed.  A council member, Gopher Broke, had suggested that the main problems were all the tributaries upstream, and if they could convince the cities and counties of the  tributaries, to build dams on those tributaries, Payback Dam problems could be diverted. But all other council members, especially Kerplunk, took no interest in Broke’s proposal.

With the heavy rains getting worse each season, Kermit  Kerplunk ran for, and was elected, to the Mayor of Payback.  Slowly he convinced most council members, that a concrete dam was what was needed.  Gopher Broke was the only opposition vote, so construction was started on Payback Dam.

Two years later, Payback Dam had a new shiny back side, of pure, beautiful, concrete. Mayor Kerplunk had managed to gain quite a number of supporters, and they were all ecstatic about the dam.

A few years  went by, the heavy rains had settled a bit, and Mayor Kerplunk was running for a second term .  During a heavy week of campaigning, the heavy rains were returning again. And this time there seemed to be no letup.  Waters were overtaking the top of Payback Dam, and were washing out the sides of the dam.  There was nothing that could be done until the weather got better.

When the rains did start to cease, both sides of Payback dam had completely washed out, the Payback River was flowing full force on each side of the dam, and Lake Payback was completely drained.  Councilman Broke reminded other council members that his earlier proposal of getting Lexico, Mondurous, El Talvamor, and Buatamolia  to build dams, may have diverted this problem.

Mayor Kerplunk stated that it most certainly was not his fault.

The failure of Payback Dam had caused flooding everywhere downstream, and businesses failed, and people were out of work. All this water was bad, any way you look at it. Water, water, everywhere, and the loss of American jobs.

And now, let us all have a virtual look backwards, to the days of our Forefathers.  In this vision, lets change the names of a few places and things:  Payback River is our Southern Border. The water is real, and is all Illegal Immigrants. Payback Dam is a beautiful concrete wall, from the Pacific Ocean, to the Gulf of Mexico. Lexico is Mexico, Mondurous is Honduras, El Talvador is El Salvador, and Buatamala is Guatamala.  

As I have mentioned in a earlier letter, our Forefathers invited Canada to join our Union, but they declined.  Mexico was not invited, due to infrastructure costs to bring their cities up to the standards needed for any average American city.  And now, allow a virtual reasoning, that our Forefathers would have had a vision, themselves, that, as populations of different countries increase, people in these small countries may travel from place to place, city to city, and country to country to find work, to provide for their families.  After all, isn’t that what life is all about?  

So in this virtual vision, allow me to state that our Forefathers would have  invited Mexico, and all Central American countries, to join our union, and they all have gladly accepted. Democracy was the genes of government, these new states  were stable, and jobs plentiful.  Mexico and all Central American “states” were having tourists, in droves, from all different states up north, travel to their state on vacations and holidays. Times were great, with very low unemployment.  There is no wall, no fences, no check points between states.  At all airports, and harbors where ships from foreign countries arrive, are all closely inspected and monitored for any illegal drug activities.  

(I am self-reminded, during the typing of this letter,  of a old folk song, titled “Big Rock Candy Mountain”)

But now we are back to reality, with our President demanding his wall, and threatening to cause interruptions and dangers in air travel, Federal Parks closing, EPA not staffed, on and on . . . 

As the years go by, and if populations  of the Central American countries continue to increase,

wall or no wall, fence or no fence, the have nots, by the thousands,  could desperately be trying to join the haves. “Payback time”, may well be the reply, should this prediction hold any meaning. 

To visualize virtual pictures of these people, by the hundreds, at any border area, standing next to a large, high fence, and wondering what it is really like to have just a few crumbs left from the dinner tables of the other side, to feed a hungry child . . .  could make one wonder, will it really, supposedly, be this way?  After all, this is only a virtual vision . . . .

Hugo Buchanan is a resident of Lady Lake.