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Who Has Time?

Hopefully, throughout these planning topics, you will see the enormous and enduring importance of getting education planning right, or at least one or two parts.  Consequently, other time consuming activities, while important, must take a secondary priority.  This is not a sacrifice because seeing their importance helps you to WANT to put them first.  
 
The 1858 Lincoln and Douglas debates, the "top rated" event in Illinois, played to thousands of people at each stop. They were 3 hours long with single speech turns lasting up to an hour because the most contentious public policy issues of the day could not be discussed in pithy 3 minute platitudes. Yet, this was at a time when the work week was 60 hours and people did not have our time saving technologies. Yet today's political debates require candidates to take no longer than about a couple minutes to answer because people's attention span and busy-ness causes them to lose interest.  This does not make sense.
 
The most insightful pundits of the 1960's, e.g. syndicated columnist Sylvia Porter, prognosticated that unprecedented improvements in time saving technology would result in so much time saved that we would have to pay workers to go fishing.  This sounded logical. Computers have replaced thousands of slide rule equipped engineers and legions of phone operators.  Prefab housing and just-in-time manufacturing creates more goods with less cost and man hours.  Cell phones save time in numerous ways. On average we have fewer children to spend lots of time and money raising.  Also, Harvard Prof. Elizabeth Warren shows that in real dollars most costs of living have gone down from 1970 to 2004. Even housing is stable, or even cheaper on a per square foot basis adjusted for family size.  Maybe health care is higher but would you trade today's care for 1955 or 1970 care to get those rates?
 
As a student of history and social sciences you know that what first appears self-evident (that your schedule really is booked up) may not be so in light of the fact that the social norms we face today create an inertia of self-evident truths, that really are not so. With this rigorous objectivity and historical context, you may find more discretionary time for at least a start on one of the many ideas posed here for your consideration.
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