I consider myself to be a materialist philosophically speaking and while gambling, casinos, and questions about connections to organized crime in Eurasia were the furthest thing from my mind when I first contemplated starting this website, reality has obligated me make them central to what I am trying to do here. I have read at the website casinowhispers.com, in a column at the Boston Globe, and from other sources for quite a while that MGM may not get approval from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission because the father of one of its partners in a casino in Macau is a prominent organized crime figure. I have no idea how significant that may be to the MGC. I care a great deal about what they decide, but I have a very hard time caring about “is” when I am much more concerned about “ought”.
I’m just not a process guy. In education the people I have the least respect for are those who focus on the process and not the outcome. I have been teaching for a quarter of a century, and I have seen systems come and go which were going to permanently transform what we do and how we do it…and what I’ve seen is that thoughtful people with a solid grasp of their subject matter who care about young people and have that spark which engages young people can teach…and those who don’t, can’t. To me every educational fad is like the triangle offense in basketball: it became all the rage when the Bulls were winning championship after championship…but in the end the triangle offense was effective because Michael Jordan and Scotty Pippen were two of its three angles for the Bulls.
I worked at WHYN-AM in Springfield right after it had changed its format to all-talk. I had a Saturday show and filled in during the week for the real talent when my teaching duties allowed. Dan Yorke was the local star at the time, and he was, and still is, the best I have ever heard at analyzing process. He would spend hours and hours describing who was in contact with whom from what organization to extract what favor for which purpose…all of which seemed (and seems) completely pointless to me. I don’t care HOW a thing gets done, I care THAT a thing gets done. The process used to build a building matters much less than its appearance and its function. I understand that the process impacts the outcome…but that is the only reason the process matters.
I was at dinner with friends and I mentioned that the Maple Street corridor was due to be upgraded as every other north-south gateway into the city had been in the last 20 years or so, but it had not been improved in at least 4 decades. Rather than engaging in a conversation about how the street, its sidewalks, lighting and traffic pattern could be altered to improve its walkability a companion obsessively tried to steer the conversation toward the processes of government which had caused it to be neglected. No matter how many times I tried to politely steer the conversation toward “ought”, he returned to process. I finally had to state outright that I didn’t care one whit “why” it had been ignored, I wanted to discuss what needed to be done to improve it. How to get IT done doesn’t matter until one has decided what one wants to get done and then the process should take whatever form it needs to take to get done what needs to get done.
Back to the casino question, and with full acknowledgment that I could be accused of motivated reasoning, I can’t see that a partner to a developer in a non related project having a PARENT involved in organized crime, or anything for that matter, should have any impact on what goes on here. If it does it does, but it clearly shouldn’t. I am not my father nor should I be judged by his deeds, or he by mine.