Dan Drezner  has an interesting discusion going on at his place. within the context of large Box stores…(This time, the great satan, Wal-Mart) and local flavor that many claim large box stores destroy by elimination of the smaller, locally owned stores. The issue has come up, as you will see in Dan’s thread, as the wild concept of actually declaring the entire state, a historical landmark!
One of the people in the discussion came up with what I consider a telling argument in more than just the question of a walmart in a locale.
“One thing I think the pro-Walmart people ignore is the binary result of opening a Walmart. It is truly an either or type of proposition. If a Wal-mart opens and only 20% of the people in a given region shop there in the first year, this will decimate the small shops that are in competition – the small shops will go out of business. In effect, a minority will dictate what the lifestyle of the region will be. ”
Seems to me this point of minority control might be applied to *any* degree of social change.
For example, could this point be used in an argument against homosexual ‘weddings’?
That case seems to me a similar one; societal impact of a large but not fully quantifyable state, imposed on the majority by a relative few, and like the WalMart question is a question of rights on one side, vs the continuance of society’s values on the other. And, like the Walmart issue, is an all-or-nothing thing; there’s no half measures that will be accepted.
The more libertarian among us (and certainly, the more liberal) constantly ask how homosexuals being given the right to marry will affect the rest of us. Boortz for example, raises such issues with some regularity. Perhaps this kind of thing should be part of the answer given them?
Another matter, and perhaps a larger question than Vermont;
It strikes me as passing strange that there should be such interest in maintaining the trappings of small-town life in Vermont, using the power of government, while those in power there are so bent on imposing societal changes in that state by means of the same power; Government. A quickie search on Google on the string: “vermont social change” reveals several hits regarding ‘social changes’ being wrought in vermont by both government and various groups… including financial institutions, I notice.
Vermont is not unique here, but is merely the leading edge along with California and other leftist dominated states, such as Mass, for example. And so the question becomes one that involves western society as a whole;
How can it be productive to save the pleasant trappings of the culture,(by ironcly, eliminating economic growth within that culture) while eliminating the culture that produced both of them, by mandating social change within the culture?
Can we forsee anything but the utter destruction of any society so caught between two such forces?