I just saw an article about how the state of Illinois doesn't wish to spend 100 million dollars for the groundbreaking of the Barack Obama Presidential Library. The state legislature is complaining that with its current debt of 7 billion, such a demonstrable fiscal allocation is a poor decision. Call me crazy, but I agree. Naturally, the Illinois Dems are trying to ramrod everything through and get the project rolling. Sweet! The deadline for the project is June 6, 2014. They currently want the thing to be located at Chicago State University (never heard of it), University of Northern Illinois (I imagine they already have a library) and some other school in Chicago.
I suppose things could be worse. They could build it in Hawaii or if Rush Limbaugh has any say... possibly Nairobi, Kenya.
Exactly how many people in the United States will visit the 150 million dollar Bill Clinton library in Arkansas? How many people have ever even been to central Arkansas. Except for this guy I suppose.
The same thing goes for George Bush and his library in Lubbock or at Texas A&M or wherever. It cost somewhere in the 250 million dollar range. Or the other Bush library elsewhere in Texas. Midland, Crawford or who knows where.
Tangent: I despise parents who name their kids after cities in the great state of Texas (Austin, Tyler, Dallas, Houston, etc.). Makes me wanna puke.
Now I realize that much of the money is raised through corporate fundraising and individual philanthropic contributions... but still, it seems odd that when it's all said and done, such a small number of people will ever actually benefit from the construction of these mammoth facilities.
It got me to thinking about libraries in general. The concept is kind of outdated. Most people just go online and have access to everything imaginable within seconds. Hey, here's an idea --- How about the first ever TRANSIENT library? By that I mean, a series of 10 rigs or so that travel the country 365 days per year. One rig could promote training and job growth, tailored to the area of the country they're visiting. Another one could promote adult literacy. One could be devoted to healthcare, staffed with physicians and medicine. One could promote cutting edge technology. Arts, music, science, history, etc. You get the drift.
My point... the general idea of a brick and mortar library is trending obsolete, especially in the age of the internet and decentralized information. You'd staff this monster convoy accordingly and focus on visiting colleges and universities. Though in theory, they could go anywhere.
And yeah, I understand the notion of going to a library is a leisurely visit, carefree lounging around and inquisitive, tempered relaxation. This one would be more "get the fuck in and get the fuck out." People would adapt.
I think it's a fascinating concept. They'll likely raise a couple hundred million for the project anyway. Why does it have to be something that the vast majority of Americans will never come into contact with? Also, I think it mirrors the premise of inclusion and "reaching out" to the populous. Very grassroots oriented. I think you could frame it in the mindset of a roving Smithsonian, but with an emphasis on moving FORWARD. It could even be a subtle reminder of the 2012 election campaign theme.
Anyway, it's just a thought. If you run into Barack, Michelle or the kids, try floating the idea. I think he'd be receptive. And oh yeah, tell him about the dominipede too --- the biggest, continuous asymmetric threat to our national security. All it takes is a click of the mouse and you have the access to learning about the existing state of obsolete emergency evacuation protocol. Something that legitimately impacts every large venue. Not only in the United States, but worldwide too! See... you never really needed that mega-concrete, 5 story building, parcel of land and asphalt parking lot.
Alright, enough of that. Great news. My 2nd book entitled "Dominipede" is almost complete. I'm finishing the final chapter (the toughest). It will be available online. It won't cost you a dime. And you don't need to worry if it has been checked out. You don't need a library card. And you can't lose it or spill grape juice on it. It's part of the new, intangible realm. Much like the next phase of generational warfare --- no weapons required. I'll be posting it soon!