Thursday, October 14, 2010

Great Success In The Journey To The Center

Most humans disagree with each other from time to time. It's natural, after all - even identical twins don't always agree. So it goes to reason that anytime one billion people - that's one in every six people on the planet - is paying attention to any one event, and cheering the results, it's not a small event at all.

That was the case over the last couple of days, as the rescue of 33 miners trapped for 70 days in a remote mine in Chile culminated in success. We're fairly certain you, or someone in your house, saw some of the footage, read stories, saw pictures or heard coverage of the event.

It's not been a small feat.

In under 70 days, a team comprised of engineers from twelve countries, plus advisors from many other countries, have assembled and built a transit system like no other. Built with parts, experience and knowledge from Chile, Germany, Japan, South Africa, the United States, Argentina, Spain, and even Bolivia - Chile's rival neighbor - this unique system was designed to transport one person at a time, inside a capsule less than 3 1/2 feet wide, through a hole over a third of a mile deep.

As many of the media reporters from all over the world have continually marveled, the focus of virtually everyone on the site hasn't been cost or nationality, politics or religion. No one has refused to help because the miners haven't paid a $75 rescue fee, or because the mining company broke the law. Nor did the Chilean government turn away any offer of help, because some minor law might have been temporarily broken. It has been a team effort, in every way.

It hasn't just been the rescuers on the surface that have been teaming up successfully.

The miners themselves organized their own - literally underground - society. They designated tasks and responsibilities, chose leaders, rationed resources and kept the peace. Because of their ability to work together with people they don't always agree with (or even like), after 70 days, they've all emerged alive and in a relatively healthy condition.

Whether it's an official coalition or just an ad hoc group, no group of human beings can manage to organize themselves and achieve any significant task without working TOGETHER, as a group, for ideas that will move everyone forward - or in this case, upward - to a better place.

If an event like this is what it takes for a group of people to be able to find some productive consensus, we see no problem with the idea of sending all of Congress back down the mine shaft, and closing things off for another 70 days. Strangely, we think citizens of many other countries may have the same idea regarding their legislators.

Who would have ever expected that Jules Verne would be the one to come up with the solution to our hyper-partisan politics?

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