Opinion: Special sessions

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Commentary by Terry Anker

The good folks at our Indiana Legislature have just completed a “special legislative session” of that august body. It seems that the governor convened the group because of work they did not complete before adjourning for the year. As might be expected, not everyone took the same view about the unusual move.

Some hold that the estimated $30,000 expense is unnecessary – especially since much of the money is going to the people who, as the argument goes, are responsible to have avoided the extension in the first place (incidentally, many legislators have publicly announced their intention to donate the added salary to their favorite charities). Others believe that this year was so abundantly important that it would have been a Herculean effort to get the job done on time (still, numerous questions might be raised about what qualifies as urgent).

Without regard to the machinations of the political machinery of our fine state, one imagines the very notion of a do-over. How would our lives be different if we could call a “special personal session” to rethink and correct our failures, regrets and short-comings? In a relationship gone awry, could we bring everyone back to “work it out?” In a failed business venture, could we return to the table knowing that we cannot leave until we find a mutually satisfying resolution? 

Would knowing that we had a fail-safe only lead us into further brinksmanship? Or, would understanding that some higher authority would call us to account for our failures keep us focused on the many tasks confronting us? Life rarely allows itself to be relived. We have one shot, one moment, to make ourselves understood. If we fail, we live with the consequences. Yet, are we doomed only to our past self?  s it time for us to call a special session of our own?    

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