EDITORIAL - A bumpy ride can also be quite exciting
(The Freeman) - January 3, 2018 - 12:00am

Bumpy. This is how some people describe the ride that starts with the new year. And that is because there are certain developments in the national front that will trigger significant changes in the way people lead their lives. These changes may involve a great deal of sacrifice. People will need to summon their deepest reserves of patience and discipline to make it through the adjustments the new year requires.

True, there will be some good fortune as well. At the top of the list will be the income tax breaks that will mean a lot of relief for wage earners across the board. But to acquire the tax breaks, some trade-off had to be made somewhere. And that somewhere is where the sacrifice will have to come in. Because it means that where there are tax breaks, there too will be compensatory tax increases.

There will be extra income to spend. But there will also be higher prices to pay. The trick is, as said earlier, in the ability to summon deep into one's reserve of patience and discipline. Everyone will be tested and challenged. There will be choices to be made between the things one wants and what one needs. But tough as those choices will be, people will at least be forced to make the wise decisions in choosing.

Thankfully, the government remains strong and fairly trusted, at least at this point. The leadership has just had a resurgence of support in the polls at the closing quarter of the year. And that is very essential, especially in times when the ride gets bumpy. Because at the end of the day, it is to government that people need to repair. It is in leadership that people get inspired.

But for the most part, the bumpiness will come from the most useless of places -the usual political skirmishes that are expected to get more frequent and heated, 2018 being the year before the next election. And as has always been the case, the political pot does not start boiling on the election year itself. It starts the year before.

And that is because nobody wants anybody else to get the headstart. And so, as politics start to boil over beginning this year, expect a lot of the vitriol associated with politics to spill over into everybody's lives, whether they like it or not. Let us just hope things do not get too nasty as to complicate the simple choices we make in our daily routines.

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