Join the dialogue: The times, they are a-changin' - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

MAP TO PROSPERITY: The times, they are a-changin'

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  • Map to Prosperity

    Map to Prosperity

    Thursday, January 2 2014 11:59 AM EST2014-01-02 16:59:08 GMT
    "Map to Prosperity" is a long-term project of The State Journal that will deeply examine government and business in West Virginia — both the perceptions and the reality.
    "Map to Prosperity" is a long-term project of The State Journal that will deeply examine government and business in West Virginia — both the perceptions and the reality.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • UPDATE: Search for suspects in Beckley shooting continues

    UPDATE: Search for suspects in Beckley shooting continues

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:38 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:38:57 GMT
    Three people are in the hospital Tuesday night after a shooting along Antonio Avenue in Beckley.Police said around 5 PM two men rushed up to a basketball game on a court near an apartment complex and started firing guns.Three men suffered injuries as a result.The three men were taken to a nearby hospital.Detective Morgan Bragg with Beckley Police said one man was in surgery around 6 PM Tuesday night.The other two men were in stable condition. Surveillance video from a camera near the basketba...
    Three people are in the hospital Tuesday night after a shooting along Antonio Avenue in Beckley.Police said around 5 PM two men rushed up to a basketball game on a court near an apartment complex and started firing guns.Three men suffered injuries as a result.The three men were taken to a nearby hospital.Detective Morgan Bragg with Beckley Police said one man was in surgery around 6 PM Tuesday night.The other two men were in stable condition. Surveillance video from a camera near the basketba...
  • 3rd annual Everett Lilly Memorial Festival to come to Raleigh County

    3rd annual Everett Lilly Memorial Festival to come to Raleigh County

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:22 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:22:37 GMT
    The 3rd annual Everett Lilly Memorial Festival is coming soon.You can celebrate the life of one of the forefathers of bluegrass music,while enjoying the live performances by The Lilly Mountaineers,Johnny Cochran, Idletymes and much more.
    The 3rd annual Everett Lilly Memorial Festival is coming soon.You can celebrate the life of one of the forefathers of bluegrass music,while enjoying the live performances by The Lilly Mountaineers,Johnny Cochran, Idletymes and much more.
  • UPDATE: Residents Without A Home Following Fire

    UPDATE: Residents Without A Home Following Fire

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:19 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:19:23 GMT
    Residents in a Shady Spring home are displaced after a fire burnt down their home on Tuesday evening.
    Residents in a Shady Spring home are displaced after a fire burnt down their home on Tuesday evening.

Sen. Brooks McCabe, D-Kanawha, is managing member and broker of West Virginia Commercial LLC. He has been involved in commercial and investment real estate for more than 30 years, and he also is general partner of McCabe Land Company LP. He has served in the West Virginia Senate since 1998, and is a special project consultant to The State Journal.

The West Virginia of tomorrow will not be the West Virginia of yesterday, or even of today. 

To use one of retired banker Holmes Morrison's favorite quotes to cite from Jack Welch, "If the world around you is changing faster than you are, then the end is in sight." 

The State Journal, starting with this issue, will be running a multi-issue series titled West Virginia's "Map to Prosperity." In these upcoming articles, Jim Ross and George Hohmann, with support from The State Journal staff, will attempt to raise the level of discussion about what West Virginia needs to do to keep up with the ever-changing world around it. 

The discussion, at times, may verge on the uncomfortable, for change is never easy. The comments and observations will be coming from a broad array of interviews with key opinion leaders from around the state. The State Journal believes that West Virginia is approaching a pivotal point in its history and needs to rethink what it has done in the past and determine what is relevant for the future. There will be no easy answers. 

But one thing is for sure: If West Virginia is to become the best that it can be, a new game plan is needed. In that game plan, the old ways of doing business will become a memory of the past. The budget will be transformed into a lean and efficient use of taxpayer dollars and funded programs will survive on their own merits. The expansion of the economy, improvement of our communities and our residents' quality of life will be the drivers. 

As Ted Boettner has said, "The big test of government is not its size, but whether it is making investments in the things that really create good-paying jobs and communities we all want to live in." 

That being said,  a professor of business, director of the BB&T Center for American Capitalism and a distinguished fellow in economics at the Marshall University Center for Business and Economic Research, Cal Kent has astutely observed, "We are a high-need, low financial capacity state." 

Therein lies the challenge: Can we, as a state, redefine what state government does and how it does it, all within the financial confines of tight fiscal policies? 

The State Journal hopes to engage its readers and the public at large in this most important dialogue. Perhaps together we can make a difference. As Bob Dylan said, "The times they are a-changin'."

Let's be part of the solution and define our future together.