Merit can be bought. Passion can't. The only people who can change the world are people who want to. And not everybody does.
I see this over and over in people like NOLA bloggers, national figures (both Left and Right), and even in my team. I can buy my way into a meritocracy; I can't make someone passionate. And only the passionate see those fundamental things that really and truly matter.
I will work to be one of the passionate.