jezuz-fucking-chirst lads: you really let that town to go shit without reliable ol' George Bailey around to pick up the pieces.
Ok, I get that the whole point of the narrative was about how much of a difference one individual can make, but I'm pretty sure it's not supposed to be just that one individual.
There's a whole feckin town of ye there, surely at least one of you would think "Y'know, things are getting a bit crap around here, maybe we should get up off our collective arses and actually do something about it before the whole place degenerates into a third rate 'Vegas..."? But no, that sounds like effort, right? Much better to leave everything up to one individual hero who'll save us all?
Unless of course, George and I are completely missing your intentions here. Maybe we're expecting too much from you and perhaps the ending of the movie should be slightly different:
...And so, Clarence did bring ol' George Bailey back from the brink but as he walked slowly and quietly back to his home, ruminating deeply on the alternate vision he'd just witnessed, he decided to call a town meeting.
"So eh, you guys do like this pious, Capra-corny good life we have here, right?"
"Um, sure..." they shuffled nervously. "I mean, who wouldn't love all the clean-living, church-going, greens-eating, no-sex-before-marriage and early-to-bed-early-to-rise kind of life...?"
"Are you sure you wouldn't prefer something a bit more exciting? Just like in New York, Las Vegas, Atlantic City..?"
"Ah, no, that'd be bad. Those places aren't very wholesome with all the bright lights and big noise-"
"-and all that booze-"
"-and the gambling and hookers-"
"-not to mention the cool jazz and all-night parties."
"And the drugs and free love and beatnik poetry and everything - that's sounds awe- full. Yes, awful, that's what I mean."
"Yeah, who'd want any of that? We much prefer the quiet life that you keep on making sure we have to lead right here."
"You sure? 'Coz I'm starting to get the feeling that you might not be completely on board with all tihis, that I might be holding you back from what you really desire?"
"Ah no, we should be good really. I guess. And you've always kept us in line - we wouldn't want to disappoint you..."
"Disappoint me? 'Fuck sake lads, I wanted to go off traveling around the world, seeing all sorts of exotic boobies and such - but each time I tried to leave, something came up and I had to stay here and keep shit together. But now you're telling me that you don't even care? That I've been wasting my time all along?!"
"Ah but, we thought you liked all that self-sacrifice - that you got off on that trip? We didn't want to ruin the illusion for you..."
"Goddammit." George sighed, "OK, as of now I'm turning the Building and Loan into a casino & high class brothel then using the profits to get out of this dump once and for all, away for you lot and off to go see the world."
And with that, a cheer went up from the crowd praising George as the (soon to be) richest man in town, as they threw off their clothes, pulled out their crack-pipes, the bells rang out and thus began the biggest liqueur-fuelled orgy Bedford Falls had ever seen.