Tuesday, January 04, 2011

in which she frets about the state of the world

i love to read newspapers and follow what's going on in the world (tho' somehow i managed to completely miss today's solar eclipse). but i'll also admit that the stories begin to blur together...another pakistani politician is murdered by his own guards, another african dictator that lost an election and won't step down, another american sentor caught soliciting sex. you start to wonder if it's even possible for the world to be any different. or if anything will ever be ok again (which, i realize, begs the question of whether it was ever ok in the first place).

and i find myself wondering when it began to go wrong. can we blame the advent of the motion picture? or the two world wars in the last century? was it mccarthyism? or communism? christianity? islam? hollywood? reality t.v.? or is it just people and all of their human frailty?

i think it has something to do with individualism. with being out for ourselves and losing any view of what might be for the common good. or common sense. the proliferation of legisation of things that used to be common sense...like how large a stall you should provide for your horse or how many horses you should have (just to name a couple of horse-related ones that are on my brain since we're building stalls)...is a worrying trend, to say the least. we apparently can't be trusted to think for ourselves anymore, since we only think of ourselves.

what will be next? our employers telling us how to raise our children?


will said...

"what will be next? our employers telling us how to raise our children?"

... yes, that's already happening.

Culprits? How about -
• Over-population
• Poverty
• Malnutrition
• Militarism
• Religious zealotry
• Passive or uninvolved citizenry
• Corporation induced values
• Emphasis on capitalism w/o social balance
• Poor or misdirected educational systems

Char said...

i think you've hit on a lot of it. even my own nephews who were raised well ask, "what's in it for me" or "why would i do that"... common good seems to have fallen by the wayside in society as a whole which is sad because i can see pockets of it here and there. i can see part of it in the work world where we are so beaten down with rules and regulations that we begin not wanting to do more than expected at the risk of being accused of taking away. people are not taught to problem solve, they are wrapped in cotton - things having been done for them, expecting it all to be handed to them. okay...stepping off my soapbox now.

Suzanne said...

Very deep thoughts, my friend. I've noticed that we are legislating more and more and thinking about the "common good" less and less. We've become completely functionally dependent on the legal system. Here in the state's, I believe it began with the "hot coffee" incident. A woman bought a cup of coffee from McDonalds. She placed the cup of coffee between her lap. The lid came off and she scalded her thighs. She sued McDonald's for not having a warning that the coffee could scald her. She won.

Really? You didn't know coffee was hot? Really? Really. Now everything has warning labels and every chance we get, we sue. Hence, frivolous lawsuits galore, corruption and lots of smacking of foreheads.

will said...

Sorry, that's a myth concerning the cup of hot coffee and McDonalds. The real story is not simplistic and is much less a metaphor. Ask a law school student for the details.

julochka said...

will - all of those issues you cite are certainly factors and they seem so huge it seems quite overwhelming that we can do anything about any of them.

char - sadly, you're very right about companies being so full of rules that you end up not wanting to do anything extra - and that at a time when they expect you to be "engaged" and are constantly harping on about your level of engagement.

esmerelda (and will) - whether the coffee story is urban legend or not, it has resulted in all of those ridiculous labels on everything...they're labeling away our common sense - have you been through an airport security lately? there's almost no common sense left there at all.

Pia K said...

hear, hear on this! and a good list from will on culprits. it's a mad world.