Philosophy, Politics
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Mutterings and musings…

Thoughts that occurred to me in the not-so-still of the night, although it may have been at breakfast…

A.)   Humans have a hard-wired need to protect other humans; the weak, those being victimized, our own family, the list goes on and on. You can argue about survival of the fittest all you want, evolution is only a framework for viewing the world around us, and it is only one of many such frameworks. But the facts are a bit different… Anyone who thinks they aren’t should try this experiment; try to imagine that you have a small child, your child, who is alone in the middle of the floor, because you are being forcibly held from going to its side. And someone comes along and starts to kick and beat this small child. And you are prevented from stopping this. Now, there are also many other people in the room, observers, from the press or the government or the neighborhood. Who among us, being the parent of the child, would not plead for intervention, for help from these observers, who among us would not plead and beg for the one doing the kicking to stop, promising anything if only they will stop?

I think any normal person would say that the above scenario is a fairly accurate representation of one aspect of the human condition. Those who do have children will, of course, have an easier time imagining the particulars than those who are childless, but I think the situation holds. There are those who will maintain that of course they will fight for their own children but other children are on their own, to which I reply that you haven’t put sufficient power into the imagination; try harder, please… There are also those who will draw the line upon citizenship in a country, or a race or a sexual preference. To all these people I would maintain that you’re doing the very opposite of ensuring the survival of the species by actively seeking the destruction of difference; you are suicidal, societally speaking… If you can’t see your own child in the face of another child not even remotely related to you, you’ve lost touch with humanity, and quite possibly with your own child as well. You may be the strongest of the human species, you may very well survive for many generations to come, but you will have lost your connection to humanity. At some point one has to stop and consider whether what we are passing on is at all worth it…

We seem to be losing our innate ability to care for the unfortunate, the oppressed and downtrodden. Becoming stronger evolutionarily while surrendering those things that separate us from the other forms of life on this planet, those things that make up a large portion of what it means to be human, just seems incredibly silly to me.

Those who refuse to care about any but their own, or at best only those others who happen to be enough like them as to not cause too much discomfort, are setting up a scenario for inbreeding and degeneration, which will lead to the destruction of the species and the ultimate ascendency of the cockroaches. But then,  we all knew they would one day take over… Let’s just not give them any help along the way, shall we…? Hmmmm…?

I think the real reason so many people object to the thinking embodied by ‘survival of the fittest’ is that it is often an excuse used by the stronger, more powerful, better connected or more charismatic for doing whatever they want. It runs into conflict with our hard wiring. None of us can do this on our own; we all rely on others; for our food and shelter, our jobs and even our very knowledge of the existence of others on the planet. Grabbing and concentrating 99% of the wealth and hoarding it among the top (top…hah!!!) 1% of the population while maintaining that this is the only way to ensure a strong America is a bit of that insanity I was mentioning a while ago… The insanity of those bent upon destruction, of the country and of the species… Philosophical myopia, if you will…

From dictionary.com

my·o·pi·a [mahy-oh-pee-uh] – noun

1. Ophthalmology . a condition of the eye in which parallel rays are focused in front of the retina, objects being seen distinctly only when near to the eye; nearsightedness (opposed to hyperopia).
2. lack of foresight or discernment; obtuseness.
3. narrow-mindedness; intolerance.

B.)   I grow weary… Bone weary, at the constant barrage of bad news, dire predictions and irrational thinking. It makes me want to turn of the radio (I turned off the TV some while ago) and go play ostrich with the other kids in the playground, among them the teetotallers and republicans, democrats and the entertainment (news) media… We’ve forgotten how to laugh at anything that doesn’t poke fun at those we disagree with, we’ve forgotten how to have fun that isn’t theme-park or issue driven, and we have most certainly forgotten how to play… I want to play… Seriously play, as we did when we were children and learned why and how to cooperate, or one seriously cool kid would come along and enforce cooperation and fair play… I don’t mean charisma, where it’s chemical or personality driven. I mean the kid who had an overdeveloped ‘fair muscle’, to the point where everyone realized that with this kid it was about fair, not about popularity…

Where are the seriously cool kids these days…?

C.)   A NY Times headline blurb… “Job Growth Falters Badly, Clouding Hope for Recovery”. Another reason I grow weary is the constant repeating of myself. Journalism’s job is to report the news, not tell us how we should feel about that news. That belongs, if it belongs at all, which I maintain to be a question that is very much open for debate, in the opinion section. Therefore, the headline should have stopped after the third word, and I have doubts about that third word… I do not care if some talking head in the government has had his hopes clouded; that is not news, it is only his opinion. In a celebrity driven culture where anyone can be a celebrity, movie stars and sports figures, politicians and business executives all have their opinions, but even then it is not news; it is only their opinion. If we were in better shape, I might be more inclined to listen to their opinion, but they’re making it up as they go along, just like the rest of us… And they don’t seem to be very good at it. I think they might have more trouble than most with the imaginative exercise in ‘muttering number A’, above…

D.)   For those of you who don’t know, and since no one reads this, how could you possibly even be aware you don’t know, my background, educationally speaking, is classical music. I once had a conductor who turned to the orchestra, held up three fingers and said “I would like to start at letter seven…”, which makes ‘muttering number A’, personally, slightly amusing…

I thought you should know…

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