..and when the sun rises again tomorrow, we'll see how far we've come ...

..and when the sun rises again tomorrow, we'll see how far we've come ...

... just to remind myself why I'm doing this ...

Depending on our personalities, the world can be a crowded place or a very lonely one. For those who seek comfort in numbers, there is no shortage of hangers on, but for those who avoid that circus, keeping thier own counsel can leave them feeling quite alone and disengaged from the mad place we call home. Life is a trade off and most of us choose how we live it.

For me, I'd rather work things out as best I can, using my own thoughts and feelings to sort things out. Following the crowd has never been a temptation to me, but that has its price, one that I'm totally comfortable with every day I get to stand up and be the person I aspire to be. When I sometimes lose track of who that is, I come here to remember, to reconnect and to resume my quest.

These posts are a reflection of some of what matters to me and it's a privilege to have the opportunity to collect these thoughts as they form in my head, as they prepare the way for my life, as it evolves from one day to the next. They re-inspire me when things seem to be floating about, with no particular aim or purpose, and it does happen from time to time.

So, today I had these thoughts that I think are worth writing down for the future me to look back on when I need to ...

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

society has become lazy ... and too dependent on government

"the government should..." is a phrase that has come to exemplify society's dependence on and demand for direction, protection and oversight by those all too willing to provide it, albeit at a staggering and some would say prohibitive price.

Tune in to any newscast, day or night, here or there, locally or abroad, and we are reminded of what the masses want, demand, from their governments. The underlying caveat is that they also expect someone else to foot the bill, usually meaning those that are seen to be the unfairly anointed wealthy, and powerful elite. The masses want government to step in and re-balance the books, so to speak, and redistribute the power and hoarded riches among the more deserving. What escapes them in this quest is that it takes resources, money, influence, to become part of the governing body and only those that already have those qualifications stand a chance of achieving their goals. It then follows that the governing body will essentially protect those assets upon which they rely for maintaining their own positions. On the other side of this equation is the reality that the masses have little to offer in this regard and are therefore likely to hold little sway with those who do. That's not to say that they are ignored entirely but the essential reality in the end is that only the crumbs are available for redistribution while the hope for more is always prominently offered.

Apart from the money and power aspect, the biggest, and possibly the single most difficult challenge that governments face is the utter impossibility of satisfying all the participants in the same space at the same time and to an equitable degree. It just can't be done because, at the extremes, the demands themselves are often contradictory and not reconcilable. That means that when the chips are down, the nod goes to the ones with the greatest potential for contribution to the status quo. The greater their skill in convincing the masses that they indeed have even a hope of getting closer to their demands being met, the ever more secure the entrenched will be in their position of influence and power. The paradox is that the masses look to the powerful to help them get what they want while what they want will have to come from those same wielders of  influence and power. Like that's ever going to happen!

On the infrequent occasion when a member of the masses does manage to elbow their way into the power structure of government by convincing their supporters that things will change, those few quickly come to the unavoidable realization that the battle is no less difficult when waged from inside, that it will be a long and difficult one, and that to continue the battle, they end up engaging the same corrupt tactics that they pledged so convincingly to eradicate. Thus lives the charade.

This perpetual struggle only survives and flourishes because the masses live in hope. What else is there for them to wake up to every day when all they think they can do is depend on someone else to do it for them? Because they choose to be dependent on government to provide for them, they pin their hopes on that arrangement rather than take the initiative to deconstruct that concept. It would be much more beneficial in the long run to take hold and fend for themselves than continue to let go and allow others to set the path. It would definitely be far more difficult to do so but, while filled with uncertainty and fear, the rewards are potentially far more satisfying and liberating.

In the face of such options, those with the means obviously act to convince otherwise by making endless and sparsely fulfilled promises that seem just lucrative enough to suppress the notion that self-reliance has its benefits. By delivering minimally on the hopes they empower, the governing cohort maintains its hold and its opportunity to continue the harvest of resources it needs to sustain this profitable dependency. The seemingly prevailing conclusion then says that the inherent instability of replacing dependency on government with individual effort is too high a price to pay for the hope of future security, however inadequate it has been up to that point. While individual cases and circumstances vary greatly, and faced with a difficult choice, clearly, in the overall context, demanding more while doing less is seen to be more attractive and productive than the alternative.

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