Join Date: Aug 2004
I understand the concept that the article illuminated. When you have next to nothing, it is difficult to survive in a world where the "owners" of industry, or of the very food we eat, require a profit. Money is far more important than are lives in our human societies.
To prove the point, farmers are paid by the government to leave fields fallow, or in other words, unused. This is so that supply doesn't become large enough to force prices lower. That means that the farmer, and the industries that use the food products can earn more per unit volume.
The up side of this is that the farmers have sufficient money to survive in a money oriented world. Let's face it. Farms are a gamble. One year you get a bumper crop and make enough money to carry you through the off-season, purchase supplies for the next growing season, and perhaps have enough left over to enjoy a little life. The next year the crop can be wipped out by a sandstorm, or too little rain, or a tornado, or hurricane, or locusts, or... And then you have to rely on the profits from the year that you had the bumper crop in.
The downside is that valuable land is not used, and food that could be shared with those who have too little is not available.
I believe that the poor exist because we live in a world of competition. The winners of the competition are far fewer than the loosers. And the winners get the spoils. This breeds ruthlessness, and greed, and the idea that it is quite alright, even exemplary to step on others, so long as you get all that you can get. It pits each of us against each other for prducts, for jobs, for a place to live, etc. It creates tension and subsequent violence. And it is taught to us by our schools, and by many in society.
Yes it is true that competition creates a desire to refine products, invent new things, and to improve what we already have. But the motivation of competition also makes it so we have winners and losers. And if You're a loser, then it's just too bad as no one is going to help you.
A world of true cooperation is just not possible it seems, as there are just too many people who want it all, no matter that their neighbor has nothing.
A truly righteoous leader would look for ways to create cooperative societies, bent on assisting others, and creating a truly cooperative world. This would resolve fighting over resources, it would create an atmosphere that would help solve some of our most difficult problems, such as loss of rain-forrests, dwindling sea-food supplies from over-harvesting, proliferation of dangerous technologies, atmospheric changes due to misuse of energy resources, and would create a world where every child, woman, and man has enough to eat, and more.
This won't happen becasue we don't have the mental resources to envision long term consequences of our actions. At least it seems that we continually choose leaders who we hope will look after regional-specific needs, i.e. our senators, governors, congressman, etc. Why should we care that a neighboring state, or country has what it needs, or a unique people are allowed to maintain their culture, so long as each of us individually have what we "need", especially when so many of those needs are superficial and are truly luxuries.
If we could just learn to cooperate, this planet has the resources to make everyone rich, give everyone a "good life". And as long as we compete for what we want, against everyone else, then we will continue to live in a world of haves and have-nots. That's just the way it is.
I'm a cooperative kind of guy. I don't need the biggest and best toys. A simple fishing pole and some water, or a bow, some good arrows, and a couple of $3.00 hay bales is enough to make me smile. And I truly believe that there will be a day of reckoning. Whether you believe it to be caused by a cosmic adjustment, Deity, or just Mother Nature doesn't really matter. It will happen.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
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