The Partying Continues (2017Apr05)


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Wednesday, April 05, 2017                                              10:15 AM

I’ve never had an ‘edge’, like my late brother—he was cool. He could be dismissive, confrontational, and disruptive—just like a rock star (and it didn’t hurt that he sang like a rebellious angel). That’s not me—I’m more of a gullible rule-follower with an annoying habit of obsessing over detail. And one of the rules I like to follow is ‘try to be positive’. When I write my dismissive, confrontational, and disruptive blog-posts about politics, I often tell myself, “You shouldn’t be such a downer—why not write about positive things?”

But I think I’m over that—you can’t write happiness—if there was anything to say about being happy, I’d have said it—but most happiness is too ephemeral (and too fragile) for words—it’s a feeling. Happiness is hard to share and impossible to write about, at length. Problems, now—there’s no end of things to say about problems.

And there’s no end of problems with today’s politics—leadership requires idealism, but the promise of power attracts the less-than-ideal. When Obama pushed through Affordable Health Care, he knew that it was a political misstep, but he did it anyway—because it was the right thing to do. By contrast, we have Trump recently signing an executive order to un-ban pesticides the EPA had determined were too toxic—and handing the pen to the head of Dow Chemical.

That would suggest that Trump favors business over humanity—but there’s more to it than that. Business can’t thrive in a place where no one makes enough money to have discretionary income (spending cash). Businesses can’t, in the long run, make a profit if all their customers are dead. Favoring business over humanity is a false equivalence—it is really a matter of preferring short-sighted greed over long-term reality, of ignoring warnings—not because they’re false, but because they are not yet true. Businesses love to project their future sales, but they’re uncomfortable with projections of reality.

That’s where science-denial and doubt comes in—they don’t want to admit that scientists’ warnings aren’t yet true—so they claim that such warnings aren’t true at all. Short-sightedness as public policy—for the purpose of immediate profit—resembles an addict grubbing for a fix. Capitalism becomes slow suicide. Socialism becomes the rehab we’re not ready to check in to. The partying continues.

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