Practical Solutions   (2017Aug25)


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Friday, August 25, 2017                                           2:55 PM

Ah, the beauty—the delicacy and iridescence of a lawn on a dewy morn, the awesome compulsion of a baby’s grin, the warm softness in the breast upon hearing soulful, nostalgic music—these are the moments that we are deprived of during a crisis. In an emergency everything’s business—get it done or someone may be hurt—no time for dawdling. Hurry, hurry—we don’t have time for nonsense.

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But face it—9/11 is really 9/11/2001—it was sixteen years ago—I think we can stop panicking now. No one can minimize the horror of the event—and I wouldn’t even want to try. But as far as how we live our lives in 2017—I think it’s long past time we calmed down, did some yoga breathing, and took stock of how many mistakes we have made.

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First of all, that Bin-Laden bastard planned more than the plane attacks—he hoped that the US would do exactly what it did—panic, overreact, start expensive wars that would increase division and hurt our diplomatic standing in the world, while they drained our coffers and goosed our national debt. And Bush-43 gave him more than he dreamed—a near re-run of the Great Depression, and hundreds of thousands of American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Besides all of that, we have this Putin bastard, who is the only world leader thuggish enough to be the first to invade sovereign territory of a neighboring country since Hitler’s defeat. Then he starts disruption campaigns against democratic countries—and I don’t think I need to remind you that democracies work badly enough without disruption.

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He scored big with a disinformation campaign against Hillary Clinton so effective that even her supporters started to doubt themselves—and he got bonus points for opening the door to the most disgraceful president this country ever had the shamelessness to elect (collegiately—if it had been a majority vote, our disgrace would have been complete).

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Putin managed to cheat us out of another four years of Obama-like governance and a wily, strong opponent against him on the world stage—how that fucker must have danced when he realized he was getting to deal with Puddin-head Donny-John instead!

Of course, your internet feed may sell you a different story—a story wherein everything I’ve just said is a bunch of bull and I am a deluded snowflake. And that is the last mistake I’ll address today—all the governmental, judicial, administrative, financial mistakes will have to wait for some other time. We have made the mistake of letting ourselves become divided—the Internet’s business plan of ‘customized filtering’ has put each of us in our neat little pigeonholes for counting and sorting.

We need a focal point. And it’s not just the internet either—journalists in both print and television have been shunted into the for-profit side of printing and broadcasting. Or, it might be more straightforward to say that there is no longer any room in modern businesses for a non-profit section.

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Our present greed is too ferocious to allow such waste of business effort as to serve the public. Besides, nowadays, the whole point of owning a media empire is to become the iron fist that chokes off free speech to his or her own personal satisfaction—then lets the rest through, so you can’t tell anything’s missing.

So we have developed both the internet and the mass media in purely commercial ways so far—and they no longer serve the public, either. Plus, we have, on the one hand, made the internet increasingly important, to where our civilization might collapse without it, and on the other hand we freely admit that there’s no such thing as a secure internet—that a hacker, or group of hackers, could wreak havoc on the global community with a few buttons pushed. Now, I like online as much as the next guy—but there’s such a thing as ‘too good to be true’, too.

So, we have made a lot of mistakes lately. And even if we didn’t make those mistakes ourselves, we all still have to live with the consequences of the above mistakes. And we have to find solutions to those mistakes. But most of all, we have to start thinking, real thinking—not discussions and debates between two sides of trivial differences, but practical solutions to real problems.

You know, like grown-ups.

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