Friday, November 05, 2010

... and other deep discussions

Cliff and I had another conversation during a walk this week, a rather depressing one:  we both agree that America is broken beyond repair.  
We believe all the king's horses and all the king's men can't put Humpty Dumpty together again.   
In this country we elect politicians who, for the most part, are out for their own good, so far removed from ordinary people that they don't even know what we need.  We go to the polls and make a choice between Mickey Mouse and Goofy, knowing neither one is right for the job.  
Nobody asked me if I wanted to finance a war in Afghanistan, by the way.
But I digress.  
It isn't the politicians who are to blame.  It's "we the people".  
We're selfish.  We don't want to give up anything, and the only way this Humpty-Dumpty could be fixed is if everybody gave up some things.  
Here's an imaginary scenario:  Let's say somebody figured out that if 75% of the people in this country agreed to give up television and home computers, it would save the country; they ask for volunteers because, after all, it's a free country.  
I'd be thinking, "I'll give up mine if everybody on welfare gives up theirs; oh, and all the politicians, too."  
And in the end, only a few stalwart souls would take that step to try and save the country; it would all be for naught, because we needed 75% and only got 2%.  
Seriously... I don't want your answer, but think about it... would you give up television and Internet if you thought it would put America back on track?  If it would make the country a good place to live for your children and grandchildren?  
This is an imaginary scenario, so don't get me wrong.  I don't think getting rid of TV and the Internet would save the country; I only chose those two because they're things that most of us would have difficulty letting go of.  I'm just wondering what freedom is really worth to us. 
I'm as selfish as everybody else.  I don't want give up a single thing.
We're spoiled, living in the wasteland of the free, as Iris Dement wrote years ago. 


We got preachers dealing in politics and diamond mines
and their speech is growing increasingly unkind
They say they are Christ's disciples
but they don't look like Jesus to me
and it feels like I am living in the wasteland of the free

We got politicians running races on corporate cash
Now don't tell me they don't turn around and kiss them peoples' ass
You may call me old-fashioned
but that don't fit my picture of a true democracy
and it feels like I am living in the wasteland of the free

We got CEO's making two hundred times the workers' pay
but they'll fight like hell against raising the minimum wage
and If you don't like it, mister, they'll ship your job
to some third-world country 'cross the sea
and it feels like I am living in the wasteland of the free

Living in the wasteland of the free
where the poor have now become the enemy
Let's blame our troubles on the weak ones
Sounds like some kind of Hitler remedy
Living in the wasteland of the free

We got little kids with guns fighting inner city wars
So what do we do, we put these little kids behind prison doors
and we call ourselves the advanced civilization
that sounds like crap to me
and it feels like I am living in the wasteland of the free

14 comments:

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I am always the optimist and don't believe that our country is beyond repair but yes, if it took me staying off my computer and the internet to get one of my sons his job back and many others too, I would.

Anonymous said...

seems like we're on a bad road, the car's breaking down and we don't know how to fix it.

I hope I'm wrong.

Mo Rage said...

oops.

that last one was me, so you know. I want you to know I read you.

have a great weekend.

Margaret said...

I agree with what you're saying--exactly!! Very few are willing to sacrifice for the common good. It's ME ME ME. Also, none of the politicians seem to know how or want to work together to solve problems. They just want to blame the other guy. :(

Fernan said...

Okay, so I may be a bit slow. just the same its the making the grade getting there is it not.
Want to thank thee for clearing up the aspirin question. Found your printed explanations clear and very informative. Thanks loads girl.
Hey sharp looking dog with you. The dogs companion wasnt bad either. (grin)

Paula said...

I could give up TV easily but I would miss the news. As for the computer I wouldn't like to give it up but if all the people who complain how bad they are having it but yet they have a computer and the service to go with it gave it up.

Lindie said...

It would be a lot easier to give up the television than the computer but I would do it if there was a guarantee. My favorite things are reading and gardening and I could keep busy without either. I would have to give up my job though as it is 90% computer!

Forty Pound Sack said...

I would give up the computer for personal use but it's a business necessity for me, so I can't say I'd let go completely. TV...well, I can take it or leave it most nights, but my mom and I bond every Sunday over popcorn and the Amazing Race. That would be a tough one, too.
It's sad, but too many people would rather dig a deeper finacial hole than give up any of their "necessities", most of which are luxuries in disguise.

Calfkeeper said...

I agree. It seems like everyone in the US has their hand out for something from the government and everyone in the US hollers when the government tries to curb spending; "Not me, not me, don't take anything from me!"

I don't even own a TV, but my solution would be professional spectator sports. They make millions; the players, the owners, the media...Take all that $$ and use it for something contructive for a decade or so. Maybe that'd make a dent in it.

The Guy Who Writes This said...

Donna, you need to stop watching Fox News. At best it's bad fiction.

Donna said...

Sorry to disappoint you, Guy, but I never watch Fox news. OK, we watch the local fox affiliate, but only for local news and weather because we like the morning crew. We DVR it, speed past everything but local stuff, and delete it. Seriously.

Donna said...

Oh, and I don't think you'll see anybody on Fox quoting Iris Dement.

Remo said...

I'd echo your sentiments but stop short of reaching the point-of-no-return. Prosperity isn't irretrievable but it's dang sure out at the end of the limb. It's going to take some hardy souls to restore a sense of sacrifice that is missing. You and Cliff have it, as do your kids (I suspect). The role going forward is to spread the ethic by example by everyone, including politicians. We'll get there but it's gonna be like ripping off a band-aid. It only hurts for a little bit.

small farm girl said...

I think you are right Donna. It will take something drastic to change this country.