We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The problem for those of us who believe that capitalism offers the best chance we have for leading meaningful and worthwhile lives is that in this debate, the devil has always had the best tunes to play. Capitalism lacks romantic appeal. It does not set the pulse racing in the way that opposing ideologies like socialism, fascism, or environmentalism can. It does not stir the blood, for it identifies no dragons to slay. It offers no grand vision for the future, for in an open market system the future is shaped not by the imposition of utopian blueprints, but by billions of individuals pursuing their own preferences. Capitalism can justifiably boast that it is excellent at delivering the goods, but this fails to impress in countries like Australia that have come to take affluence for granted.
It is quite the opposite with socialism. Where capitalism delivers but cannot inspire, socialism inspires despite never having delivered. Socialism’s history is littered with repeated failures and with human misery on a massive scale, yet it still attracts smiles rather than curses from people who never had to live under it. Affluent young Australians who would never dream of patronising an Adolf Hitler bierkeller decked out in swastikas are nevertheless happy to hang out in the Lenin Bar at Sydney’s Circular Quay, sipping chilled vodka cocktails under hammer and sickle flags, indifferent to the twenty million victims of the Soviet regime. Chic westerners are still sporting Che Guevara t-shirts, forty years after the man’s death, and flocking to the cinema to see him on a motor bike, apparently oblivious to their handsome hero’s legacy of firing squads and labour camps. Environmentalism, too, has the happy knack of inspiring the young and firing the imagination of idealists. This is because the radical green movement shares many features with old-style revolutionary socialism. Both are oppositional, defining themselves as alternatives to the existing capitalist system. Both are moralistic, seeking to purify humanity of its tawdry materialism and selfishness, and appealing to our ‘higher instincts.’ Both are apocalyptic, claiming to be able to read the future and warning, like Old Testament prophets, of looming catastrophe if we do not change our ways. And both are utopian, holding out the promise of redemption through a new social order based on a more enlightened humanity. All of this is irresistibly appealing to romantics.
I confronted a very strange and angry man yesterday about his dog barking and he ordered me off his property. I went. His extremely strange younger version, maybe 18, was standing tall beside the seated whack job. I've seen a white haired elderly lady reading the mail on the porch and from time to time and a blond woman in her late 30's helping maintain the property. I saw her twice in 6 months.
All the blinds are always drawn. Haven't seen the younger blond in months and suspect that this guy has a basement and could have little children somewhere in the house.
How in the world does one deal with this?
For me it rings like a bell on par with the most awful cases of extreme child abuse. There's no probable cause at all but it smells most foul.
Curtis my friend ... I agree with your premise that we as concerned grown-ups need to admit the existence of evil in order to do the best for our fellow humans [and animals also]. I suspect that the angry man and his son may in his heart feel guilty about something he is doing to some fellow human or animal. Being a grown-up in a sometimes childish and selfish world, one needs to keep one's wits about oneself, and stay observant of the world around you. We do have a duty, as God's children, to protect others of God's children, although it's always challenging to do so when the facts of the case are not immediately evident.
If I were with you, I'd keep an eye out, which we old ladies tend to do. That's how we lived long enough to be old ladies.
I have a 7 year old girl. It's hard to watch the news which is why I haven't done so in many many years. Fred is the spokesman for men who keep girls locked up in dungeons for decades. Nobody noticed a thing.
For reasons I do not understand, people wish to be part of something bigger than themselves and they wish their lives to have a meaning assigned by other people. Socialism and fascism, among other ways to live, fulfill these needs. Capitalism does not. To label this romanticism is true, depressing, and belittling--because it's more than that.