when i was in fourth grade
There was a feel-goody poster on the wall
it told a story about thousands of starfish being washed up on a beach by the tide
some guy was walking along, throwing them back in the ocean
someone asked him what difference it made to throw one goddamn starfish back into the ocean when there were too many for him to possibly get them all
his response was, "it makes all the difference in the world to this one"
i'm lame, so i've been trying to take that to heart
but you know what?
i'm tired of fucking throwing starfish back into the ocean
i wanna blow up the fucking moon so there aren't tides any more in the first place
This was reflecting thoughts germinating from a post I made a few days ago on Live Journal, which one might find here: http://community.livejournal.com/theologia/125901.html
I’m in a position where I’m looking at a long stay away from academics that will probably last until next summer. So, I guess I have to look inwards a bit. Doing this reminded me that I am, in fact, extremely pissed off at the world. Maybe I paid too much attention to the missionaries that would visit during mass, maybe I paid too much attention when I visited the United Nations before 11.09.2001. If you hadn’t noticed by now, the world is a crock of shit. In the realm of hundreds of dollars, tens of thousands of people could be given a modest meal of beans and water. But, they won’t get it, so tens of thousands of people are going to starve to death today.
It is a huge fucking crisis of self-actualization for my family and me to dump thousands of dollars into my “future” while there are far better uses of those funds in the third world. I tell myself that hopefully it’s an investment for the greater good, that maybe if I plug $1 into myself today then maybe I’ll be able to pay $2 to the world tomorrow.
At the same time, what pisses me off the most is that nobody else seems to be pissed off. It’s as if there’s a point where a problem gets so huge that it becomes okay to ignore it. I’d love to conquer the world, put an end to poverty, uncleanliness and toil. Realistically, I have too many skeletons in my closet to ever get anywhere near public office, and my main point that nobody gives a shit would undermine any possibility of that anyways.
But if I were emperor or the First World, you know what I’d do? I’d find all the billionaires and hundreds-of-millionaires and tax them to the point where they couldn’t take a shit without financing a new house for someone that needs it. I’d take that money and I’d build complexes in the Third World where the poor could live in clean and safe conditions while working to produce products for the first world that would give them a glimpse of what life is like outside of squalor. And these complexes would educate them at all levels so that someday they could leave and actually live the life of someone in the twenty-fucking-first century. These complexes would be huge enough to be fiscally successful while benefiting human beings by the thousands.
I’m not a genius, but in a world of six billion, geniuses should be twelve for ten cents. I doubt it’d be very hard for someone to come along and say that my idea sucks. But, if someone’s going to do that then they should at least come up with a better idea. I’m sure there’s hundreds of possibilities out there to take the world and make it at least slightly less of a shithole. I know what a ten-day hunger feels like, but I sure as fuck have no clue what a thirty-day hunger feels like without the reassurance that food will be there whenever I feel like eating. Scores of thousands of people DO know what that feels like. In a global economy that floats in the tens or hundreds of trillion dollar neighborhood, I’m sure feeding the teeming millions wouldn’t put that much of a dent in our lives. People still read Adam Smith’s 1776 textbook that says we should feel good about buying a Ferrari instead of a Porsche to round out our nine-car garage because it better increases “universal opulence”. Yeah, well Eli Whitney was convinced that he was doing the slaves a favor by inventing the cotton gin. If the road to hell is paved with good intentions, laissez-faire capitalism has built an interstate so far up Satan’s ass that he’s digesting it.
At center stage is the United States, a land where the only way you could expect a statistically significant number of the citizenry to learn where a foreign country is located is to start bombing it. A country where we can spit on the legacy of France in spite of their role in our foundation because we saved their asses in WWII. If you even suspect that this isn’t true when one considers the fact that Hitler had twice as many troops allocated on the Eastern Front than against the Americans during the apex of the war, or that roughly fifty Russians died fighting the Nazis for every one American that died in the war, then you can fuck yourself all the way to Gitmo for letting the terrorists win.
It’s one thing for me to be eaten alive by giving a shit without the power to affect any change. It’s a huge other thing for that to happen while nobody else gives a shit.