I'll have more on this later, but I want to take a moment and savor the fact that Megan McArdle is supporting Goldman Sachs, (as she has supported the bankers) over people like herself. McArdle is one of the money-grubbing libertarians whose only concern is always her own personal satisfaction. It's the philosophy of selfishness, the religion of self-love, the I've-got-mine-Jack-screw-you attitude devoid of honor or compassion.
No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were. Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee. (John Donne)
Donne wrote that we all are part of the Body of Christ, and therefore we are each part of the same whole. Even though I don't believe in gods, I still feel a part of mankind because I choose to feel, to let their suffering or concerns pierce the daily comfort of the little island of Me. We are all connected, and what we do affects others we'll never meet. Our actions send out ripples of repercussions, for good or ill.
The time to take a stand is long past, when these crushing wheels were set into motion, and now we all have to suffer the consequences. But we certainly don't have to tolerate or encourage the poor damned fools among us who are still cheering on their destruction, in the hopes that when the pinata of our economy is broken, they will be able to grab as much candy as their hands and pockets will hold.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
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The problem with trying to reason with dolts like McArdle is that they don't really see anything inherently wrong with the concept of greed. They look at people they deem to be lesser beings and are certain that their unfortunate circumstances are entirely of their own doing. If they only worked a little harder or had the good sense to be born to rich parents who could buy them a degree from Harvard, they too could have offshore accounts and luxury yachts and penthouses in Manhattan. It's like trying to reason with a child in the midst of a temper tantrum, except they've got no excuse about letting their emotions get the better of them. They distort logic, twist or ignore facts and reality, or just plain lie and justify it all by calling it "the American dream."
That's their dream, not mine. I may want to have a nice life and a small piece of the pie, but I will never, ever try to get it when I know it will only come at the devastating expense of others. In Meganland, this is okay because the poor and working classes aren't as good and deserving as she is.
That's why I like Quakerism. It says the light shines in all, without any of that worshiping some figurehead crap with the body of christ and whatnot.
Without a figurehead you have to concentrate on human actions instead of the institution propping up the figurehead. Without the religious ceremony of repentance and forgiveness, granted by God via his human vassals, every person must accept responsibily for how his actions affect others.
I came across a scrap book I put together when in High School. Some of the things were pretty embarrassing to re-view, but I left them as is. It'll give me a good laugh when I'm in my 80's.
My point is, the John Donne "No man is an island" quote is on the first page. "Any Man's death diminishes me" had the strongest affect. I could say it "rang a bell".
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