Friday, December 7, 2012

A look at 2012

It has been quite some time since I last posted an insightful look at the happenings of our day to day world. Since my last post in fact we have seen an election in the US, a brand new chapter of war in the middle east, and about 3.7 metric tons of human stupidity around the globe. All of the events that have occurred in the past year however do seem to share some underlying threat of reason, or causality if you will. What exactly do I mean? Let's start with the US election. Prior to the election, each side was spending millions of dollars in campaign nonsense, asking for money, making promises to the people, and talking about how much of a low-life the other candidate was. However, in every public debate or question and answer session, both candidates answered the questions posed nearly identically: they didn't. They danced around the issues with "that's a good question" and "let me first mention..." so that the average human being was enthralled with rhetoric to an extent where their brains shut down and they either just thought "I agree completely" or "I hate this guy." In essence, there are two types of issues that were motivating voters, ones that shouldn't be addressed by government at all, and ones that need to be tackled logically. The first, like abortion, healthcare coverage of birth control, drug legalization, gay marriage, etc. have no real place in politics. The US was founded under the premise of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness", not "life liberty and the pursuit of happiness according to how these people deem fit to pursue such." What it boils down to is this: if something affects other people directly, ie. robbery, murder, extortion, then that should have a place in politics and the legal system and be regulated by the state; which it is through the police force and enforcing laws against such violations of human rights. If the matter is personal choice and does not affect another human being directly, and instead only indirectly through a violation of their own personal beliefs, then tough shit. Learn to cope with the fact that people do things that you don't necessarily agree with, or move to an area where you are surrounded by like minded people so you can live a sheltered life. If someone wants to smoke marijuana, get an abortion, and marry their same sex partner, then so be it. If those choices somehow ruin their personal life (they miss work due to being high all the time, suffer emotional trauma from the abortion, and are disowned by their family for the marriage) then that is their problem to deal with. Government should be worrying about whether or not its citizens are killing each other, whether or not someone else is trying to kill and conquer us, and whether or not our infrastructure and economy are failing than whether or not someone goes into a clinic.

Lets look at the logical issues now. Taxes. Everyone loves to talk about taxes, and healthcare, and medicare, and social security. But if we took a rational and logical approach to the issues, if we thought like a computer  would in solving these issues, they wouldn't be issues. Take away the emotion and the bitching by every demographic and look at the issues. You have a deficit and you're running in the red. How do you fix this? Cut spending on things you don't need and bring in more money. What are things you don't need from a government standpoint? Defense? No, you need a strong military to protect your shores, however you do not need SUCH  a strong military that you can deploy troops randomly across the globe to play puppeteer with other governments. Healthcare? No, you need your citizens to be as fit as possible otherwise they'll die or become disabled and then you won't have a work force. So subsidize basic health care and tlet people spend their own money on big surgeries if they don't want the bare minimum health care that the government provides (free doctor visits, but you had better believe I'll go with the more expensive option when it comes time for brain surgery). How do you bring in more money? Numbers. How many people are there across the country making low to middle class wages? Quite a lot. Let's just say for argument sake, 250 million. If you bring in $1000 more a year from each of those people, you would net yourself 2.5 billion annually. However, you would affect their quality of living substantially due to the relative impact of $1000 on their income. Now how many people are in the high income brackets? Not too many, but let's just say for arguments sake 2.5 million. If you raise their taxes by $10,000 a year you would be bringing in 250 million a year. Not as big of a revenue as the other, but the relative impact on your population and their quality of life is substantially less. But no one looks at issues like this this way. They get into heated debates about what is fair and what should be done based on what has been done in the past. The fact that things need to change doesn't change. Adjustments need to be made, but those adjustments need to be made in the best way possible that impacts quality of life the least. No emotions should be brought into the discussion, and no historical BS about previous tax cuts should either. If we could replace politicians with accounting software we might not be facing a crisis where everyone acts like a 4 year old because they can't get their way.

The rest of the issues around the world come down to these same two principals: human beings being intolerant that they live their life differently than others, and emotion getting involved in issues that should be approached solely through logic and numbers. We kill each other over our intolerance and differences, and we make people suffer because we won't take a step back and look at things from an objective standpoint. The day that we do, is the day that we minimize the suffering in the world; not remove it because there will always be suffering, but at least minimize it to the best of our ability. Perhaps we can take the Mayan's prediction of December 21st and use it in a different light. The old world ends on that day, and the days of rationality, objectiveness, and tolerance begin thereafter. It's a complete pipe-dream, but perhaps one day we will come to such a decision and change. If not, then it's only a matter of time before things continue in a downward spiral and we truly can celebrate the end of our existence.


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