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Friday, March 02, 2007

Prevailing Angst

I feel it wherever and whenever -- continuous fault-finding. Are you "green" enough, for example. Don't drive your car. Don't fly in airplanes. Don't drink more than one glass of wine. Don't eat certain fats. Don't spank (smack) your children. Don't raise your voice. Don't eat eggs or butter or fat. Don't get fat. Don't let your children watch television or eat at McDonalds. Don't use this product or that because it was tested on animals. Don't wear fur. Don't buy anything from countries whose workers have been exploited. On and on.

Television bombards us with ads to buy everything and encourages us to re-mortgage our house to do it. Everybody want his piece of each of us and temptation is rampant. Politicians promise and cajole. Commentators imply and pervert even-handedness. We want it all and we do not want to pay the price -- but we will anyway, just let's pretend that somehow we aren't. To borrow and phrase 'We are in the world and the world we know not!' More and more ordinary people (middle class people, of course) travel to exotic parts of the world we never dreamed of visiting twenty or thirty years ago. But how many of us ever go beneath the surface of the dream vacation/holiday and experience the culture of these foreign places? How many of us ever see neighbourhoods or meet families -- how many of us want to see beneath the surface beyond the hotels and swimming pools and tourist sites?

The prospect of seeing poverty and misery for myself is not what I want -- yet it is mine to behold and I will not. Not for me the stench of overcrowded cities and the unwashed forgotten millions upon millions with their open sewers and desperateness.

And we sit idly by secure in our comfortableness on a precipice of our undoing and as we fall they will survive because they will know how and we will be 'copelessly' overcome.

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