Wednesday, June 29, 2016
It’s us versus them. We’re good, and they are bad. We are right and they are wrong, dangerous and despicable. Because they are unequal, let’s do anything we can to keep us separate and above them. Let’s keep them beneath us. Maybe we need to build a fence to keep them out, restrict them from coming into our country and even profile those “others” that are already here. Remember they are inhuman, dangerous, our immortality is at stake and we can’t trust them. . Sometimes nationalism gets confused with patriotism. Religious prophets have based their teachings on rational insight and humanism. They said many things like to honor another and do to them what you’d like them to do to you. There’s even talk about loving the enemy etc.. Instead of following these religious teachings, we are currently hearing buying a gun, protecting ourselves and family. Do not forget it’s guaranteed as a Second Amendment right. This propaganda and profit motive in our capitalistic system is exploiting irrational fears and distorting reality. Remember, in capitalism, the profit motive is supreme. Also, do not forget the abstraction “Make America Great Again” is about making you rich. Making money is about the abstraction, of that $10 billion man. This is another central theme expressed by that abstraction in today’s presidential election process. Seems to me, that the mental health of our country will probably not change in my lifetime. There was a glimpse of hope during the primaries, when one candidate talked about changing the cost of college education, more universal healthcare, taking the big money out of politics and putting more regulation on Wall Street. I’m all supportive of that “radical” kind of movement. With a more level playing field, perhaps more people would like each other. There is certainly enough fear, anger and hate and any significant reduction would be beneficial for all. Perhaps, if we can change the valence and motivation for profit, exploitation of the worker and the powerless component; develop a sense of teamwork among us on this one planet; develop a sense of trust; diminish class differences and alienation; sexual orientation; and develop a sense of production and brotherhood, then we might be off to a good start in changing the mental health ills in our country. It all starts with proper parenting and imparting these values. Of course that means the character of the parents require change. If not, then man’s nature, will continue to influence negatively our culture.
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Some might argue that there is something wrong with our mental health in our contemporary society. Could it be that it’s really about the nature of man or could the dynamics of the socioeconomic and political society be the issue, or some combination of the two be the blame? Let’s look at a few facts. The United States has the highest gun ownership rate in the world, along with the highest per capita rate of fire arm related murders of all the developed countries [88.8 guns per 100 people, or 270 million civilian guns]. According to the World Health Organization, the US ranks 14th in teenage suicide and 20 out of 27 in ranked nations in that category [10.2 per 100,000 people]. Further, the abuse of tobacco, alcohol and illicit drugs overall total more than 700 billion annually in costs related to crime [Tobacco, 295 billion, alcohol 224 billion and illicit drugs 193 billion]. As far as discretionary spending, [1.1 1 trillion} was spent in the fiscal year 2015 or about 55% of the budget going to our military. On the other hand, only 69.9 8 billion or 6.28% was spent on education. And, a whopping 82% of students graduated from high school during the 2013-2014 year. Certainly, our values seem clear. We are the military giants and police force of the world. It seems, in my lifetime, that we have always been at war or told we were threatened by the possibility of it. One positive value, previously, was the fact that we were the first country to provide free universal education from K to 12. We did damn well under that condition. And now, some are discussing free college education. That does not sound radical or socialistic to me- just smart. Some might argue like Rousseau, Darwin and Hobbs previously that man’s nature-competitiveness aggression antagonism toward others, restriction of sexual impulses or instincts by society are explanations for our countries mental health ills. Certainly, primitive man fits some of that description. Others might argue that some individuals, as society has evolved, have not developed significant reasoning capacity along with an ability to love and ability to relate to others in humane ways because of a regression into an artificial rootedness in state or race. Currently, we have a fairly significant progressive movement [nationalism] based on blood and soil as an individual orientation. This means that things like blood, religion, political party, race, social class, country, sexual orientation or home team relate to identity and result in separateness between people. This separateness becomes associated with hate, stereotyping and prejudice. This development significantly interferes with the development and capacity for brotherhood, love, and good interpersonal relationships among peoples. To be continued