Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

on politics...

I enjoy following politics, because it is a bloodless, pseudo-intellectual version of professional wrestling. I don't think the real issues that matter the most for the survival of this species on earth are going to be impacted in the slightest by whether the blue team or the red team win the race to the top of the mountain wherein they plant their flag until the next round.

You see, there is a revolving door between big business and government regulation. The polar ice caps are melting, and will probably be gone in 5-10 years. The GMO crops are taking off, despite all the warning bells and health issues that result. The sickness of our population rises with our wealth, and in turn sickens the earth around us.

Tax cuts have no bearing on whether our species will survive to the seventh generation. Wars the size of Afghanistan also have no bearing on the survival of our species to the seventh generation. GLBT rights (which I wholeheartedly support) have no bearing on the survival of our species to the seventh generation.

The polar ice caps are almost gone. It's sort of moot whether we expand drilling or contract it if we are still pouring oil from somewhere into the mouths of engines. Fracking is happening. Mountains are being torn apart for coal. Nuclear power plants are being built on fault lines and in areas prone to natural disasters while no one really knows what to do with the spent fuel rods.

I like watching politics. It sort of soothes me to see all this serious and high-minded debate about issues. It's a way to distract myself from the terror of knowing how futile our democracy has been at solving the problems of our generation instead of the problems of the middle ages. The separation of corporation and state is an issue for us, not the separation of church and state. (Corporations aren't evil, mind you, but they are capable of doing evil things when corrupted by access to political power.) Rethinking our urban and suburban and rural infrastructure to support a radical alteration in our sustainability matters. (Urban farms are good; a solar panel and windmill on every building, and re-jiggering our energy and water usage towards a sustainable level could radically shift our nation away from pollution, but you know, politics and the status quo bias and we all love our cars, etc....)

If a political system cannot save you in a time of global crisis, what use is that system?

I enjoy politics, and I plan on voting, but there's a part of me that looks at it all and feels like it's professional wrestling on the deck of the Titanic. Don't look at the iceberg. Just don't look at the iceberg. Watch this. Watch this.

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