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Been Away

What can I say? I been away. Not sure there’s much else to say but that I’ve got reverse writer’s block. Rather than having absolutely nothing to say and not knowing how to say it, I have the reverse situation: I have too much to say, but I’m not sure I want to say it.

I’ve spent my entire life being an optimist or at least looking at the bright side of things, especially when they go down hill. But these days, I feel beaten down. Oh, I have lots to be happy and thankful (great family, friends and job – what more does a guy need, I ask ya?), I really do.

But it’s when I look out around me and I see all the crap that’s going on, it’s tough to keep a positive attitude. I see Congress write 2,000 page bills and I scratch my head thinking “Why does something as simple as that bill consume 2,000 pages?” Well, because lawmakers have to throw their pork and crap into it. They can’t leave well-enough alone. The problem is: this is how business gets done (it’s how the governor of Wisconsin snuck a right-to-do-whatever-I-want-and-call-it-“for-the-good-of-the-state” clause in the union-busting bill a month ago).

Sadly, we are in a place now where the only things that will ever get made (or done) are those that generate money. It will have nothing to do with “for the good of mankind”. So, oil is here to stay until we run out. If cellphones require precious minerals in their production, we will rip up the crust of the earth to get those minerals, until we run out. If Yellowstone National Park or a specific beach on Maui were the only places where one could find those precious mineral, ooops, too bad, you know there would liens put on those places and they would be inundated with backhoes in a matter of days). Heaven forbid there might be a better undiscovered need for those minerals.

Look, I’m saddened by our fanatical rush to greed, by our headstrong haste to embrace gossip, rumor and everything insubstantial.

I just don’t know where to start. Like Hercules being tasked with changing the course of a river, is it possible to get people to think again? To be real people again? To lead productive lives rather than waste theirs vicariously reliving other lesser-spirited people’s scripted reality-TV stories?

Is it possible to compel the media to shut up and just give us the facts? I don’t want their opinions, because -I hate to say it- none of their opinions have any value.

I’m back. Just looking for a voice to shout with. It’s awfully loud in this here Internet cloud with everyone clamoring for your attention! ūüôā

A Long Hiatus

I’ve been away too long. I was trying to write an essay on mankind versus technology and it got out of hand. I had five pages of inconsistently granular outline notes, 14 pages of essay written and only a handful of the outline notes completed. I was at a standstill: too much written, too many tangentially related points and way too pedantic.

It was time to stop and rethink what it was I wanted to accomplish. I believe we’ve become too complacent. I believe we are entirely overwhelmed with the amount of¬†information¬†thrown at us every waking minute of every day. I think that in reaction to this overload we¬†go into hiding mentally and physically as an escape.¬†We escape into hobbies, television, drugs, habits (both good and bad); we run away from the very issues we should be standing up to and preventing.¬†

No more do people offer up well-rounded fully-thought-out solutions to problems. Instead the thinking is: let me prove my opponent wrong: if I can prove him wrong on a single point, then it follows he must be wrong on all points and if he is wrong on all points then I must be right in whatever I propose. Positivism is out, negativism in hitting on all cylinders.

We are going in the wrong direction; we lead now, solely based on our size and the noise we generate and provoke.¬†We should be leading not because we want to lead, but because we achieve good-for-all solution. I believe we don’t¬†demand¬†enough of ourselves, our¬†leaders, our press, our media, our companies, even our friends.

It doesn’t have to be this way. What I¬†will be¬†proposing¬†on¬†Better World¬†is to offer up simple first step directional thoughts. From healthcare to the news media, from business to lifestyles.

So, no solutions in this quick welcome back entry. That’s for the next entry! ūüôā

A technologist’s complaint: Why I hate email

Email is the greatest invention since …. well, yes, since sliced bread. It allows you to reach out to anyone anywhere anytime. Time and distance are non-events. You can send documents and photos, basically anything you want to everyone. And the best part about it is: it’s cheap!
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Ummmm, actually, no, it’s not cheap at all. It comes at a heavy price. Look around you, look at all those people walking around chained to their Blackberrys (hmm, is it Blackberries?). Go to the beach or ski lodge and do you see all those people sitting around chatting and laughing and drinking? Ooops, nope, they are reading emails on the smart phones and responding.
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To paraphrase Me & Bobby McGee: “Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to do”. and, baby, we ain’t free anymore with these devices strapped to our wrists.