What A Fucked Up World We Live In!

Hot on the heels of my declaration yesterday that I had ceased to be stirred enough by life today to write about it, today I came across this article by Ilargi of The Automatic Earth blog titled: The Untouchables of the 21st Century, which again reignited the spark inside me.

I said yesterday that there was recently nothing new in the debate on our crumbling society, lurching its way aimlessly onward to ultimate decay and destruction, that was interesting enough to express as matching my own opinion here.  But this writing struck a chord in me.  Ilargi does not blog as frequently as he has done in the past but when he does, it is usually worth the wait.

The article talks about how…

“…we are now on the verge of casting a huge group of people, essentially our own neighbors, outside of our communities. They are no longer allowed to participate in what makes our societies tick.”

These are the millions of unemployed, who now form part of the new untouchables.  If you are not familiar with what that means, read the article.

A growing percentage of these unemployed ‘untouchables’ are the young people.  In some countries making between 30% and more than 50% of this new class of social outcasts.  These are people who today do not possess the political might to alter conditions in their favour.  Many of them have never held a job, known what it is to have disposable income, and more than likely never will.  They are not only unemployed, but sadly, through no fault of their own, they are considered unemployable under the current paradigm.

“Companies won’t even look at resumes of the long-term unemployed.”

The current paradigm stinks and needs to be changed.  Society is building up for itself a heap of future trouble around this situation, notwithstanding all of the other troubles it has been stacking up for itself pile upon pile over the decades.  Chickens that will eventually come home to roost.  How will that happen?  The older generations who now wield the political power and hold the keys to maintaining the system to cover their own mistakes and bad decisions, will gradually or perhaps sooner than they expect, have to give way to the current have-nots, the unemployed and younger generations.

“This is not a road to nowhere, it’s a road to surefire mayhem. There will inevitable come a point where the younger generation we now leave out to dry gains the voting power and asks: What have you done for me lately? And then, what will be the answer?”

Things will change one way or another but it is not simply a question of restoring and maintaining high employment rates.  The very definition and purpose of employment, work, jobs, occupations, whatever you want to call it, needs to change at the same time.  Otherwise we will just go back to the same old economic growth situation which was the cause of our plight.  The following paragraph, perhaps more than anything else said in the article, is the jewel of the piece and it addresses this point.

“Our definition of work has slowly slid from doing something that is useful to yourself, your family and the society you live in, to doing something, a job, that will allow you to buy as big a car and home as possible, and consume as many products as you can whether you need them or not, in order to keep the economy growing. This change in definition has gone largely unnoticed until now, but in light of the levels of – youth – unemployment we see in ever more places, maybe we should take another look at what it means.”

Ilargi goes on to talk about how this particularly applies in Europe, which directly or indirectly affects all of us anyway.  There is even a mention of Monsanto.  That name always causes my hackles to rise.  They are the pinnacle of my pet hates among that group of useless global business organisations organisms, parasites, worms that seek to control our lives.  Here it is, speaking of how Europe needs to quickly dump the EU:

Better be quick though: the EU has one of its numerous edicts coming out soon that bans people who grow their own food in their gardens, in small plots and allotments, from using their own seeds. They must instead by law buy their seeds from vendors “ordained” by Brussels (yeah, there’s Monsanto again…).

So, I have popped my head up again and said my piece.  I am still perplexed about why people generally don’t care about the big questions.  About the injustice of it all. The greed.  The clambering for the power of being at the top of the heap.  How do we make any sense of what is going on in our world?  Why has it all been allowed to happen?  Why are there so few voices being raised in objection?  Why are the warning signs being ignored?  Can’t they see?  Can’t you see?

Courtesy of some of the comments to the Ilargi article on TAE, I think part of the answer is that we as a species are pretty much asleep, dead to the world.  We have amused ourselves to death.  I must add this to my list of favourite quotes:

This species has amused itself to death.
–Roger Waters

Speaking of Roger Waters, formerly of Pink Floyd and one of the finest of song writers I know of, some of my questions are addressed in the following song from his Amused to Death album, lyrics below:

A clearer recording, but no live performance is at:  http://youtu.be/v6mjR5JNX7w

1992 “Perfect Sense” 

Lyrics:

Part I

The monkey sat on a pile of stones
And stared at the broken bone in his hand
And the strains of a Viennese quartet
Rang out across the land
The monkey looked up at the stars
And thought to himself
Memory is a stranger
History is for fools
And he cleaned his hands
In a pool of holy writing
Turned his back on the garden
And set out for the nearest town
Hold on hold on soldier
When you add it all up
The tears and the marrowbone
There’s an ounce of gold
And an ounce of pride in each ledger
And the Germans killed the Jews
And the Jews killed the Arabs
And the Arabs killed the hostages
And that is the news
And is it any wonder
That the monkey’s confused
He said Mama Mama
The President’s a fool
Why do I have to keep reading
These technical manuals
And the joint chiefs of staff
And the brokers on Wall Street said
Don’t make us laugh
You’re a smart kid
Time is linear
Memory is a stranger
History is for fools
Man is a tool in the hands
Of the great God Almighty
And they gave him command
Of a nuclear submarine
And sent him back in search of
The Garden of Eden

Part II

Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense
Expressed in dollars and cents,
Pounds, shillings and pence
Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense

Little black soul departs in perfect focus
Hold on soldier
Prime time fodder for the News at Nine
Hold on, hold on soldier
Darling is the child warm in the bed tonight

[Marv Albert:] “Hi everybody I’m Marv Albert
And welcome to our telecast
Coming to you live from Memorial Stadium
It’s a beautiful day
And today we expect a sensational matchup
But first our global anthem”

Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense
Expressed in dollars and cents,
Pounds, shillings and pence
Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense

[Marv:] “And here come the players
As I speak to you now, the captain
Has his cross hairs zeroed in on the oil rig
It looks to me like he’s going to attack
By the way did you know that a submarine
Captain earns 200,000 dollars a year”
[Edward:]”That’s less tax Marv”
[Marv:]”Yeah, less tax
Thank you Edward”
[Edward:]”You’re welcome”
[Marv:]”Now back to the game…he fires one…yes
There goes two; both fish are running
The rig is going into a prevent defense
Will they make it? I don’t think so”

Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense
Expressed in dollars and cents,
Pounds, shillings and pence
Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense
Can’t you see
It all makes perfect sense

Finally, and I know this has nothing to do with the subject, but indulge me, I found this interview with Roger Waters on his song-writing method, to be quite fascinating.  Enjoy.