Saturday, July 12, 2008

Bachelorhood and Society

"I was unaware that anybody owed society anything."

You're not the only one unaware of that.

Consider, however, that this society and all others exist because someone felt they did owe society something, and that this society degrades and will cease to exist because people think the sum total of history's efforts up to this point was to allow them an entirely self-involved life.

This was from the comments thread at Dr. Helen's site on a topic that might have been labeled Bachelors: Menace or Threat?

Nobody commented on "I was unaware that anybody owed society anything" at all. Maybe they just ignored it, but I tend to think when something like that gets passed up, it's because there's not a lot of disagreement.

I remember thinking the same thing, when I was a teenager. You know, "What has society ever done for me?" kind of stuff. And it's really that sort of thinking that lies behind the justifications that (say) our officials use to gradually destroy society.

There's not even good faith, much of the time.

What's more, if you point it out, you're obviously a greedy right-wing neocon fascist. I'm an open borders guy, but if I'm asked about the impact on the various social programs, the best answer I can come up with "Get rid of them and it won't be a problem." Most people find that extreme.

Life for the elected elite doesn't seem to be suffering along with our infrastructure. Take that bridge that collapsed last year in Minnesota. I think it was, attributed to some incompetence at the time of its construction. But couldn't there have been some money in the budget to check those things out more frequently? Did we do all that we reasonably could?

Or did someone in office (or someone well connected) have better uses for our tax dollars?

You can argue--fairly, I think--that there will always be some corruption, some waste, whether private or public sector organizations are involved.

But how much of the deterioration of our world comes down to someone not being aware that they owed something to society?

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