WEEK #56 (6-10-12 to 6-16-12): If I Had My Life to Live Over…
What a topic! If I had my life to live over. Well, we already know we would not learn the same lessons if we did things differently. So, does that mean we would learn them more quickly if we chose a different path? Would we need to learn these specific lessons had we chosen different paths?
Examining what you might do differently is only a tantalizing thought away from the age old question, “why am I here?” By design or random accident? If life is no more than cosmic coincidence does that give us license to blissfully ignore what we do not care to see or worse yet participate in the deterioration of planet Earth and its inhabitants?
I read a book recently with a unique quote in it “The strong take what they will and the weak endure what they must”. While I would like to see the world spin with a different idealism, I am afraid even America is quickly bending to this way of thinking. I fear the caste system is soon upon us.
If I had my life to live over, I wish that while I was raising my family and trying to make ends meet, I had stopped and paid more attention to what our government officials were doing. Or, perhaps more succinctly who was doing our government officials.
When I became old enough to vote I marched down to the Secretary of State’s office and signed up as a Republican. Back then, and for many years later, if you had told me my ideals would be deemed Democratic or Socialist we may have come to fisticuffs. I thought our government system was filled with men who cared about long term benefits for ALL Americans, not just themselves and their cronies. What we have allowed the Koch brothers to do to our government is disgusting. (Koch brothers are the money behind the changes to most policies enhancing companies involvement with government)
I had the good fortune of working for a large corporation, United Parcel Service. It amazes me that these Governors have the audacity to cite retirement funds and health benefits as a reason to “union bust”. They actually say the “benefits” their employees make are driving the companies into bankruptcy. I find it difficult to believe since UPS is a thriving company. I will have a very nice pension when I come of age, because they ACTUALLY PUT THE MONEY ASIDE as they were supposed to. Why? Because there was a union looking over their shoulder to make sure it happened. Checks and balance make for a profitable company. Sure, there are your lackey’s the company would like to terminate, and guess what, a good management team can get rid of anyone. A poor management team, whether it’s a union or non-union company will drive the company out of business eventually. This is true whether the company is private or public.
What is the major reason Social Security is in trouble? Because our government keeps taking draws from it to fund war. Not because Nana outlived her usefulness. Because of greed, typically in the form of oil. But, woe unto the official who may want to fund alternative energy.
The capacity of the general public to forget just baffles my mind. Big Rock nuclear plant, located near beautiful Charlevoix, Michigan, was shut down in 1997. After billions of dollars thrown at cleaning up the property, there are still 500 acres that are too hazardous for anyone to walk on. Pristine forest, that will kill you to live there. But, big business wants to build more nuclear plants because they are less expensive than an alternative energy.
I live in Michigan. The acid rain that fell upon us from Gary, Indiana and Chicago, Illinois was outrageous. It peeled the paint off cars. Where the acid rain blew in, it killed the plant life for miles. I would not want to see that again in my lifetime. Gary, Indiana has a beautiful harbor that flows into the Calumet River. Clean up of the harbor was halted twenty years ago due to the heavy hazardous contaminants flowing downstream. The bottom end of Lake Michigan may never be open to people again.
If I had my life to live over. I would have been far more protective of “Mother Earth”. I would have quickly agreed with those tree huggers that saved forests for the spotted owl. Or, here in Michigan, we have Kirtland’s Warbler which causes controversy. Because some company wants to cut down trees on government land? We would endanger another species for what? Spite? They nest in young jack pine forest which sport a sandy soil that in my opinion isn’t good for growing anything else, oh, perhaps sand chiggers. Jack pine is a scrub pine. Good for creating a nesting ground for the extremely rare Kirtland’s Warbler. Yet, because they have been told they cannot have it, there are companies who want it desperately. I am saddened when I hear any public official say that a law with environmentally conscience law is hurting jobs. When in truth just the opposite is true. Manufacturing plants are needed to create the scrubbers for the power stacks/ the wind mills/ the bio fuels or whichever alternate energy you chose. Manufacturing plants employee people.
There are times I am ashamed by what humankind has done to the planet we live on. Per the “scripture” many of you follow, human kind has been entrusted with the responsibility to tend the animals and the planet. Yet we allow greed to supersede our main objective. Per the “alien” believers humankind was first installed to be slaves and then left behind to tend the animals and the planet. Yet we allow greed to supersede our main objective.
If I had my life to live over. Would I have these same lessons learned? If I had been more active in the governing of our city, state, country, would I have simply absorbed the thought process which seems to be “status quo”? Let the 46 companies who contributed the billions of dollars in funds to the political campaigns continue as though it means nothing? Companies being considered “people” in an effort to channel more funds into a politicians coffers….the golden handcuffs. Companies allowed to put their own agenda before people. The money machines.
If I had my life to live over, I have very few changes to make, but changes just the same. However, these changes would have altered many aspects of who I am and the journey I’ve taken to get here. I wouldn’t want to change the people I’ve met along the route, merely the fashion by which we were introduced. For each of us is the sum total of every essence we have encountered.