Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Thoughtful Government

The greatest lesson not taught in schools, but should be the greatest lesson taught in schools, is the idea of “reciprocity,” or exchanging fair value for fair value -- rather than the hope of getting something for nothing, which is probably the most damaging lesson one can learn in schools -- which is how to get a reward, while doing nothing to merit it. And in fact, the greater one can fool the rewarder into giving an outsized reward for that which is least deserving of one, the more one adjudges that accomplishment as his superior ability to manipulate (micromanage) the world to his singular liking.

Meanwhile, a good society, is that in which people communicate and exchange so that pretty nearly everyone gets what they value most as the objective of that society. Then, it is not just one person who ends up with everything while everybody else has none or very little, but most people have what they can value above all the others -- and each feels that way. So there is little resentment, bitterness and envy -- that only one person has it all, even when he could never use it all, or even use any of it properly. His entire preoccupation at that point, becomes maintaining and securing all that he has, so that others might not have as much as he does.

In a more complex society, people who get a lot more than they deserve, frequently think that are the ones getting shortchanged and demanding more -- as though it would only be “fair,” when they possessed everything, and nobody else had anything. That is the consequence of the kind of of conditioning they receive, that getting is all that matters for them to do, and giving is what others exist for -- and not the ideal balance of each individual, is giving and taking to the extent that an optimal satisfaction and fulfillment is obtained by most participants of that society. Nobody is expected to “sacrifice” for anybody else. Everyone is expected to maximize their own happiness to the best of their abilities.

That is not a problem in any society, except when a few, think that their own greatest happiness, is depriving the happiness of every other, as their greatest joy. That way of thinking, is of course, mental illness and antisocial impulse. Of course one does not explicitly express their objective in that way but describes it as a noble calling that does the same thing of robbing others from their own happiness and even their health and lives. Such a corruption of human purpose and intent, is the exercise of brute power -- just because one can, and until one is stopped by some more powerful and brutal force.

When they reach that point, it is usually not a happy outcome -- and the devastation may take years and even a lifetime to overcome. So it is a lesson worth learning early so that it doesn’t stunt one’s maturation into a fully actualized, worthwhile human being -- who as he lives, empowers and enables others to also live their own greatest lives.

The abundant world, civilization has created, makes it now possible for virtually everyone to have their minimal requirements met, if a few do not demand, that they need to have it all, just because they can. That’s how the world, is a better place, if the self-chosen few, do not think that everybody else exists, just for their own self-aggrandizement and power-trips.