When we look in the mirror, we realize how time is inexorably running out, and our lives are being consumed.
If we were to look at our city from a 10thfloor building, we would see thousands of lives like ours, moving to and from, like ants or robots, mixing and shaping what we call a society.
Throughout time, generations of people like us have been born and have died.
It is unavoidable to question a few times in our fleeting life if what mankind has done is worthy of being called an evolution or an accomplishment.
Our race has evolved from a primitive organization, through the discovery of what mother nature has given us on this little planet, to a more organized form of living and interacting together, which we can call a society.
Our lives have also been transformed by the industrial revolution and technology.
The forms of organizing our societies -- which we can call politics -- have changed from absolute theocracies to the feudal system to the first forms of popular democracy. We have passed through failed experiments, such as communism, naziismand other absolutist regimes, and have also suffered wars which have cost millions of lives and caused widespread bloodshed until just a few generations ago.
Our question – is the current world really any better than it has been for centuries? -- is legitimate.
First, there is no doubt that most of the world population still lives in misery and suffers from starvation, wars and absolutist regimes, deprived of most of technology and basic needs of life, in a way not so different from how our ancestors were living (trying to survive) centuries ago.
Then has the very small part of the world -- called “first world” or “developed countries” -- really achieved a just and fair society and a cozy standard of living?
Most fanatics of technology would surely praise our “gadgets” which seem to make our lives so much better. But I am afraid this is nothing more than an illusion.
Were our grandparents’ lives so much worse just because they had no color TVs, no cell phones, no computer games?
What will our descendants in 200 years say about us?
That our lives were terrible because our cars could not fly, our computers had no protobio-chips and so could not think like humans, our planes could not fly around the planet in 30 minutes?
I don ‘t think so; we cannot desire, or aspire for, what doesn’t exist (yet).
So thinking that we have a meaningful and easy life thanks to the technology and industry revolution is pointless.
The real grain of the question is: Are our lives really better? Are we really happy?
Are we really free and fairly organized by the representatives of our society (politicians)?
Well, from what I can see with my eyes and hear with my ears, I would say the answer is “Not quite.”
Most of the world is in disarray, and people are languishing and suffering as they did in the worst periods of the Middle Age.
The other part of the world sees most of the population (the so called middle class) working like beasts of burden all their lives to receive – if they are lucky -- a miserable pension which will be not enough to help deal with the ailments of old age.
Almost everywhere, including in the most stable democracies of the first world, people are totally discouraged about politics, and don‘t believe the system is fair.
So, what it is the point then, if democracy was supposed to have meant “power of the masses”?
We, ourselves, are supposed to be in charge, through a select group of representatives we elect.
This is what democracy is supposed to be. But this concept is so far from reality, even in the perceptions of the people in the most consolidated political democracies, that we really need to question what is wrong with our society.
Ordinary people are systematically cheated by the banks in one way or another.
We are brainwashed by disinformation from the mass media, which are controlled by a small group of people connected to some of our “representatives.” We are asked to work and pay taxes and carry the weight of all crises -- real or created, like the latest oil crisis, which has virtually destroyed, or at least seriously damaged, the lives of the middle class worldwide.
It is natural, under these circumstances, for us to see the apathy of people towards our society, the perception – not so distant from reality -- that a small group of “mafiosos” is manipulating our technological economy to consolidate their monopolitical power, while playing with our lives like we play Monopoly or Secondlife.
So, I ask myself again, is my life really better than my grandpa’s was, just because I am writing this article with a laptop rather than a pen soaked in black ink?
Just like our ancestors in the feudal system were brainwashed and cheated by monarchs and religion to accept being slaves in pursuit of an eternal life in paradise, we are “technologically” brainwashed in a more subtle way. But despite our laptops, 747s and 3G cell phones, a similar type of royalmonarchies, which have driven most of the wars and massacres, are still there, and their cadre of masons and bankers are serving their power.
We are just like dogs, but with a looser collar. So loose, that sometimes we don’t even realize we are wearing one: our collar is loose enough to walk throughout the garden, to copulate with a bitch or two, to defecate, to eat or bite the neighbour’s cat and to be fed pedigree food. But we are still wearing the collar.
If our pleasant and cozy life in the garden is not enough, and we feel the desire to see beyond our little paradise, we will feel a pain in the neck and realize we are restrained by this a collar. That’s it.
The proposed drastic “solutions,” like the communism and naziism of the first part of the past century, have proven to be a complete disaster and have resulted only in massacres, blood, repression , hunger and suffering.
Embracing a system like communism is like admitting our inability to organize ourselves in a fair and democratic society. It is also against the nature of mankind of progressing and constantly evolving: that’s why it didn’t work, and it will never be a solution.
The focus should be different: the problem is NOT the market, the capitalism, the globalization, the technology. No.
The problem is how a bunch of Mafiosos is using these tools to perpetuate their power.
Exchanging a cadré of capitalist mafiososfor one of communist butchers (Mao Tze Tung caused a massacre over 10 times bigger than the one of the Holocaust) would be the worst possible solution.
What we need is a TRANSPARENT society, where all the values and virtues of democracy and the free market are really at the service of all of us; a society where all people, rich or poor, black or white, are born with an opportunity to progress in life and be happy; a society in which we can really feel politicians are serving us and not vice-versa; a society where getting rich will be welcomed and encouraged (and not envied) if this will not be done at the expenses of the society; a society where the government will be the supervisor of the good behaviour of everybody, from the ordinary people to the politicians, to the big corporations and financial system; a society where competition will also be fair, like in sport: May the best win, but at the end of the race, we are all happy and shake hands.
The day we will be able to push our evolution towards a point to achieve these goals, these values, that day and only that day, we can ask ourselves again: “Is our world we live in really better?” And we will be able to answer, “Yes, it is!”.
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