Wednesday, October 28, 2009

abstract crisis

Withing the confines of the abstract "economic crisis", this crisis which really affects people but comes down to a bunch of ones and zeros being shuffled around or the concepts of their existence being exchanged for tangible representations of something of value, there are obvious effects.

[As a side note: what really is the difference between actual, physical, tangible paper or coin money and digital numbers that appear in a bank's account data base? Well, first off, at this point in time in the U.S. you can't charge your next dimebag. But other than that, what would be the difference between the way in which we as a society view a five dollar bill in our hand and a little pixelated 5 on a screen? Both are given abstract, arbitrary values that we all just accept, considering the gold standard was surpasses around the end of the 19th Century.]

Back to the main point:
Needless to say that is the it poorest of the poor which suffer the most. I am not just talking about the underemployed soul who gets a pay cut or laid off altogether. I mean humanitarian work. The people who live either within or beyond our borders who, at the hands of the system are given a hand in life that requires a hand-out. The people who are thrown into existence in a situation that squanders prosperity because the top half a percent like it that way and they want more because their yacht is not big enough or not enough of its appliances are platinum plated. The people worried about uber-rich social status and power, keeping those just trying to survive with their heads just above the surface.
The lack of humanitarian funds is a reminder of the lack of compassion that capitalism has instilled in wealthy nations. Short sighted, narrow mindedness reigns supreme in these societies. We could speculate that anyone from any country is susceptible to the greed that follows one towards wealth, prior to the guilty conscience repenting in philanthropy, i.e. Bill Gate and the like. Needless to say it is better for guilt to eventually result in giving back to any community, considering it is commonplace for the wealth to come at the expense of a community. But this lack of funds shows the displacement of evolutionary qualities which have been so abstracted and skewed off of the responsibilities of being human.

To preform a little thought experiment, without trying to idealize notions of hunter-gatherer societies too much:
Imagine a small hunter-gatherer society, lets say of 65 people in a tribe or what have you. If someone in the tribe was sick or starving, since the entire group's survival is more closely dependent on its individual members, it is not inconceivable to think that at least one of the 64 others would offer assistance in whatever form to help out that person in need. Or if a person had enough children and stored food, he or she may sent an offspring to help out that person, much like a philanthropist may pay a group of people to help out a third world village, etc. With the survival of our globalized village not dependent on the individual, have we evolved beyond actuated compassion that once existed in a more intimate existence?

We once were concerned with the need for food, shelter, clothing and gene spreading. For some all of those things are commonplace to the point that luxuries and monetary obsessions cloud the duty to help out your fellow species. It is no surprise that organizations that do good work, such as UNICEF, are very profitable because of the poverty that they try and help. Otherwise they would probably not exist.

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