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Monday, September 12, 2005It's been awhile...
So I apologize for the lack of posting, every now and then something happens that I'm not immediately able to wrap my head around. I've found it best to stop and take a look at things before I go blabbering on and on as I usually do. But this posting has nothing to do with any of that!
I've been thinking a lot recently about the price of oil (because I live in California) and terrorism (because I live in America). I've also been thinking about Katrina (because I'm a human being, and not some blog posting robot).
But lets start with terrorism. A lot of middle eastern terrorists got their start from the fact that we like to drive Big SUV's. Now, before you start throwing things at me, let me explain. Post-crusades, what has been our main reason for involvement in the Middle East? Is it because it is so war torn over there or the rule of harsh and cruel dictators? Possibly, but why are we not doing that in Africa or North Korea or whatever the hell Russia is called now? My answer, because I like the easy macro view of it all, is oil. The main reason we care so much about the middle east is oil. They have it, we want it, because the war machine doesn't work without oil (and neither does the Playstation in our cars), and we don't want to pay a lot for it. All of this works out fairly well, until they decide that they want to charge more for it. Then we go over there, and tell them that they can't, and they don't understand, so we... explain.
Well, think about how you would feel if your parents (or cousins or whatever) grew corn. Now corn is very important as it makes the windmills in Holland turn (this is all just an example, we all know corn is not what makes windmills run... its the tulips). Your parents have made a good living off of selling the corn to Holland, because corn will grow lots of places, but it grows best where they are at. But suddenly, for some reason, they need to raise the price of corn (pick any of your simple business solutions, cost of seed rises, labor is now more expensive, etc, etc). So they tell Holland that their corn is now going to cost a little more. Well, Holland can't have that, they liked what they were paying, and they need to corn to make the windmills go. So they tell your parents, no, they'll just pay what they were paying, and if they refuse to sell at that price, they simply find someway to make life painful for them.
So your parents are working just as hard, but they are not making as much. Soon, you are wearing hand-me downs, your dad's drinking from the stress, and your mom kills herself due to dad's drinking. Corn is still being produced, Holland (your biggest consumer) refuses to pay more for it, but offers their condolences over your hardship, and sends you a fruit basket. You are now very angry with Holland and decide that you will not be happy until all tulips are dead. You are now a terrorist.
So replace corn with oil and your parents with middle eastern governments, and Bob's your uncle, we are caught up. Yes, I know, its not all that simple, but its a basic analogy. The biggest beef terrorists have with American's is us meddling in their business. They can kill each other just fine without our help, thank you very much!
... So, if the main reason we have terrorists is due to our meddling... and the main reason we meddle is because we want cheap oil... ...then.. why don't we... put our resources towards cutting our dependence on... oil.
It seems to me that with the billions of dollars we are sinking into Iraq everyday we could develop alternative fuels to decrease our dependence on oil. I wouldn't mind if oil cost $20 a gallon if my car would only use 1 gallon a month. Now, I'm not trying to point any fingers at anyone, but why would our current president have any reason to resist alternative fuel research in favor of promoting an outdated fuel source that is very costly to both the pocket book and the environment?
Wouldn't a better way to fight terrorism be to reduce our dependence on foreign oil?
Wouldn't reducing our contact with them (which is what upsets them in the first place) be the best way to get them to leave us alone?
Because, I'll be honest, a war on terrorism is not a war that can be won by force. Their will always be another upset child who lost his family, or some rich dissident who is pissed and has the resources to start a revolution... and he will always be able to find followers. Wouldn't it be better to find ways to reduce this hatred to begin with?
One last question...
Isn't it funny to see people drive big SUV's or pickups with anti-terrorism messages on their bumper stickers? And wouldn't that be the same as a vegan driving around in a car that runs on beef?
One last note. The destruction wrought by Katrina is probably the worst natural disaster any of us have seen in our lifetime. Please do all you can to contribute to the relief efforts currently in place to help the victims of this tragedy.
While watching the news reports on the event I recall one reporter comparing the destruction to the detonation of a nuclear bomb. Excluding the radioactive fallout, of course, I think this description would be very apt. I'm not going to sit here and criticize anyone on their response, or lack of it to this disaster. One thing I will say is that if a terrorist act creates this much damage in the future, I hope that our federal government would not sit on its hands for a few days before stepping in to act. I also hope that if a natural disaster of this magnitude occurs again, that individual citizens will not hesitate to step in and help out, just as they have done this time.
Ahh, its amazing how simple life is if you just leave out all the micro details....
[feel free to post comments, I love challenging my ideas, but please, no personal attacks, it belittles us both]