Monday, November 14, 2005

Jim Kunstler's latest lecture: like dad in the den

Jim Kunstler is the author of a couple books ("the Geography of Nowhere" and
"Home From Nowhere") that have given me, and lots of folks, a vocabulary to
describe what has always bothered me about the setting of lots of American
namely, the suburbs. He has a "blog" of sorts (updated about once per week) in which he rails
against the stupidity of the "modern" way of doing things. Worth a

While I doubt that the President and his posse are too dim to comprehend
energy trap we're in, there certainly is plenty of plain stupidity in the
rest of our elected leadership, of which Senator Grassley's remarks are
A. To be more precise, actually, Grassley's statement displays
something closer
to childishness than sheer stupidity. It comprises a set of
beliefs or
expectations that are unfortunately widespread in our culture,
namely, that we
should demand a particular outcome because we want it to be
so. This is exactly
how children below the age of reason think, in their
wild egocentricity, and it
is the hallmark of mental development to grow
beyond that kind of thinking. But
the force of advertising and other
inducements to fantasy are so overwhelming in
everyday American life that
they may be obstructing the development of a huge
chunk of the population,
something that becomes worse each year, as
proportionately more adults fail
to grow up mentally. This state-of-mind is made
visible in Las Vegas, our
national monument to the creed that people should get
whatever they want.
What I wonder is: when will my fellow citizens discover
that their
thinking and their behavior are unworthy of their history? That we
entering a time when these things simply aren't good enough, aren't enough
to meet the challenges that reality now presents. Or are we too far gone?
possible that we are. After all, life is tragic, meaning that happy
outcomes are
not guaranteed and that people who forget that usually come to

No comments:

Post a Comment