Structural Insanity

The world is structured to produce insanity. Everything we see around us, both good and bad, work to move us closer to the edge of reason. It seems as if things shift much in the same way that a pendulum swings, that we go from one extreme to the other but always reach the point of equilibrium albeit for a relatively short period of time. However, it may be a continuum rather than a pendulum as many of the factors that would allow a pendulum motion may not be present. For example, economically, we go from rags to riches and back again, since money is a renewable resource; if there is something to be sold, there will be someone to buy it and over time, wealth can be accumulated and lost, then replenished with effort. The problems begin when other aspects of a pendulum system are considered. Resources can be bought and sold only if they are available; renewable resources may not renew fast enough to keep up with the demand and the destruction of natural resources through overuse and pollution may be a limiting factor. Or it could just be that the pendulum arc is so large, it may take many generations to complete.

In any case, things are changing and more rapidly than ever before. Things that were once desirable have become necessary and with that shift has come a greater demand for “thneeds,” those things that the Once-lers in The Lorax described as something that everyone needs. The problem is that the need may be starting to exceed the availability; the cycle is breaking down. As it worsens, the result will be felt by the “canaries in the mines,” those who are already living with minimum access to resources because of the economic and social delimiters of an unequal system. The last to be impacted will be those in the top 1% who have always been seeking other systems to exploit when the inevitable misuse of one system causes its demise. The problem is that in the case of physical needs such as clean air, water, and food, there may not be a way to compensate for this loss, even for the elites. As has been said many times before, we all are in the same boat—planet—and if one goes, we all go. Who knows what that 1% is planning as we only see a tiny inkling of what is planned. An off-world move is not out of the question.

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