Great Expectations (With a nod to Dickens)


We are not born with these but we are taught to have them. What we are taught to have is fixed in our minds like the gospels are fixed in a preacher’s mind but are they right? The West praises Malala and does not realize she is against capitalism. Yes it is true that socialism was a disaster in China and in the Soviet Union and that is because humans are born geared to survive; and later, taught to compete and excel and that is also good. But HOW are the qualities of merit taught? Do we excel at the expense of others or do we excel to HELP others? Do the best, brightest and smartest of us, who were given those gifts, have them to keep all the good things, they have rightly earned, to themselves OR to share with the world and share IN the world and THIS is the crux of what faces the world now. I am not here to take a side. I am just here to beg the question?

If you take capitalism and personal ownership completely away you fail BUT if you allow conglomerates and monopolies you also fail. Both extremes are wrong and neither is proving to be stable long term. Both China and Russia allowed a modified form of capitalism to return and prosperity returned with that. Earlier, In America, there was a law against monopolies but the corporate world has wiggled around those and most everything is made, owned and produced by a very few.

If you were raised to believe a certain thing you KNOW that thing is a fact no matter what the fact might be and there may be MORE than one ‘right’ fact to choose from and who decides what fact that is and how do they decide it? The Jesuits taught my father that ‘The ends justify the means.’ but no one likes it when it is applied to them…they only like it when they are applying it to someone else yet what of our total of humanity?

Each group wishes to be the ‘most human’ and deserve the ‘most stuff’ for being ‘the most hard-working’ or the ‘most chosen’. Who works the hardest? The founder of a company that works night and day to make millions (and yes, granted, that person may work hard)…OR the woman who works night and day for ‘slave wages’ to feed her family? They both work very hard. If hard work alone is the path to riches then why is there such a vast inequity and how is that inequity a good thing?

How is it we have come to see that the residents of ‘Elysium’ somehow deserve the luxury they live in more than everyone else? Yes most of them worked very hard for that, and those who keep it teach their children to work very hard to keep it, DO keep the wealth but if we MUST have ‘rulers’ why not train the rulers to believe sharing is a good thing?

There is no question mankind will demand rulers. We have been demanding them ever since the first tribal people chose a chief to bear the responsibilty for an entire people and we are not likely to change.The problem is not that there is a King or a President or a Rich Corporation; we NEED the kind of people that it takes to plan this stuff because we have lost both the will and the ability to do it ourselves over many centuries (although I wish we would leave the tribals, who still know how to live without a king, ALONE so that facet of the world can still exist). The problem is within all of US…WE allow what the kings do. We allowed them to war and make war. WE followed things we knew were wrong like good sheep. WE are bigger than THEY are and WE can take them out anytime and THEY know it.

The problem is not ‘Elysium’. The problem is that fact that Elysium cannot be shared. Are the ‘have not’s’ who drink muddy water from sewers no less human than those who learned how to ‘make things run’ at great universities?

You may argue that you get the life you deserve but even if this is the case it is STILL incumbent upon Rulers and Masters and Kings to care for the people they have charge of in the best way possible…but they will only do that if they understand they are not any better than a woman begging on a street corner in Kabul.

By MshannoM

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