Posted by: silverback | 2015/02/03

partisanship

I maintain my assertion that the Universe seeks nothing so much as equilibrium. I think it’s a cosmic joke that keeps us in check.

As Groundhog Day has come and gone, I posted a silly meme on my Facebook wall that struck me as funny:groundhog

Of course, a few friends “liked” it, and a couple took issue. I find it absurd that “Climate Deniers” are even a thing. Even if I had done zero research, had zero knowledge of scientific things, I would have to imagine, in a common-sense way, that since humans (that’s us) of the industrial age (since, say, 1900) have extracted about 70% of the world’s total resources, that we must’ve had some sort of massive negative impact on the planet.

I have friends that routinely post the doomsday predictions. My tendency is to believe that we’re going to fuck ourselves right out of a place to live.

I have friends that post spiritual guides regularly. I consider myself a spiritual person, so I’m one of those people too, I suppose. I think our best results come from staying present, seeking to remain conscious, and trying to connect with each other and the planet and the Universe. I believe in the God of Quantum Physics, so my hope is that we figure that riddle out before it’s too late for our kids.

I have friends who are a little too zealous about their religions for my taste, but I respect their right to believe whatever the hell makes them feel better. I try not to judge some of those folks for quoting the Bible while being generally self-absorbed, greedy, or even downright shitty people. We’re all on our own respective paths, right?

What I’m sensing, as the years pass, is that more of us seem to be heading for the far ends of the scale.

It’s like the political system in America. Each party travels further to the left or the right to appeal to their base, shouting partisan taglines as if they were powerful talismans, able to ward off the evil intentions of the Koch Brothers or Obamacare. Only the Koch brothers are real villains, doing real sinister shit. And the Affordable Care Act, while well-intentioned, often feels a tad oppressive and somehow more beneficial to the insurance companies than the people at the end of the day.

For every person committing to renewable energy sources, there’s one buying shares in Keystone XL.

For every person adopting the practice of yoga because it makes us feel good, there’s another mindlessly buying cheap GMO crap for their family.

For every one of us who worships the woods and the clear water and the pristine back country that remains, there’s another that wants to open ANWAR for oil drilling so we can keep driving big trucks for a few more years.

For every one of us who believes less is more, consciously abrogating loads of material crap, there’s a crew building another shopping center where there used to be woods.

For every conscientious objector there’s a teenager gung-ho to get issued a gun to go waste some ragheads. Or a Jihadist zealot anxious to behead an innocent in the name of Muhammed.

It feels like madness at these extremes. Too much or not enough. Dogmatic themes, only with different Gods, different governments, different innocents.

As we seemingly split down the middle, it feels more and more every day like we take up residence at the very edges, as far away from each other and any sense of unity or common cause (you know, like the survival of the species, or the preservation of the only place we can live for the time being) as we can possibly get.

It’s a strange, disheartening disconnect. I often wonder, a bit hopelessly, what it’s going to take to shake us back down to the middle again. Is it even possible? Is it folly to seek neutrality? What’s the point of trying to stand on the fulcrum?

Well, no matter which way the seesaw falls, the middle stays up, right?

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