Can't Drive 55 - 2008-07-22 07:44
I can't drive 55
A friend with a suspicious name, (Aziz) told me the other day that my blog was 'kinda dark.' I've taken that comment to heart. From tomorrow on, only slight and fluffy things will be posted and the sunshine in my brain will be used to shoo away the clouds.
In 1975, when oil became scarce and expensive, congress passed the miles per hour law -- 55mph on the interstate max, to save gas and protect us from ourselves. Small became beautiful -- many authors made big bucks in the 70's writing about our need to downsize our consumption and live within our means as a society. Jeremy Rifkin started a career with a book called 'Entropy,' about the 2nd law of thermodynamics -- the 'use it, then lose it' rule of reality.
Things were looking up in a real, yet downer sort of way. Reality sucked, big time.
We had lost an expensive war, had a psychotic president, ruined our economy with stagflation and had glam bands playing music on every radio station, all the time. We were looking in the mirror and seeing ourselves on a Monday morning after a ten-year binge of coke and drink.
And it didn't feel good. So, we made a plan to improve, we promised never again. elected Jimmy -- a good. decent, hard man of god and the nuclear submarine fleet, to guide us with his honesty and clear vision of less is more, and then the hangover cleared up, and Saturday night came by again, and we chose to forget.
Reagan years -- He made us feel good about ourselves again. Our long national depression lifted and we splurged like drunken non-nuclear sailors.
Since we had less in the way of natural resources to exploit for profit, we turned to exploiting people and the future -- we turned our backs on the mirror and started living the American dream again, on credit and the wisps of a spoken idea.
Sometimes depression is not caused by a genetic gift or chemicals -- sometimes we feel bad because we are supposed to. Pain is part of a feed-back loop that helps in our survival odds.
Saving money on the garbage bill by throwing our trash in the backyard is not a good long term plan for happiness.
Paying less and spending more only works for a short time.
Addiction only makes you happy at the front end --you soon have to use to just feel normal.
I can't drive 55 and neither can you -- time has told. Maybe we shouldn't drive at all.