Wednesday, October 10, 2007

IT'S NOT FAIR, PART 2

The second case of the grumps isn’t confined to Oregonians, it’s the pervasive complaint that “I succeeded on my own, with no help from anybody, so it’s not fair for me to ask me, tax me whatever to support anyone else.” Oh puhleeze, give me a freakin’ break.

 

Let’s start with your parents, who probably should have their asses kicked for bringing such a whiny excuse for a human being into the world in the first place. Two people got together and brought you into the world, Creator/ress alone, knows why. And their parents and their parents, back to the first piece protoplasm that managed to copy itself. And “thought” it was such a good idea, it did it again, and again, until the universe was not only graced with daisies and blue whales, it was stuck with us.

 

The universe must have really smiled on your parents. They must have been able to afford everything from soup to nuts to insurance from the get go. They were probably filled with hopes and dreams and lucky for you, it worked out. I’ve lost count of the letters to the editor on the theme of people shouldn’t have kids if they can’t afford them.

As I said, you’re young, you’re full of hope, things work out for a lot of years and then things go wrong. They did for my family. Dad was disabled in his mid fifties and mom had to go to work. With a lot of luck, help from friends and family and a lot of hard work we managed to make it. But, a lot of things didn’t work out like they’d planned when they first started our family. And it’s not like you can return a kid once it’s born and things get tough.

 

Maybe there’s a good reason we haven’t received any visitor’s from among the stars. Any intelligent space faring nation would have planted a swarm of warningbeacons around our system all broadcasting some variation on “enter at your own risk. The natives on that little blue ball are armed and dangerous. If you do plan on visiting, please leave the relevant information on the monitor beacon so we can notify your next of kin, pod brother, clone,” however they handle things out there.

 

So show a little humility for cryin’ out loud. You didn’t come into the world on your own, you probably won’t go out on your own and in between just about anything you’ve managed to “create” is standing on so many shoulders that if it was a pyramid it would probably reach the sun.

 

And before I go any further, let’s talk about certain taxes and tax breaks. It’s a constant litany from the development lobbies. We’ve got this great idea for whatever, but we need a break on getting the property together. Tell you what, you buy it with a bond levy or something and sell it us at a good price.  We need a break on the property taxes. We need a break on building roads, sewer lines…..whatever. I think I see a pattern here. When you need help, it’s an investment. When somebody else needs help, it’s a hand out.

 

Oh my, things kind of got sidetracked. Anyway every greatnew idea that someone comes up with is built on generations of work done by countless generations. Agriculture has an eleven thousand year or so history. Pottery and baskets to store the harvest in, almost as old. Plows and other tools to work the land are almost as old. Weaving and spinning several thousand years at least. And I’d love to know what went through somebody’s mind that allowed them to make the connections for weaving, spinning, looms and spinning wheels.

 

Smelting and working metals? Probably three to four thousand years of history. And how did someone come up with the idea of mixing two metals together to create a metal stronger than either one. Knocking rocks together? Hundreds of thousands of years. But, the fine stone work, a few thousand years. Metals good enough to build the machines that powered the industrial revolution come from the seventeen hundreds. The earliest calculators that led to computers came in the mid to late eighteen hundreds.

 

So, no matter what great new widget you claim that you came up with “all by yourself” show a little respect. Isaac Newton said something along the lines of “If I’ve seen further it’s because I’ve stood on the shoulders of giants.”  If someone manages to go further and better it’s because someone else has done ninety percent of the work.

3 comments:

mlraminiak said...

...get up on the wrong side of the bed this morning?  LOL!

Rant away.  You make some good points.  Lisa  :-]

tenyearnap said...

The ideas of today were built on the ideas of many yesterdays...my little homeschooler has just recently put this together, as he is becoming very interested in not just science but the history of science. I am hoping that finding this out at an early age will keep him from having the "I" notions which you are (wonderfully) ranting about here...heh heh.

Loved it! --Cin

ereading7 said...

Great post!  I especially like the tax break/handout comparison.