Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Facing the Consequences of Being

Facing the Consequences of Being: Breathe! Not too much though, for you might inhale some of the carbon monoxide coming from that flaming car! What a way to go out! Smoke inhalation - isn't that nice? And yet it is happening all the time to those who smoke cigarettes. Ah, the consequences stemming from human actions are dreadfully serious, but when is man going to realize this rather mundane fact? Where is Mr. Discipline when you need him? It seems to me that he has been on a permanent vacation to Never Never Land since the end of World War II. The fate of Western civilization rests on the shoulders of Mr. Discipline. He taught us how to export more than import. He taught us how to produce more than consume. And he taught us how to win more than lose. Perhaps Mr. Discipline was wearing a mask when he taught us Westerners how to thrive. Maybe his real name is Confucius, and quite frankly, the way the Chinese are prospering these days, that idea would not be all that unbelievable. Even so, as a self-indulgent individual who comes from a decadent Western society, I tend to endorse the notion that once man starts something, he simply cannot help himself to stop.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Mighty Blackstone River

The Mighty Blackstone River: Is there any part of modern living today that does not reap the benefits of industrialization? It was so keen how rivers (Nature's highways) had flooded the lands so they could be made fertile, and yet today, man seeks to control the river with his intricate methods of irrigation. But what about the process of industrialization? Why did man betray the river? Rivers used to make lands naturally arable. Now, man makes the river work for him by harnessing its great powers for industrial gains like electricity. Where is the divine justice for Nature? Could it be held in the dreaded flood? Or the bitter yet subtle existence of erosion? Floods and erosion never used to be seen as a problem. That's because property was never considered valuable if it was located on a river's flood plain. When did value get assigned to property that exists on risqué grounds - like those multi-million dollar mansions that sit on canyon cliffs in Malibu, California? Aside from floods and erosion, it was the sheer force of a river's current that drove the early mill wheels of American industry. And ultimately, Americans can trace their collective industrial heritage back to the mighty Blackstone River and the factory-infested path that it carved through the rocky ledge of Southern New England.