The state of things

The human-race is like a car which is rolling towards the edge of a cliff and instead of hitting the brakes we seem to be hitting the gas.

United Nations

At the UN Headquarters, “let us beat our swords into ploughshares”

The vast majority of people just want to get on with their lives, wanting to raise their families in security both financially and physically, but we now live in a time when that is becoming harder and harder for more and more people. Society is becoming very deeply divided and tribal, politics,religion race and wealth are the dividing factors.

After World War 2, there was a period when things seemed to be going reasonably well. During that time we saw nations rebuilding themselves along with the fall of colonialism, businesses were booming and the quality of life was improving for the majority, medical care was made easily available, housing was easy to find, as were jobs that paid a living wage even at the lower end of the social scale. Racism was recognized for the injustice that it is and action was taken, women were able to take their place in the workplace, no longer simply as a secretary but as lawyers and doctors etc. Of course challenges remained but the point is, improvements were being made in society which were unimaginable not so long before. Of course there was the cold war, and some terrible proxy wars were fought between the two superpowers, Korea and Vietnam, at terrible human cost but in many ways the world was more stable during the cold war than it is today.

Politics was also less partisan in the past, the different parties of many countries could often find a way to work together. Today, politics of the democratic system is polarized and tribal in a way not seen for a very long time and to be honest the wheels are starting to fall off. Then there are countries where there is a single “strong man” in power, as always the power goes to their heads. Those who desire power should never be allowed to have it. The same goes for countries which are governed or ruled by a single family or tribe. They can not imagine never being in power and so set up systems to perpetuate themselves no matter the suffering that might cause others.

Interestingly, over the course of human history, we have tried all forms of government, royal rule, emperors, feudal systems, dictators, authoritarianism, communism, democracy yet none of them can prove themselves in the long run. For sure there have been some benevolent kings and queens in the past who genuinely cared about their subjects but then they died and the situation invariably changed. It strikes me that we are not able to govern ourselves and as society becomes more divided the task will only become harder and more dangerous. As a thought experiment, maybe what is needed is a benevolent global ruler or organization that has the power to put a stop to all the chaos. Quite honestly, if things continue the way they are then the situation can only become worse. The cliff edge approaches.

Religion is a big issue too these days. Everybody is aware of radical Islam and in particular how ISIS (daesh) use it as an instrument of power and fear. The Pope recently said there could be a case for creating an international military force to take them on. This is interesting as the Vatican usually stays neutral on the use of armed force, at least publicly. It must be said that ISIS (daesh) are doing everything they can to create a clash of civilizations, the wanton destruction of historical sites is more about trying to provoke an international reaction rather than for any religious belief. That the Vatican is now weighing into the situation, with all its power and influence, could well lead to what could be seen as a christian crusade by the muslim world even if they don’t support the extremists. To be honest the entire Middle East is beyond hope. Those of you who follow this blog know of my deep interest in the region, it is like a second home to me but the political and religious situation will only become worse. Nothing short of a geo-political earthquake of a magnitude never imagined can resolve the chaos, game playing, war and death. Israel and Palestine is a crazy situation, they are family, literally related to each other but hate each other with all the fury of an erupting volcano. In fact if you could take religion out of the equation there would be no other difference between the Jews and the Palestinians, just members of the same blood line going back to the biblical Isaac and sharing the land.

Our political leaders do not have the answers to the challenges facing the human-race today, their impotence and incompetence becomes more obvious every day. They try to change things but ultimately nothing ever changes, they only add another layer to the crust of everything which has gone before. The global political system has taken on a life of its own which ultimately nobody can control, a little like Frankenstein’s monster and see how that ended for its creator!

The United Nations which was set up after World War 2 to bring about international “peace and security” is little more than a place where political games take place, where self interest is made apparent and very little good is ever done. Saying that, if the global situation continues the way it is, when we really could on the brink of destroying ourselves it could well turn out to be the organization to be given real power and oversight of the international situation, but the situation will have to develop much more for that to happen, maybe when our leaders and politicians see there is a direct threat to their own security. Can and will it happen? Yes. Will it be successful? No.

I have written this article because for all the following I do of international politics, religion and economics, whatever I write is ultimately futile, not that it will stop me, it is just that for the moment I am tired of writing about specific situations because there are so many of them and too many new things happening every day. All the atrocities of war, the political arrogance, the religious meddling, honestly it takes a lot of energy and I can see where it is all heading. It is not my intention to depress anybody with this article, simply to demonstrate that the global system as it stands (political, economic and religious) is self destructive and beyond repair. It needs to be dismantled.


24 thoughts on “The state of things

  1. I feel you. Writing about the Middle-East as well, I fully understand your sentiments about the region, world politics, and indeed humankind as a whole. You don’t need me to tell you that there is still hope for us. I mean if I can be optimistic even after Netanyahu gets voted in again, then hey – anyone can! All I can say is that we can only do our best to influence those around us and continue to be good people. Taking a break is fine, but I For one will be waiting to read your articles about Syria and the Middle-East once again.

    • Thanks Daniel. Your comment means a lot to me. I believe in the basic goodness of people, most people just want to get on with their lives. It’s our political leaders who are the problem, maybe we should put them all on a small island somewhere with no food but lots of guns πŸ˜‰

  2. Reblogged this on E A A Wilson and commented:
    A hot article – I am certain the darkness is turning into light, but I believe our role in the solution is not to try to fix what is broken, but to sledgehammer it completely and start fresh…

    • I have to be careful what I say, things have a habit of happening. Remember when I wrote you about the Chechen connection to the Nemstov assassination the day after it happened. See how that has played out πŸ˜‰

      • I did notice that, and gave you megapoints for being so astute. But it would’ve happened with or without your observation, so you’re exempt from any causality. Carry on with a clear conscience πŸ™‚

      • Causality, me? Never meant it that way, it’s just that I sometimes mildly freak myself out at how often, when I look into why something has happened or study the strategy to understand what will happen, that I often hit the nail on the head. It makes me a little reticent to write some things because if as I believe they turn out to be true then we have some “interesting” times ahead.

  3. Russell, I think your article does get to the nub of the current state of play. I wonder if we are puppets in the play of Maya? The Indian version could be described as a powerful program that controls the game of virtual reality that we are mired in.
    Just a thought!

    • You make an interesting comment on the nature of reality, something that is very interesting for me. Can you send me a message through my contact page? I will answer in the next day or so.

  4. Wow Russell, you lay it on the line as I would expect you too, Will Self said the same thing last week but probably with a very different thought in mind? I see the world the same as you do as do most thinking people, all we want is to live with our family and friends in peace, to have music and love abound in our lives, not to ravage the world for greed and power and domination of others. I don’t care if I have a phone or not, or a TV or a car or anything but food and comfort and love and nature. I don’t want to compete with others or be better than them, just smile and give. My dad was an Anarchist in the true sense in that he felt without laws man would do what was right naturally and for most that would be true, lets live without money just contribute to society with what we have and can do……and to get to that position? hmmmmmmmmm !!!!!!! So Russ, take a look at the sun rising tomorrow and know that it shines on everyone.

    • I have always said this my children, the world would be a better place if only people were left to it, we are all essentially good. Trust and love is all we need.

  5. OOOps that sounded ‘preachy’ maybe because it was a late on Sunday. Hey, what about a world without borders, maybe where there was no greed or hunger, nothing to kill or die for, the world as one……maybe I’m a dreamer but……………imagine?

  6. It is certainly a time where the divide and conquer themes are being played out loud across many areas. Much of our media seems to hammer this home. Some are not falling for it. “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum….” Chomsky πŸ˜‰

    Peeling away at the onion layers, we seem beholden to a financial money creation and allocation system like it’s a force of nature, alongside the money and corporate clout in politics…..and how we as people are too easily manipulated into fear and hate.

    Things seem to be changing, some are more positive, it seems we are on a brink, a fence, to create something so much better, or fall into the same old predictable ways.

    We could drop from planes, postive messages of hope and unity to everyone worldwide instead of bombs…except there isn’t much profit in that…..

    For what you do it must be exhausting on more than one level at times….and taking that time for a breath, rest and find things that make you laugh…we all need that….

    Rather than depressing I feel your message is unifying – in the last month I have read or listened to people who are feeling the same, and there is strength in that empathy.

    Embarrassingly I can’t remember where I first came across your blog, but your writings and pictures are another beacon of light in all this mess. We need more beacons ☺️

    • As you say, divide and conquer. Rule or bring to ruin if you can not rule, is the theme of today’s world. I really appreciate your generosity but I’m no beacon of light, I simply say what I see.

      The truth really does set you free, you can see and understand the chaos about you and comprehend what it all means and where it is all going. Things will get much worse than now before they get better but they will get better πŸ™‚ The fence is a very apt metaphor, none of us can sit on it, the time to choose is pretty much here.

  7. Writing about what you see, rather than what you have to portray and writing from the heart about humanity, rather than from any particular political persuasion or ist or ism, I feel is a beacon of hope and light, although I understand your humble reply. 😌
    ‘Things will get much worse than now before they get better, but they will get better’….I am hearing this and do believe this process…just would be nice with a few things to speed it up, or preferably diffuse it πŸ˜‰

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