I’m honestly shocked with what people believe. I had to explain to my mother that no, salt doesn’t melt ice, it simply lowers the degree that water needs to freeze & form ice. Sure mom, you can buy salt that melts ice, but it’s the chemistry that they add the salt that does the melting & at any rate, that’s not the type of salt that you’re using to get the ice off the front step. That was right up there with explaining to dad that, yes we are made out of stars, & yes, water & gold were brought to Earth from outer space.
But all of that is science, & I can tell you honestly that neither mom nor dad paid close attention to science class. I can understand that. I didn’t pay much attention to biology. Until recently I was of the belief that the kidneys did what the liver does & now I have no fucking idea what the purpose of a kidney actually is. I also believed that human beings had thoraxes. We don’t. But we do have thyroids, which might have been what I was thinking of, or it could have been the larynx, but I really can’t tell you what they do or where they are. And you know something else? Astronomy scares the shit out of me. I can watch a program on astronomy & be just as scared as the morons that get frightened on the reality TV ghost crap.
People actually believe in ghosts on TV. I, unfortunately, know enough about photography to understand that orbs are easy to shoot & how to avoid them.
Geology I liked, but my real fascination has always been with society & dead people. I’m really good with bones. I can tell you that, just from the picture in the news paper, that the skull they found in Cary Illinois a year back had been cleaned for display & belonged to a white person. I can also tell you if the skeleton is a man or a woman & if they gave birth. Bones are my thing, organs aren’t, but that sort of comes with the territory. The dead people I’m interested in have been dead far too long to have organs.
This is important, because when it comes to the human body I’m forced to take what other people tell me for face value. For instance, I know that women have eggs in some sort of tub & that they come out once a month & fuck with the chemistry that operates the brain in a way that I will never fully understand. So I tend to take what women tell me about their bodies for face value, & with this I add the assumption that crusty old white men understand less about the female body than I do, with the exception of Ron Paul, who is an OBGYN. Ron Paul certainly knows more about how that shit works than I do.
But, push comes to shove; I know I understand the economy & society better than Ron Paul does. It just comes with the territory. That I think is the problem. A lack of understanding that causes people to form beliefs.
Rush believes that women that want birth control are sluts. As a man I believe that there is absolutely nothing wrong with being a slut. I don’t see how that’s offensive to women, it’s a double standard with men & besides, honestly, men love sluts. But I also believe that women understand their body more than he or I do, so I’ll take their word for it.
Some conservatives believe that rape can be a gift from God. Which I believe is their interpretation of that little affair between God & Mary. They might think that he raped Mary. This could be true, Zeus did a fair amount of raping, but I’m not about to believe that rapists are gods. I’m a Catholic, it’s a monotheistic religion, I’m not about to worship a rapist, especially when they haven’t even been canonized.
Ron Paul believes that we shouldn’t be at war. I can’t argue with that. But he also believes that we shouldn’t have a military. I have an issue with that, historically, not having a military is NOT a good idea. However, having a military & not using it is a great fucking idea. I could get into detail, but Edwin Starr pretty much summed up the thought behind that with brilliant clarity & impeccable logic.
Ron Paul also, however, believes that we shouldn’t regulate business. I believe that Ron Paul might have failed high school history. We have, as a nation, been there & done that & it caused a lot of bloodshed & heartache & absolute misery & only after a long battle, a class war really, a class war that was by & large fought to victory right here in Chicago, did we get the regulations we needed to stop business from raping & murdering labor.
A lot of people, my sister included & some of my friends believe that labor is bad. They seriously think that people involved with labor are evil & are destroying America. I believe that they are fools at the mercy of propaganda. For starters, my family was never rich, by any means, so when my sister talks about the evils of labor, she’s calling our parents & grandparents evil. And when people attack labor as a whole, they are attacking the very people that built America.
Labor is the 99% they are the people that built the roads & skyscrapers. They are the people that deliver the mail, that teach your children, & that harvest the food that you eat. They are the police officers & fire fighters, the people that cook your food & serve your meals & ring you up at the check out. They make the clothes on your back; they build the cars that you drive. They are the people that guard you while you sleep. You’re life in America revolves around labor. They are the actors in your favorite movies & the musicians in your favorite bands. America was built on labor. I just can’t understand how people can call labor an evil thing, especially when they depend on labor everyday, especially when they themselves, are also labor & just don’t understand the system enough to know that.
Logically, to speak ill of labor is to speak ill of the very fabric of civilization. Historically, to speak ill of the labor movement is to condemn the people that insures that, at least in America, your children go to school & not work, the people that forced the regulations that insure that you have a safe work place. They are people that brought you the eight-hour-day (thank you Chicago), a livable wage & insured that you are drinking water that doesn’t kill you. How is that evil?
Some people, like my conspiracy theory loving Libertarian friend Jen believe that it was only the regulations that forced unsafe working conditions, low wages, & pollution. I believe that Jen & the people that hold her views have a serious problem with cause & effect. It might come with a failure in science classes. Jen might have never taken physics.
Some people believe that American’s shouldn’t pay taxes. They believe this because of the Revolutionary War slogan “No taxation without representation.” I, personally, believe that these people have forgotten the “without representation” part of the slogan. I also believe that we need things like roads, police, laws, courts, & the other things that make civilization possible.
Some people believe that CNN stands for “Communist News Network.” Others believe that CNN stands for “Conservative News Network.” I believe that any news network that has both the liberals & conservatives attacking it is doing something right.
Some people believe that capitalism & freedom go hand in hand. I have a hard time understanding how a system that developed from slavery, serfdom, indentured servants, & sweatshops makes everyone free. Capitalism can only survive on cheap & exploited labor. That’s the reason why Atlas Shrugged in America, labor fought a war that stopped the owners from exploiting them, so capitalism had to move to lands where they can still exploit other people. That is, historically, how it has always worked, capitalism consolidates wealth to the top & then needs a reset & thanks to globalization, that reset doesn’t come with a labor movement any longer, not when it can move to areas where it can still exploit people. Historically it is the economy of exploitation, it always has been. And I don’t understand how exploitation is freedom; it’s certainly not freedom for the people being exploited. But then, I don’t understand how people have the right to exploit other people.
Some people believe that everything should be privately owned & run for profit. They believe that schools should be for profit, fire departments, police stations, land, resources, & whatever. I believe these people failed history in that they are overlooking the time when we had a private fire department & we suffered through fires that grew in intensity & caused massive destruction because the firefighters only fought the fires at houses that paid for their protection, causing everything else to burn & spread. I believe that the system was changed because it wasn’t a very good idea. Furthermore, I believe that since Chile was economically devastated when they tried that, it probably doesn’t work.
I’ll take it one further. I believe that national parks & nature reserves are a good thing. I also believe that I am better off with an education, & me, my sister, & millions of other children wouldn’t have had an education if we didn’t have public schools. Mom & dad would have never been able to afford to send us to a for-profit school. My sister got to go to college for free because I paid for my higher education myself & mom & dad went into a crippling debt that they are still paying off so she could move a tax bracket above the rest of the family.
It’s an “entitlement” I understand that, but I believe that society is better when everyone has access to an education. You know what, fuck it; I also believe that we are entitled to health care, why should it only be available to those that are wealthy enough to not die?
I just don’t understand the benefit of some private ownership. I don’t see how people have the right to own the resources that other people need to live. I don’t understand how some people have the right to own what people need to live. It doesn’t make any sense to me, why should someone have the power to deny other people life for their own personal profit?
Why do a few people have the right to pollute the water everyone else drinks & the air everyone else breathes so that they can make a profit that they don’t have to share? I might be missing the point here, but I don’t see how that is fair, I don’t see how that is just, & I just don’t understand that they have the right to do that.
It could be that I don’t believe that a few people have the right to harm a large mass of people only because I am not educated enough to understand the science behind it. I might have missed the part in my education that explained the benefit of hurting the majority for the private gains of the minority. But maybe, this belief comes from the understanding that harming others is a very bad thing.
I blame the cult of Ayn Rand for convincing people that harming others for personal gain is a good idea. I believe that she some how convinced a lot of people that they have the right to abuse & exploit & hurt other people. She has convinced a lot of Americans that the only productive people are the people that are hurting others. She has convinced Americans that the labor that she is exploiting, the labor that is building the country & adding profit to the productive people are evil people. She has convinced us to hate ourselves & that is a belief that just makes no sense when pause to think about it.