It’s one of those days. I’ve started two 10 minute essays and found myself bored before I could get to the end. It’s not that there isn’t plenty to write about – the President’s executive orders, for example, or the possibility of North Korea having a hydrogen bomb (they probably don’t), the growing tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran that could threaten conflict not seen since the Hundred Years War. And let’s not forget Daesh and the Bundy militia.
Yes, the world is full of trouble. At the same time, some have argued that we are entering a golden age. 2015 – quite apart from gender equality in politics – was apparently the best year in human history. Which it might well have been for many people but for those for whom it wasn’t… not so much.
It is sometimes hard to get too worked up about it. Sated with the excesses of the holiday season and wanting only to hibernate until the bitter cold of winter passes, it is hard to get too fired up about the potential end of the world. Or about less portentous things like Ted Cruz’s birth certificate, Rand Paul’s certainty that Obama’s very limited actions on gun control will lead to the death of freedom in America (really Rand is it that damn fragile?) or for that matter the insistence that the lame ass cowboys of Oregon are a terrorist threat. Funny thing, I originally typed cowbots for cowboys and I’m thinking I’m not far wrong. There is something terribly predictable and slightly mechanical about their actions and outrage don’t you think? Maybe they just need a Snickers bar – their plea for snacks would suggest that might be true.
After all what can one person do to change the world? Well, a lot or nothing, depending on your point of view. Luckily no-one has a death star or a very effective mind control device (the Internet is only slightly effective). We would hardly like the world if someone did have absolute power over it. Even the Lady Galadriel knew that power – even in the hands of someone good – was ultimately corrupting. Maybe that’s why the writers of the US constitution limited the amount of power anyone could actually wield. As a result, almost nobody in America can actually do anything – which I guess is why the do-nothing party has such prominence in their politics.
It’s easy to become a bit cynical and feel there is nothing much to say on a dark cold January morning. But I’m sure the sun will come out soon and I’ll once again feel the world is beautiful place waiting for us to make it a better one.
And that’s ten minutes.