10 Minutes of Ruminations

Again, it has been a long time since my last post. It has not that I haven’t had the desire to write but rather I really didn’t feel any specific topic worth an entire post. Therefore, even if I opened up my blog, other distractions quickly pulled me away. Tonight, the dam has burst as I’ve found a solution to this problem. I’ll simply write a post without lingering on any topic too long. These are things that have run through my mind in the past month and which I really don’t feel like getting in a mire with all the details.

1. Healthcare

– If one listens to the talking heads too long in the media one is bound to go crazy. Thank goodness for American media that they have simplified the debate into two camps. The one camp that really stands out is of course the conservative side. I think this is because they say the most outrageous things which makes the news, Youtube etc. They do better at getting people fired up. On the left, I find myself reaching to think of a few talking heads but when I do, the Daily Show and the Young Turks come to mind but even these shows do not inspire the passion that the conservative side does.

My Opinion:

– Being back in the States I find this all silly. I have been in countries that have no health care. They do what they can but have no social net if they cannot afford treatment. Therefore, what I perceive here in the USA seems like a bunch of spoiled children, half of which wants the government to take care of them and half of them who do not. For the Liberals, they want big brother to take care of everyone which at first glance is a noble intention but we have fiscal troubles at the moment. The conservatives on the other side detest big brother and only want to take care of themselves or people they directly know. Perhaps they can just pray for everyone else and believe that will suffice.

After seeing people in other countries that have absolutely no healthcare, I really do not feel sympathy for either side but if I were forced to choose, I would choose universal healthcare but would make them get their finances in order first.

When I look at the conservative media such as Hannity show, I just see a bunch of old prom queens and ex-high school quarterbacks who drive SUVs drink their Starbucks and could give a rats ass about the poor class. The liberals on the other hand are more elitist and seem a bit snide with their comments.

2. Global Warming

– Another hot button issue. I understand the conservative point about the “cult of globalization.” It seems like a bunch of liberals taking up a cause in order to further their other agendas for what the conservatives believe is completely false.

My Opinion:

– I believe the scientists and from everything I have read points to Global Warming. Yet, their approach can seem a bit shady. However, if strict measures were not taken then how can we stop putting junk in the atmosphere. I have lived in cities where the pollution is atrocious. Even here in the Bay Area we can no longer see across the bay. Only after a severe storm can we see the other side. It would be best to stop putting crap in the atmosphere as this will cause problems in our lungs and one does not really want to breath the crap I have in certain cities. Perhaps the liberals are not going about it the right way but the bottom line is we have to stop polluting. We only have one Earth to live on! I am not on either political side on this one but the first one to come up with a good plan to stop polluting (and is not shady) I will support completely.

If we continue to pollute then I believe it will take a good majority of the population to come down with asthma before most people understand the problem. Unfortunately, by then there will be many other problems to contend with such as drought, rising oceans etc. On the conservative side, they can continue to deny it as we won’t feel the full brunt of the problem for another 40 years or so and by then the people who deny the problem will most likely be dead so they can say anything they believe now and not have to worry about the consequences.
I detest the fact that they see some snow and then use it to say there is no Global Warming. Even if it didn’t turn out to be as severe as scientist predict, it would do well to stop putting crap in the atmosphere.

3. Most passionate = Most uninformed

– I have never read so much as I do now. With the birth of the Iphone and all the free media I find myself reading anything and everything on a daily basis. It has almost become an obsession. Yet, I often ask myself “Am I learning anything or is it all just noise?” I believe the majority of the media is just noise which really doesn’t teach me anything. I find that I have a better perspective on the world through my travels and reading books from the past. When I read something that was written by someone in the 1800s or even earlier, I find I have a better understanding on what is actually happening today. The cliché is that “If we forget the past we are condemned to repeat it.” Well, from what I read in todays media, it would seem we have a very short term memory.

Those that do not read, have not traveled have a very small scope of understanding. By relying on the talking heads of today we are severely limiting ourselves in our understanding and simply taking up “talking points” by which to debate the issues. I’m afraid it is quite un-useful to have debates with most people back here in America as the majority simply repeat talking points that are used in the media. Those that have the most passion are most often the most uninformed and ignorant. I miss my discussions with top ambassadors and people of note that I had access to in Vietnam. Only on occasion do top news outlets such as the New York Times come out with a really good article that fosters great debate. Recently, the debate has been shit. If people really took the time to understand the issues of the day then there would be more people in the gray area than on the extremes which has happened now.

4. Facebook

– On a lighter note, I’m very delighted about the fact that I have been able to re-connect with just about everyone I have ever met. It is not so much that I am intimately reconnecting with everyone but rather am able to see their pictures and get a sense of how their life is progressing.

Some, prefer to keep their friends list pretty tight in that they only keep the friends with whom they interact with the most. For me, I prefer to keep connected, even if only lightly, with everyone I have ever met. Perhaps the reason is that I have lived in so many different places and am not bound to conform to any certain thinking or group. I also live in a place where I perhaps will never see the majority of people on my friends list ever again. Therefore, they are just a figment of my memory and only “become real” should I have the chance to meet them in person again.

This seems like a hard point to explain but perhaps the best way to do so is that most of them are just pictures and updates on a computer. I don’t have to worry about someone not agreeing with me on a certain point or keeping with the social norms. As Mr. Smith put it in the movie “The Matrix,” I’ve “become unplugged, out of the network” if you will. Therefore, I have the freedom to write things such as this because I have no fear of unpleasantness or disagreement with my social network. People who want to agree or disagree remain simply updates and pictures on a computer.

5. Rush Limbaugh

– For amusement, I find myself listening to Rush Limbaugh quite often in the mornings. I find that at first it got my blood boiling but now just seems like a comedy show. This man is full of hate speech for three hours every day. Yet, to my surprise, I did agree with him on one issue this past week. He was speaking about Toyota and the witch hunt going on between the government and Toyota. He m
ade a point that it seems very odd that the Government is seeking answers from a private company and threating to punish them. Why, should the government be involved in this? In the public sector, as Toyota has caused problems their sales will suffer. That is the way of the market economy. Why is it that the Government needs to get involved?

My Opinion:

– Government, stay out of it. Toyota will pay the price for their failings and don’t need any trouble from you. Less government is better in this issue and by taking a private company to task, you are raising the fear which the conservatives have been most harping about. If you want to do something, just pass healthcare and leave everyone else alone.

In any case, that is my two cents for the week. Had to get it off my chest.


By Mateo de Colón

Global Citizen! こんにちは!僕の名前はマットです. Es decir soy Mateo. Aussi, je m'appelle Mathieu. Likes: Languages, Cultures, Computers, History, being Alive! \(^.^)/


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