In no particular order, these are just a drop in the bucket of changes I’d embrace in 2010, or whenever – if ever …
1. An Electric Car – the world wants it, the world needs it; where is it?? I hear it debuted in California a few years back but GM killed it – why? Oh, wait, I think I know.
2. Global Population Reduction – want to solve global warming and just about every other environmental issue? Simple. Stop over-populating the planet. It’s irresponsible and unnecessary. Let’s have accessible birth control across the globe, along with a shift in attitude that makes more than two children per couple socially unacceptable – everywhere. No more unplanned or unwanted pregnancies. No more endless tries till it’s a boy. And, please, no more OctoMoms.
3. The Return of Good Manners – yes, manners – remember those? What’s happened to people anyway??! How is it that people rush onto an elevator before letting those leaving get out? Walk three-abreast down a sidewalk and then give the person they bumped a dirty look when that person didn’t … what? Step off into the gutter? Walk into that tree?? Squash into the wall??? When I have the right-of-way on the road and you don’t, what’s with the finger when I don’t give way? The return of good manners would be a treat on its own; paired with wish #7 (see below), improvement would be awesome!
4. Religious Evolution – more harm has been done down through the centuries in the name of religion than any good that’s come from it, as far as I can see. If God is out there, does any rational, thinking person really believe that the friction and discord between the various factions and the moral superiority claimed by each of them is in line with ‘God’s will’? It’s my firm belief that every last one of the organized religions, however well-meaning they may (or may not) be, range from misguided to downright deceitful. Distant future generations will shake their heads in wonder at our blind stupidity. We on this planet are an inter-connected, inter-dependent web of humanity and we need to move beyond our backward and archaic beliefs and behaviours that divide us and look for ways to co-exist in harmony.
5. The Demise of Consumerism – greed really is the root of all evil. Just look at last year’s economic collapse that we’re still climbing out from under – but have we learned from it? That is, anything other than that the guys at the top will always look after themselves? But our culture fosters consumption and greed. Sad, yet understandable, that so many of today’s kids work harder at attaining the newest wants and developing attitude than they do at developing a talent or skill. TV tells them, and it’s reinforced everywhere, that what really matters is the brand on a hoodie, a cool cell phone, the latest gaming technology. The only value attached to an education anymore is that it allows you to get a good job so you can make more money and buy more stuff. And the quality of much of that over-priced stuff is pathetic. So are the business practices of many of the places providing goods & services. How about a consumer revolt or boycott or coalition or lobby group – some sort of effective consumer backlash!
6. Agricultural Evolution – food shortage is set to become a global crisis of major proportions unless we resolve item #2 on this list. In the western world, we’ve become enormously disconnected from our food production. Hybridization, factory farms, Monsanto seeds, genetic modification, the rape of the oceans, pesticide / antibiotic / hormone over-use, the narrowing of bio-diversity – some of these things are just plain wrong; others are problematic in their management and application. Organic farming, backyard veggie plots and the 100-Mile Diet, admirable as they are, won’t address all problems. And some new practices, such as blanket bans on pesticides, are creating new ones too. A major shift in how we grow and access our food is imperative.
7. The Re-emergence of Common Sense – let’s start to think again, which would impact on just about every other item on this list, as well as everything else that isn’t. Things both great and small. From fashion to freedom. And I might just start with fashion – having to choose between looks or comfort, especially where shoes are concerned, is a pet peeve, but I digress … at every turn, common sense is lacking; bring it back!
8. The Death of Rap (and other crap) Music – and they thought Disco sucked in the ‘70’s. Funny thing, there’s actually a lot of good music being made, it just doesn’t seem to reach the airwaves like the bad-to-mediocre does. But maybe that’s my problem – I still want to turn on the radio instead of plugging into an I-Pod. And have a wider selection than just rap, Lady Gaga (who makes me ga-gag) or a narrow rotation of golden oldies that plays ‘Highway to Hell’ every hour.
9. Peace for Palestine (and the rest of the planet) – no, I’m not a fan of Hamas or suicide bombers, but the injustice perpetrated on the Palestinian people and their resulting desperation has led to such radical measures (I’m not justifying, just saying). I’m adamantly opposed to the Israeli stance on this issue and, no, that statement does not make me anti-Semitic though I’m sure it won’t take long for such an accusation to surface. I hear a lot of Israelis actually feel the way I do too but the tightly-controlled mainstream media, in North America at least, is very effectively muzzled from reporting such things. I am, however, a fan of J-Street, an organization whose emergence is long-overdue.
10. The Fall of Stephen Harper – can’t happen soon enough, won’t happen soon enough, however, they do say nothing lasts forever. If the masses in this country could get beyond their reverse-snobbery toward those of culture & intellect, Iggy (no, not Pop, go brush up on Canadian politics) might stand a chance. His speeches, which most people don’t get to hear but are available on the Liberal party website (where few likely read them), are rather impressive. But his Facebook bleats, reaching many more, are just wishy-washy politically-correct nothings. And no good media coverage. I’ll be waiting longer than I’d like for this one.
OK, this rant is over. Maybe I’ll balance the books soon with a posting of ten things I’m grateful for.
In the meantime, best wishes to all in 2010.
Go for the gusto and make it a great New Year!