Thursday, August 19, 2010

Complaining

I've spent my life complaining, but also fixing things. I'm listening to Modesitt's "Imager." His other book, "Haze" is also good at inserting logic and political science into science fiction/fantasy scenarios. In Imager, the quote goes something like, "Complaining doesn't help. Anyone who has the interest and ability to do something about a problem would already have done so, and anyone not interested or able, won't."

Now, in a primitive, civilized world, this makes perfect sense. In our lawyered-up, liability-depressed world with too many religions, nations, and ideas in general, the ability to do something about a problem is drowned in paperwork, permits, and lawsuits, while the inability to do something is rewarded with less stress, fewer obligations, and even money if one is technically disabled (referring here to people who are unable to cope with the stresses of life in general...or at least those that think they can't or even (heaven forbid!) are encouraged to believe/pretend they can't). The massive exposure to the dangers around us (especially cars) doesn't help the situation. People are killed and disabled by the thousands every year just because of a fascination with automobiles and the 'American Dream' of a house in the suburbs or ex-urbs.
As much as I love to complain (a bitchin' sailor is a happy sailor), I am probably the only one who is going to be concerned about my problems and the only one who will probably do anything to deal with them, and I really would rather stop complaining and do more fixing. Though I believe downsizing and simplifying would help a lot, that takes an enormous amount of work to backtrack from the buildup of 'Stuff' in my current situation (farming).
Too many machines, too little labor to replace them, and I am not allowed to just slap my neighbors in irons even though they are so brain-dead that they wouldn't notice my irons replacing the irons of their current master/bank/employer.