If you know me personally, and you’ve been trying to figure out if I survived the hilarious misadventures last night & early this morning, rest assured I am still among the living. Just getting ready to check out of Shilo in downtown Elko.
Very high marks for this hotel. I’m trying to figure out how the stay was not perfect, and I do have one flaw: The coffee pot is a cheapass model that doesn’t allow you to sneak your first cup until the entire pot is brewed. Yeah, I know. All the hotels do this, including the nice ones. But why? The sneak-a-cup feature ranks high on the lest of desired benefits to the weary traveler, especially the road warrior who was snapping chains on his vehicle after midnight the night before, and seeks to acquire command of a reasonably early jump on the next day nevertheless. That is the target clientele is it not? The story is — yesterday took a whole lot out of me, I need to bring a lot to this coming day…need a good hotel. So c’mon. Spend more than eight bucks on the fucking coffee pot. Sneak-a-cup feature.
But still, if that’s my only complaint then it’s a damn good room for seventy bucks. Kitchenette and everything. How come it isn’t this hard to find a problem when my lady is traveling with me? No, no, don’t say it…when she says the maid is doing a shitty job, there really is a problem and someone should be complaining about it. Well, there are no hairballs in this tub.
I got stuck in the backroads. I’ll take the fall for that one…kinda…since my tires were sans chains when they should not have been. But it’s crap that I have to go tootling around back there. We now have a “sixteen hundred son-of-a-bitch” rule — Morgan has to do all 1600 of the miles, down-back-down-back, nobody helping even one single inch, he turns into one and it is to be expected. The Mom is feeling guilty, which I think she should, and I’m exploiting it to the hilt. I’d think poorly of the man who would not.
So Morgan doesn’t do all 1600. Maybe he’ll do all 800 on one trip, if he gets some assistance on the 800 in the other. And on the extraordinarily rare occasions he ever has to come this far…send a fucking taxi to the Starbucks that’s just off the highway exit. Maybe I’ll sit with him. Share one last coffee & bear claw.
This, like the shopping experience, is metaphorical for the society in which we live. Some people make the decision they need lots and lots and lots of help…they’re allowed to…and because of this decision, the vast abundance of resources available to help those in need, are directed toward the benefit of a very few. And then it isn’t a few. The “I need help” crowd expands, the magnitude of help they require expands, the efficiency with which the help is given plummets downward. Then, things start to not get done. The process breaks down, and worst of all, everyone has a story to tell about how it’s all somebody else’s fault. Last night I ended up stranded because I helped somebody, and helped some more, and more, until I needed help myself because I did too much helping. This is not a new thing. “Kidzmom” and I have had this thing going on for awhile, and it’s a little bit like Charlie Brown, Lucy and the football. That just pisses me off even more.
To be honest, that’s probably the major irritant. I keep getting suckered into enabling this.
I don’t really have that much passion about this child-exchange thing…or…I shouldn’t. We’ve got a year or two to go before he can ride the train all by himself. The lesson, is the sultry, seductive slithery creepiness of this “A must help B because A can do it and B cannot” stuff. Some of these A’s, poor stupid bastards, are under the impression they’re being paid some kind of compliment and come galloping in on a white horse, armor all polished. That used to be me; now I’m in another camp of A, the A that recognizes the mission is simply not going to be accomplished any other way so you might as well do what needs to be done. Our sin, our downfall, is that we fail to spot alternatives. We are bamboozled until someone comes along to tell us “that shouldn’t be necessary, it could be worked out by means of this alternative.” I blame my/our upbringing. We were raised to think, if you expected this to take an hour and it turns out to take two, or ten, then quit your whining and snap to it. If it requires more effort then that’s all the more reason for you to get started earlier and work faster (and dumber).
Still another camp of A is the calculating businessman, whose numbers tell him that bowing to the pressure is the right way to go, because it is the path of least resistance. These are the businesses who settle lawsuits that are obviously stupid. There’s no use arguing with them, because they have the research that says this is the “right thing to do”; it’s proper, sturdy research, and more research will just lead to the same conclusion.
But as they continue their appeasement, even with the legalese that says “indemnify and hold blameless” and “we admit no wrongdoing,” the wave of appeasement in total creates something very ugly that cannot be blamed on any one of the parts that make it up. This is why we have a litigious society. This is why you have one surfer dude suing another surfer dude for stealing his wave.
In a land where the strong are punished and the weak are rewarded…there will be less strength and more weakness. I don’t understand why this is so hard to figure out.
I also don’t understand something else: What the heck happened here. As I’ve pointed out before, lefties tend to lead with the outrage, which sometimes — a whole lot of the time, actually — makes it tough to figure out what the facts are that are supposed to inspire the outrage. This is a rather extreme example, one that I hope HuckUpChuck makes the time to go check out. I’d be interested in seeing what happens, since I’ve found Huck to be much more reasonable in noodling these things out than Mr. Darrell. In fact, I’d like lots of people to go check it out. Frankly, I could use some help figuring out what happened. The Salon article spends copious amounts of space telling me what I should think, who’s wonderful, who’s a monster, and I have to read way down to find out what started it all. Ditto for the New Republic piece, which is riddled with errors, mostly grammatical.
Interesting, since the issue seems to have something to do with failing to pay teachers the proper saintly respect. James O’Keefe misled people with some of his films? Gov. Christie is a bad person just for saying something positive, or non-negative, about the O’Keefe film? Wow, these people must really hate Michael Moore a whole lot! Yeah, I kid.
Once you open yourself up to the truth of what is happening, you see human history is really just one long repetition of the same story. Weak thinkers do their thinking by figuring out who is to be a valid focus of sympathy and who is not…and from that, figuring out which ideas are right and which ideas are wrong, based on which identities have become fastened to the ideas. It is childlike thinking. And while this happens, the weak and incapable…or those who choose to represent themselves that way…are made the focus of sympathy, along with those who build their livelihoods around bringing those people “the help that they need.”
Those who actually supply the help — not administrate it, not regulate it, not direct it, but personally go without something so the help can be given — are excluded from this Cone of Sympathy. They — we, the A’s — are made into non-persons. That isn’t to say we’re persecuted. What it means is, the proposed solution to any given problem, is consistently designed to arrive at a cost to us, and at no cost to anybody else. Sometimes, in the case of progressive income taxes, inheritance taxes, corporate income taxes, the cost to us is a primary objective. Other times, the primary objective is the lack of cost to anybody else — absolute zero cost. No compromise is possible, or is to be allowed. Like last night; the drop-off point had to be on the front doorstep, it couldn’t be anywhere else.
This is what’s happening with our medical care. We have “co-pays” which are absolutely, positively, nothing more than a “skin in the game” device, an acknowledgment that the entire system will spiral out of control if one side can demand services while laboring under absolutely no burden whatsoever. So they labor under a token burden just to address this reality…and…there is agitation. Yes, much of the political pressure comes from the issue of losing coverage through unemployment & under-employment. But the constant refrain of “health care is a right!” must draw a bead on the co-pay, must it not? It has to. Can’t charge a fee for a “basic right.” The point is, all those within the Cone of Sympathy enjoy the privilege of demanding “change,” with a goodly measure of momentum behind the demand, whenever they’re inconvenienced. Or just “offended.” Even a little tiny bit.
The public is conditioned to see this as right and proper: One side should always pay, the other side never should. If we, the payers, protest, the protest is portrayed as whining. If someone else protests on our behalf, or the hell with us, just protests against the general stupidity of it…that is portrayed as being “dumb,” “duped” or a “shill.”
Meanwhile…people do not become what they want to become, they become what they watch. They become whatever is the focus of their attention. Society becomes bored with watching the strong, because to emulate the strong you have to get up off your ass and do things that aren’t all comfy. Like put chains on your car in the middle of the night, lying on your back, in a foot of snow.
And so society focuses on the weak and non-productive. It remains ignorant of the strong, who provide that society with all of the things it wants and needs. It remains ignorant, and it teaches its children to be similarly ignorant. It chastises, scolds, excoriates, ridicules those who would pay attention to them, let alone want to become them. Meanwhile, here are your daily newspaper headlines about the weak people who rely on government services, and the crisis developing because the nameless, faceless, anonymous, evil rich are not being taxed enough.
What happens next, to a strong, capable, adult mind, should be obvious. But, through this degeneration, society loses that as well. We learn to nurture weak, childlike minds. “Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub” minds.
It’s not supposed to be a problem. Because the higher taxes fall on that other guy, as does the punitive and risible litigation. It’s all somebody else’s headache, so there’s something wrong with you if you pay attention to it. Just shut up, direct your scorn where we tell you to direct it, and direct your sympathies where we tell you to direct that. Do it, or we’ll make a monster out of you, too.