2013: Happy New Year?
By Alex Call
There’s something unsettling about the very year: 2013. It seems unbalanced, uneven, shaky. I suppose it’s the “13”, a supposedly unlucky number. Whatever happened in a 13 year? 1812, 1914, hmmm…those “even” years marked two wars, so maybe 13 is a plus on that account. But still it’s hard to imagine that the movers and shakers who “run the country” are going to put aside their ideological differences long enough to actually accomplish anything of lasting value in 2013, despite the ardent wishes of so many billions of people that they do so. There so many vital needs before us, as a Nation, as a World. For narrow views tinged with racism, religion, and unspoken fears to impede progress is shortsighted, selfish, and dangerous.
This can no longer be an age of denial. The world faces the most serious problems that any age has ever been presented with. If you look at the curves of population vs. resources, what jumps off the chart are the incredibly sharp spikes, going in the wrong directions. There is no longer any question of whether Global Warming is taking place. We’ve even had our first “Sci-Fi Movie“hurricane in Sandy. That was not a normal storm, but it was exactly what environmental scientists have been predicting for some time. The Middle East is in chaos and who knows what governments will arise in the place of the old dictatorships. Hunger plagues the world in an age when there are MacDonald’s around the globe.
In the U.S. the extreme right-wing faction holds the nation hostage through bullying politics. Republican leaders are afraid to lose their grip on their leadership positions and so kowtow to the Tea Party. The Tea Party is a creature that seems to baffle the media and thus the general population. Underlying the Tea Party Constitutional rhetoric lies a base of occult evangelicalism and conspiracy thinking that includes such themes as the Second Coming, the Antichrist, racism, and the New World Order taking power for Mr.Satan. Why the media does not publicize this is beyond me, but it was also true that the pervasive racism that drove the Right in the election was only brought forward by a very few people at the very end of the campaign. Scratch the head? It was quite obvious to me.
My point is that we don’t have time to waste on this nonsense. We need to be in an Age of Reason: an era of pragmatic thinking, of solutions, and not be sidelined by narrow ideologies. We could, if we were to put our real focus on it, feed the world; we could work on developing long-term strategies for energy, conservation of resources, and international understanding. It is critical that we do this; we need to attack the problems on a “war” footing. We don’t even speak of overpopulation. Global warming is hardly mentioned anymore; it’s all covered up with “Tea Party”, debt ceiling, tax rates for millionaires. Yet Overpopulation is the key to the future; in laboratory studies rat populations crash through disease when the number become too high. We could face this at any time. Food and water resources are soon to reach critical poor levels.
The time for yapping about tax rates being three and a half percent too high is over. Warring over national, religious, and ethnic differences is completely irresponsible. It’s time to get serious about the future of our planet. 2013. Maybe it will be good year, but we’ve got our work cut out for us. I think we all need to be talking with each other about how to bring about an Age of Reason in these unreasonable times. We must rise above and sweep away the insane, petty, and petulant ideas and factions which impede real progress.
Come on, 2013, be the start of Happy New Years to come.