Sunday, June 04, 2006

Internationalism

I'm using some entries to evaluate my own critical thinking. This is something that I really just reasoned in my mind the other day.

Ever wonder why the majority of the world's wealth is controlled by a few powerful nations? Why doesn't the needed infrastructure and opportunity spread to the less fortunate? Why does the prosperity of one nation not spread to an underpriveledged neighbor? As an example, would not business and infrastructure continue to spread from the U.S. into Mexico if the border were non-existant, or at least transparent?

Many wealthy nations make rules to 'protect' themselves from competition by forbidding jobs from going overseas, and by imposing tariffs on trade goods entering the country. But wouldn't it benefit the wealthy nations to have developed neighbors to trade with?

Businesses have been outsourcing manufacturing jobs to China for decades, and it hasn't increased unemployment at home; if anything it fuels growth. Those seemingly few dollars flowing to workers in China were like gold in an underdeveloped country. The new jobs provided relative prosperity and fueled the growth of infrastructure. As they continue to prosper they demand more trade goods to continue growing and in turn send a flow of capital, and more jobs, to the wealthy nations outsourcing in the first place. Not to mention they become capable of providing health care and other services in their own country, no longer demanding vast amounts of humanitarian aid. And don't we talk a lot about helping the needy across the world? Foodstuff and medical supplies can be sent to an impoverished nation until we're blue in the face, but they'll continue living in poverty and dying of unnecessary diseases until they can support themselves.

It seems to me helping the international community, and then imposing tariffs and discouraging outsourcing, are contrary goals. Why is there an inherent need to prop up one nation anyhow? Some definitions of nationalism and internationalism (not marxist):

Nationalism
-Devotion to the interests of one's nation or culture.
-The belief that nations will benefit from acting independently rather than collectively, emphasizing national rather than international goals.
-The doctrine that your national culture and intersts are superior to any other.
Internationalism
-A policy or practice of international cooperation among nations, espeically in politics and economic matters.
-The doctrine that nations should cooperate because their common interests are more important than their differences.

As an individual, of course I pursue my own interests, but I don't view them as more important than another individual's interests. And I find I benefit from working collectively with others rather than doing everything on my own. I than conclude that my nation's interests are not any more important than another nation's interests, and international good benefits every country more than if they were to seek interests independently.

More to come...

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Searcy's Developing Side

This past weekend I was patrolling campus at about 4:30am with one of my coworkers. As we passed a Harding owned house on Market street, there were two individuals in their driveway loading up an early 90's beat up pickup truck. One fine gentlemen--camo pants with no shirt, and a significant mound hanging over his belt--felt a vulgar sign was appropriate as we drove by once, and shortly later as we drove by again. I wondered why he might want to make his sophisticated opinion so apparent, and I came up with a few ideas:

1. He's upset that a department entirely seperate from ours won't let people park on sidewalks, handicapped slots, or in front of fire hydrants with no less then five indications of a no parking zone.
2. We won't let students with black clothing and masks run around the campus in the middle of the night, hiding in maintenance tunnels and climbing on buildings, when too often expensive equipment is stolen by people who behave very similarly.
3. Maybe he's angry he has to hunt and gather while my job allows me to purchase food from a store.
4. Or perhaps he's jealous that his pickup wasn't as cool as my SUV.

Whatever the case, I'm surprised that such a primitive culture, that has not developed beyond primitive hand gestures, exists so close to home. Sad day.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

An Ode to Xanga

Currently, I'm transitioning from Xanga to blogspot. To those of you xangaites who I leave behind, I will return to visit from time to time. And as a farewell, I leave you with this:

Yesterday morning I had bacon and eggs for breakfast. We're out of bacon now, so I should buy some more. I fed the dogs, and it made me miss my dog back home. I don't get to see Patches very often, but when I do see her she's very happy to see me. She's the best dog ever. My roomate and I also went to see X-Men 3. It was good. You should see it. The weather was great all day long. Overall it was a good day. I need to brush my teeth now before I go to bed.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

America the Great

In response to a new book on tape I've been listening to, 'America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction', by Jon Stewart and the Daily Show staff, I thought I would share some personal thoughts on what makes America great. Just in case I need to mention it, please keep in mind it has a lot satire, so pretend for a minute you're seeing something like the Colbert Report.

Truthfully, I really do love this country; more than American apple pie, American cheese, and adult swim. I feel as much patriotism to the American flag as I do to my country's flag. The principles of this great nation--free enterprise, freedom to say whatever the heck you want on TV, and freedom to believe water from a spring in northern Canada blessed by a Kabbalah rabbi has the power to stop natural disasters--have shaped the history of the United States... and the Middle East. I admire determination. We'll bring democracy to everyone, whether they like it or not, one oil rich region at a time. Democracy, rule by the people, is spreading rapidly around the world. Actually, I think we need to invent a new word. What's Latin for rule by a foreign superpower? Bushocracy?

Of all the things that make this nation great, it has never been, nor is it supposed to be, the ruling government. America has a great claim to fame: they have the oldest working democracy in the world. They also have one major flaw. They have the oldest working democracy in the world. The current system allows us to choose from a wide variety of two candidates who will knock heads, for the sport of it, for the next four years, until a contender arises from the dust to lay claim to the throne. A man, or woman--heh, right--who will proudly proclaim, "I will represent you the best I can", by voting nay, because my opponent votes yay. Someone who will responsibly enforce the ninety year old 3-30% temporary war tax by spending $400 billion to collect taxes, contributing to the 'determine how much taxpayer's owe' fund. They will provide freedom by responsibly spending the taxpayers' property; and then spending taxpayer time, as the taxpayers work to earn more property to give to the government to provide more freedom.

Media objectively presents everything citizens need to know to be disgruntled with somebody else. The media has more power in this great nation than the executive branch. Pitting citizens against the legislature, Latin Americans against immigrant descendant Americans, heterosexuals against homosexuals, and donkeys against fat guys afraid of change. They make us aware that immigration is the newest problem decades ago; we were perfectly content not knowing, or caring, that our sanitation workers were breaking the law. Help had to come from somewhere once African Americans found out about the constitution.


What truly makes this nation great is its intellectual properties: the people of this great land, the American voter. Practicing diligently by voting for future insignificant celebrities, this group sends the best and brightest, those few who have mastered the ability to punch a hole in a paper card, to determine who will influence their everyday lives for the next four years. Many will look past the unimportant issues of healthcare, social security, the economy, and foreign affairs, to the real issue of preventing same sex couples from entering into a binding contract. Fifty percent of the younger voters have learned to locate New York State on a map, and another thirty-seven percent know where to find their brothers and sisters that are sacrificing their lives to impose democracy in a foreign desert. Educated voters will be happy to know their elected representatives are protecting voters right to worship nothing at all, as the government puts great attention into removing all references to organized religion.

All this was made possible by a small group of demigods who signed a flawless agreement on July 4, 1776. They understood what it meant to be free. They realized a man was never free until he was free to control his own property, direct his own affairs, and be free from an oppressive ruling body. To this day our legal system has ignored the trite ideals of philosophy, and upheld the divinity of every letter and word of the constitution that so adequately applied to the political atmosphere of 1776. And that divine document will continue to endure until a group of even more powerful demigods rebels, producing an even more profound and divine set of legal documents, perhaps one hundred thousand pages longer, writing in stone the indisputable legal guidelines of freedom.

I pray the reader remember that freedom is our greatest commodity. Freedom endowed to us through our creator, freedom to direct our own affairs, and freedom to screw up from time to time. The founding fathers made a document that could be used as a tool to promote freedom, not to restrict it. Freedom that empowered citizens to be informed, not ignorant, of government affairs. To direct government for positive results, and stop neglection of the will of the people. From every mountainside, let freedom ring!