Friday, 28 December 2007

2008 is coming isn't it time for a change of direction.

Were you surprised when you first heard Benazir Bhutto was dead? I wasn't. The last time I was surprised by anything I saw in television was 1984, I was getting a major telling off for refusing to eat the food on my plate when the News at 6 came on and those first pictures of the famine in Ethiopia were seen. Talk about a sense of guilt.


I might also have been surprised at the living conditions of some of the orphans of Romania after the fall of the Chauchescus', but probably not to the same extent as I was when I saw those first images of bloated malnurished young children . I'm not surprised when I hear of some nutter with a gun going on a rampage in a US university. A society that believes in the right to bear arms to that degree you have to expect the odd nutter or three. To the same extent I'm not surprised by anything that humans do, and I certainly don't fear it either. I don't fear the extremists in this world no matter how much the governments and the news reels would like to project a feeling that we live in dangerous times.


As for the death of Ms Bhutto, I saw it coming. I'm not saying I'm psychic or had a premonition. If I were the type to be so blessed I might do the lottery from time to time, but I'm not so I don't. But the day Ms Bhutto said she was running for election and crowds were seen celebrating I knew that region was so fucked up that someone was going to want her dead just because of her popularity, and the chances were that they were going to be successful at doing it. She knew it too.


I don't know much about her other than that she was a very intelligent human being and had run her country on two previous occasions. For better or worse I don't know. I don't care either. I do care about democracy, as did she hence the reason she put herself in that situation. This world at this time needs more people with her bravery. The world is fucked up at the moment. Fear is rife. We need more people to stand up and say yes we should be scared but we should be more scared of not standing up to the fear and those who aim to spread it.


Fear is driving the world at the moment. What has been proven is that human beings will do anything. Anything. That's why when all those beheadings started in Iraq it didn't bother me. A lot of people were horrified, "Whaaaa, beheadings!" What, are you surprised? Just one more form of extreme human behaviour.


You strap on a gun and go strutting around some other man's country you better be ready for some action. People are touchy about that sort of thing. And let me ask you this... this is a moral question, not rhetorical, I am looking for the answer: what is the moral difference between cutting off one guys head, or two, or three, or five or ten - and dropping a big bomb on a hospital and killing a whole bunch of sick kids? Has anyone of our so called leaders given you an explanation of the difference? When you get right down to it human beings are nothing more than ordinary jungle beasts. Savages. No different from the people who lived twenty five thousand years ago. No different. Our DNA hasn't changed substantially in a hundred thousand years. We're still operating out of the lower brain. The brain that first crawled out of the jungle and before that the sea. Kill or be killed. We like to think we've evolved and advanced because we can build a computer, fly an aeroplane, write a sonnet, paint, compose an opera. But you know something? We're barely out of the jungle on this planet. Barely out of the sea. What we are, is semi-civilised beasts, with baseball caps and automatic weapons.


But despite that as things stand I am probably in less danger now than when the IRA were blowing up buildings in the UK mainland in the 80s. Why? Well the Irish Republican Army had only one target and that was that was anything that could be seen as representing British rule. Whereas the muslim extremists hate everybody that doesn't think like them. Their way of thinking goes much like this:


Do you believe in God?

No.

Bang!


Do you believe in God?

Yes.

Do you believe in my God?

No.

Bang!


Do you believe in God?

Yes.

Do you believe in my God?

Yes.

Do you believe in my God and interpret the teachings in the same as I do?

No.

Bang!


Just about everyone can be a target but generally speaking the chances of any one of us getting killed is slim to non existent. Their hatred is so widespread that short of an extreme case of bad luck and being in the wrong place at the wrong time we aren't in any real danger at all. Living in fear or finger pointing is playing into the hands of the extremists. Yet our governments today are probably spending more time and energy thinking up draconian laws, and spending stupid amounts of money on securing our building framework than they are on finding ways to deal with cancer. And for what? Some people want to kill us, big deal. There are always, and have always been nutters who will have an excuse of some kind to hate. At the end of the day cancer is a bigger killer and is a much more unpleasant way to die.


I've never been scared of a Muslim and probably never will be until the day I see one waving a burning Scottish flag and he/she is spitting in my face. Then I might think twice about speaking in my fast unintelligible accent of mine. I might want to stay quiet, not draw attention to myself.


I'm more scared of the Japanese than I am a extremist Muslim. Why? A few reasons really. Generally speaking its easier to tell when a Muslim doesn't like you. The flag burning thing is a bit of a give away. A Japanese man with a grudge would be somewhat harder to judge. They tend to be respectful people. They may think I want to slice off your head with my great, great, great grandfathers sword but because they speak a different language and, generally speaking, have too much respect to burn flags you might never know until your head is rolling on the floor by which time they will be on their knees praying for your soul. Which is nice.


I like the Japanese. I like a society that is respectful but if I were Japanese myself I would be ever so slightly pissed off at the world. I would be pissed off at the thought of all the rogue states that this world has ever had, and there has been a few, only one has suffered the effects of an atomic bomb, and not just once but twice. I might be tempted to plan my revenge but I'd be sneaky about it. I wouldn't burn flags. I wouldn't hide in a cave and spread hateful messages via old taped over 70s porn videos. I wouldn't have the worlds best equipped army with the biggest weapons that scare cockroaches. I would be really sneaky. I mean really sneaky. I would build trusting relationships with business by building the dinkiest coolest must have gadgets and just when everybody has got their eyes off the ball and listening to say Norwegian Wood by The Beatles a preprogrammed malfunction could blow up the ear drums of the listener. Or I might spread the delicacy of Sushi knowing full well that western society doesn't value apprenticeships to the same extent as Japanese society. In Japan it literally takes years for someone to learn the skills involved in cutting a fish or removing the poison of a puffer fish. In the West you'd most likely get minimum wage for such work, whilst a degree in Media Studies is valued far higher even though the number of people studying Media Studies by far outnumbers the jobs available in that field. By some miracle the number of deaths from raw fish consumption is fairly small in the West but it surely cannot be long before the Sushi bars of the world unite in the message that puffer fish is good and then that minimum wage mentality might bite us in the ass. Of course I'm being silly here.


What was my point? I can't bloody remember. Something about fear and the stupidity of it why we need people in charge that think a different way. I think. This is why I never got the good grades at school. The Japanese aren't scary. It was all a big exaggeration on my part. The Chinese on the other hand.....

1 comment:

Just a Girl said...

Happy New Year Scotsman.

I wish lots of up sort of things for you in the year and look forward to your random blogging through out.