Posted by: Millard J. Melnyk | July 31, 2015

Do the Math

In terms of time spent, the math is simple. We’re harried almost all the time about things that almost never actually happen.

We feel constant pressure from concerns that don’t materialize:

  1. Concern for survival
  2. Concern for safety (war, crime, terrorism, personal violation)
  3. Concern for security (personal, financial, career, relationship, social status)
  4. Concern for social condemnation (moral, ethical, legal, personal reputation)

Actual incidents that threaten those concerns happen only rarely, if ever. Probably none of you reading this have ever nearly starved. I doubt that more than one or two of you have gone even a day living on the street or without food. And any of you that actually faced survival-threatening calamities (war, natural disaster, an attempt on your life, etc.) know how rare they are. Rare even across the collective experience of over 7 billion people living day after 24-hour day. Rare to someone, somewhere, sometime? Maybe not. Rare to you where you are through almost every moment of every day? Very. Well-founded in the case of the persons that you are directly concerned for (mostly yourself)? Practically never.

That means that most of the time you spend worrying about your survival is wasted, just looking at worry time vs. actual threat time or even actual threat risk. When it comes to survival, the risks we imagine far exceed their true potential. And that’s ignoring the glaring irony of all survival concerns: You’re going to die, anyway.

Likewise concern for safety. Even if we are in harm’s way, we only face impending harm in rare events that are usually short-lived. The rest of the time we are in fact harm-free, despite constantly carrying the pressure of impending harm in our imaginations.

Likewise concern for security. Security concerns rest largely on the illusion of control. Of all the factors that determine our eventual security, we are cognizant of just a few, and have influence or control over just a few of those. Most of the major factors that establish or destroy our hoped-for states of security are well beyond our ken, forget about our ability to alter them. I’m not saying we can do nothing. I’m saying that we can do nothing about most of it. And yet we obsess and fret as if the peanuts we can grasp will somehow make the elephant do what we want it to.

Likewise concern for social condemnation. Even if our reputations have been trashed, we just aren’t important enough to most people for them to think a whole lot about us most of the time, let alone care about us for good or ill — sorry, dear egos — so the constant weight of impending humiliation and damage to our self-esteem is mostly narcissistic.

Some of us feel accomplished because we successfully achieved relief from these concerns. That only proves that we felt their pressure but adequately (or so we think) addressed them. Should we fail to continually sustain those mitigation measures, our concerns will come right back, full force or worse, because the relief is circumstantial, not organic. Continuously maintaining remedies for symptoms just shows that we continuously feel their pressure and fail to solve the problems that cause them.

Bottom line: We spend much of our time worrying about nothing. In effect, we subordinate what makes life worth living to a largely imagined need to secure conditions under which we could start truly living. And most of us don’t achieve that sense of security, even though facts prove again and again in hindsight that conditions actually warranted it.

When you’re stuck in a loop, take notice. That’s what brainwashing does to you.

Notice that the “rich” have the means to alleviate the pressure of those concerns, but instead they exacerbate it.

  1. The rich predicate their survival on undermining the survival of their competitors.
  2. The rich predicate their safety on sacrificing the safety of others.
  3. The rich predicate their security on maintaining inequality and subjugating others by threatening or destroying their security.
  4. The rich build their reputations on deprecating and damaging the reputations of others.

The more that they undermine others, sacrifice them, subjugate them, and damage their reputations, the more the rich fear retaliation, and the more dire their concerns become.

If I were a profit-mongering bastard whose security depended on undermining the survival, sacrificing the safety, subjugating and destroying the security, and damaging the reputations of others, I’d find ways to maximize my bang for the buck. I’d find ways to get others to continually hold their prospects for survival, safety, security, and good reputation in doubt. I’d get them to believe that they are on the brink of death, destruction, chaos, and despicability. And then I’d figure out ways to keep that story looping in their heads, just like it already does in mine and other savvy, unscrupulous profit-mongers.

This would give me the upper hand if and when it came to confrontation, and it would let me pose as their savior, offering them rescue from their many predicaments while making a shitload of profit in the process, to the point that I’d effectively enslave them.

And above all, I’d make sure that the pressures stayed so constant and heavy that they never, ever get the luxury of taking a step back far enough to see that the whole thing is absurdly insane, or talk to each other, or decide to do something about it.

If I were a profit-mongering bastard, that’s what I’d do. Seeing that it seems to be what has been and is being done, maybe profit-mongering bastards are responsible for it.

I swear to God, fun will be the real revolution that obliterates all this bullshit, carried out by us who are crazy enough to call imaginary concerns for what they truly are: paranoid delusions symptomatic of PTSD from severe, long-term indignification — whether by commission, as in overt abuse and denigration, or by omission, as in neglect and denial of deserved attention and honor. And then by being crazy enough to imagine an incredibly (because that’s what imagination is for) better world.

And then FUCK ‘EM ALL! 😀

(Unless they want to join in and play nice, but I have my doubts — but I also have my hopes.)

Please let me know what you think!

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