|Posted by sean berry on December 5, 2010 at 10:48 AM||comments (0)|
Hey there every one at Thatguywiththeglasses.com, this is the CookerKing here with collaboration with one of my blogging comrades, your favorite anti-hate monger himself, Manic Expression. I want to add another chapter to his Stop the Hate series by talking about a topic that I feel is sometimes misunderstood and often demonized. The topic in question is corporations. So without further delay, let's jump right into it.
CK: Manic Expression, before we begin, I just want to give the customary thanks for working with me, I've enjoyed your comment inspiring blogs since you started republishing them and I'm honored to be talking with you about a subject which was something that I once misunderstood myself...
JDW: Thanks for having me, CK. It’s easy to forget that corporations are run by human beings. The reason it’s easy to forget that is because, in the last thirty years, corporations have overtaken both politics and our economy and run both into the ground.
But we're talking about multinational conglomerates, the kind more interested in a single point in a quarterly statement than the life of their employees. What about businesses run on a smaller scale? You run a business, do you not?
CK: Yes, I do, I own a pool cleaning service and trust me,folks, I won't be taking over the world any time soon! I can't tell you howfunny it was for me to apply to incorporate my business after years of being incollege and spitting out "anti-corporate this, anti-corporate that"not really understanding the term. It's very tough being in business for yourself because it's very expensive and what a corporation allows people to do is to not only deduct your expenses from your income, but you also have the ability to sell shares of your company to make even more money. It also provides you some legal cushion, as the corporation itself is its own legal identity in the eyes of the court. Let's not be blind though, there have been some seriously evil corporations out there, for instance, what do you think of the way BP has handled their latest disaster?
JDW: Well, NYUN and I wrote about the BP oil spill when it happened. He's a conservative, I'm a liberal,and we both thought BP fucked that one up royally.
I think the problem is greed. We're in the financial mess we're in as a nation because companies started selling shit to the American people, than making side bets with money they didn't have to make even more money. They didn't have to worry though, because they owned every politician from Washington DC to Mayberry RFD, so they declared themselves "too big to fail" and were bailed out by Republicans and Democrats alike.
Corporations can do wonderful things, and those same corporations came be capable of great evils. They're like your neighborhood charity worker who turns out to be a serial killer.
CK: Yes, I agree that a big corporation can certainly get out of hand, but I think that has less to do with the business and more to do with lobbying. There is no one that will argue that money makes this world go round, so it's very easy to assume that the more money someone or something makes the more pull it would have with just about any one. If our congress was made up of teachers and charity workers, I think the length of the reach of most big corporations would be limited severely. I am big on limiting what businesses get to tell law makers and it’s a shame that much of world is simply about doing favors for one another and fucking everyone else in the process. Corporations have the money, they have the resources and they have the people, I think in order to win this war of conglomerates there must be a counter balance to this power, you would think it would be the government, but that is not the case...
JDW: Not the case at all. Some people think I'm very pro-government because I'm liberal. Untrue. Our government doesn't work and I'm the first to agree with that. When a congressman makes policy based on what corporation is offering him a job after he leaves office, that's bad for everyone.
However...I'm a capitalist. It’s not a perfect system, and heavens know it could use a tiny injection of socialism from time to time, but I'm not going to be a hypocrite about this. I buy those products. I put money into the corporate machine. The reason? They make good products. I would rather by Oreos than some cheap corner store knock off. I would rather buy an Apple product than support an up-and-coming business. I'm a sucker for the name brand shit.
Most corporations got where they are by making a good product that people wanted. I'm okay with that.
CK: There is no doubt about that because I too would rather have Oreos than the Publix version of them. As consumers, we do have an incredible amount of power to keep a company in business or completely bankrupt them. If you aren't happy with BP, don't buy their gas, support another company, but you may find that the other company is just as bad. I guess in the end what we need to do as individuals is ascertain what companies are doing and if they are doing it for the right reasons. I don't care that someone is getting rich off the fact I like to drink soda or buy certain products, I know firsthand when my company makes more money, it gets spread around the country, as in I buy more food, pay for more services,tip more, and overall become a bigger contributor to society. Again, it lies in the hands of our law makers to keep these guys in check and not only that, but ourselves to elect public officials we believe won't give into these temptations and kickbacks.
The whole point of this all has been to show you that just because a business is a corporation does not mean it is evil. Businesses, like people, deserve your individual judgment and one should not be so quick to condemn a corporation. As Manic Expression said, some corporations make good products and that's why they grew to the size they did to begin with, because of your support as well as some government interference. Being a bigger company also means they can make things cheaper and in any day and age, the more money a person can save, means more money to spend elsewhere.
So Manic, any closing thoughts on this matter, as I want to avoid beating the proverbial dead horse?
JDW: I think, in closing, I would like to dodge any charges of hypocrisy. I know I've written almost exclusively negative things about corporate America, and a bigger critic of big business you will not find. However, to say that ALL corporations are evil billionaires sitting in a board room trying to think up ways to screw us all is fairly ignorant.
We need to find a way to keep big business in line and on our side, which is why I do think government regulations play an important part in capitalism.Granted, the government can be as corrupt as any corporation, but until we, the consumers, are going to step up and fight for ourselves, somebody has to keep business honest. An honest business is a successful one, despite current beliefs.
CK: Extremely well said, it does come down to us and a successful corporation can mean good things for us all, but like anything, when it gets to extremes it becomes dangerous. Absolute power corrupts absolutely,as they say, so if we are tired of someone having power, we need to stop giving it to them. The main point of this is all is to not judge any person or business until you know about it and its history. I would also like to add that I am not endorsing any big crooked companies but just wanted to define the term better as it is automatically linked to something negative. A special thanks to Manic Expression for agreeing to do this blog with me and I thank you all for the time it took you to read this post!
|Posted by sean berry on December 5, 2010 at 10:36 AM||comments (0)|
Hello ThatGuyWithTheGlasses Patrons,this is the CooterKing and I'm here to have an interesting conversation with everyone's favorite blog aficionado, NYUN. The topic in question is possible theories on God and let me state before I get started that this purely an exploration of theories and I am in no way trying to dispel any one's religious beliefs or refute them. This topic was inspired by a blog I wrote, which you can read for yourself by visiting my site at http://imaginasean.webs.com/apps/blog/show/5382665-chaos-theory-fractals-possible-theories-on-god,though it is not necessary to be familiar with the piece in order to follow this conversation.
Ok, the table is set; my drink is poured; now I am just waiting on NYUN, who is apparently running a little late.
NYUN walks into the virtual bar and sits down at the table.
CooterKing: NYUN, it’s about time my friend! Where you been?
NYUN: Sorry, I'm late CK, I got held up by a bunch of Glee advertisements that I couldn't escape from....How are you today?
CK: Hehe, I have never seen the show, but that blond with the short hair seems like quite a saucy broad, I bet she would be fun to drink with, though I'm not sure if I'd want her to take me home or vice-versa! But yeah man, I’m good,thanks for asking. And thanks again for accepting my invitation to collaborate,I have a pretty interesting topic to cover and I knew you would be the man for the job.
NYUN: Well, I'm always up for civil discussions about interesting topics, my friend. What are we talking about today?
CK: I wanted to do something out there, and I mean really out there, in fact,so far beyond out there it is at its core beyond our understanding. I want to talk about some alternative explanations for God and our place in the universe.Let's start simple though, care for a drink?
NYUN: Thanks, I'll have a cup of Earl Grey-HOT! (Big Jean Luc Picard fan) Alternative explanations for God? Are we talking Chariots of the Gods, kind of explanations?
CK: I never met a Picard I didn't like, so I'm with you there, brother. Yes,Chariots of the Gods is a big part of this conversation. I think being both lovers of Star Trek, the concept of aliens is anything but alien. Would you agree with me when I say that we are a very unique species to this planet?
NYUN: Yes, for the geeks out there, Chariots of the Gods is the book whose theories inspired STARGATE. It was the notion that the Pyramids all over the world, as well as the Nasca lines were proof that Aliens existed since it's almost impossible for Mankind to have achieved them any other way. The notion is that any species possessing technology thousands of years ahead of another species would be indecipherable to them unless they were thought of as Gods.
Are we a very unique species to this planet? I guess that depends on what you're comparing us to, my friend.
CK: Other animals specifically and though the similarities are striking, I can't help but be fascinated by our skillful use of tools. As a species, we have created so much, for you don't see dogs writing operas, cats singing rock ballads or mice building chapels, this compels me to think we are different. Even if it could be proved that aliens influenced us, then do you think people could still believe in a higher power,since there should be no limit to your faith and someone had to create the aliens...
NYUN: Interesting theory. Kind of like God created us in his image...and then we created him in ours kind of thinking? Could it be that Star Trek got it right, and the Aliens seeded the Galaxy with DNA and we evolved from that? Or could it be that an advanced race of space travelers made first contact with us thousands of years ago and assisted us in learning early technology and were seen as gods by our ancestors? Or maybe Battlestar Galactica got it right, and we're the 13thcolony of man separated from our mother planet!
I Love good science fiction. Done right, it really gets you to think about the endless possibilities.
CK: Yes, good science fiction will give you just enough info so it’s not completely absurd and let you assume on faith that everything else is true, sort of like any good religion itself,because when it comes down to it, there is very little way to prove who of us is right. Did you ever happen to see that episode of South Park where the then Mrs. Garrison was refusing to teach evolution in her classroom?
NYUN: No, I'm afraid I missed that one. Sounds like great humor fodder, though.
CK: South Park is always good for that, the reason I bring it up is in the episode, towards the end, the boys are talking about evolution and they basically say that why can't evolution be the way that God created us, that instead of creationism, we actually had a more feasible explanation for how we can to be what we are, that God can still exist and you can still believe in evolution as well. I thought they made a good point, like they always do, so in some ways, the thinking that we are in essence in the middle of a ladder of creations, that there could be aliens above us, god above them, and another reason I am prone to think on this constantly expanding hierchy of creation in the universe itself, how it's continues expanding and thus offering up not just nearly an infinite area of space but also different levels of existence and perhaps intelligence. In the article I wrote, I discuss the concept of self-similarity and that in many cases, you can break something down and its inner components look much like the whole product, do you think it's at all possible that even our expanding universe is yet another smaller component of an even larger system?
NYUN: WOW just had Déjà Vu, my friend. I won a Transmission Awesome Awesome Blog Of The Week for asking that very question. http://thatguywiththeglasses.com/blogs/myblogs/entry/is-creationism-really-that-different-from-evolution-a-few-questions-for-the-tgwtg-community
Is it possible that God created the Universe and the laws of physics governing it? I conjecture that if that's so, then isn't the study of Science really an attempt to peek at God's blueprints? Before the new blogging system erased all previous comments, there were 97 comments on it in one of the most EPIC online debates I've ever participated in.
In other words, Did God create Evolution?
CK: Goodness, that is epic! So I guess it was by a good stroke of luck that I asked you to participate in this, since having read a lot of your blogs and comments, I've gotten the impression you're a very open minded guy, though I admit to having no knowledge of that particular piece. God very well could have created evolution, he could have been sitting there thinking, you know, I made all these animals, what if I rewire their brains a little, alter some of the physical traits and then let me see what happens? We could be the most grand of science experiments and maybe the aliens are angels. I have always thought that a major component of faith was miracles, that things happened that we can't explain, the sick get better all of a sudden, someone suffers an injury that should kill them and nothing happens or someone's luck is just ridiculously one sided, is it not possible too that these things can be scientifically implemented by aliens that could very well read our thoughts, possible alter them in the process or use technology beyond our wildest dreams to make all the impossible possible...
NYUN: Which brings us back to the topic of discussion. Is it possible that Alien races so advanced beyond us appeared before our Ancestors and were interpreted as Gods?Personally, I think it's definitely possible. Don't forget. Even if this is the case, that doesn't preclude there being a God responsible for the whole Universe above them. It comes down to faith in the absence of provable facts.Do you believe or not?
CK: For me, the idea of aliens as God's makes the most sense, as it would provide a fairly logical answer to some pretty tough questions otherwise, but I think in my own mind, I usually think of god in terms as a celestial being, some indefinable force but not a judge of our character or someone who would punish us if we lack faith, after all, wouldn't our lack of faith in god simply be a design flaw if God created us? If he is truly all knowing, could he have not seen that people would naturally disobey him? So it's when I have thoughts like that do I find myself looking for a more logical explanation as to our differences in comparison to other creatures on this planet and our own societies rapid evolution over the course of our existence. How does the idea of visitors from space fit in with your own ideas of God?
NYUN: Well, when I think about it, I like Carl Sagan's notion the best: In a Universe with billions upon billions of stars and their potential solar systems to harbor life, if we're all there is, it's a lot of wasted space. I see no reason why God would make us alone in such a vast expanse. It then follows that some species in the Universe would likely be very advanced technologically,physically or mentally in ways that would be indecipherable to other species except as Gods. I feel that this is not only possible, but highly probable. Did this happen to us thousands of years ago? It would go a long ways toward explaining some of the unsolved ancient mysteries on our planet.
CK: Such as stone henge,Easter Island, the pyramids, the Mayan's advanced knowledge, to name a few, so it’s very easy to agree with Sagan's idea, as I do. I have also entertained the idea that God is simply the sum of our collective intelligence, that there is a connection between people that we are not even consciously aware of and as of yet there is no way to really measure that effect. So if this were to be the case, then advanced abilities or advanced thinking would simply be a matter of unlocking the brain's latent abilities or just turning up the juice on current modes of thought until they produce something outer worldly.
NYUN: I think that's possible. We use less than 20% of our brainpower right now. If we could activate 100% of it, I think things like E.S.P. Telekinesis, Telepathy...all are possible. It would be extraordinary to witness the power from that.
CK: Or scary! hehe, maybe there is a reason why we only have access to these abilities in rare occasions, but most of the super human feats I've seen have been related to brain injuries or people born with extreme genetic mutations. If you ever have a chance, checkout the show, Stan Lee's Super Humans, in one of the episodes, they talked about this guy who can basically run forever (they showed his lactic acid production actually started reversing after awhile instead of continuing to spike) another guy who could do these extremely complex mathematical problems in less time then you could type them into a calculator, so perhaps these people are manifestations of what we will all be at some point in the future.They also had a blind man who could play anything on the piano right after he heard it, I thought of you when I saw that one! So if it is true, we are made in God's image, would it not be true then that we have some small degree of his power? Let me ask you this though, if the existence of God could be proven or unproven, would it really change any one's mind or do you think people would just stick to their beliefs as is?
NYUN: I think proof of God would negate the purpose of God. I believe we're not meant to know the true nature of God or what his plans are. To do so, would be to be God.We're mere mortals, and his being will forever be just beyond our knowing for sure. That's where faith comes in. To believe in something greater than yourself in the complete absence of proof is the strength to change the world.
CK: Well said and I have to agree completely. I think despite any real evidence that might come up, people will believe in whatever they want to because it's that belief that guides them and serves them. So whether it is aliens or some ethereal being pulling the strings on all of us, we are going to live the life we think is right for us.We don't know who's watching us but we know we are watching each other, so no matter what, it's what we do here on earth that makes this planet heaven or hell. If there is nothing else after this, then I want to know that my time here was not a waste and that I lived a good life and not on anyone else's expense. I think this is a topic you and I could hammer on about for hours, but I think most of what needs to be said has been, so any final words before I wrap things up?
NYUN: I like your notion that it's our actions here that makes our planet Heaven or Hell a lot. I like taking a little responsibility for treating people with respect and love. I like trying to make a difference in the world, even if it's a small one. And I'd like to thank you for having me on your blog, my friend. it's been a pleasure talking with you.And thanks to TGWTG fans out there, for giving us some of your time to read.Peace.
CK: We can't expect any one else to do something we are not prepared to do ourselves, so I cannot expect respect from someone if I don't give it to them. With that in mind, I hope you all enjoyed this conversation as much as I have, I can't thank you all enough for your time.NYUN, it's been a treat working with you and I look forward to doing it again.Take care, my blogging brothers and sisters and see you around the site!