Tuesday, January 24, 2006

My Invisible World

I am not a “one world”-er. I despise the concept of drowning individuality into the masses of collectivism. I do not wish to see the countries of this world consolidating power and creating monolithic institutions of governance over all. And similarly, I do not wish to see countries that carve their boundaries in the hearts and minds of people. I do not want governments telling their people where to travel, who to live with, who to fall in love with, where to buy from, and who to sell to. I am shocked at how our governments even dare to prescribe the kinds of relationships individuals can have with one-another. I am appalled by the brazen interference of the government in my decision to have a family or a relationship across political boundaries. I believe that the only reason we have let governments become so viciously powerful and have anesthetized ourselves to their interference in our lives is because collectivism and the acceptance of the majoritarian opinion is considered valid, 'democratic', and even morally fair. Just as in our private lives, we have tended to accept the collectivist opinions of our culture, our tribe, our religion, our tradition, our race, our sexual orientation, our class, our nationality, our ethnicity, our status, our society – we accept and become obedient to these collectivist forces in our lives and so, extrapolating that to the geo-political scale, we find it only logical that we become obedient to what our government tells us to do – regardless of whether that is even the proper role of the government. We are so used to subsuming our individuality to larger collective voices that we now think it is only proper to be obedient to these masses, and we sometimes even actively seek to identify ourselves with it. In our lives, we listen to our parents about who to marry or what career to choose, we look to our race to decide who to select as a romantic partner, we look to our priests and religious leaders to tell us what to believe and what is moral, we observe the trends of our socio-economic class to decide which clubs to join and who to be affiliated with, we look to our traditions to decide how to act and what to celebrate – all these are instances of our collectivist desires to seek our personal identity in things above and beyond ourselves. It stands to reason then that these same collectivist tendencies allow us to stand by the roadside nonchalantly as the government (the collective replacement of the race, or the tribe, or the religious leaders) decides to pass law after law, dictating how we live our private lives. Ban smoking. Ban gambling. Ban drugs. Don't ban alcohol. Ban foie gras in restaurants. Ban mowing your lawns on Sunday. Ban personal travel to Cuba. Cannot bring your lover from Brazil to the US just because you love them, etc. etc. I want a world where the government is invisible. I want to live in a world where there are no nation-states interacting or trading with each other, but individuals – only individuals – from different countries freely trading and interacting with each other. A world of invisible boundaries and invisible governments. A world of individuals who seek no higher identity above their own selves. Wishful thinking? Yes.

5 Comments:

Blogger Aethlos said...

Hey, i'm pretty sure we use the same template - blogger right? Maybe i don't understand the question... but i'm an open-source type... so anything you want, just let me know, i'm happy to share it!

1/24/2006 12:59:00 PM  
Blogger Aethlos said...

yeah, i lived in india - calcutta, varanasi, and delhi... i also traveled the entire country... vashist/manali, bombay/mumbai, goa, madras, srinigar, amritsar, rajasthan, agra, every end of the place. my indian friends always say "you've seen a lot more of india than i have". :)

1/24/2006 01:04:00 PM  
Blogger Ergo Sum said...

Wow, that's true. Indeed.. you've seen more of India than I have, even!

What brought you out there??? Hmm.. I'm not sure if this is a topic of discussion on this open, public space.
You have my email, if you need to.

But it's cool.

About the template... I wondered how you were able to get those countries with continents and all... also, do you know how to get a link to show all comments posted regardless of the post?

1/24/2006 02:09:00 PM  
Blogger Aethlos said...

and, ALAS... a fan of nusrat fateh ali khan! PIYA RE is one of my favorite songs ever, and you're a fan of steve levitt, FREAKONOMICS steve? he's at my old school, univ chicago. YOU HAVE EXCELLENT TASTE!

1/24/2006 09:20:00 PM  
Blogger Ergo Sum said...

I know Steve was from Uni of Chi. Yea.. it's a great book.. tons of real, concrete, practical knowledge... I was only upset that it was so short!

Piya Re is cool... what about Kinna Sonna Tenu, Rabb Ne banaya! ;) ha!

1/24/2006 09:21:00 PM  

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