Seashells

Have a seat. We have a lot to recollect.

Firstly, let’s get something clear once and for goddamn all:

1. POLITICIANS, BY DEFINITION, ARE CORRUPT.
2. MULTINATIONAL PROFIT-SEEKING ORGANIZATIONS, BY DEFINITION, ARE IMMORAL.

DO NOT TRUST A SINGLE WORD OF EITHER OF THEM.

Exceptions are there, but extremely rare: Do Not Assume that your preferred party/brand is any different.

1.
By politicians, I mean top politicians. Not your aunt who hands out flyers for this or that political party. Elected officials. They did not reach their status because, out of millions of others, they are exceptionally brave or idealistic. Those are qualities that are possessed by the most zealous of supporters, who sadly don’t have the capability to think for themselves.

In order to get elected, one must play the game as it is created, and not only adopt its corruption, but contribute to it. Not only will they accept funding of a third party with its own (hidden though obvious) agenda, but also they will pull the strings they find, blackmail competition, and manipulate the, earlier mentioned, supporters. They will hire people who make a living by playing the masses’ psychology like a fiddle, and have made large scale manipulation their field of study.

2.
Companies, from Coca-Cola to Chiquita to fucking Colgate, are systems that function near autonomously and have two goals:
-Make money.
-Expand and grow in order to make more money, faster.
Don’t think I’m making this up: these are the core principles of capitalism, simply put. The examples are there and you don’t even need to look for them to have heard about them. Nothing is safe: Health care, anti-conception, drinking water, if the company is large enough and it would get away with selling human rights for fat profit, it will without consideration.

By “evil” I don’t mean the kind shown in civil wars, or racism, although it will often lead to such situations. I mean child labor, chemical contamination of rural areas, financial exploitation of the poor. People are hired with one job only: to keep these things quiet. There are people who work to keep the search results for these scandals low on the google list, I shit you not.

Most companies that don’t indulge in these practices, refrain from doing so because they are either too small and thus too heavily influenced by the moral code of the individual employee (because an evil company can work without a single evil employee), or because they are simply in a position that does not allow them to do so. Because they are too closely watched or too inexperienced.

 

Neither of these two sources can be trusted on issues that matter, such as vegetarianism, environmental problems, moral issues, and matters regarding justice, faith (omg faith) and freedom.
Is it so hard to understand this?

Think for yourself.
Question authority.
Think for yourself.
Question authority.

“If I knew I would grow this old
I would have taken better care of myself”

-I forget

Upon being asked what I wanted to become back when I was a kid, I bluntly replied, “Me? I won’t live to see 20, I can’t be bothered with that.” Looking back now, I kind of regret that attitude. I have always focused on the present, then now- I could be dead tomorrow and I don’t want “I should have lived a little more intensely” to be my final thought. That in itself certainly isn’t a bad thing, but as a result I often ignore the long-term consequences in a decision in favor of immediate pleasure.

I’ll get to the point: I’m going deaf. I am 24 and I have the hearing of a 60 year old. I used to think I have exceptional hearing, until I was tested before boot camp and deemed unfit for the navy because I could no longer pick up low tones, which are used often on ships because of their low frequency and thus long carrying range. Nowadays, it has become impossible to ignore. To compensate for loss of hearing, your brain has a built-in “volume button” that goes up as you hear less. So when talking to someone, the sound of his voice doesn’t go down per se, but the background noise goes up. First symptoms are difficulties with conversation in a noisy environment. And Tigger, am I ever fucked.

It doesn’t come as a surprise. When I was 18 I blamed A Perfect Circle, now I blame my work. Hammering steel by my head, repeated exposure to 100+dB music, powertools… So very often have I worried about my hearing and now it’s too late. I will go deaf at a very early age and for the first time in my life, I’m concerned about that. I am quite perceptive and I want to stay that way. Besides, although I don’t share some of my colleagues’ habit of going “HA?” when I misunderstood, being asked “I’m sorry?” four times in a row must get damn annoying for my conversation partner.

Summer equals financial recovery for me. Taxes and “vacation refund” (a system I will never understand) get me through winter, and spring/autumn is when I can throw my money out the window because the warmest months have an apparently infinite supply of it.

This year, no different. January and February I went looking for myself in hills and cities, and in march (I think) I joined a couple friends on a hike through Scotland. To say I was broke was like calling Beyoncé’s latest album “unfulfilling”. The only difference this year is that summer brought next to no income at all. I haven’t checked my paperwork but I believe July and August brought me around €400, each. That’s about half of the poverty border. I can live on that no problem, if it weren’t for the fact that ”living” isn’t exactly my goal in life.

So I’m scraping together what I can. Three different employers owe me money now, and at this moment I’ve worked fifteen days with one day off, with my agenda booked for another five days of work. For the mathematically untalented among you, that’s twenty days, with one day off. The fridge is empty, the girlfriend is alienated, the couch has wandered halfway across the room because it could.

In all seriousness though, There’s a new element that has come with each job opportunity: my girlfriend works mornings, nights and weekends, giving us a 6 hour window each weekday to see each other. One that I haven’t respected in a long time.
We both have to work, that’s a given, but the difference lies in that I choose when to work. I have the freedom to refuse jobs as they are offered. In other words, with every job that I accept, I willingly choose not to spend time with my girlfriend, instead.

My self-enforced rule generally goes like this: Work comes first. Period. Not because I like it better, but because it pays the bills. And bills need paid, end of story. It’s not something you can put off, or cheat in. Since I can never tell if the current “wave” of work will last, I need to take what I can get.
This is open to exceptions. Theoretically I can make the money to cover my fixed expenses in about a week, since jobs most often go way outside the standard “Nine to five” package. But what applies to a month, applies to the year as well. I am never sure what the next season will bring. Besides, I need hard cash to bring my next world domination plan into practice.
So I try to compromise, not something I usually do. I’m going to try and get thursday or friday off, at least, so we can see each other properly rather than a few hours at a time. It’s all about priorities.

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2 responses

  1. Jamal

    I shall add my opinion; capitalism isn\’t working any more. I think that we need to reconstruct our way n life and that could b done starting with marxism…

    16 September 2009 at 01:24

  2. Maarten

    Communists are misguided. There is no more freedom to be obtained by giving it all to your government.In my humble opinion.

    20 September 2009 at 01:31

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