Government, Belief, and Other (not shared) Thoughts

Today I find that I'm in a rather reflective mood. I blame NPR. You see, about 6 months ago I started listening to NPR and it makes me think while I drive to an from work. However, the increased awareness of what is going on in the world and government has left me with many and varied thoughts. This is not meant to be a telling of well organized and deeply held feeling evolved over much pondering and reflection, but rather a dump of scattered and hap hazard thoughts that have occupied my thought recently. Basically, I need to organize them and writing them down seemed the best way to do that. You just get to enjoy as I feel I should post more.

Belief, or the nature of believing

My thoughts in this area are fueled, in part, by such things as an article on Scientology (done by NPR), today's announcement of a new Pope, a discussion today about the Word of Wisdom, and my own thoughts as I prepare to teach about the Restoration next month. I have found myself asking, "Why do people believe?"

Cynically, as I understand it, "people" (I know that is very un-technical or specific) feel that humans believe because it is the way we are raised, but I personally feel that is too simple an answer to be completely correct. I think there is something about human nature that wants more. More what? More anything. Why do we care if there is life on Mars? Why do we spend more than we make? Why do we fight so aggressively for something that is just an opinion? We want more.

Religion puts people in a frame work that explains their position in relation to what more there is out there. Does it have to make sense? Only to those who require that it does. Does it have to make us important? Only to those who want to be important. Does it have to be real? Only to those who need it to be. Religion is a reflection of people who follow it.

I'm still developing my feeling and thought about that idea, but it is interesting to look at religion as a reflection of personal feeling and beliefs. It is crude, and I don't feel entirely correct but it is interesting to think about. I will continue to reflect and hopefully share some more on this topic later.

Government

"To big to fail." It is a phrase that came up today in conversations at lunch. It was used as a twist of the comments made by Mitt Romney in the recent presidential race debates regarding banks. "Greece wasn't big enough, Spain wasn't big enough, and the U.S., if it continues, will also learn that it isn't big enough", was the comment made about the current financial/political nightmare in this country. The problem is, as I see it, that no one can solve it and be popular at the same time.

Programs that cannot sustain themselves need to be seriously modified, not just given more money. Plans need to be made to get them to a fiscally stable place. That means either taxing everyone severely for a short term to put finances in order (I personally don't trust those taxes to go away once they have stabilized a program/the government), finding a creative way to pay for them until they can sustain themselves, or cutting systems back until they can support themselves (possibly building them back up to their current or some improved status). Many of these programs were funded by the future, the idea that everyone would pay into it and cover the older generation. The problem is that the younger generation didn't choose this, the older generation did. Pensions, according to my friend, have the same problem (his father being a union worker). This example is clearly medicaid/medicare but it is not the only system that is run this way (or equally relies on the future).

The real issue is that the people blame the government, not themselves. We are the ones who selected these politicians to run our country. Sure we didn't all vote for the same person and most legislation we deal with was voted for by our parents before us, but collectively we have, vicariously, enacted all of this legislation. If we disagreed enough, it wouldn't still be around. We need to be responsible for it. It will suck, I'm almost sure of that, but I don't see how this nation can continue to exist if it doesn't stop being a child and start being an adult.

Other Thoughts

I want to share more, but find that it takes me too long to organize my thoughts (as un-organized as they are still). Hopefully I will get better at getting on and sharing a little more often, then it doesn't have to be as perfect. I hope that sharing this now will spur me to share more. Here's hoping!