Communicator (communicator) wrote,
Communicator
communicator

I like Slacktivist

Even though I can't get on with the monotheist religions I love Slacktivist, a blog by an Evangelical Christian in the US. I disagree with his theology, but I just really like him. This week he comments on reports that his fellow Evangelicals are supporting tough budget cuts 'to balance the budget'. Strangely, from his utterly different world, from a different class and gender, from thousands of miles away, he says exactly what I think:
Whenever I hear someone say, "We've got to make the tough, painful choices to balance the budget" I know that I needn't waste any more time listening to that person. He's not really interested in balancing the budget, he's interested in imagining himself as someone who is "tough." And he's so preoccupied with this need to feel "tough" that he is unwilling to do the arithmetic and see that the most urgent need when it comes to balancing the budget is not a "painful choice" but the choice to ease pain. Putting people back to work is not a painful choice. It's what those people want -- what they long for, hope for and pray for. It makes people happy and actually solves the problem.

It is not surprising to me that sympathetic emotion and the most pragmatic course of action are the same. That's because the urge to work in co-operation, and to relieve suffering are evolved human mechanisms to ensure survival. Suppressing those urges might require emotional fortitude - being 'tough' - but it's like the fortitude required to cut your own arm off. 99 times out of 100 it's a very bad idea.
Subscribe
  • Post a new comment

    Error

    Comments allowed for friends only

    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic
  • 2 comments