New Year 2021 Commentary

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

I do not think that anyone really knows who stated the above quotation; but, it sounds pretty good to me. English was not my first language. My first language was Spanish and I grew up in a Spanish speaking home. So, English phrases like that sometimes do not resonate well with me. Nevertheless, I know that the phrase resonates with my English speaking audience out there in cyber-space.

We have been through a year of lockdowns in this country. How much longer are we going to continue to do the same thing over and over, and expect different results? COVID-19 has not gone away and now another strain is coming. What have we gotten for our efforts?

  • social distancing
  • hand sanitizers
  • wearing a face mask
  • constant hand washing
  • closed schools
  • cancelled conferences
  • layoffs
  • destroyed business like restaurants, gyms, salons, and oil jobs
  • cancelled sports games
  • postponed Olympic Games
  • e-learning which has been proven not to work

All of this is to what end? It reminds me of the book, “Being and Nothingness”. In that book, Jean Paul Sartre essentially says that there is no meaning to life. People and everything around them are just simply there, with no purpose at all. Can we really continue to live like this: locking down and following obscure, cryptic, and occultic orders that have no tangible results; and thus, no real meaning? Note, that when I use the word occultic, I mean the original Latin meaning, which is “hidden”.

What really does not make sense to me is that the new omnibus bill is sending something like $25 million to Pakistan for gender studies. Meanwhile, our small businesses are struggling to stay open. So much is in that bill that sends money overseas. How can this be when our government’s first responsibility to take care of its own people?

It is hard for me to get my mind around the idea that people who live thousands of miles from my home are dictating to me where I can go and what I can do. When I complain to my fellow Texans, the usual response is “go with the flow”. Go with the flow? That is just more “Being and Nothingness”.

I cannot see anything around me, a great painting, a beautiful poem, an ingenious musical composition, etc, that happened by just the natural flow of things. Entropy actually indicates the opposite: nature is spiraling towards disorder.

The generation right after World War II is a great generation. One thing they taught me was that “you have to make things happen”. In other words, your dreams do not happen by accident. Let us put an end to these lockdowns in 2021; because living life with a goal, guided by self-actualization, is much better than empty “Being and Nothingness”. Let us stop doing the same thing and expect different results.

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