One of my high school teachers once asked, “Without speech, would there still be thought?” At the time this stoner-esque consideration was profound enough to leave me not only speechless, but thoughtless as well. I tried to imagine a thought without words and could only vaguely conceive of emotional inspirations that well up deep within us. Music has a piece of this power, to convey thought and emotion without words, but in a way it borrows so much from speech and sound.
People seem to do a lot of talking, and a lot of thinking. Unfortunately, they don’t always go hand in hand and at times we seem to say things without thinking about them, and conversely to think of things without talking about them. Most of the time, this is all fine and well, after all if you’re not hurting someone or something with your pointless drivel then who cares, but words and thoughts have a way of turning into actions, and together these can have a serious impact.
People love lists and why shouldn’t they. If we want to make a decision about something we need some concrete facts, plus, when you write stuff down with numbers next to it, it looks orderly and scientific, so it must be reputable! If you’re already on the fence, here ya go, this should pull you over one way or the other.
“By now the revolution has deprived the mass of consumers of any independent access to the staples of life; clothing, shelter, food, even water. Air remains the only necessity that the average user can still get for himself, and the revolution has imposed a heavy tax on that by way of pollution.”
Every winter the air around Salt Lake City Utah gains national attention for being some of the worst. It’s unique geography, dense population, and numerous industries often trap air between mountain ranges, creating a thick, foggy soup of air that can often be the worst in the Nation. As residents once again protest the quality of their air and argue that breathing clean air is a right that we can’t be denied, I have to wonder, what’s exactly making this air so unhealthy, and whatever it is why can’t we just turn if off? What could possibly be worth our lives, poisoning our air and killing ourselves?
Sometime during the winter of 2011, shortly after our decision to embark on this car-less adventure, I began what has become an in-depth and on-going, online research project into human powered adventure and the car-less lifestyle. The internet is a vast place and while I’ve only begun to probe its deeper depths I do feel like I’ve scratched enough of the surface to create a small offering of interesting links and information to share with you.
Election time creates an atmosphere of intense social interaction. Everyone seems to awaken to the fact that they have a voice, a choice, and an opinion. The concept that we are able, in part, to choose the direction and character of our future translates to many of us becoming emboldened to share the opinions and ideas that we would otherwise keep silent. And not only do we share them, but we often insist upon them, creating division and intolerance towards anyone with an opposite view. Most of this “sharing” or “discussion” is happening on an impersonal basis. While we still seem to be obeying the old laws of not discussing politics or religion in public, we have realized that the media, meaning all forms of media, from the press to social media, are more of a mouthpiece for opinions then they are a forum for open and understanding discussion. While this has become commonplace in news media through the skewing of facts and opinions to support a one-sided view, it has also taken hold in social media outlets like Facebook. I’m sure most of you who are reading this are familiar with the phenomenon I’m talking about, and probably many of you have taken part in it as well. The silent shouting and badgering, sarcastic mockery and outright hate for not only an individual, but also the entire demographic he stands for. And yes, the incessant and unrelenting instruction that you VOTE!