Personal Responsibility- For a Better World
By Tony DeLorger © 2010
The conjecture that we are without blame and not responsible for what our governments do, is pure madness. Even by standing there and doing nothing, we have allowed governments, churches and institutions to act irresponsibly and in their own interests, despite us. To stand on a platform of inaction is the same as supporting the deed and we have done that well for centuries of social injustice. The reality is that as human beings and inhabitants of our planet, we are responsible for every act, good or bad, of the people we have chosen to take charge. In disagreement we have chosen to be silent rather than rock the boat, and as a consequence have found ourselves voiceless amid a sea of trouble. It is not in us all to be activists, but when things are going wrong and we stand idly by, how can we ever expect change? The greatest and most undermining influence on our social problems is you and I, being complacent and ineffectual.
Personal responsibility is a concept that we haven’t assimilated, apart from keeping our rooms tidy and cleaning up after ourselves. The reality is that we carry a responsibility for those that have come before us and those who will come after us. I believe we are collectively responsible for what happens in our world, and until we accept that joint responsibility, the world will never find peace.
Complacency and ambivalence are the traits that have delivered us to this place in which we now live, a place where governments do exactly what they want, and for the ease of response, we let them. We complain about taxes, working hours, cost of living, insurance premiums and the like, but are not prepared to do anything about it, stand up and be counted. Change can only occur with committed action. We the public, have an immense power that we should exercise. If money is the root of all power then we, who are spending it, have the greater power collectively, not the manufacturers, producers or retailers. Together we can dominate what is produced and used by us, if only we would realise the power that we have, organise ourselves and use it to our advantage. For example, if we collectively decided to support our own industries, like orange growers or sugar growers, and force the government to disallow cheaper imports, we would save thousands of jobs. We may pay more for the products initially, but gaining more jobs, more local profit and eventually less taxes and lower interest rates will make us strong, personally and as a nation. There must be some foresight used and a dedication to supporting our own country first. If we continue to trade and buy cheaper products from third world countries despite our own industries, how can we expect to develop and support local business? We need to support our labour force, and be even more independent and strong as a nation?
It’s all about attitude. Government lumps huge and excessive paperwork on businesses because they believe that business is trying to cheat them out of their revenue raising. This attitude has turned many small businesses into cheats, because they cannot survive if they don’t. If the government put as much effort into incentives for small business to increase their production and profits and ultimately support them and make everyone more successful, our country would be far better off. How can a government deal with its people in such a negative way and expect growth and success.
By this attitude, the government and tax office have more than alienated themselves. They are looked on by small business, the lifeblood of our economy, as ‘those bastards that make it all but impossible to run a business.’ No-one is going to think that you don’t have to pay your dues or pay taxes. Shutting down small business over ridiculous reporting procedures and tax burdens, while corporations are paying just about nothing in tax and laughing all the way to the bank, is simply outrageous. It proves beyond doubt that money and politics walk hand in hand.
Obviously equality does not exist in our capitalist society or the business worlds, and those with money and power, have far more to gain from the present political systems. Again this inequality shows how our present form of democracy has failed to hear the voices of the people. As the rich get richer, the gap between them and the struggling masses widens. The money has the power and the voice, and democracy has all but failed the masses that in our free-enterprise system have become like serfs to the Money Lords.
Free enterprise means opportunity for all, but when governments favour only those who have gained some positions of power, and who inadvertantly are in a position to support the politicians, free enterprise is in a sense no longer free. Those in power must be responsible for not only the corporations and magnates, but also the fledglings and the magnates of tomorrow. There must be a sense of equality and a fair and just administration of business activity that excludes bias and political consideration. Again, the opportunity for corruption must be taken from politicians. An even playing field must be a precondition to a positive change in government process.
The process of thinking and responsibility has become so muddied by the complications of life that it has changed into something entirely different. We have as sentient beings, lost ourselves in an avalanche of denial, entrenched in our day-to-day rituals of life. The truth of our irresponsibility and apathy is so blatantly obvious because of what the world has become. We are now surrounded by the result of our attitudes and we are paying the price. Injustice, corruption, racial and religious hatred are but some of what we have allowed to dominate our earthly existence. Now, if we want to save ourselves, there will have to be radical steps to arrest such an entrenched reality.