During the Vietnam war when U.S. soldiers were due to return back to their homes for leave or the end of their tour of duty, they exclaimed that they
were "goin' back to the world."
i.e. The world = U.S.A.
You begin your post with the address: "Hello ATS!" but then almost every "We" that you use refers to fellow Americans - although ATS is a forum that
is not exclusively a congregation of U.S. citizens.
Almost every statement you make, every question you ask are revealed as the questions and statements of a person who is encapsulated - living in a
kind of bubble.
The reason for the attitude and character of everyday people whom you observe is easily explained - EGO, self-absorption. The sense of entitlement
from the top on down. What you are saying is: "Whatever happened to the American dream?"
The American dream is not exclusively American. It is the dream of all who pledge allegiance to the way of the ego.
There is independence - that is one thing; but the world is really inter-dependent, especially from an ecological point of view.
What gives Americans the right to expect that their society should receive the lion's share of the world's energy supplies and other raw materials?
Why are so many Americans unaware of more than an elementary understanding of geography?
The answer = self absorption and a sense of entitlement.
This can be observed in relation to U.S. international relations but the problem is: so it is without, so it is within.
Whatever you observe in the character of everyday people around you in your community or country is also not exclusive to America. This disease has
spread to many other countries and infected many other cultures.
Thomas Jefferson asserted that American citizens have inalienable rights to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The question is though, what
happiness? How is happiness interpreted by the masses? Surely this is a relevant question, because you have said you were happy when you
were a child but now you are not.
Happiness = pleasure. Pleasure is a drug. What is the nature of addiction and the nature of addicts? The nature of addiction is to justify all means
to seek the object of pleasure, whatever it may be.
I believe that America had the power to gradually transform the whole world into a place that shone with all the principals outlined in her
constitution. Why do I say this? Because look at the power for destruction America has created through its military might, armaments manufacture, and
the sheer scope of political influence. Observe the aping of American culture all over the world.
Energy can be used for positive or negative purpose.
The big picture reveals that humanity has become a species intent on seeking pleasure at the expense of everything they feel does not concern them,
and all that concerns them is that which threatens their pleasure-seeking.
This is why there is so much concern about "end of the world" issues - because it would mean the end of selfish pleasure seeking.
What a shame.
edit on 24-1-2012 by Golden Rule because: (no reason given)