A Magic Pill for Everything?
I am always struck by Man’s desperate groping for a Magic Solution to each and every problem. It is a bit pathetic but also of course rather funny, especially if one tries to see things from the perspective of a visiting alien from outer space.
Let’s take “The Fat Pill”. What we really want is not to eat properly and cut down our vast consumption of just about everything but especially burgers, chips, popcorn swamped in sugar, honey or chocolate, giant steaks and pizzas, crisps, candy, and of course alcohol and simultaneously combine this with a healthy lifestyle involving regular exercise that makes us pant (to get the heart going – nothing to do with sex, though Tiger Woods is clearly pretty fit)!
No, what we prefer is to keep on stuffing ourselves and then take a FAT PILL! Whoever invents this is going to make Bill Gates look like a starving rickshaw- puller in India.
Then there is the ALCOPILL. Rather than drink in moderation to the benefit of all and sundry many of us prefer to binge ourselves to the point of death and then, just before hitting the sack (if we make it that far), grope for the magic pill. I believe pharmaceutical companies worldwide are working furiously on this in the hope of hitting the jackpot. Much more profitable than boring old stuff with malaria, which kills millions every year.
It may be cynical old age, but I’m currently off magic solutions. As a language teacher, I saw the desperate scrambling for nirvana when language laboratories came in. Every school had to have one; every timetable was hacked about; teachers would become redundant ….. Oh dear … most language labs are now broken-down, dusty and abandoned piles of junk at the bottom of some rubbish tip somewhere. Are wind-turbines in the same category?
dot.com? This was the magic pill of the late 1990s! The new paradigm. Everything would be different; billions could be made without doing any real work. Oh, and does this remind us of the banker’s world? Of course, they are an exception because DESPITE everything they can STILL make billions for doing no real work.
As for government finance (a quite different animal), the current British magic pill is to print money and bung it into the economy in the hope of stimulating “growth”. None of this “living within our means”, taking “a bit of strong medicine” stuff. No, we’ll go for the magic pill so we can get back to normal levels of debt and spending. Patience, virtue, moderation and commonsense are much less fun than the magic pill of printing money.
And there is a VERY GOOD reason for this of course: the GENERAL ELECTION is around the corner and we don’t want any pain BEFORE then, do we? After, of course – if we get the right result – we will have a bit of commonsense back. Not that we want to, but it’ll be forced on us by the markets … but then we can blame it all on someone else. In Britain’s case, Mrs. Thatcher will probably still come in for considerable stick, even though she left power nearly twenty years ago.
Magic? Sadly, one can see the same desperate groping for the easy solution in religion. We are metaphysically, morally, spiritually and practically lost, so let’s look for some magic to provide a solution, even if there is not the slightest proof of the existence of God that would stand up in court.
Our epitaph may well be: Homo Sapiens – the Magic Species. Unfortunately, magic is best left to conjurors; it is not a recipe for managing society.
by Chris Snuggs