Rough thoughts/notes that pertain to an online discussion I stumbled on somewhere…
I’m not sure I’d attribute societal rot to the guys at the top of the financial food chain. I do think people rely on other people and institutions way to much though. A lot of my family relies on my grandparents – they leech. My mom knows how to work the government programs for her own benefit. And I know plenty of people that, even at this age (20-30 years old), are living like they’re still kids in school, with mommy and daddy paying for their cars, their clothes, and in some cases even their rent. My aunt does all of these things, plus some, for her adopted daughter, and she (the daughter) is almost thirty. But I think these are all examples of a symptom, not necessarily the cause of modern society’s problems.
In my experience, lots of people seem all to responsible for their own spiritual – and finacial – rot. It all comes down to the individual, the way I look at it… and when it’s seen on wider scales, I think it’s because individuals are influencing each other with similar lazy, incompetent, or even ignorant attitudes and behaviors (and other individuals are – knowingly or unwittingly – allowing those influence to affect them towards decay).
Greed isn’t the problem; reckless lack of any intellect applied to greed is a problem though (an ignorant behavior), which is a case of following desires without guiding them through reason, through simple common sense.
That problems like this are noticeable in a society only seems like an excuse for each individual that fits the bill of decadence… people like this seem to point to things outside of themselves, like society, their friends, their parents, their past, etc. as reasons for being the way they are. But I believe that how each of these influences actually affects his or her life is up to each individual. It’s choices, not a matter of fact.
So really, what I guess I’m trying to say is that if you want to bitch about the decay of society, the source is individuals. The Individual is at the heart of any group, I think. And strong individuals make for a strong town, city, state, country, etc. Lazy, stupid, or otherwise incompetent individuals make for a hollow collective. If you had no anger, no passion, no heart, I’d call you spiritually sick; in society, maybe the individual plays a similar role to emotions and to passion, and if the average individual is lacking then so to will society.