Everything sublime is as difficult as it is rare. Baruch Spinoza

Thursday, April 23, 2009


Soul shadows you everywhere.  ~Anda Fiori

Intellect without soul. Ponder that for a moment. On first consideration it may be doing without thinking, but it's deeper than that. It's doing without caring. And perhaps it's more than that.

The Best and the Brightest. A phrase that has been bandied about a lot. Graduate in the top percentage of your class at Harvard and ride the shuttle to Wall Street. Money Express. Intellect without soul.

Lawyers rising to the top of their game. Writing briefs parsing words, massaging truths, authorizing torture by saying it's not torture. International law doesn't understand our need, the Geneva Convention is outdated, obscure. We are The Best and the Brightest. Intellect without soul.

Board rooms across the world, men in suits sit and discuss how to make the profit margin wider. More profit is necessary, more profit is good. Hong Kong was a great run, but now Mainland China is better. No regulations and the masses will work for nothing. Profit will be so high that a few pesky lawsuits over dead children, dead pets, a drop in the ocean.  Profit. Intellect without soul.

A state governor, a good christian man, threatens to veto any budget that comes to his desk with income tax increases meant to close a whopping deficit. He smiles benignly at the camera, speaks in a soft, convincing voice and says that more cuts are needed. We can't raise taxes on those who can afford to help in crisis. That's just wrong. Cut social services more, cut state healthcare for lower income people. Cut police and fire services. Cut, cut, cut. Intellect without soul.

It comes at you with a smile and an outstretched hand. It speaks with a voice of reason, it tells you it has your best interest at heart, just let it be. All will be well. It's raw capitalism without restraint, it's raw power without control, it's ideology without heart.


  1. and sadly, it's the name of the game...tho' hopefully obama is really changing things. i guess just not in minnesota....

  2. Great blog this morning Sandra. You should send it to the Strib.

  3. I had to read the first sentence a couple of times and put my thinking cap on. WOW...great points all and so typical of what is running the world today. Good post...note all the points seem to be money driven in the end.

  4. In the end, it comes down to us. If we, as a country continue to accept what has become the status quo, it's what we will get. If we make an awful noise, things will change. We had 50 years of relative prosperity, no enormous bubbles which ultimately burst. Then we gleefully walked right back to unrestrained capitalism. From Ronald Reagan through George Bush II it rolled like a behemoth, increasing in size and scope as it lumbered along. It won't be easy, but the only way to affect real, meaningful change is to demand it. I'm not sure enough people truly understand the serious nature of the economic condition of the world to make that awful noise yet.

  5. Your words ring amazingly true. Sad, but true.

  6. The *love* of money is the root of all evil & to profit from those less fortunate is truely wicked.

    As a people we have grown callous when simple courtesy raises eyebrows & draws comment. I decided long ago I can't change the world but I can decide how I will act within the world.

  7. Unfortunately, the world can dictate how we live. The root of all evil is unfettered power. From it the wellspring of wealth and callousness flow. It camouflages itself in reason, safety, opportunity, religion and fear. I worry as much about the Obama administration. A precedent has been established and power is rarely relinquished. Bush has set up an executive branch with mind-boggling power. I don't want this president in that position any more than I wanted the previous to have it.

  8. the only power we have is our vote. Use it wisely. It is a time when we need to walk the walk and talk the talk. Only with our actions can we change this.

  9. I'm sure you know the quote: Power corrupts; absaolute power corrupts absolutely.


I really appreciate the concept and sentiment behind awards, but I cannot participate in them anymore. I have too may and I have not got the time to devote to participating properly. To all who have honored me, I am grateful but I don't have seven more things to tell anyone about myself! And I'm a terrible passer-oner.