Life should be exciting

Posted: July 10, 2012 in Philosophy

My parents can’t understand why I’ve quit my job. I only have a couple of weeks left and I keep getting little remarks occasionally thrown at me. Anything from telling me how I won’t be able to afford anything soon but they also tell me the upside is that if I’m on benefits I won’t have to pay for my prescription medicine from the doctor. (Although I don’t see £7 every ten months as that much of a problem.)

My Dad is a bit past 60 now and has been in his career since dropping out of school at 16. He’s moved companies but it has always been the same job (and not a very glamorous one at that). It pays pretty well and he’s saved up a lot by being careful with his money from an early start. It’s all very admirable since he has provided a family with a good home, car, plenty of food, we all had mobile phones once we started secondary school, etc etc. So I understand when he criticises me for leaving a job without any guarantee of getting another, especially at the moment when even the most basic jobs are hard to come by and welfare is being cut left, right and centre so that not having a job is even harder on your life than before despite there being few opportunities – I will leave that point there before I start ranting about politics instead of what I’m supposed to be ranting, I mean blogging, about.

My Mum is similar. She’s been in her same job for most of my life. It has no prospects for promotion or any kind of bonuses and since it’s a public sector job she is getting what little pension she has cut back (thanks Mr Cameron. No really. Great job. I hope your Mum’s proud.)  So she has no choice but to stay in her job because as she gets closer to 60 there is less and less chance that she will be employed by another company.

So I do understand their scepticism. I have been in my job for 3 years and I have learnt a great deal. Last year I was given a new contract with a pension scheme, monthly salary, fairly low and flexible hours, as well as a small amount of private medical cover. All very nice but it doesn’t actually pay all that great. But it’s not the money that’s making me leave. It’s not the un-organised middle management, or the fact that the business is currently losing money, it’s not because I spend the majority of my time on my own in a windowless room, it’s not that I have to drive because I finish too late to catch a bus, it’s not even the fact that it’s such unsociable hours that I rarely get to see my friends.

It’s the fact that it’s boring. My job varies more than most peoples jobs but it’s still boring. I’ve become pretty good at it and it’s no longer challenging. And I can’t stand the idea of doing something menial.

I want something exciting.
I want it to make me happy.
I also want it to make me sad.
I want to feel like what I’m doing is worth the effort.
I want it to be worth the effort even if it’s really really hard.

I don’t want to sacrifice the exciting and the unknown for the familiar and the dull. I might be taking a big risk but I’d rather try and fail than not try at all and settle for average. And when I say these things I don’t just mean my job. I mean everything. I mean life, love, work, friends, family, home, travel, everything.

Unless it’s mad, passionate, extraordinary love, it’s a waste of your time.
There are too many mediocre things in life. Love shouldn’t be one of them.

I don’t know who wrote that but my ex told it to me. And since then I’ve tried to apply it to every aspect of my life. It’s a slow and difficult process. Removing yourself from the familiar and the safe is a lot harder than just packing up and walking away. You need to work very hard to leave certain things behind before even leaving. Which reminds me of another quote she once told me which I think will be a nice way to end this blog.

I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy. I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it.

 

Budget is ‘Morally Repugnant’

Posted: March 21, 2012 in Politics

I would love you all to read this entry a friend of mine just made about the budget that was announced today. It’s not too long but it’s informative and it’s funny. You’re getting a bargain for only two minutes of your time. And if you disagree I’m sure she’d love you to start a debate. But be warned she doesn’t go down without a fight!

Budget is ‘Morally Repugnant’.

As someone who has stood as a candidate under the Socialist banner I may get shot for saying all this but I agree with the statement that some are born to lead and some are born to follow, and that it isn’t a bad thing. But what I do have a problem with is that those who are leading get more than those who are following. I don’t believe one person should be rewarded more for doing a different job. The managers in the workplace are as important as the people who answer the phones. Both roles are necessary for the running of the business so I don’t see why the managers should be paid more. It is simply a different role that is to be filled by a person who is able to do it.

I’m clearly not a full on communist since I draw the line at Socialism. But even as a Socialist I know that a Socialist or Communist economy won’t work. What Marx drew up was something close to a Utopian society where everyone is free and equal. However in practice we’ve seen that this isn’t the case. Karl Marx drew up the plans for the perfect society but unfortunately no one has been able to fill it with perfect people. State intervention has proved to be a good thing in certain cases such as healthcare and the minimum wage. But the problem is that people can’t be trusted with power. Fidel Castro has done a lot to help the poor in Cuba but he puts down opposing political ideas with force and although he denies owning any wealth he still continues to live lavishly.

People are flawed, and I’m sure you’ve all heard a phrase along the lines of “The fun of the many is always spoilt by the actions of the few.” Unfortunately for you and me the Few are the ones with the power.

The problem is that people don’t realise how Socialist and Communist the UK really can be at times. The things that people would call Communist are the things that our country should be most proud of: the NHS, minimum wage, benefits, and all the other state intervention that has given the poor a chance to get by in this economy which favours the rich.

But I’m still a Socialist because as a Socialist I can continue to fight and support the things that take us closer to a Socialist society even though I know we’ll never get there. But maybe it’s knowing that we will never go the full whack and become a Communist nation that keeps me involved with the Socialists. I might not support them if I thought they were actually in with a chance! But despite that, I still want to keep trying to make us equal.

What If It Was The Other Way Around?

Posted: December 3, 2011 in Politics

What if it was the other way around? What if Britain was the minority in the world?

What if a bigger, richer, and more powerful group of countries decided that our regime was a threat to the rest of the world. (After all we do have a big stockpile of WMDs.)

Imagine the foreign tanks rolling through our towns and cities. Seeing our towns burning and our friends and family running.

Being told that it was all for our own good and that the new way is better for us. After all we all drink and smoke and have casual sex and believe in things that are different to the majority of the world.

But we are right and the invaders were wrong! Or maybe our way of life really is bad and the Liberators are right.

Politics is boring…?

Posted: November 12, 2011 in Politics

If you’re a friend with me on Facebook you’ll notice that I’m constantly posting news articles, giving updates on protests, and sharing pictures from activist groups such as TRAP and Coalition of Resistance etc. This reached the point that when I posted a music video of one of my favourite bands someone instantly commented “Oh my God! Something that’s not politics!”

So why do people lack so much interest in politics? One argument could be that most people don’t realise how much around them is directly affected by politics which, as they see it, is just a bunch of rich guys sitting in a room and arguing about Europe and occasionally taking us to war and it’s easy to see why. All we hear about is MPs expenses and how the government spends too much. It can certainly become tedious. But there is so much more to it than that. Anything in our lives can be affected by even the smallest decision in Parliament. Anything from parking meters on the side of the road to taking us to war.

But we all know that as well. We may sometimes forget to what extent the decisions made in Parliament affect us but we are aware. So why don’t we care? Why is it that every time you’re in the pub with friends and someone brings up politics the whole table groans? Well it’s simple really. It’s not that politics is boring. It’s not even that people don’t care. It’s simply that people have no faith in politics.

“Well it’s not like we can do anything about it.” and “Politicians are all the same.” These are just two of the most common phrases that come up during a talk about politics. Somebody told me today that politicians are just like actors because they are just paid to lie all the time. The only difference is that actors are entertaining.

The next question I’m about to put to you is almost not worth saying because the answer is obvious. Why do people feel this way? Earlier this year 250,000 people marched through London in protest of government reforms. This was one of the largest peaceful protests seen in Britain in decades. The protesters were demanding that the new coalition government revised it’s spending review and tried to source or save money in different areas to the ones that it had proposed. The ‘cuts’ threaten emergency services, charities, businesses, armed forces, public transport as well as jobs and services all over the country. In the eyes of the protesters no one will be spared apart from the very well off. Lots of alternative solutions have been proposed with solid evidence to back their ideas. There are also lots of professionals who believe that the spending reforms will actually make the problem worse.

Yet despite all this nothing was changed. The students had rioted and nothing changed. The unions went on strike and nothing changed. Government officials resigned in protest and nothing changed. Occupy is now in full swing in over 1,000 cities all over the world where a grand total over half a million people are protesting against the ruling elite in a peaceful (and educated) way. Nothing is changing. There are more strikes and protests planned for later this year and guess what everyone expects to happen afterwards? Nothing of course.

But there are ways of changing the government. Political pressure groups do a good job of affecting government policy. And we have the House of Lords looking out for us, right? They’re not elected so aren’t trying to win votes and secure their pensions. They are appointed because of their knowledge and expertise and experience. Plus there are lobbying groups that are open to everyone. But this may not be good as it sounds. Pressure groups get to give advice but MPs don’t have to listen. The same with lobbying groups. Plus only the rich can afford to pay for them. Low Associates is a lobbying group, sorry, I mean ‘strategic policy advisers.’  It’s run by Andrew Lansley’s (Secretary for the department of Health) wife.

So if you have the money you can pay for him to pass on your ideas straight to the big man himself. Mr Dave C. However, if you’re poor you will have to wait in line at your local village hall once a year to meet your MP who really couldn’t care less if Tesco (that just went through Low Associates to get support) has decided to build a new petrol station next to your house and then halve the value of your property. The House of Lords are great but with the Parliament Act of 1949 the House of Commons don’t need the Lords consent before sending a new Act up for Royal Assent.

So if the official routes are no help, and protesting is no good, then what can you do? Nothing. You just get on with your life, try not to think about it, and groan whenever someone reminds you of your inability to change the world for the better because in the end no one listens.

I like to end on a question so here’s an obvious one. How can you make politics more appealing to someone who doesn’t believe they can make a difference?


Atheists

Posted: October 23, 2011 in Religion
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There is one word which gets used far too often in today’s society with far too little thought behind it’s meaning. Atheist. Or to be more specific the phrase “I’m an Atheist.” is what gets at me because it’s become ‘cool’ to be an Atheist and so the meaning has been lost.

An Atheist is, in the broad sense, the rejection of the idea that there are deities or any kind of greater being. This could be anything from God to Karma. Almost all of my friends would probably consider themselves Atheists, but let’s face it, there’s a bit of agnostic in all of us. Whether it’s hope or simply curiosity we all want something to believe. So this is the main problem I have with most self-proclaimed Atheists. I could go through all my friends one at a time and they’d each reveal some kind of belief. I have friends that believe in Karma, others that believe in true love, some believe in ghosts and the rest are probably just hoping that death isn’t the end. Or if it is, then at least they hope it will be a nice end with some kind of pat on the back from someone saying “You did good.”

I think that I fit best under the title of an Agnostic Atheist. This simply means that I don’t believe in the existence of a deity but I also believe there is still a lot left to discover in this world and that there is probably a lot that we will never find out because it is beyond our comprehension so I don’t rule out the possibility that there is more to life than we currently know. I see the idea of God as just a quick and easy answer to life’s mysteries. We know so little about our world, and virtually nothing about the universe that it is in, so to come to the conclusion of God just looks to me like giving up on learning.

We can’t see sound and we can’t feel light. We only know radio waves are there because we’ve created technology to show us. The same goes for microwaves, x-rays, gamma rays and all those other rays. There’s a huge list of things that we only know about because we created instruments to harness their power. How much else is happening around our heads right now that we have absolutely no idea about? What other kinds of things are happening in space or on other planets? We don’t know. And that is why Atheism is, to me, just as closed minded as religion.

Before I sign off I’m going to leave you with a question to think about and to bang your heads over. Bring this up with your friends next time your in the pub together and see what crazy places the conversation takes you.

Does it make sense for an Atheist to not believe in something that doesn’t exist?

An Introduction

Posted: October 23, 2011 in Updates

So I’ve got a friend who’s been blogging for quite some time and I’m constantly telling her what I think about the things she writes (I usually agree with her.) And my occasional Facebook rants get quite a few people going so I’m going to try and put my thoughts, feelings and views of the world into more coherent stories and articles. For other peoples benefit? Or just mine? I don’t think it matters.

So welcome to the site of a man having a mid-life crisis at 23, trying to change the world for the better of everyone, but also hates all the people in it. Be prepared to love to hate me.

Adam x

The rest of your life...