Hope vs. Greed, the Future vs. Today, Obama vs. McCain

The self-sacrifice involved in mutual sharing and co-operative action is impossible without hope. When today is all there is, we grab and hold on. We are afloat in an ocean of nothingness and we hang on to any miserable piece of wreckage as if it were the tree of life…

Those without hope are divided and driven to desperate self-seeking. Common suffering by itself, when not joined with hope, does not unite nor does it evoke mutual generosity. The enslaved Hebrews in Egypt, "their lives made bitter by hard bondage," were a bickering, backbiting lot. Moses had to give them hope of a promised land before he could join them together. The thirty thousand hopeless people in the concentration camp at Buchenwald did not develop any form of united action, nor did they manifest any readiness for self-sacrifice. There was there more greed and ruthless selfishness than in the greediest and most corrupt of societies. "Instead of studying the way in which they could best help each other they used all their ingenuity to dominate and oppress each other."

That’s from Eric Hoffer’s great book "The True Believer," and it’s true enough, but I’m still bummed…John McCain so reminds me of a miserable piece of wreckage. 


Published by Kit Stolz

I'm a freelance reporter and writer based in Ventura County.

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