Empty Days

Sunday, July 11, 2004



Comforts vs Freedom.

Footnote 21. (Paragraph 128) Since many people may find paradoxical the notion that a large number of good things can add up to a bad thing, we will illustrate with an analogy. Suppose Mr. A is playing chess with Mr. B. Mr. C, a Grand Master, is looking over Mr. A's shoulder. Mr. A of course wants to win his game, so if Mr. C points out a good move for him to make, he is doing Mr. A a favor. But suppose now that Mr. C tells Mr. A how to make ALL of his moves. In each particular instance he does Mr. A a favor by showing him his best move, but by making ALL of his moves for him he spoils the game, since there is not point in Mr. A's playing the game at all if someone else makes all his moves. The situation of modern man is analogous to that of Mr. A. The system makes an individual's life easier for him in innumerable ways, but in doing so it deprives him of control over his own fate.
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That's a very simple and straightforward description of what it's like to live in a highly regulated and highly comfortable society, the epitome of which is the urban life. The price is simple: for every protection and comfort you must pay with restriction of personal liberty. The more comforts, the less freedom. We are swamped in comforts.

Most people prefer it this way. The alternatives are too radical to consider.





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