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“Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” is a well-known phrase in the United States Declaration of Independence. The vision of the Founding Fathers must have come like a breath of fresh air on the nascent nation. It has stirred all those who read in their flush of youth. Youth is unbaked dough and in the heat of experience,- direct from life, he shall realize these no longer resonate well either in the light of his own subjective realm of experience or from what he has seen in the world about him. (I use man in an inclusive sense.) There has been so many conspiracy theories lately and now it would seem the more improbable it is, appeals all the more to people. It is sheer waste of time to impute such vile gossip on those who served the nation creditably and lived in glare of fame and public service. It degrades their service as well as trivialize their fellow citizens who elected them in free and fair electoral process. Two tribes in terms of pursuit of pleasure seems cut and dried. What keeps irreconcilable is ironically enough is trivial. Creating memes and using social media to create info wars speak volumes as to the damage this divide causes. Such despicable fake news involving fellow citizens on account of their color or race and without producing a shred of evidence cannot be the fruit of education.
Why speak of America we have had instances of dissemination of fake news in Tamil Nadu resulting in spate of lynching. In my childhood it was every saffron clad itinerant sadhu a potential child snatcher and we were warned to keep clear off their offer of sweets and company. Now the social media has not made the consumer wiser. There is fake news and unfortunately it is crowding out real news from cyberspace. If this is progress all I can seek is the life of Robinson Crusoe as an alternative. Divine rights of kings was a conspiracy played on poor oafs by the elite. Then we have had Enlightenment which broke up the stranglehold of Rome. It did not clean up the Church; we have instead news about priests using their position of trust to molest children, continuing as nothing ever mattered. What Enlightenment are we talking about if a cloud of conspiracy theories is let out one after the other as though from Satan’s Hall of Pandemonium? Liberty, Life and the Pursuit of Happiness are three foundlings transported from Europe to America. If liberty is to cleave the air with fake news and conspiracy theories of what worth is free speech or the First Amendment? Happiness is more in the pleasure each citizen pursues and as a result their combined actions degrade happiness of clean air, environment and of fulfilled life from national life. If such happiness leave a planet degraded for our children is my pleasure to be equated with irresponsibility for my fatherland? So there must an equation be established and it can only be achieved by placing a moral imperative between the world without and world within.

Let us look at love we have for our happiness with love for our nation. Patriotism is not merely saying what others profess but do not when the nation needs them. It is to suffer the inconveniences any war entails but also ensuring that if my life would ensure safety for my offspring as well as satisfy my moral imperative doing the right thing is reward enough. A Purple Heart is for the wounded but I need not fight for it instead go into the thick of action to protect the flank of my brother at arms so he and I can come home safe from the war. War is unpredictable for soldiers as living is for civilians because you go out and you shall never know if a hit and run case will knock you down or not. So keep living and doing the right is what a man with moral sense would do. It can only be achieved by example shown to us at tender age. Such exchange between cultures, social classes and between parents and offsprings build up generations after generations. Instead we have the pursuit of wealth resorting o excuses for failure. Quality time of the 80s was a conspiracy that some fools touted to create wealth.
The only conspiracy, it has been going on for centuries, and has brought down nations simply because no one wants answer. Now for the question: is my world view colored by my ignorance or is it affecting my ability to think clearly? If the latter is the truth should not I do something about it?
This conspiracy between world without and the world within makes value of things and persons a lie. ‘When I want wealth nothing should stand in my way’. If this is what motivates you, well, you have a problem getting values of both right. Things are things but the value you give it can skew your judgment. So fools speak of pursuit of pleasure. Conspiracy of lie is in your value and pursuit.
Recently was a news about Manafort’s lavish style. Value of an ostrich is in the coat of Manafort. He would move heaven and earth to get what no one else has, an ostrich coat. He thought he would be the man on the go. Shucks, he is instead is in a cell. Conspiracy of his value and pursuit of it got him into the present predicament. Who is to blame?
An ostrich is not a thing but a coat made of ostrich is. So it is the price of a coat+ life of an animal. Worldview of a fool wants an ostrich killed for his value of playing a man of power. It is how we have endangered species and shrinking of Amazon Basin, weird climate and planet plastic. It is all in an equation of Supply and Demand. Fool of a supplier shall always be found to cater demand of another fool. Pursuit of pleasure is a snake pit and wealth is at the bottom.
Who but a fool thinks his own worth depends on the Value placed by the world outside? Patriotism is a value touted by everyone but when President Trump tweeted six days ago ‘collusion is no crime’ one can see where bone spur comes in the equation.
Benny

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