Again this is late, and I’m sorry. Yesterday Older Son came over and powered through moving boxes that were in the wrong place, while I powered through unpacking the ones that very quickly overwhelmed my bedroom. By the time I did the instapundit night dj job, I was almost sleep posting. Hopefully there weren’t any blunders too big.
So I slept a little late and haven’t had nearly enough coffee.
I was thinking as I woke up, that we’ve been eating out way too much. After unpacking/moving all day, I’ll be so tired the thought of CHEWING makes me want to cry, much less the thought of cooking. (Actually I still manage to chew, but there was a time I was so tired I had to have milk, because eating was too much work.)
When I get in that state, particularly if I also forgot to eat all day, I can be a pain and a half. Add to that the tiredness of going out to eat every night — secret is I prefer my own cooking — and you get this:
“Where do you want to eat?”
“I don’t know.”
“Okay, we’ll go to Mexican Place.”
“Right then where?”
“I don’t know.”
“What about Chinese Place?”
“That would be fine.”
“But do you want to go there?”
“I don’t care.”
Repeat with anything you can think of.
I’ve heard exchanges of this type related as to why “people don’t really want freedom. They want someone to choose for them.”
Right. Sometimes we do. On things that don’t really matter. Anyone who knows me well knows that “Sarah wants someone to choose for her” is the answer to “what is the sign that the apocalypse has come?”
BUT in certain things, at certain times, like when picking a restaurant while I’m dead tired, I want someone to say “We’re going to Pete’s, and that’s final.” However, because I’ve trained my guys to leave me my decision space, we end up in an argument when I refuse to choose. Same with every member of the family, btw, so it gets funny.
The truth is freedom — any type, even “just” where you want to eat tonight — is work. Granted, the choice of a restaurant is less work than most, but you must still have some idea of menus, prices, and relative location of the place, which means really work at informing yourself. And then you need to figure out what you’re in the mood for.
Does the fact that sometimes, on minor things, I don’t want to do the work mean I really prefer tyranny?
Oh, hell no. I’ll be frank, I never want to do the work. I’m very lazy except for writing. BUT I also am aware that no one else choosing for me will choose “right.”
Look, remember being a kid and having your parents choose for you? If you had anywhere near a normal childhood, those two people are the closest you’ll come in all the world, to someone with your best interests at heart. And yet, how many times as a kid did they pick things you didn’t want? And I’m not talking of the “broccoli is better for you than chocolate” type of thing. I’m talking when your choice would be just as valid, like in buying outfits, but they picked one you hated, because THEY liked it?
Now make the people in charge of your decisions strangers with their own interests. Do you see?
So what do you do when decisions are a pain?
You retain your freedom for all the decisions you can, and then you delegate. Or in the case of restaurants, you write all the names down, close your eyes, point at one.
Do that in the case of judges and other political appointees you don’t have the time to research too. (In my case I vote AGAINST retaining all judges unless one has obtruded on my attention as particularly good. Too much time in power is a problem we have with our “elites” right now.)
But as much as I disdain the work, it must be done. Once you surrender your sovereignty to get some peace, you’ve surrendered it all. Yes, they’ll pick what restaurant you are going to go to, but also what you can say, what you can’t and how.
A lot of minorities — gay people come to mind — think an all powerful state could give them everything they want. (At least their public representatives do. Many gay people I know and I’m friends with are holding up both middle fingers RIGHT NOW.) And they’re right. An all powerful government COULD.
It also COULD take away everything they have. Weirdly — and it is weird — I can’t name a single totalitarian government that has been good for minorities. Communists in particular almost always attain power by courting minorities of all kinds, and then repress them ruthlessly when they attain power. The “exception” is Africa, and it’s not an exception. Black skin (well, varying shades of brown) is a MAJORITY in Africa. So there communists don’t hunt down people with black skin. Any other color, though, you’re out of luck.
I don’t know why, except that groups tend to behave like a lot of individuals, not a collective mind, and since that doesn’t fit the theory, communists must repress it. Maybe. Or maybe the only way to run a totalitarian state is by uniformity.
So when they think instead of doing the work of fighting for what they want in the forum of public opinion, they can surrender that part to the government, and short cut the process, what they are actually doing is surrendering ALL their decisions and all their rights to the hands of a third party.
Do some people want that?
Maybe. Some people are so damaged that “not thinking” is a great good. They live where I am after 12 hours of unpacking boxes.
But the majority of people? No. They don’t want to make decisions on what doesn’t matter to them. And being busy cooking, cleaning, unpacking boxes, going to work and raising fat babies, they think a lot of things don’t matter because they didn’t take trouble to inform themselves.
This results in the two horrible candidates standing for president, but it’s not all. No. The worst part is “people don’t want freedom. They want someone to choose for them.”
Oh, h*ll no. Except for our delegated power in our chosen representatives, most of us want to decide on what actually matters to us. It’s what matters that varies.
Tell the most apathetic voter that you’re going to touch his precious — whatever that is — and it’s a lot like threatening to take me to a Mexican restaurant. (I actually like food from Yucatan. I despise tex-mex.)
Listen to what people are saying and the inferences made from your refusals to choose.
Sweet liberty is in your hands.
Keep it there.