Thursday, 26 January 2017
"'Our trouble today is that we could leave individually, but we've got so big an investment in Odyyseus, emotional more than financial, it'd hard to see how we could -'
"And the cigarette dropped from his fingers, and he stared into a vision for a minute that became very silent in the room, until he breathed, 'Or could we?'"
-Poul Anderson, "Ramble With A Gamblin' Man" IN Anderson, Tales Of The Flying Mountains (New York, 1984), pp. 129-163 AT pp. 154-155.
This is yet another moment of realization, of course!
Harker, head of the commission from Washington, says that both Donald Bell of Odyyseus and he himself are guilty of being "'...glutted while others are poor.'" (p. 143) No, they are not. I am not guilty if my salary is higher than another man's because my work is more skilled than his. I am guilty if my large income derives directly from keeping others in poverty. Don't spread the guilt around. Direct it to where it applies.
Harker seems to contradict himself. Having spoken of poverty, he acknowledges that no one in North America is starving but claims that there are riots because "'...an ever-mounting standard of living...not only stops rising, it takes a sharp downturn...'" (ibid.)
I think that hardships greater than a mere downturn in an already high standard of living are necessary to explain riots!