It is 4:14 AM on New Year’s Day 2016.
No, I haven’t stayed up all night partying; I was in bed by 7:45 PM on New Year’s Eve being completely exhausted by a poor nights sleep and a day spent at the gym, running errands and playing with the kids. Now that I’m up so early I thought I’d get a few thoughts down on the year 2015.
In our society at large I don’t think 2015 is a year necessarily worth celebrating: we’ve got the demagogue Donald Trump leading the polls for Republicans, the Middle East is a mess, we’re close to war with China over some islands with fossil fuels that create global warming and global warming seems to be past the point of no return already.
When I look at the various parties all over the world they all seem like a tired out old record. The date of the year is going to change and suddenly everyone forgets what the year actually brought. It is akin to throwing a party on the deck of the Titanic while it is sinking. We’ve hit an ice burg, the boat is going down but someone yells that we’ve got campaign and fireworks on the upper levels so the crowd immediately all shuffle and ignore that we’re all in serious trouble. The party lasts all weekend until everyone returns to work on Monday realizing that nothing has changed, we have a hangover and to make matters worse, we still continue to sink.
However, it is possible to make 2016 better than 2015 for our own personal lives even if we cannot do something about the state of world affairs at large. The change in the date is a good catalyst which gives us momentum to make resolutions but it will only work if we have perseverance to see them through as the days and months roll by. For me personally I’ve been contemplating a change in careers. This is not an easy decision as I work from home and actually like my job. I just do not see any more room for personal advancement and wonder about all the excitement happening in the technology industry in San Francisco. I wonder if I should go join that party or be content and pass up on opportunities which have been coming my way.
Given that I’ve changed my life – switching countries – many times in the past I know making a change can be done but I do not want to have regret or hate myself as I’ll have to leave the comforts of home and actually drive to an office everyday. But if I do nothing than nothing changes and I do not progress in my work career. It seems 2016 has already presented me with a very big life decision and if I make the change then 2016 could become very exciting (or awful). If I do not make the change 2016 is just another year where nothing much happened.
But going back to Donald Trump I’m in awe that so many of my countrymen are dumb enough to support this clown. It reminds me of looking back at history in disbelief about how a population could support such a terrible person and what they must have been thinking. We tend to rationalize that it was in the past and perhaps the people back then just were not as educated, informed or generally smart as we are now. Then we take a look at Donald Trump and all his support and realize not much has changed in terms of stupid people wanting to support idiotic leaders. It makes one lose faith in Democracy as a whole. With Donald Trump gaining so much support Democracy seems like a very poor system.
And it is not just Donald Trump. We have legacy families that hold on to power just because that is something the wealthy want to do. Once people gain a lot of money they are not satisfied and next want power. The examples of this are innumerable. We had Meg Whitman – the billionaire – who wanted to become Governess of California; in my opinion she had the money and so not being satisfied next wanted power. We have the Clinton and Bush families who have turned America into an alternating monarchy and I imagine if there were any chance at all their children will be running for office in the future.
If I had my way we should go back to having a council of wise elders who do not depend on popular support in order to make wise decisions. The population at large just isn’t sophisticated enough to make the correct choices and leaders who depend on the number of supporters will usually not decide against them unless there is a powerful corporation which trumps popular will. The corporations hold the most powerful cards and even though we pretend the people are in control that certainly isn’t the case.
In fact, democracy has become a charade. We’re lead to believe we have a choice and the power to make real change through elections but corporations have become more powerful than governments and the corporations main aim is to make ever more money no matter how many lives have to be spared. Money and power now trump human life and the well being of the planet.
Well, I think I’ve said enough about that and should move on to other things.
It is now 5:15 AM and I have to start thinking about caching the first sunrise of 2016. We were invited over to a friends house but my boy seems to have a stomach bug so we had to cancel so he doesn’t spread it to them. This leaves a day wide open but keeping the boys indoors all day doesn’t seem like a very good choice. Perhaps we’ll head down to Fitzgerald Marine Reserve or have lunch at a restaurant – if anyplace is open. Today should be a relaxing day but I might feel the need to continue organizing different rooms of the house to really feel like I’m getting 2016 off to a great start. And perhaps I could meet the guys outside by myself for a drink or two later on in the evening.
I’ve done a lot of grumbling in this post but I am looking forward to 2016 and starting to feel a little of the excitement regarding this change of the date.
As a last thought, I am sad to see Christmas over and have placed the last remnants of it outside over the Halloween pumpkins which have now all but disappeared. Time marches on.
Sunrise on New Year’s Day 2016 at Oyster Point, CA