Thursday, February 7, 2008

Change

Doctor Shortage Change Obama We Are One

Maryland is running short of doctors. In part this is due to the outsourcing of medical training costs by accepting immigrant doctors and depriving young Americans of the opportunity to train for a lucrative and worthwhile career. This is the cost of legal immigration. By focusing the discussion on illegal immigration, the true costs and advantages of the present immigration system are concealed. What happens to a society which develops along this path? It may be financially expedient for a while, but ultimately the community must provide for the training of its own doctors (engineers, lawyers, scientists etc). The bills are coming due, just at the point we can least afford to pay them.

A more efficient health care system would take much greater advantage of greater numbers of less expensive nurses and primary health care workers, and provide a great many worthwhile jobs for the community. This is what government funded health care programs do. They provide lots of good worthwhile jobs. Why are we importing people from other countries to do these professional jobs, when we have such a great need for decent jobs in less well off communities all over the country.

Just because it is manifestly easier for the politicians to contain the great American tradition of accepting people from all over the world in search of a better life for themselves, by allocating slots to people based on their having achieved advanced education overseas, at someone else’s expense. WE demonize as illegal, the undocumented workers who arrive penniless and desperate, as so many of our forefathers did before us. And we forget, in this dispute of who has a “right” to be here, that many arrived in chains, and their descendants still face an almost impossible struggle in many cities and farm communities all over this land of the free.

It is in the nature of all things to change. It is the only constant of which we can be confident. Unceasing change and transformation is fundamental to our existence on this mortal plane. The genetic make up, and the conscious historical traditions of our people are expanding at an ever increasing rate. This is inevitable, and therefore, if you want to be able to understand this change, you need to accept its benefits and its other consequences, and grow your understanding in alignment with it. Senator Obama’s candidacy for the nomination of the Democratic Party is one of the manifestations of this change. The multi cultural lives of our teenagers and young adults in urban and suburban areas of the United States are another indication. Change is speeding up. This is partly because of our abilities to communicate with vast numbers of people very quickly, but this again is neither cause nor effect, but manifestation of a far deeper and more permanent change.

Old barriers of race are breaking down in the United States. Oh we still find lots of ways to separate ourselves from each other. Our suburban lifestyles and car culture have cut and sliced the arrangement of our lives - we don’t get out enough, and when we do go out, casual conversations with the neighbors, once a feature of ordinary life everywhere for hundreds of thousands of years, has been replaced with chatting to the clerk at your local McDonalds. People now meet each other on the internet. In response to a god-awful loneliness (hmm…reminds me of some days as a teenager) people connect with each other over vast distances, and over their local neighborhood sitting in front of small screens.

Pretty soon our situation is going to be dramatically changed in response to the decline in the use of oil to power our lifestyle.

There are all sorts of reasons why we must, and inevitably will, decrease our reliance on fossil fuels. This will entail some very serious re-tooling, and a big rethink in architecture and the design of community living spaces. We simply will not be traveling anything like the distances our current generation, and the previous couple, have always taken for granted. This is another big change that America is racing to embrace, while at the same time squeezing the maximum economic benefits from the existing arrangement. The old structure must fall, and it seems the owners of all that capital investment are preparing (however grudgingly and slowly) to switch to the green economy. The advent of Green products from the makers of Clorox Bleach is a welcome sign. Recent restructuring of the conditionality of loans to energy generation companies requiring investment in cleanup and in renewable sources, is another.

One thing of which you can be certain, the number of energy units consumed is going to go way down for a lot of us. The pollution and noise of the internal combustion engine is about to undergo a dramatic decline. The air will be a lot cleaner.

Managing this change will require very flexible leadership in Washington DC. Does Obama have the capacity to manage, to lead through the minefield of competing interests? Well, maybe, maybe not, but somehow or other we must, if we are to continue to be successful as a nation, develop a way of living in harmony with each other, and with the natural world of which we are a very important part.

In other words, our selves must unite and integrate at higher and more inclusive ways until we can form policy from the core idea that what is good for the world, and for the people of the world, most of all, is necessarily good for America. We must flow with the change to be successful, to resist, to try and delay the change will exhaust the power of all who try it.

We are One.

We are becoming one world people in a very meaningful and transcendent manner. Nothing can interfere with this change. It runs far deeper than the superficial reality of nation states, and water shortages, and resource wars, and whatever else dances in the pixels of broadcast reality.

We are One. It is manifest.

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