Dear Everyone - Definitely Off Topic - But Of Interest
We all seem to be John or Jane Doe working types of one kind or another. This blurb on careers which basically dumped on MBA's and lawyers and non - profit types for working at something they like - but at what price? Then followed some sage advice.
The author is Dr. Marty Nemko a local Berkeleyite with a PhD In Education
I saw therefore I share.
As someone who really did come close to starving pursuing an academic carreer I loved
and who did lose five years of her life somehow trying to live as an independent philosopher, and could not make it work.. I still find this revolting to the bottom of my soul.
First of all, there's a difference in the pursuit of passion, prestige, and social service. The second
two, the social climbers and the do-gooders, I have no use for. But I am pained to see this
attitude towards artists, intellectuals, etc. by libertarians. Someone who gives up such a passion in
life for the sake of a 'practical' carreer is not my emblem of what freedom is all about.
What I hear is a conservative fear of 'intellectuals' a la Hayek, Schumpter, Kristol, Paul Johnson to match a socialist's fear of 'businessmen'. This war doesn't have to exist. I support businesspeople *because* commerce and industry can have the same passion as art, whether that business is Hollywood or plumbing supplies. If I thought capitalism *was* inherently an inevitable accpetance of dispirited compromise, I would seriously reconsider my support for it. As it is, I *am* a businessperson. On the ~very~ free market.
The lesson of Janis Joplin is the unfathomable cruelty of society that devours its best. She should
have just stayed in Texas and smothered her passion for music? 'Sound career advice'? Only
according to a standard of values that holds persistence in grey existence as better than a single bright flash.
I got my second choice in life, which I don't expect many people to understand, but which I am nevertheless proud. I love my life because I still live with passion and not 'practically'. What pain I have comes from not having been able to follow my first love. And even now, I have far more of my first love of idesa than I would ever have in 'practical' peace with the world.
"The choice was mine, and mine completely:
I could have, any prize that I desired
I could burn with the splendor of the ~brightest~~ fire-
Or else... or else I could choose time" (_Evita_)
Libertarianism should not be the politics of the grey leading the grey, urging the young to give up before they've tried, the place for the sold-out, the narrow, the weary, the tired, the cynical. Live such and believe in liberty if you much. I myself learned libertarianism from Rand, Shelley, and _the Dead Poets Society_. I followed my dreams, paid a price... paid the Price, and would do it again a thousand times.
If anyone young and thinking of giving up your dreams is reading this, then please hear me: from someone who survived, or at least mostly survived, don't give up, it's not worth it, and there are sometimes other paths. I made every blind and stupid dazzled assumption the young can make, but I would still rather have made those mistakes. The whiff of the tomb you smell in the middle-aged is real, it's not you, but they, who need to 'grow up'- humans do not gain wisdom by aging like wines. Adjustment is a tomb. What is here offered is a slow rot instead of a pyre.
"Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark, in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet, the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won, it exists, it is real, it is possible, it's yours." (_Atlas Shrugged_)
In this world, only death is certain. Even the smallest chance of passion is wise according the most sober and asult realization of them all: mortality. Any life you choose will see you cold in the end. Ask yourself what you would rather have died for.
To the old, in fact or spirit: I believe in your liberty to live as you want, even in stagnation, and do not love the altrusim and socialism that most idenitify with ideals and dreams. I have no carefor status- dare question me on this- nor do I despise commercial or unglamorous lives. But is "folow your dreams and starve" really what you want?
There must be a better way.
'Jane Doe working type'
"If their lives were exotic and strange...
they would likely have gladly exchanged them
for something, a little more plain;
maybe something, a little more sane...
We each pay a fabulous price
for our visions of Paradise
but the Spirit...
of a Vision...
is a Dream..."
- Rush, 'Mission'