Withering Morality

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Everyone everyday looks for affirmation that their past actions or judgments were right. This is a part of human nature. There’s also another side of human nature that leads to a gross shortfall in morality and, in turn, down the road to ruin. This error in human nature is mostly caused by jealousy or pride. Both jealousy and pride, I believe, are two of the biggest problems facing America today and they are leading unrelentingly to America’s certain — and current — downfall.

Several readers have written to me recently and asked me to give proof of statements made in my book and in my articles that basically boil down to “George W. Bush is a criminal and a liar.” I’m not interested in mad so-called politically correct discussion. Only a fool who is blinded by pride or jealousy cannot see that George is so far deep into his lies that he cannot pull himself out anymore. I do not need to be a Jesus or Kahlil Gibran to see what should be obvious to anyone who starts out with an objective point of view.

People may know — to their hidden sorrow — that their only son is an idiot or a liar, but they don’t like it when an outsider points it out to them — this is where jealousy and pride play a part. Words are very hurtful, but not as devastating as the truth.

Before I go further with this, let me back-track and tell you about two non-events that I witnessed here in Tokyo yesterday:

During a video tape recording for a TV show we took a lunch break. I needed to quench my thirst. I walked around the corner to a large vending machine standing there and bought a refreshment. When I reached down to pick up my drink, the door of the vending machine swung open; it was not locked. I shouted to one of my Japanese co-workers to come over. He did. I pointed to the door of the machine and he said, “Yes, Mike, the attendant absent mindedly forgot to lock the door. But this is not a problem of an unlocked door, this is a problem of morals.”

“Does everyone know about this?” I asked incredulously.

“Yes. Everyone knows.” He replied and he turned to walk away.

I stood there for a moment and pondered this situation. Yes, I thought, this is a problem of morals. The Japanese are such honest people. I know that had that been the United States, that machine would have been stripped bare within minutes.

Am I wrong to think that people would have stolen those drinks from inside that machine in the United States? I don’t think so. But, then again, I spent my teen years and some of my adult life living near Los Angeles, so maybe things are different there. I doubt it. Am I also wrong in calling the taking of those drinks from an unlocked vending machine theft? Absolutely not. Whether the machine was locked or not, taking those drinks would most certainly have been theft. I also suspect that if anyone did steal those drinks, they would try to justify their actions by saying that the machine wasn’t locked. Here is where morality in the United States today takes a big hit.

The second uneventful happening was another friend was riding his bike. Not unusual, on the surface, of course. The unusual thing to me was that the previous week he had mentioned that he left his bike parked by the train station for over a week and he had to go to retrieve it. We both wondered if his bike would still be there. A few years back, he had studied at University of California at Santa Barbara. If it were the USA that he had left his bike outdoors at, we both agreed that for sure his bike would have been stolen. But this is Japan. His bike wasn’t stolen. It was still there where he had left it over a week before.

These two stories lead me back to where I began: With so much evidence in the public domain that George Bush lied about the reasons for the Iraq War; his comments about, “Taking Saddam out,” even before he became president; the current Rove/Plame affair; so many books written by former Bush Staff members — who after finally waking up or finding a conscience had to speak out against Bush; 9/11 happening while Bush was on the watch. On top of that, throw in all the other innumerable shady affairs and suspicious deeds, etc., etc., some people will still be so obstinate that they ask me for proof when I say, “George W. Bush is a criminal and a liar.” What more proof do you need, America? Would you trust this guy enough to hire him as a part-time worker in your family store? I seriously doubt it. If you say you would then, I’m sorry but you are most certainly a fool who is blinded by pride.

You don’t need anymore proof that this guy is a liar and a criminal. You don’t need anymore proof to impeach this guy and try him for crimes. All you need to do is lower your head, show some humility, courage, and get rid of your foolish pride. This is a question on the morality of the average person in today’s United States. This is not a question of an unlocked door.

Mike (in Tokyo) Rogers [send him mail] was born and raised in the USA and moved to Japan in 1984. He has the distinction of being fired from every FM radio station in Tokyo — one of them three times. His first book, Schizophrenic in Japan, is now on sale.

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