Almost there...

Monday, July 28, 2003

Driving into campus the other day, the song "Right Here, Right Now" came on the radio. I remember when that song came out. The Berlin Wall had fallen. Russia was talking glasnost and peristroyka. Nelson Mandela had been released from prison in South Africa. The world that had teetered on the brink for so long had finally fallen, but fallen in a good way. Things were changing. The Cold War was over. The world could finally start working together, spend less on military and more on science and innovation. I don't think I was alone in feeling that way. I think the dotcom era rose out of that sense of promise.

Compare that sense to now, little more than 10 years later. Russia isn't the enemy, but it isn't exactly an ally, and we've created a whole new set of enemies. Regimes that we created because of the Cold War, we now march in and overthrow. Our military budget is soaring these past couple of years, and we continue to build more nuclear weapons even though we have enough to destroy all life on earth thousands of times over. We're poised to become the next imperialistic power, but pay no mind to our foundering economy.

It made me sad. So much promise squandered.

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