Freedom and responsibility cannot be separated. Freedom without responsibility is a naive concept. We were not born into a world where anything is free. There is a cost for everything. There are four options to responsibly cope with that cost: Pay now. Pay later. Get someone else to pay, or recognize that someone prepaid.
The concept of responsibility seems simple enough. There are some difficulties however. One of them is that free stuff doesn’t come with a price tag. It is prudent to find the cost, and decide how to pay. If someone prepaid, there is a debt of gratitude and possibly an obligation to pay forward for someone else.
Determining cost can be difficult. There are environmental costs. There are human labor costs. There are resource depletion costs. There are waste management costs, and there are health and psychological stress costs.
When people purchase goods or services, their ownership is legal license for physical control, but their payment does not absolve them of their responsibility to pay for future or previous costs, the same costs that are associated with free stuff.
The fruits of the earth are bountiful, not endless. We can never fully appreciate their existence, or the cost of our appetite for their consumption. We are living in the period of pre-civilization. Pre-civilization is an optimistic term that forecasts impending civilization.
Civilization will not be perfect. The calculations for cost containment are not based on completely measurable attributes. The cost must be calculated on the basis of broad arguable observations. This is unsettling to the pre-civilized elite, who rationalize the subhuman treatment of micromanaged underlings as if it were a right. Famine, robbery, slavery, war, genocide, and infanticide have all been justified as inevitable. They are excused as consequences of the poor genetics, the poor work ethics, the poor schooling or the poor morality of victims who are treated, by others, each other, or themselves, as if they were subhuman beings.
In pre-civilization we have noticed how greed, and abuse of power snowball. The most unscrupulous, increasingly often, become the most rewarded. They hire people who become dependent on them for work, or for protection. Large populations have jobs whose work does not serve humankind, but degrades it. The work they do is more toxic than beneficial. People evacuate the moral high ground for immediate gratification or immediate survival. In pre-civilization, the “public good” isn’t good. Moral high ground isn’t high at all. Business is not service directed. Profit is achieved by cheating consumers, investors, workers, and taxpayers. People are exploited on the basis of age, gender, religion, political party, nationality, or any other way they can be divided, or singled out for exploitation.
In pre-civilization strong leaders make decisions that help or harm humanity. People who are willing to do either good, or dastardly deeds for special favors surround these leaders. The leaders need help, and those who surround them expect more compensation for worse behavior. Scum floats and pre-civilized behavior rots from the top.
In order to make us stupid enough to put up with pre-civilized behavior, we had to be educated to ignore our innate common sense. We were taught two lessons in a number of ways. The first lesson teaches that humanity is a matter of degree. Special awards are offered to calibrate the degree of humanity. They mark the top of the scale. Members of the team who work to provide service and care for the recipient, take lower positions on the scale. The other lesson is that opaque complexity is a safe home for bureaucratic, and governmental treachery.
With regard to education, two major sources are the media and the schools. Both institutions teach people to concentrate on their own self-serving desires. Public schools are run like mass production assembly lines to produce fuel for dangerous inefficient economic machinery that may kill us all, if it is not replaced or repaired soon. Schools use a grading system; not to measure learning, because it doesn’t; not as a teaching tool, because it isn’t; but because it classifies students to what is considered their appropriate pre-civilized level of sub humanity. These children grow up to accept being manipulated, impoverished, and disenfranchised. Disenfranchised, they tend to pursue shallow personal goals. They ignore personal and public responsibility using toxic humor or psychotropic drugs to dim moral floodlights that would illuminate the ravaged aftermath of planned or impetuous irresponsibility. Students are meant to be fodder for an irresponsible dysfunctional bureaucratic economic cow that tramples the avenues of human dignity, and service to humankind.
Generally speaking, Media is not service driven. It is profit driven. Service to mankind offers few avenues to achieve monetary gain when compared with sex, violence, recreational drugs, gambling, and mass marketing. The media assails pre-civilization with a barrage of addictive messages. Civilized media will serve civilization, not assault it.
Instead of crisp clear concise law, pre-civilization uses verbose legal complexities to the disadvantage of civil behavior. Neither business nor government can responsibly serve in a haze of opaque complexity. Civilization clarifies complexities. Clarity ultimately serves everyone except those who are trying to cheat.
Freedom, liberty, and justice have to be for everybody or they don’t exist. They are not free stuff. They have to be paid for with responsibility. Civilization is for everyone or it doesn’t exist. It has an economic body. Each person is a part of a cell that is a part of an organ that is a part of that body. The economic body exists to protect the health and wellbeing of every person in every cell in the body. The cells exist to serve the economic body, and the body provides sustenance, and opportunity to the members of the cells. When the members of the cells, the people, serve civilization and each other, the economic body is healthy. Clear business cells perform a service and produce a by-product, trust. Trust is firm ground for civilization to walk on. Free stuff is scattered on quicksand.