No post about stuff would be complete without George Carlin’s “Stuff” routine. It’s also an excuse to put a little Carlin on the blog. I know he was an atheist, but he was funny. He was also right; we are way to concerned with our “stuff” these days. I mentioned something about this yesterday, but I barely scratched the surface. Be it money, possessions or status, we’re so caught up in the pursuit of stuff, we’re willing to bankrupt the country, screw the poor and the elderly and forsake God to get what we want.
I realize that last statement is a little charged, but I believe it’s true. Right now, Congress is arguing over whether to raise the debt ceiling. The Republicans have rejected several sweetheart deals that feature massive compromise from the Democrats while offering plans that place an incredible burden on the poor and the elderly by cutting “entitlements” like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security while leaving the enormous military budget untouched. How is this related to keeping stuff or getting more stuff? By the fact that the Republicans continue to fight any tax increase on the wealthy tooth and nail. These people seem to be willing to send the United States into default on our obligations just so they can keep more of their stuff. Let’s see, I’ve covered bankrupting the country, screwing the poor and old folks, what’s that leave? Oh yeah, forsaking God. Read the Bible, Old and New Testament, and you’ll see that God commands His people to take care of those who can’t take care of themselves. If leaving people out in the cold isn’t forsaking Him, I don’t what is.
That’s just the example that’s in our face right now. There are other places where this is happening, too. Yesterday, on The Dude Abides, Cathleen Falsani aka God Girl (has she got some cool names or what? I’m jealous) reported that the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange County has offered $50 million dollars to buy Robert Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral . In an area with a poverty problem like Orange County’s that’s just fucking obscene. How many families could be fed on that money? How many housed? But none of that matters because these “Christians” need a place big enough to hold all their parishioners. And, we wonder why people think we’re assholes.
On a more personal level, how many of us are more concerned with out “stuff” than we are with people? In the video, Carlin says our houses are just places we keep our stuff; places we lock up our stuff so we can go out and get more stuff. Then, we have more stuff than we have room for, so we move. Or maybe we put some of it in storage; “Imagine that” he says, “there’s a whole industry based on keeping an eye on your stuff”. Think about that for a minute, in America we have so much crap we can’t keep it all in our homes. And, instead of getting rid of some of it, maybe finding someone who needs some stuff like we don’t have room for anymore, we pay someone to keep it for us. Because, you never know, your acid washed jeans and super-cool Members Only jacket might come back in style one day.
Stuff is just stuff and, no matter how much you have, it will never do what you hope it will: make you happy, fulfilled or anything else. Looking after your fellow-man (or woman) will do that and rather handily. It’s the way God made us.