August 02, 2006

This World

I case anyone wonders where I've been, I'm alive.

I'm getting moderately pissed at my apartment, and probably will convince myself to move in the next 2 months. Bleh.

I can't help but think that our response to the various happenings in the Middle East, and our incredibly risk adverse reaction to our children, is at it's core the same thing: a belief that every human life is infinitely precious. There's a tiny risk that someone might hurt themselves diving off a diving board? Unacceptable. People got into accidents when their blood alcohol level was insanely high? One drink might be too much, lock them away and throw away the key. We've saved untold thousands from excruciating death in Saddam's prisons, but some of our soldiers have died? Bring them back home, immediately. Isreal's trying to defend itself, and some civilians [in other words, human shields] have died? Cease fire.

A risk adverse investment strategy, long term, is likely to cost you more than it saves. I am sure that's happening in all these areas.

Yet, there's the other side. I know of a guy whose 6 year old son died when the ATV he was driving flipped. A hundred years ago, when you had at least 4-5 kids so that you knew 1-2 would survive and not be crippled by polio, smallpox, etc, you knew it would happen, so you had at least a chance of dealing. Now, the mere threat of your son not getting into graduate school is life altering.

Given that, how much worse is it in China, with both 3rd world health concerns and the 1 child per family rules?

Posted by Owlish at August 2, 2006 10:00 AM | TrackBack
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