Thursday, September 1, 2011

Lie back and think of Armageddon

I believe that we in the west (specifically media, government and academe) do not give sufficient attention or  respect to The Prophet (peace be upon him). I speak, of course, of Mark Steyn (may he live forever--or at least long enough to avoid the CIA-jihadi assassin coalition-- in order to write a few more books and inspire a few more souls). This is not a review (cuz I'm not really smart enough to write one) of his latest: After America: Get Ready for Armageddon, but boy, do you ever have to read this book. Unless, of course you are a Morlock, in which case you probably can't read anyway, at least (like the president of the Detroit Public School Board) not beyond a grade 3 level. But if you are an average Joe (an active, useful sort of person, which apparently is becoming more exceptional all the time), and might like to think about saving western civilization, it's worth a gander and a ponder.

I was in a bit of a spiritual torpor this summer and needed something to perk me up, so I read this book.
Much of it is pretty depressing and/or horrifying, but also extremely funny, which always helps the med’cine go down. Don’t read this book with a full bladder. If you can make it all the way to page 225 ("the Super-Ass of Jimmy Olsen") and be unmoved, then you must be a product of public education and/or employed by a government bureaucracy. Also, do not eat or drink anything while reading this book, unless you are prepared to fork out for the cost of a new one. I nearly spit my beverages several times in outbursts of laughter. I thought I might have to start a new organization to deal with this phenomenon: MADASS (Mothers Against Drinking and Studying Steyn). I wonder if I could get some government funding for that. (Just kidding.)

I knew this before, but in this crazy old world, there are folks who are part of the problem (Steyn’s “dependency class”), and those who are part of the solution (the “productive class”). Steyn adds a third, the governing class, but since they live off our taxes, they are firmly on the side of the dependency class (except perhaps for the few “real” jobs in the government, like building roads, but these productive positions are few and far between). The point of this post is that the book made me want to get up off my own slowly enlarging arse and do something productive, which I did, right then and there. 

I started with picking and freezing a couple of gallons of chokecherries (which I will later make into jam). The next day (with the help of kids and other relatives) I picked about a bazillion bushels of crabapples. Then I made about 20 liters of applesauce and froze about thirty pounds of cut-up apples for future apple pies and such. (Yes, I know I'm mixing Imperial and Metric--what can I say? I'm Canadian, and middle-aged). There is still corn to pick, husk and freeze, as well as carrots, tomatoes, and many other veggies. It's mind-boggling how much food you can grow on a very small plot of earth.

This is in addition, of course, to the regular duties of homemaking and raising (homeschooling) seven lovely children. It feels good to be part of the productive class. (One must try to atone as well for having a hubby who works for the federal government, but at least it’s in the agricultural sector, where his research can benefit producers—ie. farmers who grow real, actual FOOD—and not some useless Assistant Chief Deputy Diversity Coordinator Social Policy Analyst.)

If we don’t heed Mr. Steyn’s words, western civilization will collapse. There are no “maybes” in the equation any longer. The solution lies in everyone manning up (yes, even the girls) and being responsible and productive, not in clamouring for the gub’mint to "do something"--except, perhaps get the hell out of our lives and pockets. The book didn't change my life, but it did remind me of this basic truth. And I'm going to teach my seven children (doing my part to avoid demographic meltdown) to do the same. 

For your further edification: here is a real review, written by one of my fave bloggers, Elizabeth Scalia, aka The Anchoress. In First Things.

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