9/11 Reflections

I went to the hardware store today, looking to buy a notebook before my job interview this afternoon. On the way I stopped by Kinkos to print out a copy of my resume (as you can see I subscribe to Vonnegut’s philosophy on life – quote at the end). Anywho someone next to me asked the date and I told her it was the 11th. Then it hit me, Septemeber 11th. Wow. I sat there lost in thought for roughly 60 seconds and was shocked at how much had changed in our attitudes since September 12th, the feeling of unity is gone, the desperate lack of direction… still here folks.


I’m disgusted by the state of American Politics and may be a little unothrodox in my own political views, but I know that what we are doing now is not right. Ignoring issues and sides, I think we can all agree that political spin has risen to out of control levels. People deserve to know the truth when it’s available, yet every politician works on a mantra of spinning the issues in their favor. Established politicians avoid controversy, “young bucks” go after the big guys by personalizing, evangalizing, and exploiting real issues. I saw a presentation of Keith Olberrmann’s speech re: 9/11 and was disgusted to my core. He makes excellent points but his agenda and theatrical display disgusted me. Are we all so brainwashed and controversy addicted that messages don’t sink in unless they are funny/combative/sad/etc? Can we all act rationally for 33 seconds and react to a good point without that point having to be packaged. Where are the noble intellectuals, do they not exist anymore or do we simply not give them any attention?

We’ve got a big problem guys, unfortunately it’s not Bush or Olberrmann, it’s us. We vote, we give power, and we decide the future for ourselves. “If we want hell then hell’s what we’ll have” (Jack Johnson). So what of it gang, do you want hell?

Kurt Vonnegut — “(talking about when he tells his wife he’s going out to buy an envelope) Oh, she says well, you’re not a poor man. You know, why don’t you go online and buy a hundred envelopes and put them in the closet? And so I pretend not to hear her. And go out to get an envelope because I’m going to have a hell of a good time in the process of buying one envelope. I meet a lot of people. And, see some great looking babes. And a fire engine goes by. And I give them the thumbs up. And, and ask a woman what kind of dog that is. And, and I don’t know. The moral of the story is, is we’re here on Earth to fart around. And, of course, the computers will do us out of that. And, what the computer people don’t realize, or they don’t care, is we’re dancing animals. You know, we love to move around. And, we’re not supposed to dance at all anymore.”

Big Think Edge
  • The meaning of the word 'confidence' seems obvious. But it's not the same as self-esteem.
  • Confidence isn't just a feeling on your inside. It comes from taking action in the world.
  • Join Big Think Edge today and learn how to achieve more confidence when and where it really matters.
Big Think Edge
  • Economist Sylvia Ann Hewlett breaks down what qualities will inspire others to believe in you.
  • Here's how 300 leaders and 4,000 mid-level managers described someone with executive presence.
  • Get more deep insights like these to power your career forward. Join Big Think Edge.

'Upstreamism': Your zip code affects your health as much as genetics

Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."

Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
  • Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
  • Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
Keep reading Show less

In U.S. first, drug company faces criminal charges for distributing opioids

It marks a major shift in the government's battle against the opioid crisis.

George Frey/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Politics & Current Affairs
  • The nation's sixth-largest drug distributor is facing criminal charges related to failing to report suspicious drug orders, among other things.
  • It marks the first time a drug company has faced criminal charges for distributing opioids.
  • Since 1997, nearly 222,000 Americans have died from prescription opioids, partly thanks to unethical doctors who abuse the system.
Keep reading Show less