Do you have a degree in economics?

Do you have a degree in theology? Do you have a degree in history, sociology, and political science? If you have these degrees, you have the tools to fathom the depths of world and U.S. circumstances.

Mariner was watching his bird feeder the other day. It is quite popular with many kinds of birds, squirrels and rabbits. He observed the gluttony and crude eating habits of the larger starlings. They literally gulped chunks of all the peanut butter, cookie crumbs and nut treats before other species could have their fair share. The starlings left only after the ‘profits’ were gone, leaving only a scattering of sunflower seeds.

This behavior reminded mariner of how capitalism works. Profit is the ethic. If profit disappears, capitalism will go elsewhere to find still profitable resources. Don’t get mariner wrong, conservatives; he understands that the combination of an entire continent’s untapped resources, combined with a new public form of Christianity, the profit capacity of capitalism and little in the way of civic restraint – allowed the United States in a few scant decades to be the powerhouse nation of the whole world.

Something has happened recently. The capitalists have flown away to other nations where profit can be sustained at high levels; only information scavengers remain gleaning what can be had. The United States isn’t destitute. In fact, the U.S. still is the richest nation in the world. However, this is a relative statement because the majority of other nations aren’t doing as well as they once did. What’s left in the United States is a disarray of sunflowers shells and no investment in sustaining the life of the rest of the birds – er – population.

This is where your profound collection of degrees comes into play: How do you fix this situation? It is part economic, part cultural, part circumstance, and part government.

For example, the nation is very, very short on birdhouses. There aren’t enough to go around. And some bird varieties – the darker kind – can’t have one in any case. Will you please fix this?

Some birds have become predators and carry guns and clubs. They are confused and joined the political party that is responsible for their circumstances. Will you please fix this? Birdseed is becoming scarce; some birds have none. Do you know where to get more?

Fortunately, mariner maintains the birdfeeder. It’s a role akin to being the government. Does the U.S. have a government? Not one that can fix anything. Will you please fix the government?

Ancient Mariner

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