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It is All relative!


I read a great article in the car section of the Globe and Mail called the Theory of Automotive Relativity.   To be honest it was the picture of the bright red Lotus Elise (right) that caught my attention … the title is a bit of a mouthful!   The gist of the article is that your experiences tend to set your benchmark for things … so, for example, if you are used to a very comfortable car seat you might find the Lotus a little uncomfortable!

I wrote a blog entry a little while ago about What is Important… the gist of which was that if you are diagnosed with a terminal disease, then what is important in your life will suddenly come into a sharper focus.

I’m inspired to make a few other comparisons.

1.  When I look at the reaction of the Greek people to the austerity measures that are being imposed, I can have some sympathy, I certainly would not want to be caught in that myself … but the reality is that a total failure of the Greek economy, without the bailouts being offered by other countries, would be MUCH worse.

2.  I read in the paper that Public servants face the “fight of their lives”, according to one union leader.   Yes, it is going to be difficult, yes there are going to be jobs lost and nobody wants to be that position.  The reality is that the government has grown bigger than we can afford, so unless we want to be faced with example #1 above (Greek situation) we need to be pragmatic.  Because it is government, things won’t happen overnight and most likely many positions will be eliminated though attrition or a move to the private sector.  The union would serve its members better by focusing on finding the best solution cooperatively, rather than sabre rattling and fighting the inevitable.

Here is one representation of just how lucky we are.

Picture of starving African children with ribs showing

If the Earth’s population was shrunk into a village of just 100 people with all the human ratios existing in the world still remaining, what would this tiny, diverse village look like?  According to Philip M. Harter, a medical doctor at Stanford University of Medicine here’s what he found:

– 57 would be Asian

– 21 would be European

– 14 would be from the Western Hemisphere

– 8 would be African

– 52 would be female

– 48 would be male

– 70 would be non-white

– 6 people would possess 58.9% of the entire world’s wealth, and all 6 would be from the USA

– 80 would live in sub-standard housing

– 70 would be unable to read

– 50 would suffer from malnutrition

– 1 would be near death

– 1 would be pregnant

– 1 would have a college education

– 1 would own a computer

If you live in a good home, have plenty to eat and drink then you are a member of a very select group. If you have a good house, food, can read and have a computer, you are among the very elite. If you woke up healthy this morning … you are more fortunate than the million who will not survive the week. If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation… you are ahead of 500 million people in the world.

It really IS all relative!