What makes us think that we’re all immune from the ravages of history. When 100 million people died between 1901 and 2000, I wonder how we position ourselves historically. The past fifty years have not only been times of incredible economic growth but of the growth of peace in the West. Now that we’re all talking about nuclear terror (see 5/28/2002 post), it makes one think that we could be entering the full stage of history once again. India and Pakistan, I hope, will prove us all wrong.
I heard an interesting post on NPR the other day — with the fall of national governments over the past twenty years or so has also come a precipitous rise in two organizational constructs — multinational companies and terrorist organizations. In both cases, they are often state-sponsored and in both cases they work according to internal machinery that impacts external communities and the lives of many individuals. In fact, I’m sure that terrorists like those in Al Quaeda have studied the organizational structure of companies whose reach, in both communications and markets, is global.
It’s also likely that, because of our return to history’s fold(s), we are all moving past the lines of “individualism” that has marked our lives and our behavior for the past 20 years. In other words, we have joined a cause whether we wished or not.
These thougths were had over a discussion with my friend M, who was here for dinner tonight with my wife and daughter. We also spoke about the likelihood of the next terrorist attack here in NYC (and/or WDC) and about the great unwritten story — how many people are leaving NYC (and/or WDC) out of fear, panic, or plain old anxiety. Surely the New York Times, full of Real Estate advertisements and classified advertising, won’t be covering this story. And who would have the data — probably Bloomberg (the mayor and the machinery) and likely a lot of other companies — Visa, Banks, and Realtors.