Charles Hayes: Death is a subject that most of us avoid for understandable reasons, but if you’ve ever been with someone who had to put the necessary pieces together after a family member has died unexpectedly, or if you’ve had this experience yourself, you know how hard it is to answer questions when there is no one left alive who can answer them.
Charles Hayes: To be truly free one has to have the ability to see through illusions, to defy the herd’s desperate need to conform, and to enjoy the privilege of using one’s time as one chooses.
Charles D. Hayes: What is happening when we witness an officer beating on someone who is clearly no longer resisting is that emotion has taken over and the incident is running on instincts being driven by hormones.
Charles Hayes: Our educational deficit is readily observable by focusing on those whose lives are sheltered by a narrow sense of identity, a regional, local, or tribal view simplified by relating to all of those outside their group in terms of us and them.
Charles Hayes: One of life’s biggest mysteries, in my view, is why, once people realize the arbitrary nature of how beliefs are constructed, it doesn’t give them pause to examine some of their own hard and fast assumptions.
Charles Hayes: At its best, capitalism dramatically improves lives; at its worst, unchecked greed ravages the environment, oppresses individuals, and destroys culture. Capitalism is analogous to radiation. Used carefully, it can produce miraculous results, while overuse kills.
Charles Hayes: People whose internalization of the business model is such that they believe Capitalism to be the solution to every problem under the sun now make me cringe. Low wages, high unemployment, and low taxes are good for business, but not so much for working people. The business model of efficiency is well suited to business, but not to families when there are not enough jobs that pay a living wage.
Charles Hayes: Corporations have bought the right to employ people permanently in lifetime jobs at serf wages, with government subsidies, and they are able to deflect criticism by shouting clichés and platitudes about freedom.
Brain Political Views: People whose natural predisposition has been overwhelmed by their culture are very likely to be the most extreme partisans on the left or right.
Broken Economic System — Disrespect comes as a moral tax; we Americans pay it over time with compound interest that manifests as contempt.
Charles D. Hayes: I grew up with a sheltered worldview much in agreement with the same politics and prejudices of my community. It was a world of black-and-white notions of morality, and it was a literal interpretation of racial superiority that white was right. But reading Martin Luther King’s Letter From a Birmingham Jail changed my reality.
Charles Hayes: Unless we are threatened with imminent annihilation or given a short time to live, we are predisposed to perceive of the future as something open-ended and unlimited, regardless of our age. We are loath to admit our existence is finite.
Rugged Individualism — When aself-indulgence overrides self-restraint, the goodwill that made this country a place of envy disintegrates.