Tuesday, November 08, 2016

A Sort of Dropping Out

I have begun to think very seriously about completely dropping out of society.

No matter what the outcome of the election, I find myself increasingly removed from a society that has moved past me in terms of philosophy, morals, political understanding, economy, and the simple view of me as a person.  The outcome tomorrow ends up having very little to offer me.

But the modern world has very little to offer me either.

Conveniences?  Certainly.  And I like running indoor water and refrigerated food as much as the next person.  But the more important things of life - all of these, on the whole, modern society offers nothing more than a tangle of loud, bright, neon sounds that flash and trumpet but offer little substance.

I cannot change the laws.  I cannot change the outcome.  What I can do is change myself.

What is this looking like? I cannot total say, for the thought just occurred

I have a few ways.  Media, for sure - not just the cable I no longer have, but Netflix as well.  The media I have listened to for years driving to and from (somehow, I doubt there will be little enough I want to listen to in the news).  Sports - although again, not really an issue for me at all.

Internet?  Oddly enough, I will probably buck the trend:  more reading of blogs, less of news.  It will either be things I care not to hear about or impending cries of doom (that have gone on for a very long time indeed).

Books?  Oh, mostly old ones, thank you very much.  Other than histories and a few agricultural and artisan books, again I find that most modern books have little in them that I enjoy - and frankly, the past interests me more at this point.

I know what you are thinking:  what a quiet, solitary sort of life.

Quite possibly yes.  But my life is trending this way.  Outside of Iai and throwing and the gym and church, I spend little enough time out among the world unless I have to.  Home - an isolated home, pulled out of the mainstream of living - is a place I quite like to be.

I cannot fall back totally from the age I live in.  But I can divorce itself from as much as I can and still find - perhaps surprisingly to those who live in it - that a perfectly sane and peaceful and useful life exists.


  1. From the sounds of it, TB, you've probably read "Atlas Shrugged." What you're describing is "Going Galt." You realize that, as much as you want to "run the railroad," and as much as you want the "railroad" to succeed, it's no longer possible, given the ever-changing rules of the game. The only thing left to do is to walk away from it, wait for it to fall apart, and then go back in and rebuild.

    Indeed, there's little to be done that can change the course of things now. All one can do is to watch the runaway train pass you by, and pity the people on it...

    1. Pete, oddly enough that very thought popped into my mind as well. For perhaps the first time, I understood John Galt's motivation to simply to give the society around him the benefits of his mind and efforts (his mind, you understand - mine is a bit of a sieve), that sort of exhaustion where you realize - perhaps for the first time - that you simply cannot go forward in the world as it exists.

      If that is so, I wonder where in the story arc we currently fall?

  2. I could have written that post myself, word for word. I haven't bought a paper in years. On the MSM websites I find myself being trolled by children. Stupid children. I will not watch the news on TV and when the music stops on the radio and some talking head comes on - I change the station or turn it off.

    The modern world pushed its way into my family and destroyed it. Stupid issues came up, people drew their lines - words were fired off like bullets - and it was all over. There was no coming back from it, or patching things up - there was just moving on. I was the last one to move and I can tell you it's a struggle sometimes. I hope all is well with your family. But if you are going Galt, TB, you need to really think hard on that path.

    Is this emotional desolation any better than having skin in a game and a battle you can't win? For me...it has to be, so it is. The bodies are buried, the cinders have cooled. My wife and I continue on and if we are lost - then we are lost together. I take great comfort in that sometimes.

    If you decide to stick it out TB - God bless you, for you are a better man than I. As for me, I want no more of this world with its filthy, inverted morals and endless posturiing crusaders and victims. I want big sky, sun, and wind.

    And peace.

    1. Glen, I have wondered how much things can be patched together in our country, let alone the world. We really are becoming different groups of people that happen to share a living space.

      I think the biggest difference that it makes - for me - is how much time and energy I want to spend on this. It is obviously headed no where I particularly want to go, but I find myself still consciously dragging myself along with it. In a very real sense, it does not matter who wins tonight. And frankly, it does not matter what they do or do not do. I cannot fight what they do. I can only sink out of sight and mind.

      I think - I am guessing perhaps - that this "going Galt", this disengagement, is going to end up happening in stages. Divorcing myself from society as an entertainment and information source is the first step. From here, I am not sure - to be honest, just doing that is going to be a far more difficult battle than I thought.

      Big sky, sun, wind, peace - what a wonderful picture you paint Glen. I hope you get there.

  3. I do understand where you are coming from. Some of our favorite TV shows are the ones where people are going against the flow and living alone. The Boonies, is one such show. Life Below Zero is another. If we were able to take the cold as well as we did in our 20's, we'd be in Alaska trying to make a go of subsistence living, instead of living in Louisiana sweating.

    Whatever you decide, be safe and God bless.

    1. Unfortunately, cold is off the menu (largely) for us as well Linda. The Ravishing Mrs. TB is not a fan.

      But I wonder - and maybe this turns into a blog post - if I have always mistaken Going Galt. Originally I thought it was a state of independence. It is that, but I wonder if it is not just a much a state of minimizing your involvement and effort in the society at large if you cannot get out.

      I think we have already mentally taken the first few steps. Now it is a matter of creating a plan and then working single mindedly towards it, ignoring the world around us.


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