Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The prison of the short-term

We are held prisoner by the short-term nature of decision-making. Health care costs are skyrocketing because, in the moment of crisis, please, doctor, do whatever you can to stabilize great-great grandma. I do not mean to deny empathy to those at the end of their lives, but at what point to we tack on an extra two months to someone's life at the expense of providing basic healthcare to the uninsured? Surely there is a way to ensure basic health care for all people, rather than viewing health through the lens of crisis: somebody get the crash cart, do whatever you can, keep trying.

And, in war, we spend three hundred thousand dollars to produce one Humvee, when that money could provide a hot meal for over a million children, perhaps negating the need for the armored vehicle in the first place, with the added benefit of, you know, feeding a million children. In the heat of the moment we allow military spending and healthcare innovation to be its own end, but standing at the precipice of the future, surveying the whole world and God's call to faithfulness, these things cannot be their own end. Perhaps they are a means to an end, but they cannot be their own end.

All of this makes me wonder how God views history. I think I know, but it must be interesting to watch us scurry about.

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