With the economy in a hole the size of Texas, Americans are chilling out. However this type of chilling out is in the literal sense.
During the oil embargo of the 1970’s, Americans were forced to cut back on their oil consumption. Rationing was imposed, the national speed limit was reduced, and people were encouraged to turn down their thermostats during the winter to 65 degrees F (18c). During this time of national crisis, Americans pulled together. However today with a tanking economy, it seems to be every man for himself.
Walk into a house in America now and you will likely find the thermostat set at a chilly 60 degrees F (15.5c). That is normally much colder than what Americans are use to. This is all being done to save money in a time of economic uncertainty. Even that wonderful food that comes in a can that is called Spam is once again a popular item flying off the shelves of stores to save money.
It becomes not too difficult to see Americans moving the dividing line that sorts out luxury from necessity. What was once thought of as necessity is now a luxury, and doing without said luxury is proving to be a necessity. In a sense it becomes a reality check on being humble. The economic crisis is teaching Americans that there is little difference between them and other countries including third world countries.
As President Obama connects with people from all over the world because he is that patchwork quilt, so too does this economic downturn look to erase much of that American arrogance that is so easily seen even by Americans when viewed from abroad. So if there every was a silver lining in all this doom and gloom caused by the global economic mess, it is bringing people closer together around the world. The mutual respect and understanding that at any time the carpet we stand on in life can be removed in just a blink of the eye.
So as Americans continue to chill out, a lesson is being taught in the classroom of life. That lesson is a lesson of humanity and that remove all our materialistic possessions, we can not be identified as any different than the person that has none. Remove the arrogance and we can not tell the person who works, from the person who reaps the rewards of workers.
When it comes down to it this economic adjustment as some call it, is also an adjustment in things that matter most, and that is we all are human, and to survive as a species, we must work together as one and shed status differences. That is how we all started, and that is how we all must end up to complete our species maturing cycle. With luck some day several millennium from now if we don’t kill ourselves off we will see that happen.