The Prior Problem

Roland Stahl
October, 2023

     The world is in such a mess these days, on every level.  I try to think about the solutions to so many problems ~ everything from the ongoing necrosis of the oceans due to proliferating plastic, along with warming and acidification, to the conflict in Israel/Palestine, but consideration of every problem leads to the same conclusion every time ~ the only way to deal with the problem is to deal with the prior problem first.  It keeps happening ~ I see the collapse and death of our biosphere due to the rape of the planet’s trees (and its minerals and its oil), but then I realize that before we can make any meaningful change in the biosphere or tree-planting, we must first deal with the economic problems of the current world (facing down the Robber Barons who want to take as much as they can get for themselves, and to Hell with the rest of the planet), but before those issues can be addressed, the fundamental political problems of the world must be dealt with and resolved.  But, prior to that, the level of consciousness everywhere must be raised, before it will be possible to deal with the political chaos on the ground.  

     But, is this useful?  The pragmatist wants to say, “Oh, sure; of course you are right; but what do we do right now?  The problem is upon us, and we need to deal with it immediately.”  So what is the appropriate way to deal with a problem?  Should we hark back and deal with the prior problem first, or deal directly with the issue immediately at hand, in the best way we can at the moment?  The easy way is to deal in some immediate way with the situation at hand.  The harder way is to step back and first correct the error of the prior problem, after which the present problem will no longer appear.  

     The more I thought about it, the more I formulated a universal law ~ “For Any Problem, the best and most efficient outcome, of all the infinite ways in which the problem could unfold, is by first addressing the Prior Problem.”  That is a pretty wide ranging law; any problem covers a lot of ground.  What it means is that, even though it is much harder to address the prior problem first, in the long run, the best and most efficient outcome will be secured by addressing the prior problems first.  

     I was thinking about that Law while thinking about the ongoing collapse of civilization in so many parts of the world ~ Russia and Ukraine, on the one hand, and Israel/Palestine on the other.  In the former conflict, Russia is all Red, while Ukraine is a bright Purple, but rising inexorably toward the Orange.  In Israel/Palestine, on the other hand, it is all Red and Purple ~ there is not the slightest vestige of a credible resistance from the Palestinians ~ it is all stark Red against bright Purple.  

     The most obvious observation one might make under these circumstances is that advice from neither Israelis nor Palestinians will be very useful in finding a solution.  The Israelis want to exterminate the Palestinians as vermin, just as the Americans wanted to exterminate the Native Americans, or as the Turks wanted to exterminate the Armenians, or as Hitler wanted to exterminate the Jews, or as the Russians want to exterminate the Ukrainians (if they won’t love us, we’ll kill them), or as the Chinese want to exterminate the Tibetans and the Uyghurs.  

     It is pretty obvious that what is needed is a Higher Authority to regulate these matters.  The problems on the planet must be solved, but there is no way that the problems can be addressed without dealing with the prior problem first.  

     There must be a single world order, no matter what form it takes.  A long line of visionaries have known that ~ Einstein, Teilhard de Chardin, Bertrand Russell, H.G. Wells, and many others.  It has to happen ~ get used to it.  There can be no future for the planet until we deal with this, and no one said it’s going to be easy.  I guess the place to start is by elevating the consciousness of the people on the planet.  


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