I'm out of sorts this morning. K has offered to take over all the drudge work on the manual and even manage the record-keeping for me this morning, because I feel like crap and because my mind is running a thousand miles an hour. I'm sure I'll be back to my--our--projects tomorrow, but right now I can't stop mulling over my post from yesterday.
Having had a night to sleep on it, I feel the need to be brutally honest. This is just me, Josh, talking now. Understand that. I'm not speaking for a single other soul out there.
When I think about the UAS and what they claim is their right to lead, to essentially rule the rest of us, it makes me mad. That's a gut reaction to anyone trying to put themselves in authority over me for reasons I don't feel are justified. And after tossing and turning about it last night, I came to realize that the crux of my problem with the UAS is exactly that: they wouldn't be giving us anything in return.
The plain truth is that I'd welcome them as a central authority and cede control of policy and everything else over to them if I thought they could do a decent job of it and actually provide some kind of service for the right to lead us. If they had a massive army that could be dispersed among the various communities around the country to eliminate the threat of zombies, access to technologies that would improve the lives of the people under them, hell, pretty much anything that would help people, I'd bend knee in a heartbeat.
I like to think of myself as an independent person, and I am. But I would happily trade the fear and worry for some stability and breathing room. If it meant that our worst problems were managing to get in a third crop of potatoes for the year, I'd give up my ability to influence policy without hesitation.
Because of this blog and the paranoia that drove me to start writing it when The Fall began, I've achieved a weird cult status. Not cultish in the sense of worship--though donations of fresh fruits and booze are always welcome--but like some internet celebrities before me. People actually pay attention to what I have to say and give it weight. Certainly not all or even most of you, but even a small fraction can make a difference.
I'm not complaining about that, really, but I wonder if any of you realize what a burden that can be? Having to guard my words because an outburst of anger can push people toward bad decisions. I'm still stunned and grateful every day that I have the chance to make people think (or rethink, as the case may be) but after almost three years the load begins to push down on me. I'm sure the UAS would tell me to stop writing the blog were they in control. I'd probably rail against them and fight.
But in the end I would probably do as they asked.
Not because I wouldn't want to write this blog or help people any longer, because I still do. Rather it would be a pragmatic choice; to keep the leadership unified. This is all hypothetical, of course, since we have long since gone past the point of no return regarding the UAS, but I'd be going against my stated beliefs about being practical above all else if I said otherwise. It's not the work or the message I worry over. It's the constant fear that I'll say the wrong thing (as I have before) and precipitate disaster. That's why I took time off when I had my breakdown. I couldn't risk it.
The highest ethic a survivor can follow is to do what is best for the tribe. I believe in the here and now that the UAS offers nothing beneficial to us, any of us, as groups or individuals. What's best for us is to avoid open conflict for as long as possible, bolster our infrastructure and reserves of food and needed items, and in general strengthen ourselves. Alone. No masters setting the rules for us, only the people we vote into office.
If only the UAS had chosen different tactics and actually had some equivalent service to offer us, things might have gone differently. Others have wanted to kill us or take what is ours, even subjugate us cruelly.
That has never, ever worked out well for them. You'd think the UAS would have learned from that example.
Too late now...