Sunday, April 22, 2007

What price a Life?

This is an idea for a probably infinite set of media programs... That could inform, entertain and may provoke (shock, horror!) some thought/introspection.

In 3 or 4 generations we in the Western World have gone from a farming and manufacturing economy and society, to a 'service economy'. Just one generation saw - electricity reticulation, street lighting, radio, automobile, aircraft, the 'production line', industrial scale War [WW I] and the end of domination of European Royalty and Nobels.

We've gone onto create new life forms and manipulating DNA. To knowing most of the building blocks of matter and creating nuclear bombs capable of extinguishing everyone on the planet many times over. And to generations living off social welfare, using drugs and escaping into the 'virtual worlds' of TV, computer games and on the 'Net.

We didn't get here by accident, but we could lose everything in a flash with an accident - or through others intentionally destroying it.
Appreciating what we have and why we have it is essential to preserving our lives.

"What Price a Life?" It's ambiguous and can be taken many, many ways. Such as:


'price' has many dimensions:
  • Dollars
  • Time
  • Energy
  • Resources (animal, mineral, vegetable)
  • Opportunity Cost - the cost of choosing 'this', not something else
  • Environmental
  • Human - personal, family, friends, group, community, town, country, ethic grouping
  • Human - physical, mental, emotional, spiritual
  • Sociological
  • Consequences - what are the on-going results of decisions, actions and inaction?

a Life - I

"What price for Taking a LIfe?" With a gun, a knife, .... Intentionally and accidentally. In War, in peace and at home.

  • Saving a Life - hospital, road safety, industrial safety, nuclear
  • Extending Lives - good health and nutrition
  • Prolonging - last month, 3 months, 12 months
  • Living a Life. e.g. a monk, a celebrity, a cleaner, a guard, a doctor, a teacher, a prostitue, a farmer, ...
  • Creating a Life - IVF, surrogacy, Gene Therapy...
  • Selling/Trading a Life - slave traders, 'black-birding', white slavery, sex slavery, ..
  • Preventing/Containing a Life - jail, detention, ...
  • Seeking a New Life - immigrants, refugees, ...
  • Freedom, Self-Determination, Self-Expression, Creativity
  • Justice, Equity, Fairness

a Life - II

"What Price a Life here and now?"
  • Over time
  • In this town, community, country
  • For this sub-group - aboriginals, Native Red Indians, Inuit
  • By religon/religous belief
  • By Sex (M/F/other)
  • By sub-culture - terrorists, drug-pushers, regime...

a Life - III

"What Price a Human Life?"
  • A wild animal
  • A pet
  • A domestic animal (food, fibre, fleece, milk, eggs, ...)
  • An endangered species
  • A not 'cute and cuddly' thing
  • Insects, parasites, pests...

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