Ook and Mook Invent Money, Wealth and Taoism   (January 22, 2011)

Stone Age geniuses Ook and Mook invent money, wealth and Taoism in one fell swoop.

Demonstrating Humankind's remarkable ingenuity with financial and philosophical innovation, Non Sequitur's Stone Age geniuses Ook and Mook invent money, wealth and Taoism with only sticks and stones.

A comment left by a reader on the Non Sequitur comics site reveals that Ook and Mook also invented Wealth and Taoism:

A guy I know was so certain that wed be in economic chaos by now that he bought a substantial amount of gold. He kept prodding me that I should be buying some as well.

I assured him that I had bought sufficient amounts of lead. If it became a significant issue, Id be by to pick up his gold.

From The Way of Chuang Tzu by Thomas Merton:

For security against robbers who snatch purses, rifle luggage, and crack safes,
One must fasten all property with ropes, lock it up with locks, bolt it with bolts.
This (for property owners) is elementary good sense.
But when a strong thief comes along he picks up the whole lot,
Puts it on his back, and goes on his way with only one fear:
That ropes, locks, and bolts may give way.
Thus what the world calls good business is only a way
To gather up the loot, pack it, make it secure
In one convenient load for the more enterprising thieves.
Who is there, among those called smart,
Who does not spend his time amassing loot
For a bigger robber than himself?

Special note: Once again I find myself so sorely pressed for time and energy that I am unable to respond to all emails. Please know I read all emails, but I can only devote a very limited number of hours to this blog and all related correspondence. That leaves me with a deeply vexing and unsatisfactory choice: if I devote those few hours a day to responding to email, then I have no time left to write the blog. Without the blog, then there is nothing to write me emails about, so both vanish. My own core energy is heavily depleted by this constant struggle, which leaves me unhappy and feeling that I have failed my readers no matter what I do.

For better or for worse, most of my time is spent pursuing the sort of self-reliance that I promote here. I find it a peculiar conundrum that the only way I can possibly manage my correspondence would be to sacrifice the very practices which form the heart of this site and my purpose in creating it.

Unfortunately, I don't have a fixed income, pension, grant or trust fund, so nobody pays me to answer hundreds of emails. I have to make enough money in the real world to pay our health insurance, property taxes, income taxes, self-employment taxes, dental bills, etc., and have time to nurture my own network of friends, associates and family, cook 95% of our meals at home, take care of the fruit trees, garden, bicycles, etc. and have some time to devote to fitness, music and my other writing/books in progress.

I regret these limits but even workaholics have limits, and they bear down harder with each passing year. I feel old and tired much of the time, and that's not sustainable.

So please do not consider it a slight if you receive no acknowledgement; I read and value each email, as I know it comes from a real individual with pressing demands of their own. This entire enterprise, if it can be called that, is imperfect, and will always be so. I keep it afloat, but barely. That's the best I can do.

I have added a new forum to Daily Java, for comments on non-financial topics discussed here.

If you would like to post a comment, please go to DailyJava.net.

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