The traditional political spectrum that most people look at in life is a simple straight line with the word “Capitalism” written on the far right and the word “Communism” written on the far left. Yes, if you study the subject further then you can introduce words like “Authoritarian” and the foggy-defined word “Libertarian”. Like it or not we all fit into one of the four options. Governments these days get a lot of flak, yes, there is corruption, there are scandals and there are Rupert Murdoch’s, but realistically speaking their general intentions are – in what they believe – for the good of the nation. Okay, Maggie’s poll tax and Blair’s oil wars did seem a bit mad…but I’m sure they had their reasons…
It doesn’t matter if you swing to the left or to the right, whether you’re an Obama fan or a Romney fan, whether you love Winston Churchill or Joseph Stalin, the point is all governments enforce a system. Without a system you have anarchy, and not once in the whole of recorded human history has anarchy ever prevailed as a sensible, controlled model of governance. Last year we saw anarchy around the streets of Britain, brain-dead imbeciles tried to justify the police-killing of a drug dealer as a good reason to burn down a carpet shop. It’s similar in Somalia, on a slow day at the office people like to take their skiffs out to the Gulf of Aden and steal freighters. Anarchy cannot prosper and is doomed to fail.
So, on a completely related subject I went to a local mall on Thursday night for some delicious fast food; yum. All the eateries are lined up next to each other in a parade…the agony of choice. I made my gluttonous decision and approached the counter, or at least tried to. When I arrived there were several children all shouting at the poor cashier and some teenagers shouting at each other. Soon enough some grown men arrived and they started shouting too before muscling their way through to the front. A mother arrived and barged past everyone else – including me – just so she could demand a cheap plastic toy to calm her screaming infant. The poor burger man behind the desk looked as if he was contemplating putting his head in the deep fat fryer. I don’t blame him. This was so far detached from a functional, civilised society as was possible.
There was no queuing. It was just a gaggle, nay, a stampede of people all desperate to catch diabetes first. There was no humanity, no order, no respect. Technically I should have been served next but no, the poor burger man was sifting through the hoard by order of loudest voice. I looked left and right and all the other franchises were experiencing similar chaos. It was hell or hunger.
Eventually I got my fat induced lump of dead cow and bread and made haste towards the exit. Typically the never-ending escalator was jam-packed full of people who don’t know how to use them. Knock London Transport all you like, the London Underground is king with its escalator protocol, “Keep right” it says so people can walk up or down on the left without let or hindrance. It is a wonderful thing. Here? Pah! If people aren’t trying to walk up the down ones and down the up ones then they’re blocking the way so those of us in a rush are delayed even further. It’s the only time you will experience people standing in a line in some form of order.
What may be done about this reluctance to queue like civilised grown-ups ? Well, I say we take a look back at that recent twitter campaign, where the pious and the sanctimonious were banging on about “when in Rome”. I see. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. So the next time I want a cheeseburger on a busy Thursday night I will rugby tackle everyone – even women and children – to the ground and start shouting incomprehensible ramblings to the man with the name tag with 3 stars on it. I will show as much respect to those around me as I would show to a cow-pat. I won’t be able to keep this dynamic up forever because if enough expatriates start doing it a law will be passed to stop it, the queue-shy will have been defeated.
And quite frankly, I think I could live with Communism as a preferable alternative…