I’ve just seen the animated film version of Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax – and it wasn’t as bad as some film critics have thought. The main message of both the film and the children’s book that inspired it – preserving the world’s ecology for future generations to come – remains as important today as it was when Theodor Giesel (aka Dr. Seuss) wrote and illustrated the children’s literary classic back in 1971.
But there’s also another lesson to be learned from The Lorax – and not just in its original literary form – and one that is just as relevant as preserving the world’s ecology: the problems arising from the global financial crisis that has dominated news headlines for the past few years, caused in part by the greed and complacency that’s stemmed from the business world’s questionable actions which have brought about the Occupy movements that have occurred in many cities around the world for almost the past half-year.
Earlier this week, when former CNN News personality Lou Dobbs spoke on Fox News, he and Matt Patrick mentioned – and criticized the new Lorax feature film, urging moviegoers to ignore the film’s overall message. I wasn’t surprised, given the fact that Fox News leans more towards the right (as in right-wing politics) – which isn’t exactly a smart move for several reasons, including the fact that News Corporation (who owns not only Fox News, but also 20th Century Fox) already has its share of problems in the wake of that phone-hacking scandal in Great Britain last summer which has already given the media empire one or more black eyes. Not to mention the fact that Dobbs and Patrick’s comments make it sound like the 99% – the majority of Americans who don’t approve of the 1% – don’t count for anything in today’s society. That kind of thinking can only lead to disaster – and not just for the business and financial worlds.
Part of the problems resulting from the financial crisis has to do with the delusion shared by many corporate leaders that they’re not only rich and powerful, but also the fact that they’re above the laws of both God and man – the same corporate leaders who’ve pumped money into many a politician’s election campaign (mostly conservative Republicans), while holding on to their power and prestige, no matter what the cost. This delusion, of course, is nothing new – it’s existed throughout history, and has brought about consequences that have nearly caused mankind’s downfall, like the actions of every tyranny that’s existed since time began, including the ancient Roman empire, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Adolf Hitler. And like the tyrants of old, many corporate leaders who are already corrupt refuse to take responsibility for their own actions, partly because they’re blind to not only what truly matters, but also the fact that someday, their careers might crumble for good – a tragedy that might extend to both the world’s governments and civilization itself. Which isn’t surprising, considering the financial problems plaguing most of the world’s governments – caused in part by certain corporate heads who should pay very high taxes in order to keep such governments running and do the job that the general public expects them to do (an idea already suggested by billionaire businessman Warren Buffett, whose only real crime is allowing those stupid GEICO ads to pollute the TV and radio airwaves – but that’s another subject for another article).
Thankfully, not all rich businessmen are corrupt – the best and noble of them, including Ford, Carnegie, Shriver, Gates, and Turner have created charitable organizations that have helped and improved the lives of many (and more than that). It’s also that act of charity – not unlike Jesus Christ’s various deeds that have defined Christianity – that can help make the world a better (if not perfect) place to live in. Perhaps the business and financial worlds should rethink the concepts that have, to a certain degree, brought forth the problems that the world is now facing – as well as the fact that the 99%, the percentage of civilization seeking positive change, counts for something. The same 99% that might someday bring forth the kind of revolution that truly matters, which dignifies civilization and its more positive and noble traits – and one that might yet outlast the most outdated of political and social ideologies. If the Lorax existed in the real world, he’d greatly appreciate that idea – and so would his creator, proving that Dr. Seuss does and still matters. And he always will.
John Lavernoich is the author of the novels Code Name: Chameleons and Chameleons To The Rescue, as well as close to various non-fiction articles and short stories that have been published in print and on the Internet – to learn more about Mr. Lavernoich and his writing achievements, please visit his official website (http://johnlavernoich.sharepoint.com), as well as his pages on Windows Live Spaces (http://cid-ef88d131988ab38f.profile.live.com), Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/john.lavernoich?ref=name), MySpace (http://www.myspace.com/jlavernoich), Twitter (http://twitter.com/JLav65), and WordPress (https://johnlav.wordpress.com). Mr. Lavernoich also maintains his own video channel on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/user/JLav65?feature=mhsn) as well as his own Author Spotlight page on Lulu Books‘ website (http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/Highroad).
©2012 John Lavernoich.