Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ethical Dilemma Numero Uno

So, I am not sure if you get moments of revelation on a day to day basis. There are guys on TV (and a couple of super-spiritual folk that I know personally) who hear God speaking audibly to them and have words which you and I could only dream of… Well, I see things, sheer revelation. On Monday, I saw an ethical nightmare that is taking the nation of Britain, and the US if I remember correctly, by storm. This thing, this thing that I saw, could send even the ‘most goodest’ person into terrifying tremors of ethical confusion. It haunts grocery stores and beckons you by name begging you to consider doing things its way. Were you to wander over into its grasp, well there the dilemma begins.
Hopefully by now you are inching ever closer to the screen of your computer to discover the identity of this horrific thing. Well here goes: THE SELF CHECKOUT MACHINE.

As I walked past one of these perfectly designed ‘ethical confrontation’ contraptions it struck me how powerfully this object could confront every moral fibre in your being. Certainly, every time you casually amble in the general direction of the Self Checkout Machine rising up within you will come thoughts of maybe sneaking even the cheapest, smallest thing on your shopping list past the scanner and into your bag the other side. Apparently the machine weighs everything that is in your basket and as you take it out ‘expects digitally’ it to go through the scanner and be placed in the bag on the scale the other side. Amazing thought here, but if you never put it in your basket in the first place there will be no expectation.
“Simon,” you ask, “If someone wanted to shoplift something they would do it anyway?” Yes, but this elevates things to an entirely different level. Any decent person will now be overwhelmed with new morally dubious thoughts. What is this world coming to?

Seriously though, it was something that struck me as I considered the general consensus that our society is surfing upon a moral landslide, yet here is something that only works assuming an old school honour system. A risk the supermarkets are taking? Maybe not; maybe the ‘supermarket powers that be’ have developed these machines upon principles gleaned from Romans 2:15. Who knows? Anyone give us a clue?

Malachi Update

Firstly, sincere apologies for the severe lack of blogs in the month of October. Not even sure why that is. A major part is played by my ‘not friends’ at Sky Digital whose See Speak & Surf deal for us has actually turned out to be See & Speak. Surf has apparently given up on his two mates and there is certainly mutiny on board the Sky Digital ship serving the LJ household. Don’t even try rectify the problem because that would be a foolish assumption on your part… Why would you expect something for your money??

Ok, on to the little dude—Malachi. Remember we were spending a morning about 3 weeks ago grabbing his arm and yanking him with the intention of enabling him to roll from his back to his front. Hey ho, the little guy has learned to do it all by his little lonesome. In fact if you don’t watch him it is fully possible that he will do a full circle around the focal point of his head which does not move as readily as the rest of his body. The little guy apparently assumes he has achieved legendary status through this dynamic development. Really can’t work up the strength of mind to tell him that other people have been doing it for ages. I think he’s too young to handle the shock.