Despite the obvious damage now visible in the entropic desolation of every American home town, Wal-Mart managed to install itself in the pantheon of American Dream icons, along with apple pie, motherhood, and Coca Cola.
Everything we do these days - our lust for ever more comfort, pleasure, and distraction, our refusal to engage with the mandates of reality, our fidelity to cults of technology and limitless growth, our narcissistic national exceptionalism - all of this propels us toward the realm where souls abandon all hope.
The newspaper headlines may shout about global warming, extinctions of living species, the devastation of rain forests, and other worldwide catastrophes, but Americans evince a striking complacency when it comes to their everyday environment and the growing calamity that it represents.
I do all I can to maintain good health. I eat mostly plants, as Michael Pollan would say. I get a lot of exercise. I lead a purposeful daily life. I stay current with the dentist. I made the formative decision of where to live over thirty years ago when I settled in a 'main street' small town in upstate New York.
Our twenty-first century economy may focus on agriculture, not information.