"It is our constant difficulty that we want to keep what is pleasant and reject what is unpleasant." Ayya Khema, "Being Nobody, Going Nowhere." Here you can order the book from Amazon.
The welcome side effect of a disruptive era is that memes are up for grabs. They can be smashed, modified, made more sticky or created out of seemingly nothing.
One of those memes which has outlived its relevance is the assumption that life in America is the Happy Valley. Those campaigning for office during 2016, at all levels, can establish the unique force field of reducing demand for daily life without unpleasantness.
Innocence is not cute. Novelist Henry James hammered that theme of the perils involved in being a sunny, optimistic American. With their darker world views, Europeans took advantage of them.
Currently, Americans set themselves up for needless pain by attempting to duck the raw realities of our time. Those range from how much of a struggle it is to earn a living wage to the pilot with unsound mind who might be the one assigned to our flight.
There is demand for realism. "Being Nobody, Going Nowhere" was first published in 1987. Yet, it remains in the 97,000 ranking on Amazon. Within even a few years, most books plummet to the million and below rankings.
Thought leaders can help us with ordinary life. Not inspire us to reach for the supposed American Dream. My immigrant grandparents from Poland and Italy had no dream. Instead, they were shrewd about how tough life was, both in the old and new countries and did what they had to survive. Both sets wound up thriving.