The Gold Bar Metaphor

See this gold bar?

Chances are, you’ve never seen one laying on a neighbor’s lawn.  Likewise, I’d say that chances are pretty good that if you had one, you wouldn’t keep it out our your lawn, either.

And why not?

Well, that’s obvious:  most of it would not expect the gold bar still to be there after a few days.  People being as they are, the greater the amount to be gained, the more likely they are to take what isn’t theirs.  And a gold brick laying on a lawn would probably be considered easy pickin’s by many.

Fine, Jack, so what’s your point?

I’m glad you asked.  I’ve been noticing more and more lately that some certain aspects of our society are simply too valuable for us to believe that they could lie around without anyone snatching them up for their personal use.  They are like gold bars laying our our public lawn, and begging to be stolen.  For example, what if otherwise innocent things could be snatched up and used secretly for sinister purposes?  Ponder these:

  • Government
  • Law
  • News
  • Expert testimony
  • Celebrity
  • Entertainment industry
  • Voting
  • Education
  • History books
  • Religion
  • Reason
  • Science
  • Food
  • Medicine
  • Water
  • Language
  • Reform movements

Such things permeate our society, and society being what it is, we tend to do less than we ought to protect the integrity of these things.  In other words, we tend to be careless with them, like a guy who lays a gold bar on his lawn, assuring himself that it’ll still be there tomorrow.

But are these things “still there”?  Or have they already been commandeered, corrupted, co-opted, or compromised in some way?

I believe that all of these things have been compromised by people who use them for their own purposes without coming forward to state their motives openly for all.  I’ll be using this gold bar metaphor from time to time in my writing from here forward, so I thought I’d detail the metaphor here as a point of reference.


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