Toward the end of the Q and A at the end of his talk at MIT, Thomas Friedman spoke on the "competing forms of imagination" illustrated by "11/9" (referring to 11/9/89 when the Berlin Wall came down and the same period when the Windows operating system was marketed) and "9/11" (when the World Trade Center and Pentagon were bombed by Qaeda terrorists). Friedman asserts that "imagination is the only thing not commoditized in a flat world." It was different imaginations that brought down the Berlin Wall and the Twin Towers.
In his inauguration speech on January 20, 2009, President Obama said:
"To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it."
In considering Friedman's notions of imagination, and President Obama's pledge to people in developing nations, do you see yourself responding to the change he is calling for? How? Will you heed the admonition to avoid "indifference to suffering outside our borders"? How? Will you personally evaluate and perhaps change your resource consumption? How? Do you agree with Friedman's assertion that we need to develop, and encourage others to develop a more "positive imagination"? What will you do about this personally? What does it mean to you as an individual, as Friedman exhorts, to "export hope and not fear"? How might you do this?
i see the nation changing. As more and more people influence each other and as laws change we will move towards a more international friendly nation and world. there is a lot of suffering outside of our borders, i can be a miracle worker and solve the world problems, just by myself. there are better people for the job, people who have already taken the time to study and understand the people who are in need, and i am more than willing to help them, with money or with what ever way that i can help as a collage student. i hope as i get older, and finish with school that i can give more. i have looked in to natural living, and as a collage student i can not afford the totally natural life style. i have some health issues, that allows me to eat the organic and i have already worked that into my budget. some day i will have kids and i want then to know that they are going to influence the world, their positive imagination are going influence and affect the world.