John Hates Happiness
Kevin and I give John a lot of shit about his cynicism and in this thoughtful and fun episode he finally owns it! Sure he thinks that humankind has committed irreparable damage to the environment. He thinks we have destroyed the landscape with cars, fossil fuels, graffiti and punching puppies. He has stated many many times that no person is beyond corruption if given the appropriate incentive. But this topic of believing that optimistic people cause more harm than good really triggered me while we recorded the episode. I dug my feet in the sand for a long battle. You can’t tell me that optimism is the route of evil, you fuck! Granted, I’m no Ned Flanders, but I’ll be damned if you could get me to agree with his point.
Then something curious happened: I listened to the playback of the episode. He wasn’t nearly as extreme as I remembered. He made some good points and his overall opinion is that optimism in and of itself does not help make positive changes unless we DO something. Get off your happy ass and make the changes that you truly believe in. While I don’t love John’s harsh opinion that it is a determinate to society and a positive outlook and belief that things will work out not matter what; he does have a point. Optimism combined with denial of reality might lead to people not helping the future of humanity. He just doesn’t have to sound like such a cold hearted prick when he makes it.
- Greg Mitchell