Peter Montgomery wrote:
> tolerance, benevolence, inoffensiveness and a
> redistribution or increase of purchasing power
While this leaves much to desire, it's rather better than anything
T.S.E. ever had to propose.
I had a friend around 30 years ago who sank into a deep and destructive
depression. All she really needed to snap out of that depression was to
go to work, mix with other people, instead of staying trapped at home,
living of AFDC and taking care of a two-year old infant. The problem was
that child had serious allergies; he needed regular weekly shots for it.
Her physician explained that if the child lived to the age of four or a
bit more he would be o.k.: that is the age when he could learn to cough
up sputum; blow his nose. But until that time, the allergy was
potentially -- even probably -- lethal without the shots. She could get
a job, but not one that immediately began providing medical benefits, so
going to work (and thereby recovering her mental health) would have been
fatal to her child.
I have two acquaintances who suffer from schizoid affective disorder.
They handle it pretty well, considering that to get to their therapists
they have to beg a ride from some acquaintance; to get to the grocery
store they have to beg a ride from some acquaintance; and the only
living quarters they can afford are wretched beyond words. (Not much
public transportation in B/N Illinois, & there is no way either can
afford a car.)
It's amazing how much difference an increase in purchasing power could
make to many people. Eliot was a jerk when he was making such remarks as
this. That's one reason Pound, for all the horror of his formal politics
and his anti-semitism, was so much richer a human being than Eliot. Time
after time, in his life and in his poetry he exhibits a generosity
utterly beyond the likes of TSE.