Music, Observations.

If I ruled the world

The old high school essay theme, “If I Ruled the World,” endures long after the writing struggles of adolescents fade into adulthood. My current response is simple:

If I ruled the world,
I would step down;
one less autocrat,
one less crown.

 

The philosopher Daniel Dennett voices a similar but more thoughtful wish to let the world rule itself, at least once everyone is adequately prepared:

Many would rule capriciously. A lighter example of this is Terry Eagleton’s gleeful call for the destruction of his particular petty annoyances, among them Morris dancers, those who misuse words (as might be expected from a literary critic), and people who bump into you while preoccupied with their mobile phones. Steve Martin’s satirical selfishness underscores this approach, in his Christmas Wish List from SNL.

Others answer this self-posed question with the construction of a utopian world dominated by peace, love, happiness or beauty. For a lyrical expression of such a thought, it is hard to beat the song If I Ruled the World by Bricusse and Ornadel, first made familiar to me by Tony Bennett’s wistful rendition:

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