The idea that we stand on the shoulders of giants has always impressed me but it never completely satisfied me as an adequate statement of our conditions. We do stand on the shoulders of those giants in our past who have implored us to do better, invented something that benefited us, added value to existing things, or incited us to action that brought about positive change.
We also stand on the bones of those who came before. The soldier that gained and protected our freedoms. The farmer that cleared the land. The contractors that installed the infrastructure. The jobs that were created and lost in the process of business. The structures built, inhabited, and re-inhabited. The business started, the investments made and lost to be purchased by someone else. And the taxes on our labors that have been imposed.
Everyone of us throughout existence stand on the shoulders of giants and the bones of those who came before.