Atlantis Alumni

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Alas, they just don't get it...

It makes me sad when I see good people that just don't get it. John McCain is one of those people.

Threatening to "kick Barack Obama's ass" in the debate? "Get in his face" says Sarah Palin? Ok, so maybe these people aren't so good.

The problem is that these metaphors are extinct. I mean that. Apes throw poop when they feel threatened. Essentially human beings have to stop throwing poop at each other if we want to evolve into responsible members of the planet earth and maybe even the universe.

In a nutshell, leadership, how we conduct ourselves and the metaphors we use do in fact mean something. Primates throw feces. Humans throw inuendo and guilt by association. Both are forms of a futile attempt at driving off potential threats without any kind of substance. Actually the poop has more substance than the inuendo. Go figure.

Maybe it is time we evolve beyond threats and saber rattling and go on to what we were intended to do. Hence the title of this: so many folks just don't get it. Our minds need to be as strong as our bodies, maybe stronger. Ideas need substance and the current Republican campaign for the presidency lacks just that.

Further, it seems to constantly thrive on violence, an awkward trend in a world that is getting rocked by the economy. As tempting as it may be, we can't fire bullets into our economy to get it to perform. And we can't use a few talking point in a stump speach to jump start some structural problems resonating throughout our global economy. Our problems are far more sophisticated than a set of combatants and they need more than a few great minds looking at problems differently to come to a resolution.

The issues that we face as a country transcend smart vs. dumb, fat vs. thin, black vs. white. I myself only consider my intellect sophisticated enought to know what I don't know, which is quite substantial. That means that our collective problems won't get solved by one man but by a whole bunch of people with different experiences and intellects brought together. We can't seem to get that as a country. It's tempting to look for cheap and easy answers.

JK Rowling has a great quote: "Harry, you'll have to choose between what is right and what is easy." It's one of my favorites. Easy is declaring war, victory and spoils. Right is trying to identify the questions and problems we are trying to solve before we answer them. We need stop the reacting and start thinking.

Go figure. I am going to watch the debate and hopefully we will walk away with some ideas of who will start to ask the right questions and get some smart people in the room to address them.


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