Progression of Excellence

PART ONE

ALEXANDRIA-OCASIO-CORTEZ (AOC) 

To a post on Facebook about this newly elected member of the House of Representatives, I urged that that she do more than enter tweet-sized statements, offer more than a headline, or give words behind a sound bite. Write and explain. Put forth policies that reveal reasoning and present the mind, not the mouth, to the public. 

An admirer, a devotee or perhaps a disciple of AOC replied, “Why apply that to her before any of the other people stealing from us.”

AOC is a politician in the business of making views, not sentences, known. She is new to the political arena; she is will be in the House of Representatives. She is voluble and engaging. She is 28 years old, too young to challenge the establishment in New York state: Senators Schummer and Gillabrandt, plus Governor Cuomo. 

Should AOC go beyond offering easy to read popular quotes, provocative tweets, enlivening sound bites, attractive slogans or alluring headlines? She can distinguish herself by employing methods that her peers eschew. Write out and think through policies, not delights for the masses or the church choir, but something that Americans can understand, adopt and support. 

She does not want be on the fringe, agitating to the true believers who put her on a pedestal and bow as in a personality cult: The leader demands that nothing is questioned; nothing is discussed.  Edicts are issued and the Big Person carries all authority. It’s a rush but forfeits responsibility because the leader is not accountable. The followers end up counting angels on the head of a pin.

Americans have tried a person of this ilk, the OT (not an abbreviation for Overtime). He spouts off the latest dribbles from a drooling mouth, always trying to please homies from the ‘hood. 

PART TWO

LOST LIFE

How does an enthusiastic youth turn against aspirations and stop doubting and questioning?

   “There are wonderful, helpful people, and there are others who more concerned with how things affect them and/or the institution that they represent. This realization was a little disappointing because with my youthful, idealistic, student experience I had a higher expectation for how the University should be run and treat its children.  

   However, we have to realize that it is a government bureaucracy in which the people who work there are very human, and want to protect themselves and the institution.  After a lot of years in the private sector… I… worked [at the University] for a while, and I saw it firsthand.  It was both good and bad, just like business and life.

 

  For me, I had to take off my rose colored glasses and accept the reality that the University is not heaven and not everyone is an angel.

This quote from recent correspondence reveals the absolute decline of a human being and his facilities, a man who is easily complacent and self-satisfied. The subject being discussed was history, and this response reminds me of a proverb popular in the Soviet Union: “The future is certain. It is the past that is uncertain.” In other words the bureaucracy will determine what the past is, and thereby the future is assured.

This is not the only discussion I’ve had with Boomers on this point. After some talk, I asked a successful businesswoman whether there was in her life anything she would change. She looked ahead, out the window with some glow in her eyes and said, “No, I don’t think so.” She wouldn’t change a word; she would not change an act; she would not change a relationship; she would not change a thought, a reflection or a wish.

If presented with the argument of this writing, both persons would insist, I didn’t mean that. I’m being misquoted. Yet these persons are approaching a brain-dead status because they are accepted what-is and failed to rail against what-could-be. They are sell- outs.

Each relies on age, experience and wisdom. I have the judgment based upon experience. Right away, these persons are wrong. Is each satisfied with the world as it is, whether it depends upon what is happening is the South China Sea, Washington DC or across the street? Mark Twain had advice for listening to such people: “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down the their level and then beat you with experience.”

It obvious each boomer lacks human qualities – inquisitiveness, curiosity, imagination, foresight and ideas. What sort of world do these individuals want their children and grandchildren to grow up into and struggle through: A bureaucracy that can’t be changed because a predecessor-in-interest was too lazy, incompetent or complacent to work to change the way the society or bureaucracy worked twenty-five or fifty years ago?

Wisdom is not fed only by experience. That’s a cop-out. It was Mark Twain who observed,

“We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it and stop there lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove lid again and that is well but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.” What is true for cats (sitting on a cold stove lid on a hot summer day is soothing) is also true for human beings. Persons relying solely on experience frequently fall into cliches – events are inevitable, or history repeats itself. Again Mark Twain clarified, “History does not repeat itself but it rhymes.” Experience likes rhymes. That is why people cling and linger on experiences When old or old thinking, they rely on experience – today is like it was when I was young. How so? What did you think then? Be honest. Why did you change? Be honest. Was that change good? Be honest.

As the quote form the correspondence indicates, experience plus age lets a human being pass, let it go, let people do their own thing, accept any malarky a bureaucracy, a society, a group or an individual proposes. It is too difficult to change the way people think, do or feel. We know that. Tell every person in the Civil Rights Movement how difficult it is to change the attitudes and ways of their fellow Americans. It was easier to pass Constitutional Amendments, 13, 14 and 15.

Yet hiring or having a person with experience who is supposed to be motivated, have imagination and knowledge plus propose new ways to address problems is never assured. That experienced person may have given up. The work, the bureaucracy, is too difficult. That person expended energy and imagination when using drugs and unthinking enthusiasm earlier in life: Now that person is settled: I grew up. I’ve given up. I am a tired, useless, old human being who likes to watch life pass by. Hiring a person like that only adds another layer to the bureaucracy.

PART THREE  

RESOLUTIONS

What does AOC have to do with the boomers in Part Two? Nothing, and perhaps everything. It is easy to go along with the bureaucracy. It’s not just business and political entities

but also a social organization. AOC can lose everything and disappear into the Federal Government. She will part of the group, the power elite, a giddy promotion for a fresh face. She will become rich, successful and powerful. She will be popular, on TV and famous. Who does not want all that?

What’s happening in her mind? AOC is young and for the reminder of life she should read, ponder, write, and thereafter act and express herself about thoughts and beliefs. It is clear few of her peers, Left or Right, can or are doing that.

For the boomers? Can old people change their ways? It takes energy to be curious and inventive and stick to it. It takes energy to read and think about ideas and issues comprehended and how they might be applied today to better the future. It is not enough to travel. An acquaintance said in my presence: “I went to the Galapagos Islands.” Before I could ask about differences of species on each island (which Darwin noted), she said, “And then I saw Machu Picchu.” I did not ask about the recently discovered Inca city west of Machu. I figured she was happy seeing the highlights of South America. Some people are truly the living dead, so deep in a rut that they are buried.

I got into a tiff with a woman on Facebook. I made a joke about marijuana usage, and she told me if I weren’t using pot, I would never be part of the Twenty-First Century. Sorry I can’t join Elom Musk. I did not respond to that view – you’re lucky you got out of the Nineteenth Century. Pot and its derivatives are not the drugs to make the Twenty-First Century better. Going forward, all human beings, as hard as it may be, should keep as many of their wits within them. The tale of the Twenty-First Century will be, the person with the most wits wins.  

CHARACTER: Crime Four

Last year I presented three lists describing crimes and criminal activities, derived from TV crime shows. Issues in this article arise from a crime show: Woman has wonderlust. She moves from place to place but no stop is perfect and satisfies her. She needs satisfaction not contentment or acceptability. She continues to look for the perfect location with perfect people. She meets different and more people. There are chemistry and magic someplace.

A person seeking something from the environment or from society has a tough row to hoe. Everything is life predicated on experience: Wise men learn by others’ harms; fools by their own. Or, Experience keeps a dear school, yet Fools will learn in no other. Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanack. Our person relies on impulse, instinct and intuition, freely for the way forward but frequently is hurt or offended if someone is rude, questioning or dismissive. Yet ask whether our person is capable of love, or recognizes love apart from fondness, affection and attention.

Our person from the show was murdered in the same manner her mother was 25 years before. Picked up in a bar, taken into a forest, assaulted and killed. The murderers were easily caught. However, our person did not learn from experience, and there appeared no memory to let our person ponder, reflect or consider. This was a sorry, pathetic, weak and uneducated human being. What may be worse, our person may be lying to herself about herself.

How to breach the cycle relying in impulse, instinct and intuition? One ay, put something of substance into the person’s head. If she loves nature, educate her about forest lore, not the tripe James Fenimore Cooper recited but real things from education to survival skills. That education will change activities, the life, behavior, goals and aspirations.

BLOATED AIRHEAD

Campaign 2016. Raise an issue as a headline. One headline is USA debt. It’s a lot. Everyone knew that long before the election began. Next headline, change tax plans.

One bloated mind is unwilling and incapable of speaking intelligently about anything beyond repetition. The reason for lack of understanding is the bloated brain has a head of air – yes, the good old airhead. This candidate says he’s huge, read bloated.

The airhead fumbles while trying to amplify the headline, but no use listening. No use repeating the same thing, again, again, and again, three times in a minute. The public needs facts to be repeated. They don’t need to be a laughing stock and corrected by Democrats in their company when they repeat the party line: I was critical of women because no painted ladies smiled my way. The public needs facts, logic and reason rather than the lies, obstinacy and misstatement of a bloated old airhead.

Many candidates talk to citizens presenting their cases why they should be nominated as the party’s candidate. They don’t rely on headlines, on cliches, slogans, folk sayings and homilies. They discuss policies and programs and explain why one approach is better than another. In this way politicians reveal themselves as human beings. But the bloated airhead has ordered people from campaign events: “Get her out of here. I know she’s a ten and justifiably evaluates my misuse of cosmetics, my over-use of hair spray, my donning ill-fitting clothes and my carrying excess blubber.” (“I’m frustrated. After Christmas I couldn’t get into my clothes. They had to be taken out and more material needed tailoring because I overate and gained 20 pounds. I hate to exercise. My double chin became bigger and bigger obliterating the double chin and becoming an extra neck, like I’m storing snacks there.”)

The bloated airhead has never felt more confident. All his sycophants drool over his every move. Everyone knows his name, and no one trusts him. Everyone knows Hilary, and no one trusts her, either. Everyone has an idea who Bill and Hilary are, but no one knows who the hell the bloated airhead is. The American people may have to spring for the devil they know rather than the terror lurking in and descending from some far away, high up executive suit: Every day he demonstrates he hates people; he detests critics; he loathes criticism; he only likes to talk to people who are elites; he likes persons around him who say yes to every whim; he does not listen; he knows the headline for everything or something close but knows no details, specifics or background knowledge. [He knew Paris was once part of Germany, his homeland uber alles, but he does not know the Germans lost the European part of World War Two, so the French now have it.]

The Presidency is not an on-the-job training program; the bloated airhead is too fat for the position. But he can not be fired, terminated or liquidated if elected, only impeached. It is best to avoid the airhead on any ballot.