Monday, April 23, 2007

Destroying Credibility and Respect

Despite testimony running 95% in favor of the governor’s nominees, the senate committees have voted against recommending these nominees to the body of the whole for confirmation -- destroying whatever hopes remained of any credibility of the senate (legislature) being a place in which people can expect fairness and rational thought. Instead, there is only a knee-jerk reaction against preventing those who are fair and rational, from exercising those abilities in a government capacity.

Undoubtedly those "rejected" go on to better lives in the private sector -- where such qualities are valued and rewarded. In Hawaii state government, it is not welcomed. What happens is that all those virtues go elsewhere -- leaving those remaining to prey upon one another, in an ever-decreasing pool of compliant victims.

That’s what happened to the mainstream media -- and all the institutions that became so powerful and control so total, that they could lock out everybody else who wasn’t already inside, in the inner circle of power and control.

The problem with that kind of thinking and strategy is that the vast talent on the outside gets locked out and becomes the seed of their eventual destruction, as human genius and resourcefulness becomes their mortal enemy -- rather than their ally -- because THEY choose to make it so. That has always been the arrogance and miscalculation of power.

You can’t warn them against acting in that way; they have to as the fate they have designed for themselves. That is the lesson of the recent Easter passion play -- in which those of greatest power, are fated to their eternal doom and damnation. Yes, they become famous -- but for what?

And is that what they wish to be famous for? Many people don’t ask that question, because they become drunk with their own power and ambition -- for which they become known to the world in an unmistakable and irreversible way. It doesn’t take much -- to expose a whole lifetime of who they actually are, and stand for.

The legislative session is very stressful -- and destroys a lot of people as an unintended consequence. I think it is mainly because the mind becomes overburdened -- with all the petty details and considerations until there is no space and capacity for acting clearly. Instead of entertaining the hundreds of unrelated issues every year, what they need to do is develop one clear idea that implies all the others.

That clearly, would be raising the Hawaii standard deduction and personal exemption until it was at least as high as the federal (national) -- if it is indeed true that the cost of living in Hawaii is higher than anywhere else in the United States. Why should all those living in real poverty, have to pay for the lifestyles of government workers demanding $100,000 a year guranteed lifetime incomes -- so they can live in the luxury they feel they are entitled to? Then they might have some credibility and respect -- that no amount of demanding that they be recognized as the only powerful and important people in society will get them.

That's not what the legislature is for.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Speaking For Oneself

Many people don’t realize that in union elections, they are voting to give up their right to speak for themselves -- and then wonder why they have no right to speak for themselves, and have no say in determining their own working conditions. The right to speak and represent themselves is granted to everyone as the highest right -- in a republic. That is what a republic stands for -- the granting of rights and powers from the citizens -- and not divine rights from those most ruthless in asserting them.

That is still problematical for many people -- who believe that they have the right, authority and wisdom to speak for everybody else -- and to tell everybody else what to do. Psychologists call such people, “authoritarian” personalities -- of which the totalitarians, despots, tyrants, demagogues, and everybody else claiming to speak for God and truth exclusively, are easily recognized.

Such types are contrasted by “democratic” personalities -- which is not simply the right of individuals to gang up and impose their collective will on the (unorganized) minority, but are those who regard the rights of others as inviolable also -- and no majority or consensus can vote to eliminate them.

In witnessing the proceedings at the Hawaii state legislature, what is distressing is not so much that many citizens are distressed by the treatment of such minorities, but that it doesn’t bother the leaders and representatives to preside over such injustices -- and in fact, are rather proud of them as their show of power and dominance. For whatever reason, the reporters sent to cover such deliberations, seem also to share in the triumph of these injustices as though they were on the “winning” team running interference for these abuses. It’s really quite sickening and disheartening -- to know that not only are the politicians predictably corrupted, but those self-designated to be the “watchdogs” for the citizens --cannot distinguish right from wrong either, and for that, proudly call themselves “objective,” rather than realizing their blinding bias, prejudices and even hatreds -- often touted as “political correctness.”

Thus, the most egregious wrong doings are legitimized because the majority has voted to make it so -- losing sight of the fact that the major justification for government in the first and last place, is the guaranteeing of those rights -- of those minorities. That is the defining criteria for determining justice, fairness and value in any society -- the baseline treatment of the least powerful.

The truly powerful, don’t need government; government was not designed for their own benefit -- and to legitimize and aggrandize their own power.

The most inviolable power in a free republic, is the right to speak only for oneself -- and not the claim to speak for everybody else. Yet in almost every tactic to convince others of the legitimacy of their own views, they seldom make an appeal on its own merits exclusively, but only make an attempt to manipulate the mind and opinions of the other -- which is not speaking any truth, and being clearly recognized by that.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Writing to Your Representative

I think one of the big mistakes of writing on/to a forum like this, is trying to get somebody else to do something or think /act the way one wants them to -- rather than just articulating one’s understanding and insight as best one can themselves -- for whomever resonates with it. You don’t know who that might be; it might not be the person you have specifically targeted, and demand should act as your personal emissary for your own point of view which they may have no idea what you are talking about. You have to first be your own best representative -- of your point of view. The appeal is best made not by the office one holds but the validity of one’s perceptions and depth of that understanding and passion.

That’s why blogs are a quantum leap over letters to the editors pages -- in which not only do citizens try to get somebody else to do something that they might even be better able to do themselves, but the editors then select and manipulate those personal attacks to maximize the controversies and conflicts that are the problems in society. So this new forum makes possible problem-solving by the principals rather than going through so many intermediaries that might have been necessary in a time in which one couldn’t get their perspectives published -- as are now available to anyone who fully realizes these new realities.

The transition to blogging is problematical to a lot of the old media writers for that same reason -- in that they have no advantage or disadvantage to anyone else. In a previous era, everybody wrote to the editor hoping to convince/embarrass the editor/governor/president as the only person who could do anything -- to do their bidding, to understand what they alone could understand and articulate best. Now YOU can just state the case the best YOU can -- as the ultimate authority. That is empowerment in the age of the Internet.

That’s what a lot of people don’t get. Then if your case has merit, somebody will run with your idea. But to pick somebody out who SHOULD run with your idea and SHOULD understand your sentiments is not an effective way to see YOUR ideas come to fruition.

In the new world, everybody is a principal. The best way not to get one’s message through is to write to the editor of the newspaper to address a representative in state government to write to the president of the United States on your directive. This is the age of disintermediation. You need to write to the President directly. It’s not the old golden era of newspapers anymore.

The hardest thing for people to get used to in the new freedom of expression, is that there is no limit to how well they can express their OWN point of view -- and not as the mass media model of controlling everybody else’s opinion. That’s the paradigm shift of these times the mainstream media doesn’t know how to report on -- and why it fails to evolve (survive) to the next level.