One thing I often noticed in politics (as well as other environments where there’s classical management) is bikeshedding. You do a design for a report or for a landing page and suddenly everyone is a designer or a landing page optimiser professional. This is really well addressed by Seth Godin here:
you’d think that there’s a correlation between the last few hours of tweaking and the results that we get. […] For surface shine, 80% might be more than enough. After that, the tweaking is for us, not those we seek to serve. – Seth Godin
An interesting article on philosophy that talks about time has this interesting quote:
“the idea of progress in history is a myth created by the need for meaning”.
Which, while a bit hyperbolic, is an interesting take on the dominance of linear time in the West.
While the most recent time the thought that the world was but a sinusoidal function happened when reading The Online Gig Economy’s ‘Race to the Bottom’ but really it applies to pretty much everything. While that article is about the economics and while I only have enough history knowledge to know about the parallels to the early 1900, I’m sure there are many more throughout history.
At first (around when I was 15) I thought it was actually just a circle. It was quite depressing. Humanity on a grand scale and us as humans just kept playing out our own little circles. Much like in Memento we helped ourselves along the way. Giving ourselves the justifications for our future actions. It was all quite depressing.
A few years later, and perhaps as a defense mechanism, I started seeing things as a sin function. Yes we were in a loop, but it was one that was globally trending upwards.
“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” – A few different folks, usually attributed to Martin Luther King (#)
Is one way I try to see it. While in this case it’s about humanity and helps me “accept” what’s going on in the world. (Just to be clear, I use the Buddhist interpretation of acceptance here, not resignation).
This is another one of those posts that I wish I had an answer. I wish I could close this with a straightforward answer to rally people around. An upbeat message. But I don’t have one. All I have is acceptance of the current reality and the part it plays in the greater picture.