Uncategorized 14 Jun 2002 04:56 am

Civil Rights Statement and the politics of power

Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | We won’t deny our consciences presents a statement signed by several artists and teachers in the US voicing upset at the war policies and civil rights abridgement promulgated by our Chief Executive.

I agree. Some of the language annoys me and comes off as overly dramatic. On the other hand, the message is good, and the subject is definitely worthy of drama.

I am still writing letters to my Congress people to let them know how one part of their constituency feels, and I still talk to people some about the horrid laws that have been enacted, but I haven’t been as active in working for change as I started out trying to be. I need to resume that.

If we all sit on our duffs, then those with an agenda for increasing their own power will go right ahead. You see this behavior everywhere. I think of my workplace.

Many folks are trying to rise to the top of the organization. No matter that they are not competent at the “lower”, albeit more important, part of the organization for which they were hired. They want to be “leaders”. Why? Presumably, there is the power that comes with it, and the privilege of getting to have a more bearing “say” in the direction of events, oh yeah and it is the only way to get a raise.

So, the money thing is understandable, who doesn’t wnat to have more financial security.
the leader thing, I think is the part that everyone misses. Everytime I have been in a leadership position, I have had to work my butt off. I didn’t really have to, but I felt compelled to do the best to lead the group in the right direction. I wanted to make the project succeed. Usually, this responsibility more than outweighs the financial gain if it is taken seriously. So, it is actually a deterrent to aware people who approach the throne, as it were.

The power is the other perceived reason to become a leader. To get more control, and make things go the way you would like. I am not sure how that plays in, because in Silicon Valley, if you have a good idea and you do it, people will pick up on it. You invent power by inventing good things. The people who rise through the ranks by merit, are the only ones who are respected. The rest are seen as illegitimate power grubbers.
So, real power does not come from the position either.

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