Saturday, October 25, 2008

its all about Perspective

This one is all about perspective when used as a metaphor. Sometimes it is necessary to see beyond our point of view to get a better understanding of what is going on. Sometimes it does not matter, but most times we get to see way more than what is apparent if we change our viewpoint.

We are in the midst of a historic election year and there is just about 10 days till America elects a new president. I will use that backdrop to explain my point about perspective and viewpoints.

In Knowledge management circles there is a concept called "conformational bias". Basically this means that if your thought process is inclined one way, you tend to analyze and dissect events from the point of view of your BIAS. So if you are a democrat, everything the Republican candidate says and does is phooey and vice versa. So if conformational bias can skew our perspective where does the truth lie?.

Lets take a look at John Mccain's (Republican candidate) campaign for a moment: He is running on a ticket where the current president's approval rating is in the single digits, the economy is in a bad state and we are still fighting a war that was never popular. So if you walk in his shoes, he has quite a campaign going. The big question is can we learn something from it?. If you were put in a situation of not having a snowball's chance in hell, but you were knee deep in it, how do stay motivated?

Well it is all about perspective and viewpoints.

Take a game, your favorite game. You are down at half time, so way down that you dont really have a chance of winning, what do you do?. Do you throw in the towel? or do you play the game out and making it a point to learn, so the next game you play, you have learnt from it? My heart goes out to the loosing team, becuase it takes a lot more to play the game out than the winning team. It is easy for the baser side of human emotion to come out when you are put in a state of being a loosing team and it is easy to not concentrate on skill, but rather on unproductive paths.

So if you see charector assasination taking a frontal role or a focus for the loosing side, you know why. it is all about perspective and viewpoint.

So my hats off to the Mccain campaing for still being in the game. And remember when his team does not concentrate on issues that matter, and focus on socialism, race and other base emotional issues, they are just human beings, playing on a loosing team.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

The GOP academy and the Madrassa's

If you join the GOP academy, you can learn how to wink, pronounce NUCLEAR in a folksy way and the subtle art of "Management by Fear". If you join a Madrassa, I am not sure if they teach you how to wink in public, or pronounce NUCLEAR a folksy way, but they will teach you "Management by Fear". So in our heart of hearts the ideology is not very different, so why do we have a big problem about the Madrassas?.

If you answered "They are evil" or "They are the enemy" then you score 100 points on this quiz. Which is what this Saturday morning Rant is all about. Quizzes.

You see, to mobilize the masses you need a common enemy, in the "Management by Fear" approach. You find one, you paint them as evil and you go after them, regardless of cast, creed, culture. It is also very cyclical. Meaning one year your enemy might be this group, next year they will be another and so on. In the past our enemies have been, the Japanese, the Russians, the chineese, the Vietnamese, the Germans, the Moslems, Wall Street and who knows who is next. The fact remains that to stay united, to drown our miseries, to get relief from truth, we need an an ememy. An enemy that we can rally around. That is the corner stone of "Management by Fear".

So what does all this have to do with Quizzess? Well, glad you roped me back to the main theme.

If you asked me a question and I did not know the answer, you are bound to think lesser of me. If this were an exam, the result would be, I would not get a passing grade. However, if you asked me a question and I made you feel that you asked me the wrong question and perhaps you should have asked me the question that I knew a very good answer to, we all come away winners. So remember this. If you are asked a question, and you dont know the answer, formulate your own question, anwer it well and chastise the one asking the question for asking you the wrong question. That my friends is the ultimate in Management by Fear.

So next time you hear of people with power tell you, that the sky is falling, be very afraid, this is has never happened before, ask yourself the question. Is this Management by Fear?. Would it make it any better if I winked and pronounced NUCLEAR in a folksy way?. You are right gosh darn it. You Betcha!!