Constant's pations

If it's more than 30 minutes old, it's not news. It's a blog.

Friday, May 13, 2005

A note to Karen Warthen


Thank you for taking the time to write.

There was something that you said that made me think. And after careful review, I decided that I would let you know.

You said, "I am not sure speaking out really helps."

Let us remember that the most important audience for our own words is ourselves. For it is when we speak, write, or take the time to understand our own thinking, that we as the first listener-reader-audience gain the most benefit.

For it is through clear thinking that we are aware of what is.

Whether we choose to react or do anything is a separate issue. For it is our own self-esteem, confidence, and courage that is fueled by knowing what is real.

When we see what is, we can clearly see what most inspires us, and choose whether to embrace favorable habits.

Sometimes personality contests are merely the symptoms of far deeper things: A battle of wills over whose version of reality shall prevail.

Sometimes people assert their own truth, not because they are delusional, but because to assert anything else would not be true to their own values.

It is a separate matter whether their values are "correct" or healthy. Today, it is clear that many value bullying and arrogance over diplomacy and reflection.

It gets results. It also has disastrous consequences.

When we establish cost baselines and performance objectives, they are done with the goal of doing something challenging. Yet, in the big picture we often loose sight that despite the day to day squabbles, there are billions of dollars frittered away.

Most managers want to do the right thing. The problem is when managers constrained by budgets invent a mountain of lies.

Honesty is something often taken as a sign of weakness. Yet, it is actually our own doorway to courage, action, and solutions.

What is to be done? Well, if there are 10,000 people who each gave $10, then Todd's family would be better off:
"Todd Kauppila Memorial Fund" at the Los Alamos National Bank Account # 322687-20 [ 32268720 ]
This nation has over 300 million people. What if everyone reading this blog simply asked 10 of their neighbors to contribute $10. Each. Then only 1,000 readers would have to do anything.

Alternatively, those who retire could simply say, "We, as a group, are going to contact 10,000 people and ask for a $10 donation." Would that make a difference?

You bet it would.

Never forget that people can surprise you. And that sometimes what we have to say is simply what others are also thinking.

Yes, there are times to go with the flow and not rock the boat. But there are other times when to do anything but speak out will simply invite more abuse.

Such was the catalyst for the Declaration of Independence. It is simply an affirmation of what a few people chose to say.

Someone, a single person, had to be the first. Today, we enjoy the fruits of their courage.