Archive for leaders

Power Corrupts People

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Education / Schools, Ethics & Morals, History, Recommendations & Tributes, Spiritual, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 15, 2018 by Drogo

Baron J.E.E. Dalberg-Acton (aka Lord Acton 1834-1902) was a noble English Catholic historian, politician, and writer. Lord Acton knew several major foreign languages. Acton’s linguistic and religious passion may have influenced Tolkien many years later. A fellow Catholic, Tolkien used the literary legacy that power tends to corrupt even the best men, as his main theme. In Lord of the Rings, the most powerful Ring cannot be used as a tool for good by even the best heroes, because they too would eventually be corrupted, no matter their intentions. The revelation seems to be that power is part of Original Sin as described in the the Bible, in the book of Genesis, in the Garden of Eden. The Old Testament myth that humans fell from the grace of godly paradise because we submitted to the evil temptation of power (the apple advocated by the serpent), seems to have found new expression in the words of these men. Acton collected a large historical library for the “History of Liberty”. Acton was politically Liberal, and travelled greatly. Acton loved reading original historic letters. Acton lived at his country house in Aldenham, Shropshire; and served in the House of Commons. Acton admired the U.S. Government for the Constitution, but oddly sided with the southern Confederacy for defending individual citizen liberties against the tyranny of Union Federal empire (while ignoring slavery). Acton was appointed to the Royal Victorian Order, as a Knight Commander (KCVO).

“History is the arbiter of controversy, the monarch of all she surveys.” “There is not a more perilous or immoral habit of mind than the sanctifying of success.” [about Oliver Cromwell] “The strong man with the dagger is followed by the weak man with the sponge.” “Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right of being able to do what we ought.”

In 1887 Lord Acton wrote his most famous quote:

“…I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men, with a favorable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption it is the other way, against the holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority, still more when you super-add the tendency or the certainty of corruption by authority. There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it. That is the point at which the negation of Catholicism and the negation of Liberalism meet and keep high festival, and the end learns to justify the means. You would hang a man of no position like Ravaillac; but if what one hears is true, then Elizabeth asked the jailer to murder Mary, and William III of England ordered his Scots minister to extirpate (destroy) a clan. Here are the greatest names coupled with the greatest crimes; you would spare those criminals, for some mysterious reason. I would hang them higher than Haman (biblical Persian minister in the Book of Esther), for reasons of quite obvious justice, still more, still higher for the sake of historical science.”

He is best known for that remark he wrote in a letter to an Anglican bishop; but according to an editor of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica: “Lord Acton has left too little completed original work to rank among the great historians; his very learning seems to have stood in his way; he knew too much and his literary conscience was too acute for him to write easily, and his copiousness of information overloads his literary style. But he was one of the most deeply learned men of his time, and he will certainly be remembered for his influence on others.”

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Mohandas ‘Bapu’ Karamchand Gandhi (1869-1948) was an Indian Hindu non-violent civil disobedience activist. Gandhi was leader of the Indian independence movement against British colonial rule. Gandhi’s self-sacrifice inspired freedom movements for civil rights across the World. Raised in a merchant caste family in India, he later trained in law in London. Gandhi first used non-violent civil disobedience in South Africa, for colonial civil rights. Returning to India in 1915, he organized farmers and workers to protest against high land tax and bigotry. Leading the Indian National Congress in 1921, Gandhi led national campaigns for social causes and self-rule (Swaraj).

Gandhi helped India challenge the British salt tax by marching in 1930. In 1942 Gandhi called for the British to leave India. He was imprisoned for many years, upon many occasions, in South Africa and India. Gandhi lived modestly in a community and wore a traditional hand-spun Indian dhoti and shawl. Gandhi was vegetarian and took long fasts for spiritual and political reasons. Muslim Nationalism (Pakistan) and Gandhi’s Hindu pluralism in India helped to force Britain out of India in 1947.

Displaced Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs migrated; and religious violence broke out in Punjab and Bengal. Gandhi visited the riots to help and fasted to stop religious violence. Hindu nationalist conservatives criticized and assassinated Gandhi. Gandhi’s birthday is commemorated in India as a national holiday, and worldwide as the International Day of Nonviolence. As with all martyr heroes that lives real lives, Gandhi had many human flaws of the sort that might be emphasized more when historical writers express loss of popular favor their cults.

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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien’s work was certainly influenced by the events of the World Wars, despite his public refusal of metaphor speculation. ‘The Lord of the Rings‘ explores abuse of corrupt power, by considering that the temptation of use of power can eventually corrupt anyone. The One Ring of Power created by Sauron promises great power, but eventually corrupts all who use it. Even good people are corrupted by lust for the Ring because of its power to rival Sauron, and by using its vast powers even the lightest souls darken. The ones best able to carry the Ring are innocent souls with meager ambition, and the best they can do with the Ring is to destroy it.

Tolkien said these words about power: “The proper study of man is anything but man, and the most improper job of any man . . is bossing other men. Not one in a million is fit for it, and least of all those who seek the opportunity.” [Letters #52] Tolkien believed that leaders should be judged by their example, more than common people are judged [James 3:1]. Power and authority allow for the most terrible things. The misuse of power often ruins leaders and followers who allow the abuse to happen. Vigilant active citizens will demand wise balance.

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Power within us and others is clearly our responsibility; not only to control our own will power to keep it within reason, but also to influence the power that we allow others to hold over us and others. If citizens cannot control their own leader’s passion for power from within a government using democracy, then it will be left up to other governments in other countries (see World Wars). The conclusion to the problem of power is perhaps best summarized by Spiderman in Marvel Comics – “With great power, comes great responsibility.”

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Regarding Warlords or Dictators

Posted in History, Military, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 25, 2018 by Drogo

Warlords, Dictators, or Generals of fame are important to History. Yet what does this say about the value of Peace, human life, or Life in general?

Greek, Roman, and Christian Empires used sculpture and architecture to facilitate the public, usually under dictatorships. In Greece stoas, plazas, and theaters promoted democracy; yet cooperative societies get quickly smashed or oppressed by competitive economic and political greed. Many militants consider this a brutal part of human nature, that we will not ‘grow out of’ in our evolution as a species for many eons.

Caesar was a tyrannical dictator who established a line of Emperors, so although very brilliant and important to History, he is not really a SCOD role-model. Yet Queen Boadicea is a SCOD heroine, because of her suffering under oppression and rebelling in defense of her people, not a conquering invader.

Colonial Empires rely on extracting resources from branches of subjugated colonies under threat of military force. Empires can run using monarchies, states, or corporations as legal power. American government began as a corporate conglomerate who represented their home states illegally under a monarchy empire. Gradually US Federal government grew with economic and population expansion, run by corporate business owners who corrupted politicians. Thus began our American Empire.

It is hard to consider what militant leaders do, as ethically good; even if they kill some bad people, or defend their own country, when in the course of their harsh rule they command the killing of thousands. Generals may learn the hard way that war is hell, and have wisdom of campaign strategy and knowledge of will power leadership strategies, but it should always be remembered that they were not the most peaceful people in over-all major ways compared to most great philosophers who are rarely recorded to have killed anyone (unless we include orators and authors like Hitler). Most great philosophers advocate peace more than violence, and this is why the most important SCOD philosophers should consider the morality of their major views regarding conflict resolution and what they are promoting within society. Questions of killing become part of the SCOD theme regarding the important value of Life, and how that value affects civilization.

We should judge our own leaders the harshest, because we have more responsibility and control over ourselves than others.

Drogo_mounds

Corruption Trials Can Create Change

Posted in Philosophy, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 26, 2017 by Drogo

Some people fear holding officials accountable, in fear of another corrupt vice politician hypothetically causing more problems, or that it would mean endless hearings and trials about corruption, thus grid-locking government more than usual. Having more public attention about corruption, could force restructuring of democracy for functionality. To me it seems irrational to allow a terrible leader to continue causing harm, by any illogical reasoning that allows abuse instead of ethics. To be fair it would be interesting to hear a scenario where oligarchs would allow our change to happen; which might well be impossible so long as corporations and plutocrats control the economy and campaign finance aka bribery. Perhaps the ultimate conclusion is that people en mass create the social change that years from now facilitate economics and politics for small people and all people. How grassroots change happens is first by compassionate communication for the less fortunate poor, with at least some frequency and sympathetic rationality using arts and sciences to reflect egalitarian goals and aspirations. Over time systems become run by people with the collective core values that groups of people expect and demand, even if their words and promises fall short of actions. Needed actions tend to happen when individual people feel empowered enough to carry out the activities that give them rewards (see Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’). If individuals can run large groups democratically with enough members to fill offices and run accountability rules, then Plato’s need for a Philosopher King would be overturned by the majority of masses joining Socrates and Diogenes in noble quests in common spaces using dialog instead of only fixed rhetoric and abuse of power. Perhaps democracy can hold leaders accountable, rather than jail or execute public nuisances.

Successful Leadership & Selling

Posted in Economics, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2015 by Drogo

10 Successful Traits

– based on an article by Dan Cassidy on Lifehack

1. commit to worthy goals

2. persist until you achieve goals

3. take responsibility to keep going

4. work harder, smarter, or differently

5. emulate case studies of success

6. believe in your goals

7. care for your health

8. rest, take breaks, and play

9. make mistakes and recover

10. adapt and learn

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21 Laws of Leadership – John Maxwell

I. Law Of the Lid: determine levels of effectiveness.
II. Law of Influence: cultivate influence.
III. Law of Process: develop daily, not in a day.
IV. Law of Navigation: chart the course, not just steer.
V. Law of Addition: serve others, don’t just lead or boss.
VI. Law of Solid Ground: establish trust.
VII. Law of Respect: gain strength from those weaker.
VIII. Law of Intuition: evaluate everything.
IX. Law of Magnetism: Who you are is who you attract.
X. Law of Connection: touch hearts, not just hands.
XI. Law of the Inner Circle: close friends determine potential.
XII. Law of Empowerment: share power with others.
XIII. Law of the Picture: people do what people see.
XIV. Law of Buy-in: people buy into a person with vision.
XV. Law of Victory: team cooperation should win.
XVI. Law of the Big Mo: Momentum moves group goals.
XVII. Law of Priorities: activity is not victory.
XVIII. Law of Sacrifice: A leader must give up, to go up.
XIX. Law of Timing: know when to lead, and when to serve.
XX. Law of Explosive Growth: lead leaders, not just followers.
XXI. Law of Legacy: train people for leadership succession.

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Selling 101 – Zig Ziglar

Once you have something to sell, find someone willing to buy. Deal skillfully with reluctant potential buyers. Persuade by asking, not telling; then engage what people care about, even if it is not a reason for buying ‘yet’. Selling is based on the buyer needing; use analysis, awareness, solutions, and satisfaction factors. Conduct comfortable ‘inner-views’ using sincere interest in POGO: Person, Organization, Goals, and Obstacles; it is mostly about them. Sell solutions to problems; ask to have. KISS to close; Keep It Simple Sales-person! When people say ‘no’, empathize with objections without believing the conclusion is final. Test objections, then move on. Manage your time, so that you do what you need to do, and do what you want to do. Most of your time will be spent on activities that do not directly make sales, but support your system.

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Politicians

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 1, 2011 by Drogo

Good and Bad Politicians

Ongoing Lists of our representative leaders, past and present.

Think of this list, as a list of real life “Heroes and Villains”

By “Good” we mean “Ethically and Morally Good”

By “Bad”  we mean “Corrupt, Evil, Vile, and Sinister”

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Good Politicians

Kucinich

Sanders, Bernie (US Senator)

Gravel, Mike

Unger, John

Gore, Al

Carter, Jimmy

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Bad Politicians

Bush Jr.

Cheney

Rummy

McCain

Nixon

Jackson, Andrew

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Legendary References

Posted in History, Philosophy, SCOD Thesis with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 14, 2011 by Drogo

SCOD Legendary Myth and Hero References

SCOD itself exists as multiple amalgams of various ideas, but is never restricted even to one particular mixture.   Even a vision of Utopia or Paradise is different for everyone, yet SCOD does not claim permanent perfection.  Many believe that our human existence only allows glimpses of archetypal enlightenment, regardless; SCOD strives for Organic Sustainability for humans.

SCOD Theory Themes have been listed as 5, but that list is only condensed from a longer list of client inspirations. The Themes are used in the personalities and decisions made by the designers, clients, and followers. They affect actual structures in neighborhoods, to isolated woodland experiments. People of SCOD create based on Themes they believe in, or respect.

A complete reference list is impossible, as all things are reminglings, yet here is an attempt to site primary Legends and Heroes:

The Epic of Gilgamesh; Homer; Hebrew Scripture; Pythagoras, Empedocles, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Archimedes; Vitruvius; New Testament; Sparticus; King Arthur; Robin Hood; Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael; Copernicus, Galileo, Newton; Einstein, Hawking, Sagan; Hume, Hobbes, Locke, Kant; Washington, Jefferson, Franklin; Byron, Blake, Poe, Lovecraft, Crowley; Wells, Huxley, Orwell, Bradbury; Gaudi, Dali, Graves, Woods, Giger, Gilliam; Monty Python; Jung, Steiner, Gurdjieff, Ouspensky, Bennett; Wagner, Orff, Poledouris; Claymont;  Soleri, Cosanti, Arcosanti; DNA; World Cultural Diversity; Martial & Healing Arts; Art, Science, Alchemy/Architecture; History/Literature/Linguistics; Nature/Spirituality; Environmentalism; etc…

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SCOD Philosophy owes much to Legendary Heroes.

Our heroes are fictional and historic, males and females, there is no limit.

Philosopher Kings (Queens not included yet):

Asian: Lao Tsu, Sun Tsu, Buddha and Confucius

Hebrew, Christian, and Muslim: Moses, Jesus, Mohammad

Seven Ancient Sages: Thales, Pythagoras, Empedocles, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, and Epicurus

Mathematics: Euclid, Archimedes

Science: Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Einstein

Roman: Cicero, Julius Caesar, Marcus Aurelius (Stoics), Saint Augustine

Medieval: King Arthur, Saint Francis, Thomas Aquinas

Modern: Machiavelli, Francis Bacon, Hobbes, Locke, Descartes, Hegel, Hume, Hegel, Kant, Kierkegaard, Goethe, Nietzsche, Ghandi, Marx, Jung, Phenomenology