Tuesday, September 21, 2004
Who are we?
I just concluded a meeting with some clients of mine, who flew in just to see me.
These particular clients represent a large concern with international facilities and a growing presence overseas.
I'm glad to have them as clients, of course.
Our meeting today was about establishing a presence in a country with an emerging economy that would be ideally suited for their expansion. We discussed the pros and cons, business environment and so on.
Then the bomb dropped.
While they wanted to set up shop, etc., it was just important for them to make sure that everything possible was done to keep the competition out. As a matter of fact, I would venture to say that we spent more time at our meeting on that, than we did on their business potential and growth.
The amount of energy and effort the had expended on coming up with ways to keep their copmpetition away was impressive. It was also very depressing. They look forward to 'beating the hell of them' with as much vigor as they did in growing their business and doing what they do best-- provide an excellent product and service at a fair price.
Sitting there, I was reminded of BunkerMulligan's piece this morning, on how dirty politics has become.
There isn't even a pretense of winning for the sake of doing a better job, or redefining a better America.
Politics has become a contact sport, with fewer rules than football. It's about winning at all costs, regardless of who may get hurt in the process.
Issues discussed are based on polls, vote courting is fools game, because everyone knows the candidate can't deliver on promises made, and real issues, like Health Care and Social Security will take decades to deal with properly and fairly.
Both parties hold up judicial and administration nominees, as if somehow, loyalty to the country is based on political party allegiance.
Both political parties decry the 527's, while at the same time, their respective National Committees are no more than Tamany Halls, dispensing deals, trading favors and coordinating attacks on anyone within range with the goal of destroying the 'enemy.'
Truth has become irrelevant, people's lives have become dispensible and 'speciality teams' of lawyers lie in wait to question the votes fairness, or to nullify the vote if it doesn't suit them.
Business too, has adopted these ideas, and it has even filtered down to the school board level, with charges and counter charges bandied about as if they were real issues. All the while, schools and children have become the props for another political campaign. No one really cares about the kids. If they did, we'd have schools that work.
My meeting today forced me to see our new reality. Competition, that what made us great, is now bad. Monopoly is good. Fair play, the idea that we needed to make it on our merits is an idea whose time has passed. Success is no longer predicated on doing what it took-- now, it's about doing away with competition. And guess what-- government money, handouts, pay for it all.
Our political parties have taught us well.
The public and public interest are to be used and not respected.
It is said that our politicians are supposed to represent us.
If they do, then we are in a sorry state, indeed.