Jim Letourneau's Blog

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Be Afraid

...but don't let fear rule your decisions.

One very good reason to be afraid comes from Arnold King. He argues that there is an excessive and currently increasing concentration of power (think suits) in the hands of the people who created our current fiscal firestorm. It is charitable thinking to trust that the people who created this mess are the best people to lead us out of it.

We got into this crisis because power was overly concentrated relative to knowledge. What has been going on for the past several months is more consolidation of power. This is bound to make things worse.

Meanwhile, knowledge (think geeks) is increasingly dispersed. In King's arguments the centralized suits are winning out over the decentralized geeks.

In Oliver Stone's "W." there is a telling scene where Karl Rove asks Bush if there were only a one percent chance that the lettuce in his sandwich had e-coli and could kill him, would he still eat the sandwich?

Ron Suskind's "The One Percent Doctrine: Deep Inside America's Pursuit of Its Enemies Since 9/11" illustrates how the use of fear led to the severing of fact-based analysis from forceful response.

If someone wanted to intentionally create fear, they've succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. I'm not a believer of consiracy theories but I would agree that a crisis creates the perfect opportunity for those craving power to grab it.