STUNNINGLY Intelligent, Timely, A Study in Ethics, Business, & Governance, April 20, 2013
I received this book as a gift because I have been telling people for over a decade that the 21st Century is going to be the Century of women, whose compassion, intuition, and smaller egos make them so much superior to men in an age that will be vastly more complex and nuanced than the Industrial Era with its willful ignorance of the true cost of everything including the true cost of colonialism, unilateral militarism, and predatory capitalism.
First, for context, a few of the books that have caused me to appreciate this one and recommend it without reservation, the bottom line being that muscle (and blind heavy metal militaries) are out, brains and heart and “non-zero” are in.
Philosophy and the Social Problem: The Annotated Edition
THE DAWN OF THE AGE OF AQUARIUS
The Chalice and the Blade: Our History, Our Future
Mapping the Moral Domain: A Contribution of Women’s Thinking to Psychological Theory and Education
Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny
First off, the author’s background is relevant: business professor and corporate time with Time-Warner. This is a serious guy that has done hard time in both the academic and corporate media worlds–he is inteimately familiar with the pretensions and limitations of men, and with the cavalier manner in which we have treated women. I like to point out to people that it used to be legal to abuse women and people of color, and to deprive both groups of voice and vote. This is also an author with a very broad international perspective, who teaches for the United Nations and understands the challenges and the requirements for stabilization & reconstruction.
I am quite taken with the author’s discussion of “tribalism” and how modern tribalism combined with media manipulation make us all both stupid and dangerous. As one who has studied the origin of the state (including matriarchs as the first leaders, because lines of inheritance from women were absolutely known) and also the preconditions of revolution (concentration of wealth and huge disparities of income being number one), I see the author’s introduction as long overdue common sense. I have been charting what I call “information pathologies,” my reflections on this are easy to find online, they boil down generally to men being able to get away with insanely criminal corruption because of secrecy and the willingness of men to assume that they are entitled to deprive others for their own advantage.
Early on, and with due regard to Jeffrey Nielsen’s Myth Of Leadership: Creating Leaderless Organizations, the author discusses the fact that “leadership” is not a skill, it is a designation that instantly creates leaders and followers — those with privileges and those with duties. In my own writings these past 20 years, including my chapter on “paradigms of failure” easily found online, I have noted that all eight of the information “tribes” in the USA have become totally corrupt and no longer represent any semblance of the public interest in relation to their avowed stake-holders: academia, civil society (including labor and religion), commerce, government, law enforcement, media, military, and non-government/non-profit. We have become a The Cheating Culture: Why More Americans Are Doing Wrong to Get Ahead.
Throughout the book the author makes many references to how he sees a marked difference in the generation coming up through the school system and entering on duty, eventually to assume power and influence: they are NOT the same as we have been, we the generation of lies. I have been doing some substitute teaching for the past few months, and have been both refreshed by the young, and inspired — I am thinking of doing an article on “Generation Truth.” They are not going to stand still for a corrupt Congress borrwoing in our name, stealing in our name, invading in our name, torturing in our name, poisoning our earth in our name. Change is inevitable. As my middle son said one day in the car, “We’re just waiting for all you old people to die.” They are not going to fight us for power, they are simply going to exercise power more wisely, more collaboratively, when they get it.
QUOTE (75): In the new age powered by relationships, coalitions, and consensus, the male style of single leaders will not work. Female leadership is the recipe for getting us out of the mess we find ourselves in.
When the author and I talk about female leadership we are referring to ladies who think, not butch women trying to out-do the men at being “hard.” I have seen such women destroy entire Departments of government, and I have also seen females whose vision, compassion, and diplomacy was such as to make me weep when they were stomped on by the butch women so eager to out-do the men on the men’s own terms. Newsflash from Dr. Russell Ackoff: doing the wrong thing righter is still the wrong thing, we need to do the right thing, and in my view, and in the author’s view, the new new thing that we need to try now (which is actually the old old thing of our indigenous forebearers, the democratic consensus circle, open space, and seventh generation thinking),is 360 degree compassionate appreciative dialog and deliberation — Christina Tobin of Free & Equal, Sandy Heierbacher of the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD), and Peggy Holman author of Engaging Emergence: Turning Upheaval into Opportunity are all women I would gladly support, confident that my views would not be marginalized as they have been these past 20 years by the dolts spending money in our name to no good end across the US national security enterprise.
The author spends useful time and space on the fact that women have common sense that men lack (my wife will attest to my own short-falls and I to her strengths), and that men are too easily screwed up by sex — it stops their brain, closes their heart, and makes them seriously stupid, time and time.
If I have one disagreement with the author it comes in the chapter on the male obsession with war. The book lacks an index, so I cannot double-check my own reading, but he is I believe overlooking the role that financial fraud and greed play in funding war instead of peace. Medard Gabel, #2 and co-creator with Buckminster Fuller of the analog World Game (and today t he architect of the digital EarthGame, he just needs $3M a year in escrow) has done phenomenal research showing that for one third of what we spend on war, we can eradicate every one of the ten high-level threats to humanity identified by the United Nations High Level Panel in A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility–Report of the Secretary-General’s High-level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change. I was among those who tried to stop the Iraq war when Colin Powell and George Tenet both failed the integrity test and refused to stand up to our nakedly amoral Vice President and our good-hearted but challenged President, and I can certainly say with authority now that for the $4 trillion or so we have wasted on Dick Cheney’s being out of control and Congress abdicating its Article 1 authority, we could have created heaven on earth — free clean water and energy for every person on the planet, a lifetime cell phone and free education for everyone on the planet, and then just get out of the way of the infinite wealth this would have produced. CORRUPTION leverages male testosterone. On this point Lawrence Lessig and I are in total agreement. Males can be controlled by women only if we keep money honest. As we have all seen, Wall Street has destroyed not just the US but the global economy, and done so while reaping huge profits from funding two lost wars.
I will not spoil the last two chapters by summarizing them, but to end this relatively short and easy to read (and very easy to gift book — priced right!) the author provides:
Chapter 10: Benefits and Wisdom of the Aquarian Age and the Divine Feminine
Chapter 11: How Women Can Save Us From Destorying Ourselves
This book certainly deserves to go into a second edition, and if that is the case, I hope the author will add an annotated bibliography. 2012 is the beginning of Epoch B, the era of bottom-up multinational collaboration and consensus. Epoch A, the era of top down unilateral “because we say so” era is over, but the corrupt male leadership has not gotten the memo. Occupy is going to come back. If the US Government continues on this insane path of false flag attacks, false information on unemployment (actually 23% overall and 40% for both kids right out of college and for old guys like myself without a PhD), and government on behalf of the 1% instead of the 99%, we are also going to see angry white men with guns in the streets, and none of the insane plans of DHS for martial law and metropolitan “lock-downs” will work — the angry public will simply start killing anyone wearing a uniform and carrying a weapon. The USA is close to a revolution — look for my Graphic: Preconditions of Revolution in the USA to understand how close — and this book, with its celebration of female values and common sense, is as good starting point as any I can imagine for inspiring a radical change in direction. What the men have been doing is NOT WORKING.
Robert David STEELE Vivas
THE OPEN SOURCE EVERYTHING MANIFESTO: Transparency, Truth & Trust (2012)