In Science-Fiction there is an often told story of a ship’s crew going to a Utopian planet. The people are at peace and all of their needs are taken care of by a computer. It makes the decisions and it provides everything that the people need. However the computer is dying or malfunctioning and control must return to the planet’s inhabitants. Utopia has ended.
Today we look around, much like the people in that Science-Fiction story, we wonder how the world that we thought existed has come to an end. We have come to realize that the people who we elect to represent us in Parliament, don’t really represent us. That the schools that should teach us are not interested in either us or in knowledge. That those who should be in charge of our moral and spiritual lives aren’t interested in those things. In short the people who are supposed to be our leaders aren’t doing their job at all.
We are alone trying to work out everything ourselves. Because we cannot rely upon what we are told or shown as so much of it is false. That’s not normal or good, it shows the perversity that we all must endure. The reality is that we don’t have leaders anymore. Leaders are not the people in charge, they are the people who take charge, the people who take responsibility. Leaders lead, but we are not lead, instead we are managed and manipulated, lied to and treated like fools.
Leaders develop personal relationships with those who follow them, but we are just numbers, voters, consumers, take your pick or pick all of them. The Prime Minister is not a leader, nor is the Premier, nor the team captain. Everyone refuses to lead as that simply gets them in trouble. Don’t rock the boat, don’t create waves, that’s the way to get ahead. Everywhere I look I see a lack of leadership, everywhere.
Of course leaders also have responsibilities, they are allowed to make mistakes, to show initiative, they are allowed to have passion and to be human. But today that isn’t allowed. Instead we are told that mistakes are unforgivable. Personal failings are unforgivable. In fact people are not even allowed to have responsibilities, how many times has something gone wrong and no one takes responsibility?
Your electricity bill is wrong, but you speak to a phone operator who is not responsible at all. If you get angry and yell at them they are not responsible. In fact not a single person at the electricity company will be responsible. Some mysterious force that no one can identify will be at fault, but no actual person. We see this everywhere, no one is responsible, because mistakes are unforgivable. So we are managed and manipulated, but not lead.
How do we create leaders when to make a mistake is unforgivable?
We must accept that men are flawed, you, me, every man. That leaders are not perfect men because no such man can exist.
That leaders accept responsibility, so give men responsibilities.
That leaders require followers and those followers need to be loyal. Not sycophants who agree with everything and give false praise. Loyalty doesn’t mean that, it means giving honest support, it means not rejecting them when things get hard, it means that loyalty goes both ways.
That we all need honesty, honesty that is mixed with empathy.
We need to encourage looking after our own, in every way.
Finally we need to stop being so individualistic!
We need to stop attacking our enemies with our individual fingers and instead to roll our fingers into a ball. That fist is a much better weapon then any broken fingers could ever be.