There is something wrong with a nation of increasingly “college educated” people having to fill out jobs that require about as much critical thought as a butter-side-down slice of bread has in determining whether it lands face or butter side down. An older social worker bemoaned the bad old days when she did not count numbers and data since she was always in the field dealing with people. Also, there was a formal network but the informal always existed and people did their jobs even when they went outside of a norm or a business practice to do so. This was called back then, getting the job done. If Mrs Watson had no food in her kitchen that weekend, someone did something about it without waiting for office approval from Central Services.
Today, we have more processeseses, rules, and procedures in place to protect us from other more advanced uber college educated types – lawyers, the Schutzstaffel of our society. People who look like us, but are pure in thought, GPA, GMAT, and have been for seven generations back (the insulting irony of this comment is intentional). This Schutzstaffel, or SEC for short, protect our Brave New World from persons having to take responsibility for their actions or being able to walk across a lawn without asking, “what is the risk” and “can I slip and fall on this part so as to get out of poverty?” Lawyers have not only won 4.5 million for your brain damaged child, they have created a great many jobs that heretofore would not have existed. The Neo-protectionism. People and organizations work hard in the real and very live game show – Who Can Out-Smarter a Lawyer?
Realistically, this has created and entire industry based on the product of Cover Your Ass ™. CYA actions take time and money and increasingly we work on CYA 90% of the time and work 10% on what we should be actually doing. It is the management practice of accountability where the employee has to account for the activities and billable services for the past 45 min. yet is expected to do this documentation on their own time or by magic in thirty seconds.
And, with these college educated types looking to pay back all those loans for learning critical thinking, where is the critical thinking? The “I’m Mad as Hell and Not Going to Take It Anymore.” (What in this blog will be hence refered to as IMAHANGTTIA). We are creating more complex systems, counting more numbers, and creating a complex pile while not asking, why are we doing this to ourselves. People say, today’s complex world, but really…. it is elves or space spiders or mind control that is doing this to us…. or us?
Take bundling derivatives and financial products so complex that they can only be explained in one sentence… such as, “the process was so complex that even seasoned financiers did not understand” and then in the remainer of the line says, “how they bought up subprime mortgages from banks and bundled them together to resell in the market through 401k plans and other products.” Ok, very mediaeval process, but mediaeval- usury Bible kinda’ money changers in the temple thing not mediaeval how is the duke of Olean related to the lord of Orkney thing. We can get the process of how we were screwed… but no, no critical thinking to push back and say not only do we understand now how we got screwed, but at the time we knew the whole game was fixed – we just wanted to win, so we never questioned Mr. Madoff’s ability to return on our investment. We did not question while times were “good” why warm ham sandwiches were getting loans, or how many spider monkeys were killed or children enslaved to produce our Americapitalism goal of 8% solid return. Now, we blame our orders. We were just not aware the game was fixed our sad eyed and droopy dog investors say. “I never asked how he got those results” one investor actually said. The man with the nice voice on Teevee or the radio told us it was way too complex for our little heads yet it has this simple 1 Thessalonians 5:2, “For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night”ring about it. Now, like war criminals of old, we moan, “I was just a little guy following orders.” Either those teachers saying “critical thinking skills” on their lesson plans are lying, or we’re just plain dumb.
I think a long as we think we can game the system into giving us TGTGWAE (The girl, the gold watch, and everything), we just plod on. If I can game the system, perhaps they will increase my food credits.