Sunday, February 1, 2009

An Assault on Mediocrity

New blood joins this earth
And quickly he's subdued
Through constant pained disgrace
The young boy learns their rules

With time the child draws in
This whipping boy done wrong
Deprived of all his thoughts
The young man struggles on and on, he's known
A vow unto his own
That never from this day
His will they'll take away

They dedicate their lives
To running all of his
He tries to please them all
This bitter man he is

Throughout his life the same
He's battled constantly
This fight he cannot win
A tired man they see no longer cares
The old man then prepares
To die regretfully
That old man here is me

Metallica, “The Unforgiven”, Metallica (The Black Album) 1991

The current economic environment illuminates the constant struggle of man as he attempts to make his way in the world. The realities of life are never as omnipresent as the day when a young person cuts free of the parental umbilical and emerges into the world alone. Reality quickly challenges man’s sense of individuality and creativity as he confronts the demands of self interested employers and the natural selection of capitalism. Those with superior gifts, however, are often surpassed by those blessed with incredible luck or an uncanny ability to subjugate one’s pride and ambitions in the subservience of others. To those of true intellectual capacity or those that cherish their individuality and creative faculties, the preponderance of sycophancy and the ascension of mediocrity are nauseating. Their desire to pursue a more pure and idealistic path in life, one void of undeserving flattery of incompetents and advancement of servile fools, is in conflict with the realities of self-preservation and ethnocentrism. The incubation of young talent in a meritocratic environment is often foreign to corporate cultures that utilized flawed heuristics to evaluate candidates and employees. Managers and executives, often in positions of authority because they fit the stereotypical ideals of their predecessors rather than the possession of exceptional ability or intelligence, perpetuate mediocrity by prioritizing self-preservation. Managers prefer to surround themselves with trusted minions of similar background and inferior ability to legitimize their position of power and maintain a less threatening environment. Those of superior ability and intelligence are quarantined by threatened managers in an attempt to insulate themselves from those that might expose them as incompetent frauds. As a result, the truly gifted grow frustrated with the entrenched economic order and ultimately must quit to pursue their ambitions or resign themselves to a life of unfulfilled mediocrity.

To those that stand up against the oppression of mediocre leadership and take chances in the pursuit of your dreams, we salute you!