Mocked to death

Mocked to death

Mocked to death

The Apprentice attracted a big audience but it was a poor show for all that because it was a mockery of hiring colleagues. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for mockery. It is a powerful weapon in the fight against pomposity and stuff-and-nonsense.

But successful mockery is ephemeral, transient, an aside to the events of the day; a laugh to lighten the load of jargon and obfuscation, not a major contribution to making a more civilised world. Not even in a VUCA world.

Today’s TWTWTW writers, we are told, have to modify their scripts for fear of not just being accused of writing but of actually writing the news. All power to their creativity but I don’t want my world planned by a latter-day Bremner much as I admire his skills. One or two episodes of The Apprentice are enough. Now we get a new one almost daily. When will it end? There is a real danger if it doesn’t end soon.

Sensation of the sort emanating from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is unhealthily addictive. It drives out considerations of fundamental issues of planet maintenance, poverty and the human spirit. Occasional relief from these issues is vital; permanent distraction, dangerous. We run the risk of thinking the whole thing is a joke. While it may be for us, it certainly isn’t for those whose lips are pressed against life’s bitter cup. We are responsible for them.

A boss I once worked for devoted his life to preening his image. A colleague described him as “taking positions” from which he couldn’t retreat. His behaviour was brutal. He was a powerful person, largely because he was so rough, but he lost his life to a ghost of himself.
Now, some time since he died, I feel sorry for him. His ego was so fragile that he had to keep propping it up like an ageing Prima Donna who cannot leave her cosmetics alone.

Under his harsh regime I developed a tendency to a masochistic belief that there was nothing more to life than this seemingly endless persecution. Victims easily become used to the idea of their subjugation. Such stimulus is dangerous for them and for all those who work with them. Getting out of serfdom is the hardest of all disciplines.

What can you and I do to mitigate, perhaps even correct, this aberration of governance?

While legitimately entertained by the antics of The White House we can remember and help those whose lives are far from the indulgence of self-gratification by personal projection. We can take a peaceable but visible and vocal stand to make our concerns known. We can explain to those who do not understand the corruption of democracy that is taking place why freedom demands such a big price.

And our behaviour can show we mean it.