It’s NOT the economy, but human and community development, stupid!
“In order to keep the campaign on message, Carville hung a sign in Bill Clinton’s Little Rock campaign headquarters that read:
- Change vs. more of the same
- The economy, stupid
- Don’t forget health care.
Although the sign was intended for an internal audience of campaign workers, the phrase became a de facto slogan for the Clinton election campaign.”
There is an unholy alliance between our money system, business management practices and our politics. I have come to this conclusion recently based on the happenings here at home and in the wider global arena.
All three, based on credit creation, vocational management, and public policy creation and implementation, respectively, revolve around a monoculture of ideas that reinforce each other in self-serving ways. They manufacture dysfunctional disorderly behaviours at all levels from the individual up to our institutions, be they local, regional or international. These initial public goods and services have been captured by private-money vested interests, and are manipulated for self-serving wants out of greed and fear of scarcity, not out of love for human and community development and self-sufficiency.
This shadow of the collective unconscious has been shrouded in sound bytes where social constructs like private property, free market, and economic growth have become legitimized behind the masks of our individual and collective insecurities, and these insecurities have been institutionalised by a cast of state actors masquerading as bankers, accountants, lawyers and last but not least, politicians.
Truth be told that instead of being public goods and services, where we have an ecology of credit creation, vocational management, and public policy creation and stewardship ALL in service to human and community development, we have misguidedly constructed a human and community maldevelopmental system that puts at its helm private money multiplication, conformist business management practices and neoliberal policies. All of this in servitude to the growth of the economy, expansion of the market place, and privatisation of the public spheres, even as our human and community supporting and developmental systems are undermined and underdeveloped.
So instead of our politicians serving as stewards of human and community development, they have become servants of the elite money multiplying interests. Cases in point in my sphere of interest and concern are the inordinate interests placed on the speculative economic growth potential of regenerative medicine research and the expansion of a fast-food franchise in the Federation, all which portend to create jobs and economic growth. In the process of this mad rush for the pot of gold at the end of this figurative rainbow, the communal avenues of communication and the communal bonds of trust among administrative and technical stakeholders are undermined and dismantled, and the health and well-being of individuals and community are put at risk, respectively.
It is not that we do not have the required expertise to advise in going forward on these crucial issues of national development; it is that for some reason of individual and national insecurity, the policy makers are not willing or are not prepared to listen to the technocrats who are in the trenches of their communities struggling on a daily basis to do more and more with less and less. The politicians are more concerned with the political capital gained for the next elections, rather than the human capital gains and development in the here and now. To use a metaphor which I hope would bring the point home: They are more concerned about the shine and glitter of the icing on the cake, rather than the nutritious and substantive nature of the cake that provides the solid foundation for the icing in the first place.
So instead of listening to each other to understand the true challenges we face on the ground, the politicians are only listening to reply so as to do damage control or score political points in the next elections. What a waste of energy!! So we, the health care workers in the trenches, are faced with a dilemma. If channels of bidirectional communication are not enabled, encouraged and implemented by the policy makers among themselves and among us, what other choice do we have but to go public, in the best interest of the country?
Since I am at it, here is another concern I have. Yes, we can boast of the great gains in the health care sector of physical buildings and services from ambulances, intensive care unit, mental health facility, hemodialysis, CT and MRI, and oncology unit, but what good are these if 1) there are not sufficient preventative maintenance resources to prevent down time of these critical services, and most important of all 2) the heart and passion and calling to care and to give of one’s time and energy for the alleviation of the suffering of others, is seriously undermined by the political establishments, both in and out of office?
What if I want to address a concern of national human and community development in public via social media, given the deaf ear of the powers-that-be? Must I be muzzled to not speak out given our toxic divisive political environment, 1) out of fear that my constructive criticisms and concerns would be taken out of context and spun by the opposition for political gain, or 2) out of fear for sanctions imposed by the incumbents for my highlighting the deficiencies in the system? How can we express our concerns, NO LONGER OUT OF FEAR, BUT OUT OF LOVE FOR COUNTRY? What other avenues are there to raise awareness of the challenges we face and our concerns of policy decisions that are blindly focused on economic growth, and not as focused on human and community well-being and development?
Yes, we have several human vocational deficiencies at home, but has any one asked why is this the case? Instead of being quick to lambast our own, and import the requisite skills from overseas (which at this point is a necessity), is it sufficient to be content with this temporary solution? If the passion and heart in our basic caring and development institutions such as the family, health care, education, security and information-services are not progressing and developing in a self-sufficient manner as they should, does it not behoove us to ask why? If 88% of our students are being left behind, how could a monetary incentive rectify the passion to learn and discover and actualize our potential in the first place? If our civil service is dysfunctional and under productive, how can a pay-per-performance incentive rekindle the sense of belonging, giving and sacrifice of oneself for the other in a vocation of service, if that sense of self-worth and community belonging has been undermined by the twin cancer in our midst of 1) our political toxic environment and 2) the economic growth imperative that trumps human and community development in the first place?
My fear is that by not seeing the damage we are unwittingly doing to our individual, community and national development, we will be motivated to do more of the same; by being sincerely misguided at best, willfully blind, or ignorantly arrogant at worst, we will continue to misconstrue economic growth poison for human, community and national developmental medicine.
Our economic growth paradigm is the biggest shadow in our collective unconscious that needs to be addressed individually and collectively. If we do not have rational and coherent policies that are fully life-coherent and integrally transformative, our egos will only become more disorderly and dysfunctional and entrenched, and we would become more tyrannical, sadist, hyper-rational (know-it-all), greedy and addicted in our self-serving actions. This is not a matter of opinion, but a matter of fact! Once we forsake the life-ground that supports our individual and collective well-being and development, from our families to our communities and up to our nation, we will more likely than not institutionalize the cancerous elements of our money multiplying systems in all of our individual self-serving behaviours towards one another and in all of our policies.
It is that feeling of belonging, it is that feeling of being part of nation building, it is that sense of being able to develop and actualize our life-gifts in the service of family, community and nation that is the engine of true human growth and development. Although they say money makes the world go round, it only does so for the connected few at the top of the unholy alliance, not for the vast majority at the bottom for whom the politicians were elected or appointed to serve, despite their “trickle down” rhetoric. The sooner we see the errors of our ways, and make a genuine effort to reform and help to lead the way to integral transformation, the better off we would be.
My intention is not to disparage the politicians among us, but to help uplift them to a higher level of awareness of the shadows in their individual and collective unconscious. It is in the spirit of great concern, tough love, faith in our people, and hope for our nation, that I wish these deep reflections find the open ears, minds and hearts of our politicians.