“No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is from Me,” says the Lord” – Isaiah 54:17
Leaders in society are natural targets for those personality types who: (1) cannot bear the thought of innovative change – particularly if the thought is not their own; (2) cannot stomach the fact that others articulate views which are different from their own – especially when they inwardly admit that these thoughts are better than their own; (3) do not recognize that experience is the best teacher and that one’s knowledge is not restricted to the academic exposure obtained from one, two or three degrees – this principally happens when their thirty, say, years of experience is one year’s experience repeated thirty times; (4) have adopted a political posture which induces a myopic focus and they are then restricted to the point where there is a manifestation of cerebral dysfunction – and, what is more, they are not even aware of this infliction; (5) do not accept that there are apolitical individuals who are focused on nation building – because they themseves must be politically associated as a means of earning an easy living when their party is in power; (6) do not appreciate what can be learned from the success of other countries through cross cultural communication – mainly because they have lived sheltered lives and have not been exposed to the richness of global interactive dialogue; (7) are still searching for spiritual fulfillment in their lives – principally because they never learned the difference between spirituality/relationships and religion; (8) make statements from a position of perceived power and then apologise in a patronising manner – this happens more than ever because of their eternal relationship with insecurity; (9) do not appreciate an honest offer to help – because they think that they have a divine right to all the optimal solutions; and (10) have not taken the time to attempt to pay the rent for their space on earth, as my wife is wont to say, – because of their mendicant mentality. Last week my column was entitled “Beating the Economic Crunch”. I suggested that, rather than struggling to survive in a quagmire of doom and gloom, in an effort to put the nation first, one should aggressively activate positive belief systems such as ambition, self-confidence, good relationships and security (to love and be loved) and adopt an entrepreneurial approach. I admonished, in the context of Proverbs 4:5-9, that “this positive approach, this ability to spot opportunity, is part of the wisdom that shall give to thine head an ornament of grace that shall deliver to thee a crown of glory. Be brave, become an entrepreneur! Take this important step to beat the economic crunch. I did it over 30 years ago and have been the net beneficiary of the decision”. I was heartened by the responses which I now share with you. The first, from New York, is a question and answer dialogue: Question: Do you think a person can “evolve” from being risk-averse to someone who is willing to step out onto the ledge, not knowing what lies beyond (or even scarier, how great the fall may be)? Answer: Yes. It is like learning to swim. You need a shepherd – you gradually gain confidence- then there is no turning back. Or, it is like learning to ride a bicycle. You need training wheels – or, in my case, a few bruises from crashing into fences or walls or the ground- you gradually gain confidence- then there is no turning back. Question: Or do you think that each of us innately, inherently, “genetically”, or through some combination of nature/nurture is programmed to fall into one of the two camps and there we are destined to remain? Answer: No. Question: If necessity is indeed the mother of invention and if desperate times call for desperate measures then there should be much more evolution taking place, don’t you think? Answer: Some of us evolve naturally others have to be nurtured. The “haves” must shepherd the “have nots”. Comment: I’m curious about your thoughts. I’m neutral. Answer: Get off the fence, m’am! Final response: Well stated, Bas! Off to a Board meeting… The second from Barbados: “Thanks Basil – this is certainly a positive way of tackling that situation… I hope you can project other positive approaches into the local situation … a 2 % drop in the economy is not a big deal compared to what’s happening in the metropole, and if that’s all, we can be quite happy, don’t you think? It’s the pessimism and advance shedding of jobs and selling of shares that’s causing the snowball effect! The third from Trinidad: The tide has come ashore in Trinidad, these are uncharted waters in which the world is sailing. Just like in my father’s days he worked for himself and traded his carpentry skill. Fourteen years ago I made that decision to be an independent consultant. I too have been counselling my family and friends to consider similar approaches as us. More persons need to hear our message. They need to get out of the cycle of fear … in order to take their lives, family and country to a higher state of freedom. Keep up the good work.