Greetings to you, It is good to be with you again. Our subject today is a troubling one about a troubling subject. The necessary attenuation (weakening) of some peoples aspirations for career levels above their abilities. We have all heard of the "Peter Principle" involving the well educated. This is a talk about what happens to those of us who never reach the upper stages of advancement. Let's briefly speak about unrealistic ambitions. Most of us dream that one day we will have at least one advanced degree and a big important job to go with it, right? Well what about those positions in life that are just as necessary as "Doctors, Educators, Nuclear Physicists, and Rocket Scientists? Jobs like Sewer Workers, Fast-Food Cooks, Garbage Collectors, etc. Without these positions being filled, the public at large (public and private) would experience insurmountable difficulties fulfilling their obligations. Where in this universe is the justification for the granting of seemingly great ability to one, and paraplegia to another? Is fairness just a word? Educators deal with disparity on a daily basis, and frankly I do not believe there is yet an adequate answer to this question. Some understanding (no matter how minute) of the *existence* and wisdom of God in relation to the situations in which Man often finds himself would help. (Good luck on that one).
Now, as in the past, when trying to answer this "vexing" question we have encountered some of the greatest dreamers, soothsayers, false prophets, (preachers) and outright liars this world has ever known. Some are very famous quasi-intellectuals and some are seemingly serious "Men and Women of God". I think the real answer is *no one* actually knows, and those that "claim" to know are paid more for "emotional theatrics" than actual content... Most of us learned long ago while studying Geometry that in order to reach a conclusion, we had to first take something for granted to be true. We call this a "Given". Without that assumption we have no "starting point" from which to "launch" our investigation or substantiate our theorems. The simple question "How do you know?" could stop us in our tracks. That being the case and since we are all flying somewhat "blindly" we modeled our jurisprudence system and way of life in varying degrees from the Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish, Christian, and Islamic traditions and principles. And because of the differences in these traditions the wars haven't stopped since. This is true because each tradition wants more of the world's population to adhere to its tenants than those of the others. Why? Psychiatrists tell us it's because everyone is secretly afraid that the path they've chosen is the *wrong* one, and the greater the number of others choosing the same path reinforces their need for surety and calms their fears of uncertainty. However, if you will take note of one "glaring" truth here, most of the physical combatants in all the wars and conflicts of yesterday and today in all these traditions come from the ranks of those who clean the sewers, cook the fast-food, pick up the garbage, etc.! Why? Do all the members of this "Lower Class" actually belong in it? Or are others to blame?
First of all we have (out of necessity) developed a societal "caste" system in which we attempt to adequately utilize the talent in the population. We have inadvertently (or intentionally?) psychologically "brainwashed" much of the proletariat starting in their childhood into believing and honoring the view that many of them may have limited abilities and that the "higher" callings and careers are for the those blessed with superior mental attributes. This usually means members of the "Upper Class" (though not always) who occupy the Jurisprudence, Medical, Scientific, Educational, and other Professional Societal Positions. This "Human Attenuation" begins at an early age; Its tentacles can be insidious and stretch far into the "psyche" of the individual. Young Children do not realize the significance of their being different races, colors, and backgrounds. They do not as yet "know the ropes" and these differences are carefully instilled in them by those in responsible charge of them. This indoctrination will (whether intentionally or unintentionally) increase or diminish their self esteem. In the case of Black Children their parents and teachers will somehow let them know that they are not White and what that means in this country. Conversely, in the case of White Children their parents and teachers will also somehow let them know that they are not Black and why they are "privileged" because of this fact. This is only the beginning of the attenuation of minorities and the elevation of the majority process. At this stage in the life of a child he/she is very easily molded. I remember an experiment done in a classroom full of White children. All of the children with blue eyes were asked to sit on one side of the room, and all of the children with brown eyes were asked to sit on the other side of the same room. After some "prodding, demeaning, and ridiculing" first the color of the blue eyes and then the brown eyes, the children with brown eyes "turned on" the blue eyed children, and vice versa. Before long we had a "full scale war" going on in the classroom, and this "staged" character reduction and assassination took less than one classroom period! Some of the children were so angry with those of the opposite eye color that they were "in tears!" And these children were all White!
How much easier is it to successfully reduce the expectations of minority children who look much "different" in more ways than the majority children? Earlier in this country's history the Supreme Court participated in this evil practice by ruling that if there was no suitable school for Blacks in a given school district, then Black Students would simply have to do without an education! Also, in New York the Court ruled that under no circumstances would Black Students receive more than a "flawed" eighth-grade education from the school system! Many similar and almost imperceptible intrusions into the natural soul and psyche of young Black Children (and adults) still takes place in this country even today. This also gives predictable rise and continuation to the Men vs. Women, Black vs. White, and Opportunity vs. Denial issues which are common to our system of jurisprudence and American life in general. Newspaper articles, radio and television broadcasts, commercials of all types, and outright lies reinforce this diminution and disparity. The News "Structure" employs reporters who embellish, exaggerate, and inaccurately represent minorities in the media, often in demeaning news reports. It certainly appears that at times many television reporters "scour" the available witnesses to various crimes until they find the "one" Black person who's hair is "all over" their heads, has no teeth, red eyes, and cannot put even two intelligible words together for the crime interview! They then ask him questions like: "What do you think of Quantum Mechanics?".... Only God could interpret his answer! Is that right? By the time a child is old enough to recognize what has happened to him or her the attenuation- elevation process has taken hold, and is a part of his/her life. And then this "camouflaged" process starts over again at the beginning of another child's life. Unfortunately, this evil process leaves no visible tracks, and cannot be proven. Do I hear conspiracy? Or is this just another coincidence? What do you think?
Secondly, there are those workers that occupy the "Middle Class" of the structure. One of their primary jobs is to act as a "buffer" between the lower, menial class and the "upper, chosen, or privileged class". Any contact the lower class has with the upper class must be kept at an absolute minimum (unless they have gone through and passed the "admissions" process) because of the (hidden) fear the upper class has of losing their position due to a possible "revolt and riot" by those of lesser stature, (who make up the majority of the population) There is always a very large excess of lower and middle class members of the society still left over, so what happens to them?
These are the people we send to war, and use to populate the ranks of our home based armed forces, police departments, correctional institutions, and public welfare organizations. Politicians also know that "big" money is spent on war and related industries with much of it going unaccounted for. And well, we all know "that" story!
Of paramount importance in the gathering of one's army is a suitable "cause" for going to war. And It is always going to be better if you have *God* on "your" side. Most countries that go to war usually have different God's or philosophies, (or no God) and because of that difference we have the "best" psychological reason of all to "go and get' em": We're going to heaven, and they're not! In fact, they want to take us to Hell (or someplace like it) with them by forcing their godless, or demon worshiping way of life on us! And of course, we cannot allow that, so "off" to war we go! At other times we simply want to persuade (force) others to embrace, incorporate, and exchange their lesser way of life and political system for our superior one. Another effect war has on society is the fact that it can be a devastatingly effective method of population reduction. In some overpopulated countries this may be of minimal importance.
We cannot have an "imbalance" in the structure that I have just put forth. Everyone cannot get an advanced degree and become a "nuclear physicist". And those that cannot should (by now) have been "properly" attenuated, or in some cases incarcerated. No one group or profession in the structure is more important than any other! For example, the Sewer Worker doesn't have the type of knowledge that the Accountant has, but unless the Accountant can manage his own waste products and build his own house, etc. he would eventually wind up "counting his fingers" without the help of the proletariat. In fact, If one was to lock four of this nation's top *racist* heterosexual Caucasian professionals aged 35-55, and one overweight minority female aged 25-35 in a room with none but minimal services provided them by the middle and menial workers among us (with very minimal portions of water and food, no light or outside communication, etc.) for only four weeks and then suddenly "swung open" the door, one would find these (often) "nose in the air" types reduced to a "yelling, screaming, prehistoric type mess", begging for food in an odious atmosphere that would remind one of a zoo! The female would also be pregnant. Stretch this experiment out for one year and we would only have one surviving male left because he would have "killed" the other three to insure his "mating" access to this minority female, and to prevent "Man's age-old all consuming fear" that the Woman may become pregnant with another man's child! This example may seem a bit "extreme" but it illustrates the "gamut" of the fallacy and reality of our "exorbitant, enamored" opinions of ourselves... Besides being hypocritical, we do not seem to realize under normal conditions that we are totally dependent on each other to do what they do and not what someone else is more proficient in performing. Talent wise unless you are talking about procreation, just because we are all human we do not "all have the same abilities!" If we did, this scientific experiment we call "Society" and general civilization would have failed at the onset and never come into being. Everyone would want and expect to be President or "Chief" and no one would want to "take out the garbage". It is foolish to think we can all be Black, White, or Brown. For that to happen, the earth itself would literally have to "stand still!" And then one side of the earth would fry, and the other would freeze!
For all of the above reasons those among us that are Parents and Educators must continue to try and "discern and separate" those with inadequate abilities in their field of choice while appropriately (and "gently") directing them towards more individually obtainable goals. Likewise those who are Supervisors, Managers, and business owners in the general public and professional structures should do the same. However, where there is a glimmer of promise, that spark should be fully investigated and nurtured. As a responsible leader in our society, your talent is the reason you are where you are, and you must continue to perform this function fairly, effectively, and without fail, as you have in the past. If you do not, our Society cannot function without great difficulty and an increasingly over populated Penal System.
And there you have it! All of the societies Upper, Middle, and Lower, positions have been filled. (With a few "Bums" thrown in for good measure) Mix in a little romantic music, crime and punishment and you have modern society as we know it today.
The rich will always continue to get richer, and the poor, poorer. Because of this there will always be forms of employment, unemployment, poverty, prosperity, hunger, condemnation, and praise. There is more than enough *continual* work of every kind for every talent waiting to be done now and by generations not yet born. Yes there will always be work, although as always, some will do nothing.
"Human Attenuation" where it is found, has occurred as a result of either natural, or a humanly manipulated phenomena. This action or condition must never again knowingly be allowed to be of human cause, unless it is for the good of the individual and the society. Other than that it is evil. This evil makes its worst appearance in the form of racial discrimination. Anyone, whether a teacher, relative, employer, friend or foe caught interfering, impeding ,or negatively causing a lack of development potential in any human being (especially someone in their charge) should be fired, jailed, or both. While it is true that not all people receive an equal "shot' at life, this does not excuse those of accountable age from being held responsible for their actions. Lack of proper Human Attenuation and or Elevation by parents who have "relinquished" their parenting duties to "others" on a daily basis have entered their children into a "synthetic" arrangement that can never replace a Mother/ Father's real love and instruction. In the case of the Father, reliable statistics show that his simply "being" there makes an appreciable difference in the affirmative. In my view, this mistake alone can cause life-long problems of all kinds for children and adults. More stark evidence of this lack of Attenuation shows when thousands join the quest for unreasonable unobtainable goals such as the desire to be "The Country's Greatest Performer" on the television show "American Idol" while having absolutely no talent and being totally unaware of it! To say that these people have been grossly misinformed and Elevated beyond their abilities is a major understatement! .This type of maladjustment often leads to divorce, suicide, murder, etc. as well as more problems for the Society who has to attempt to incorporate them. The reasons most parents resort to Day Care for their children is mainly monetary and there is no quick answer for this problem. But at times it is out of pure selfishness and a lack of proper concern. Orgasm can be the most consequential, expensive, physiologically necessary 20 second experience in one's life. In some misguided relationships such as those between the mentally ill, this often leads to misunderstood or denied child responsibilities requiring a further drain on the society's financial and psychological coffers. However, when this problem occurs as a result of "natural" causes, it must be recognized, and dealt with in decisive, helpful ways. *God* in his wisdom (Evolution to some) has designed all of us to fit (in some way) into this grand mosaic here on earth. Each part just as important as the next, and different only in "minor" ways. Thus far, we have found very successful ways of "straightening" almost everyone out but ourselves. And for that much credit is deserved. Truly the best among us is said to be, he or she, someone that is able to follow their own sage advice. Albeit, this path has generally been next to impossible to walk for very long. Biologically, every marriage or relationship at times seems like a mistake because monogamy is not in man's DNA. A lack of proper Attenuation even at the professional level can make us believe that we are "more" than we actually are. I do not have to tell you how this can ruin an otherwise perfectly good relationship. ("Professing themselves to be wise they became fools". Romans 1:22). Remember that frequently repeated "adage" that taught: "You never know what you have when you have it, but you always know what you had when you lose it". Lastly, a reminder to Parents: You cannot pay another to do for your children (for money), that which you will not do for love. Most people simply will not do it. While the familiar "Be all *you* can be" mantra can be interpreted in many ways, (some racist) it is the attempt to rightly balance the Attenuation vs. Elevation methods used in the motivation of people that is the basis for this article. Stay well.
"Nothing ever came out of nothing. We do not believe in miracles, hence we deny creation, and cannot conceive a creation of something out of nothing. Nothing organic is eternal. Everything is in a state of constant flux, undergoing change and reformation, keeping up the continuity according to the law of evolution. We are the same as plants, as trees, as other people, as the rain that falls. We consist of that which is around us; we are the same as everything. If we destroy something around us, we destroy ourselves. If we cheat another, we cheat ourselves." *The Buddhist Catechism*
All The Best,
Henri W. Tartt
Supervising Chemist, and Chief of Microbiology, (Retired)
City of Cleveland, Ohio (USA)
Website: *Tartt's Scientific Approach* www.henriwtartt.com