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Tag Archives: ethics

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when a whale carcass floats out in the ocean sharks and other predators gather quickly and very soon a feeding frenzy ensues.

in the unbridled lust for flesh and blood often the predators rip also into the flesh of other predators, often their own kind.  …there’s no love lost here, there is also no time for conscientious reflection… it’s purely a game of primitive survival instinct and it’s a free for all.

collateral damage or “friendly fire” as we prefer to call it these days, is a complete non-issue, and is not even registered on the spreadsheet. it’s the bottom line alone that counts and the numbers, conditions and circumstances preceding this grand total are irrelevant.

this is no place for ethics, morality nor civil sentiment. it’s literally a bloody mess. it’s everyone for themselves and the winner takes all.

however, on reflection no one seems to really care much at all as this, to the letter, is almost exactly the same situation and process that is found in normal business practice every day…

just another day at the office, thank you very much… and whether we are willing to face it or not, there’s really no point in blubbering on about it…

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Blind leading Blind

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it’s nothing less than tragic to think that tomorrows leaders are following today’s leaders right now…

what was that about the blind leading the blind?

as radical as it may seem to the vast majority of us … perhaps for tomorrows leaders to shake off their own blindness it may well be greatly advantageous to start by stopping, go by staying, start questioning rather than obeying, learning by actively unlearning, programming by deprogramming and courageously walking untrodden paths… and perhaps even to not desire that others follow them at all?

outrageously also, perhaps to radically reinterpret the practical meanings of honour, respect, integrity, ethics, fairness, integrity, honesty, selflessness and dignity as these ideas might also be a most necessary initial step?  …  let’s face it,…  maybe only one in a million of all the leaders alive and active today display even a remote trace of any of these attributes

… and could it be that any righteous leader of tomorrow may well be categorized as anarchical, radical, rebellious and perhaps even profoundly irrelevant and dysfunctional … if judged by present standards?

instead of falling into a ditch along with those who illegitimately claim the high and lofty seats of power and influence in our world today – should we not be thinking of doing another form of ditching?

 

 

this was posted on Facebook  recently and it is indeed a sobering cluster of ideas

when I saw this for the first time it was posted by a person of “white” race in South Africa – a minority cultural group in the country who are now feeling the very real pressure of racist legislation and the resulting reality of legislated dis-empowerment and intimately perceived unfairness under the powerful hand of the present government which was democratically elected into power by the majority of South African citizens nearly 20 years ago

as a member of this same “white” cultural group I immediately resonate with the sentiments and ideals expressed in the posting

I also feel all manner of emotions bubbling up inside me as it is a very tangible reality we face every day

and yes, in the posting there a strong linear thread of ‘logic’ in these statements and the wisdom of what is stated is to my mind self evident

… however what is seemingly less evident is that without too much lateral thought and perspectival gymnastics the same set of principles can be seen at work in the present political legislation as those which entrenched and under girded the now disgraced and ousted Nationalist Party’s policy of Apartheid and “Separate Development” prior to the political shift in 1994

with these policies legislated during the days of Apartheid the White race in South Africa was entrenched as exclusively privileged recipients of preferential access to resources … material, economical, political, social, cultural and this spilled into all other sectors of society including job reservation, education, land ownership and many other arena’s …

what a man sows is what a man reaps… whether just or unjust

and yes, the circle will turn again, and again…

and it’s always amazing how the same thing can look so completely different seen from just another angle

… and perhaps now, with the shoe on the other foot so to speak, so many of us “whites” seem to all so easily think of many reasons and linear justifications not to share this sobering  aspect of the equation, publicly, privately, even within ourselves – in our own private thoughts

… don’t you think?

“South Africa’s ANC party bans minister from eating treat in front of supporters”

What level of ethic is at wok here?

Are we really meant to swallow (pun intended) this and align to a view that because it is not done in public it is ok? …. and that making an external show of something deals with the root cause of it?

The ANC seems to be running the country (and our lives) according to a mocking satirical lyric line in a funk rock tune written by “The Tower of Power” :

“It’s not the crime,

and it’s not the thought,

It’s not the deed,

It’s if you get caught”

How about considering some possible tabloid Headlines to help place this kind of reasoning into a context that might perhaps encourage us to see this from another angle shall we?

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* “South Africa’s ANC party bans ministers from corruption in front of supporters”

(The country’s ruling party has decided its senior members should enjoy the sweet treat only in private amid fears it could appear elitist.)

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* “South Africa’s ANC party bans ministers from raping and/or committing acts of sexual harassment on women and minors in front of supporters”

(The country’s ruling party has decided its senior members should enjoy the sweet treat only in private amid fears it could appear elitist.)

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* “South Africa’s ANC party bans ministers from “tenderpreneuring” in front of supporters”

(The country’s ruling party has decided its senior members should enjoy the sweet treat only in private amid fears it could appear elitist.)

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* “South Africa’s ANC party bans ministers from stealing and pillaging in front of supporters”

(The country’s ruling party has decided its senior members should enjoy the sweet treat only in private amid fears it could appear elitist.)

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* “South Africa’s ANC party bans ministers from committing acts of sexual harassment on women and minors in front of supporters”

(The country’s ruling party has decided its senior members should enjoy the sweet treat only in private amid fears it could appear elitist.)

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* “South Africa’s ANC party bans ministers from committing acts of immorality in front of supporters”

(The country’s ruling party has decided its senior members should enjoy the sweet treat only in private amid fears it could appear elitist.)

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 So it’s okay to beat your wife just as long as it’s not in front of the children? … and fathers should never do this in front of the children for fear of appearing violent and disrespectful?

God bless Africa, for we surely have no stomach for it.

We go to a very reputable restaurant and order the master or head chef’s speciality.  We so enjoy the meal that we simply can not stop celebrating the culinary experience we had just had, so when the waiter comes to clear the dishes we express our delight … but just telling the waiter is clearly not adequate praise for the meal.  So we ask for the manager or even the chef himself to be summonsed that we might tell them directly.

I wonder what would happen if when the manager and/or the head chef arrived at our table we all stood to our feet and shouted,

“Bravo!” “Well done!!” “Excellent!” “Encore!”

… and then one of us started a slow hand clap whilst the whole table began to bang their hands on the table top shouting out louder and louder,

…“more!” “more!” “moRE!” “mORE!” “MORE!” “MORE!”… in a deafening crescendo and did not stop until the chef had scuttled back to the kitchen to quickly improvise a delectable extra helping for the whole table?

Perhaps the most appropriate way to celebrate the decades of culinary skill and expertise as well as the intricate planning and preparation for the evenings delightful entertainment might be to tip the artiste generously – at least in keeping with our great pleasure, to appropriately express our appreciation and indeed honour for the excellence of the occasion.  Thereafter perhaps we could even tell as many as we see fit of our wonderful experience and encourage them to also go and experience it for themselves first hand.  Perhaps we could even go repeatedly ourselves to relive the amazing cultural experience…

The meal cost the chef a specified amount, in terms of the practical costs of the foodstuffs and all other supplies needed but also in terms of years training and personal preparation and skill.

I wonder what the encore would cost him?

I am a professional musician and…

democratic control | nakedpastor.

I wonder how many faithful church goers see a linkage or similarity between the conflict of free speech in a democratic political system vs. a totalitarian state of social governance and the freedom offered by Christ and the unilateral control of leadership exercised in the local church?

In South Africa a secrecy bill (the “Protection of Information Bill”) has been shoved through in what clearly appears to be a sneaky, underhand and sinister fashion.  If it gets past any constitutional court appeals and hearings it stands to give the government unimaginable power to control who says and does what … and exclusively at their (the ruling party’s) own discretion and for their own personal benefit and ultimately, protection (from exposure and prosecution for corruption and any other deviance or malpractice).

A thought from another planet perhaps: – the bill, what it stands for and the way it was forced through as well as the alleged reasons for this action is to my mind somewhat extremely unethical to say the least. The fact that it comes through the ANC is nothing less than shocking.

However, in terms of the direct implications of the bill on the “free press” what to my mind does perhaps need to be thought through is the extent to which the press really is “free” and objectively “journalistic.”
Let’s face it, sensationalism sells and revenues from advertising in publications that generate sensationalistic response is what makes the world go round for the press industry.
The press feel like their freedom to inform is being taken away, as well as their freedom to bring an ‘objective’, factual perspective (and before I am branded as a neo-Nazi, totalitarian despot sympathizer, I do believe that strong debate and passionate opposition is essential and very healthy for any community).

But for many decades now I personally battle to read the newspapers, or watch TV, TV news, or read current news editorials as they are to my mind so overwhelmingly manipulatively inflammatory and one sided in terms of the sensationalistic negative spin they seem to take (take the whole recent Rupert Murdoch debacle for example).
Could it be argued that the cries of the “free” press are the same as the cries of the record industry against piracy (who even mobilise the artistes themselves to campaign against piracy) when they themselves, to my mind at least, are the biggest pirates, raping and pillaging creativity, the arts, culture, artistes and the coffers of the artistes themselves for their own gain and dictating to the masses what, when, and who to listen to in order to extract exorbitant profits for themselves?

(and as a personal footnote jab, the Gospel Worship/”Contemporary Music” industry as well as the Christian/Gospel Book Publishing Industries do exactly the same thing – selling manipulatively marketed, sensually “popular” merchandise for exorbitant profits and in so doing dictating to a thoughtless and naive church what the “prophetic” voice and message and culture of God is…  – which in the present Christian scene is merely a very weak, attempted copy of what is perceived to be popular and trendy in the ‘secular’ marketplace. –  A bit extremely blasphemous to my mind … …  .. .   don’t you think?)

Anti-gay pastor arrested for public masturbation asks gay community for forgiveness | The Lookout – Yahoo! News.

Every time I hear someone (including myself) getting really passionate about an issue I get these warning bells in my head…

…and the persistent ringing in my ears seems to be telling me that nothing happens independently or in a vacuum.

It tells me that whatever it is, it’s all coming from ‘somewhere’ … and that ‘somewhere’ is mostly out of control and not really often all that conscious…

… to us.

It also warns me that very possibly the so-called “impassioned” person is merely trying to make sense of it in his/her own life one way or the other.
I am never surprised by these things when they come out publicly…  in fact, I am almost expectant.
It’s almost as if it’s something we can only wait for to happen.

The expectant, faithful skeptic – that’s me.

The only ‘surprise’ I tend to have is how some manage to ‘conceal’ it better and longer than others?
… and just maybe … could this be an indicator of exceptional ‘deviance’ and the real ‘intentional sin’? – now there’s perhaps a thought worth getting some feedback on don’t you think?

(and for those fundamentalists amongst us…  have a good little look at Romans 2:1 ~ … what we judge and condemn in others is in us and we do the same things …. etc.)

A good friend’s status on one of his social networking systems is “It’s always ever only about…”

And yes, we are suitably provoked to insert “me” as the only logical conclusion to that subtle but screaming declaration.

This has tickled and disturbed me all at the same time over the last weeks.

Clearly it’s something I know very well from experience but equally clear to me is that I seem to forget it all too often.  It’s not because the statement is untrue or defective – this is obvious to me,  perhaps it’s because I am.  Maybe I wish to forget it?  … a subconscious act of convenience?  Maybe my daily habit of rearranging my own personal fig leaves over all the less presentable area’s of my life distracts me from the reality of what I am actually doing?

“Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive!” (Sir Walter Scott)

A song by the great Paul Simon paints these pictures,

“He makes me think about
All of these extra moves I make
And all of this herky-jerky motion
And the bag of tricks it takes
To get me through my working day
One-trick pony”

What is it about us that so energetically wants to persuade others about what we are trying so energetically to persuade ourselves about ourselves?

We seem to have become the monsters of the marketing bog…  flaying around with this herky-jerky motion and the complicated bag of tricks it takes to get us through our working days… perhaps the frantic rustle of dried out fig leaves as we cover ourselves from ourselves, just in case we are seen for what we really are…?

And the skeptic raises his voice from the swirling beneath the surface of the deep and asks,

“what about our consuming motivation, even obsession with persuading others about our personal beliefs?”

Who are we trying to persuade?

Who really needs to be ‘saved’?

Is it about all about ‘them’?

… or is it actually always ever only about us?

don’t forget your heart and the promise that we are to be led by, and taught by the spirit – this was and is god’s idea – not any of ours
the ‘word’ is a person (even the text tells us this itself and again, this is one of god’s ideas, not ours) – even the ‘words’ we speak are not letters but a person, they are us, and we are far greater than the combination of signs and meaning the symbols appear to be

the biggest trap with the ascendancy of the written ‘word’ (textualization) is that it is politically worked out as language in a symbolic way (a set of signs)  –  deployed to attempt to try articulately convey the fundamental essence and practical nature of meaning through an agreed upon form of communication which in reality pre-dates even speech, possibly even thought itself
speech and literature are culturally defined, determined and interpreted and culture is an ever evolving thing as we know and meaning naturally shifts through and with time and changing context

this is a very scary thing and needs to be taken seriously as it has dire potential for those who are not all that fully aware as all too often unscrupulous individuals have wittingly or unwittingly used this process as a tool, a weapon even, to manipulate others for sometimes quite sinister motives

at other times even innocent, caring people have unwittingly become servants of a cultural groundswell of historical circumstance – religious institutions of all kinds are an obvious example of this

even our scriptural texts tell us to guard our hearts above all else, for it is the wellspring of life – this calls for great courage and an ever sensitive ear and eye for the leading of the spirit.
perhaps it is better to err on the cautious or at least practice great circumspection rather than to rush in where even angels would fear to tread

yes, most people are trying to be good, but good is clearly seldom if ever good