Why Not Do It Right?

I am fascinated by two things – how people are determined to do it wrong, and how people are determined to do it right.  And America is the perfect place to see both going on at the same time.

I watch with amazement as Trump is taken seriously, and may be the next president. And at the same time I marvel at how software developers keep making software better and better. How can both be going on at the same time?

Two different populations are involved here, and they are doing two different things – that much is obvious. It is also obvious which population is larger, by far – the first kind. And we need to spend some time on them.

They are self-destructing – and determined to stay that way. This much  can be said without giving them a second thought. This behavior is not unusual. Large groups of people (often referred to as empires) have destroyed themselves many times. The present Empire is unusual in that it is global. Tied together by a mass media that affects them all – but over which they have little control.

Who does have control? The second population, who has remained carefully in the background because they don’t want to get stomped on. They know how things work – how all the little gears work together. But they also know how the first population would gladly get rid of them – if it could.

There is class warfare going on in America – with neither side being very aware of it.

This is most clearly seen in the fight over encryption. The first group wants total control over everything – with no secrets possible. The second group sees how some privacy is essential to the working of the information economy. But they have not done a good job of explaining this – because saying something, anything at all, would make them targets for destruction.

They know some things have to be done right – or everything breaks down. They are trying to save the world – while the first group are destroying it.


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