Banana Republic

I had a boss who was fond of the phrase “perception is reality.” He used it as an excuse to justify his inaction for almost any employee related conflict. No point in meeting to explain whatever employee issue was being raised that day “perception is reality” he’d say. It drove me crazy each and every time.

While true perception is an individual’s sense of reality. Let’s also be clear, reality is reality. I may perceive the Earth to be flat, but science tells us otherwise.

That’s the thing. Facts exist. There is such a thing as truth. A good leader understands this and knows that one of their most important jobs is to shape perception to match reality.

They rely on facts, science, logic and reason to persuade the majority to get in the boat and row towards a common goal. When JFK announced America would put a man on the moon within years hardly anyone perceived it possible. Good leadership not only got the majority to believe it but made it a reality. Pushed the naysayers to the margins.

Then there’s another kind of leader. Still skilled communicators but the arrogant narcissistic types. The ones who don’t take “no” for an answer. Who degrade, demean and harass their “subordinates.” Who talk a lot without saying anything of substance. Who take credit for the good work of others and shift blame when something goes wrong. Who surround themselves with ass kissers and “yes” men.

These type shape perception not to match reality, but to match what they wish their followers to perceive as reality. They use slogans, rumors, propaganda and lies to do so. Repeat them until they rise to the level of alternative fact. Feed on the discontent of the margins to spread their falsehoods. Power to the people. To those who could’ve been a contender, if only…

There are no two ways about this Russia business. Donald Trump, the so called President of the United States, and his corrupt caravan of criminals and enablers were working in cahoots with and for the benefit of Puppetmaster Putin and his henchmen of oligarchs.

Donald Trump is the subject of an active counterintelligence investigation and an unindicted coconspirator in a current criminal case. He’s about to deliver a “state of the union” that will ignore the consensus conclusions of our intelligence community and reject the proven findings of science and industry experts.

The entire production dependent on phony statistics, false equivalents and personal anecdotes unsupported by evidence. Absolutely none of it will be based on reality. Instead what we will hear is a mosaic of lies, propaganda and alternative facts all designed to craft the perception that America faces a national emergency that only our Dear Leader, Donald Trump is able to solve.

Welcome to the banana republic that is Trump’s America. Where reality no longer matters. When all the evidence points one way Donald Trump and his merry bannon of deplorables will insist you ignore your eyes and ears and believe otherwise.

This country was founded on the principle of informed consent. Informed meaning look it up yourself. Do some independent research. Trust but verify through multiple sources and corroboration. Tune out opinion. Focus on the facts. I double dog dare anyone to offer a plausible innocent explanation for all of the Russian ties;

The meetings, the selective memory, the soft talk, the financial ties, the server communication, the false equivalents, the sympathetic appointees, the obstruction, the lies, everything being done by the agency formerly known as State Dept., the intelligence gaffes, the lack of sanctions, the removal of sanctions, the ill advised withdrawal from Syria and Afghanistan, the revival of the nuclear race, the secret meetings, the refusal to criticize, the insults and slights of our traditional allies, the childlike denials and ensuing bouts of panic, the obstruction again, the dismantling of our democratic institutions…on and on it goes

Resign Ralph

Neither left nor right has a monopoly on poor leadership.

Governor Northam is but the latest hypocrite to be exposed on the left and should serve as a lesson.

Poor leaders destroy a culture. Whether it be a national, state or local leader, or an office boss or head of household, a strong, trusted voice is required for sustained success. Groups crave the security that a good structure and clear direction provide. To establish routine, social responsibility and community requires an inherent trust in a decision maker.

Regardless of size, once a majority of members lose faith and trust in their leader, the tribe begins to unravel. Productivity wanes, what once were minor snafus begin full blown catastrophes. Communities unravel, factions form, and before long the whole is toxic and dysfunctional.

Governor Northam has irreversibly lost the confidence of the majority of his constituents. The longer he remains in office the worst it will be for Virginians. The reason he must resign has little to do with his views on race, but mostly on his ability to effectively lead. Simply put he is unable to deliver a key job requirement of a governor.

I for one will never trust the judgment of a white man who can only remember the other time they dressed in blackface, not the one for which they are now maybe accused (he may have been of the klansman.).

Accusations that seem pretty credible seeing as how the picture appeared on his medical yearbook page and he had never mentioned this colossal potentially career ending fuck up before. Accusations that are further strengthened when you consider that in his prior yearbook his nickname was also com incidentally listed as “Coonman!”

Alas, that is not the point. This should be an easy decision for Northam because he is unable to lead and his party has asked him to do the right thing. His Lieutenant Justin Fairfax is a fellow Democrat and capable successor.

Interestingly, though he shares Northam’s political views, Fairfax does not share his skin color. Is it fair to wonder if that has far more to do with the decision to remain in the office than the sudden cries of innocence. Perhaps Ralph hasn’t evolved quite as much as he claims #ResignRalph

Resign Now Northam

The only thing Governor Northam is sorry for is the fact that his secret was exposed. For 35 years he knew of the pictures existence. Heck he memorialized its existence in a yearbook that probably sits on some bookshelf on his plantation.

If Northam was truly sorry, at some point in his public service he would have gotten ahead of the story. Given an authentic and genuine speech about mistakes of his youth. Errors in judgment born by ignorance and immaturity, not animus.

He’s had the platform and opportunity to condemn his past actions and chose not to. That speaks far more about his conscience than any forced apology.

This one is pretty simple. If, as a white male, at any point in your life you thought

1) it a good idea to either pose in blackface or pose as a KKK klansman next to a man in blackface

AND

2) decided the picture was so great you just had to include it in your MEDICAL SCHOOL YEARBOOK to be memorialized for all time

Then you not only deserve a lifetime ban from public office; you should never be allowed to hold a leadership position at all, period.

Some moments of poor judgment have a lifetime of consequence. This is one of them #Resign

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/01/us/politics/ralph-northam-yearbook-blackface.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur