Posts Tagged ‘machiavelli’

Tiger in the Tank

12 February 2010

Dear J-

Somewhere along the way innocent turned into guileless, guileless into naive, and naive into stupid: the cynics of the world will assert that the world isn’t fair and that if you’re not out to get it, then it’s out to get you. Naive is a word associated with a Candide-brand of optimism that everything will eventually turn out for the best. I understand it from a change perspective: you’ve got to be willing to take action to make things happen because you can’t rely on anyone other than yourself to do what you want.

It’s the Machiavellian qualities that folks justify that make me nuts; “by any means necessary” is one rallying cry I’ve heard plenty of before. Is there any reason sufficient to abandon tolerance and dignity in the face of desperation? I suppose it’s a personal value; the best of us can spin compelling reasons for the most ridiculous actions when given the right motivation; we tell ourselves it’s just the once but it only gets easier and easier every time we do it.

I haven’t put my finger on it exactly but i think much of my frustrations lie in not having said that things bother me; if I don’t speak up, there’s no way to change them. It’s an admirable quality to be able to assert yourself un-forcefully yet effectively, and one that I clearly haven’t mastered (or even attempted). The road to recovery starts with recognition, so I’ll make it a resolution (hey, it’s not too late for me; while the rest of you are seeing red this Sunday, I’ll be seeing it for a different reason, Year of the Tiger) to not let these things build up inside.