Savages in our Midst
Roy D. Follendore III
Copyright © 2000
If we choose exclude the idea of right and wrong we are left with survival. The idea that savages exist in our midst then become obvious. This paper is about this underlying basic concept and the necessary roles that leaders and leadership play on the nature of fairness within our modern civilized organizations. This is in effect a justification for honorable leadership as a savage in our world.
Drums were arguably the first form of technological mass communications. They gave us the news of the day, told us who we were and helped us organize ourselves. Through the use of drums mankind first became enlightened.
The problem with becoming an enlightened society based on communication is that we think we understand the reality of the world around us simply because we have images and messages that allow us to communicate. Understanding and communications are not the same thing. Communications simply allows ideas that may or may not be truthful or faithful to the truth to be conveyed.
Too much communications reduces the potential that communicated ideas will be completely understood and truthfully evaluated. Communications is not existence nor is it contextual existence. Too little also communicates. Communications is communicated perspective, typically only one perspective, which would probably not be the perspective that the one being communicated to would have if there. Communication is more often than not, persuasion to make choices.
The choices that we must make in our lives are not the choices that others should take in theirs. The decision as to which particular choice is the best choice is governed by morals and morays, which may not be at all equivalent. In some parts of the world, it is a moral thing to eat the dead and even in the great churches of the civilized world there are communion counterparts to this rather grotesque idea.
Maybe our societies are not as far from savagery as we may think. We certainly have a societal memory of such things though in considering the implications we must keep in mind that it is a representative memory, not an actual practice. Never the less, it is said that we are never more than two generations from societal savagery because beneath the surface of our modern practices are often brutal ideals that have allowed mankind to conquer his environment.
What does it mean to be Civilized?
Drop a man within a natural hostile environment and the life of that individual will be consumed by the act of survival. The man will be searching and competing for a niche in which to gain the substances necessary to exist. This means shelter, water, food and companionship.
Drop a small group of people in the same environment and that group will close ranks to accomplish the same goals. Individuals will be focused on for certain skills at the exclusion of others. The will of the group in context with the immediate goals of the group will conform and control the will of the individual. The leadership will become vested in not just the individual who is most competent at individual survival but at the organization of the groups survival.
The selection of the leader is therefore not just results in the leadership solution but also the organization of leadership among the tribe. The opportunities for all possible future changes are affected by communicated leadership.
Tribal decisions therefore are not necessarily founded on survival qualities but upon qualities associated with command and control of popularity through the management of tribal resources and assets. Control is therefore often accomplished as a means of assuring a few will thrive, rather than all of the tribe will survive.
We all remain in our hearts savages savaging for existence. The world we live in remains a competition of values. The potential for economic greed within civilized leadership in the Board Rooms represents a potential excision of fairness, an opportunity for organizations to go wrong. The desire for justifiable honest communication and maintaining peace within the savage nature of the group is a fair reason for desiring and maintaining leadership.
Copyright (c) 2001-2007 RDFollendoreIII All Rights Reserved