Friday, November 18, 2011

"Skin In The Game"

It's an expression used more often by sports fans and I may have it wrong, but I always heard it getting out and doing, as opposed to sitting back and blabbing.

Minor case in point, our jerk-of-the-week, Professor Avery: he is what he is (waaaay over there on the Left) but when his e-mails got out, he didn't try to pretend it was a joke or a fake. (And to his credit, his opinion of air travel's feddie "Theatre, Security, A" and their nudie-scanners is as low as mine or perhaps yours). That's worth remarking on.

Take one of my fave examples, the guy from the county-seat Social Security office in the town where I grew up, who took an hour a week of his own time to go on the local cable TV access channel and explain, in tedious detail, various obscure aspects of applying for Federal help and related topics. --Okay, I don't approve of the system, but people who find themselves having to use it report the process is frustrating and confusing and here was one guy, trying to shed light.

It is a sobering thought that even in the rottenest regimes, there are honest civil servants, fair judges, decent cops and people willing to step up and do what they believe to be right -- they may be outnumbered, afloat in a diresome ideology, struggling under crummy laws, or trying to cope with a broken society, but they are there.

And in a world where most people just "go along to get along," there's a lot to be said for the few who are willing to put in some sweat, to "get some skin in the game," to put their efforts or the money to back up their words. Even when they're jerks, at least they stood up and did something. At least they stood for something.

...Still working on this line of thought but I'd rather have an honest enemy than a passionless, inert blob that just wants to follow the path of least effort.


Jim said...

I think that most start out wanting to do a good and honest job when they get into the government (at least most that I know do). The problem is that most lose that spirit after dealing with the political garbage that is pervasive in the bureaucracy. The amount of time it takes to lose that spark varies depending on the person.

By way of a disclaimer, my wife is one of those that have not yet lost their desire to serve. She still occasionally comes home furious, or in tears, and rages at the the abuses she sees on a daily basis. I just nod my head and agree completely. Of course, when she's done, I always have to spin her up a little more by adding "and you want ME to go into the government? I doubt I could handle the level of stress you deal with and not express it more...directly...than you do."

Bubblehead Les. said...

Had a college Professor who was a Passionate Communist, taught classes about it, went to the Rodina all the time for Research, and would be more than willing to spend hours arguing point-by-point with you on the subject, given cogent answers instead of the usual OWS crap-line of "The Rich are Evil!"

But he's still a Loon.

Panamared said...

I think I understand the thought, it's refreshing for someone to at least know what they stand for, but a few names keep coming to mind Marx, Engels, Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol-pot. If someone is supporting the wrong ideals, the kindest thing is to educate them to error of there way. The difficulty lies in the fact that most people rarely use the brains that God gave them, and most of us once we've made up our minds we are not willing to change it.

docjim505 said...

I've often wondered what it must have been like to be an honest cop in the Soviet Union, nazi Germany, Saddam-era Iraq, or even my beloved South of a century ago. How does one go home at the end of the day and say, "Well, I did a great job on the "X" murder case, but... um... er... "Y" will just have to remain... uh... unsolved. Dammit. I should have taken my brother-in-law's offer to work in his bakery."

Ed Rasimus said...

I stumble over your reasoning on Avery. I'm all for free speech and intellectual freedom. "I don't agree with what you say, but will defend...etc." But I have a lot of difficulty with tolerating those who have a powerful influence on a younger generation and go out of their way to inculcate a disrespect for the nation, the heritage and those who sacrifice much in their service.

Maybe it is a delayed reaction to watching the Fonda/Hayden/et. al. disrespect for the returning warriors of that period.

Avery is a symptom of what is killing the grand experiment in liberty.

PS: I do agree wholeheartedly with your position on all of those unsung, honest, dedicated workers throughout all levels of government. They are too often lumped into the corrupt view of Washingtonian incompetence.

Anonymous said...

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” TR


Roberta X said...

Ed: he appears to be an honest commie-lover: he's still a fan of the right to privacy, for instance, and willing to look dispassionately at the actual risks of air travel. Alas, he also appears to have a very European-socialist horror of nationalism (Euros blame it for their last two big wars, ditto Balkans. I can't wait to hear what they'll blame the next one on), which explains (without excusing) his dislike of the large U.S. flag on display at his university and his snippy attitude about care packages.

I would maintain that because he is open about his inclinations, he's a sight better than the sort of sneak who propagandizes covertly. It doesn't make him a splendid fellow and boon companion -- but you know where he stands.

It's the difference between Dianne Feinstein and the slimy goit who got elected to the House as a friend to gunnies and then fought against HR 822; with Dianne, there aren't any surprises.

Derfel Cadarn said...

Please point out these rare beings as some of us would like to see one before they become extinct.

TinCan Assassin said...

Part of your last paragraph is my QOTD. Thank you.