It's interesting. The old saying “too much of a good thing” is prominent for me at the moment. From the extra condition that sits around my waistline, to the over-enthusiastic tendency towards political correctness, and the cultural upheaval the US, collapse from the peak of excess seems to be an unavoidable condition of the human experience.
The devil on your shoulder says, just squeeze a little more… you know this thing has more legs… just one more day, keep your foot on the gas…
It's too late.
You should have got out sooner. “Why didn't I listen to my gut?” you say.
More recently though, the accuracy of this idea came to me from my seven year-old daughter.
I was busy painting the landing ceiling late last night. Up a ladder staring squinty-eyed through my hand to try block the light from the recessed downlighter burning a hole in my retina.
Cara watched me as she got ready for bed and said;
It's funny, isn't it Dad? When you don't have enough light you can't see, and when you have too much light you can't see either.
I was taken aback by the level of insight I just received from this little blonde girl. Kids are not supposed to know this stuff, but the truth is they do, and sometimes they bowl us over with it.
Nobody Lost Taking A Profit
“Too much of a good thing” recognises that the coin has two sides, that the stick has two ends, and the the other side of both positive and negative experience exists.
The understanding of this idea makes us aware that we're applying too much gas, that we're flogging the horse too hard, like the folks that got caught when the markets collapsed in 2008.
A client of mine who managed to make a call before the bust comes to mind. It was 2006 or so, when he told me how he sold all his properties a year or two earlier. He decided to take his profit; “I earned enough” he said, “time for someone else to make a buck”.
He landed on the right side of that coin toss.
Losses aside, this idea also gives us the comfort that things will get better, but usually in their own time. Forcing them to improve tends to work against us.
Best to feel our way in and out. Rationality rarely works.
Susan Decker says
A “cultural upheaval” is something I have not heard our social chaos called.
Please elaborate, Larry. You have such an inciteful and interesting perspective.
I have personally been involved with what I see as corporate business vs the individual small business. A Corporation take- over of a memory center where a loved one lives, has been a horrible experience.
Is Capitalism as we knew it, non-existent?
What happened to the time when when the focus of a business was its client or product? Quality service and goods brought profit to all.
Now, is $profit the focus? The bottom line pushes the client and product to a position of a bothersome detail needing costs cuts and less time.
Have we enjoyed too much freedom of choice and individuality?
I forward your writtings to my friends. They love you too.
Thank You , for another thought-provoker from a different angle.
I think it’s a natural course of events. For generations, since WW2, the US heralded itself via media and marketing channels as the epitome of freedom and fairness, the self-appointed agency of right in the world. It was all about the free market and the rights of people to be happy and wealthy. But the reality is that this was only a story, a surface level marketing ploy, a Bernaysian propaganda machine designed to take over the consciousness of the people. It’s everywhere, not just in the US, but in the US, the inevitable social impact is now playing out. Your government has been infiltrated by narcissistic corporate entities whose primary goal is to make profit at any cost to Human life and liberty. It’s not just Trump, he’s the worst of them, but it has been there before him only wearing different clothes. In Europe, I would hazard to say, the problem is not so acute.
It’s a case of too much of a good thing.
With the coming of machines and automation, human beings are no longer required. That, as a commodity has been spent. The corporate gods do not need us any longer, so rather than been seen as outwardly ruthless and evil, they kill the population by excluding health care, paying people less and less, allowing communities to dissolve, removing broad-subject education and narrowing the minds of people with shit on the TV. Oh, and perhaps the most remarkable, placing an idiot in the White house who can speak the language of the stupidest and most fearful of them.
In 1819 the economist David Ricardo said that employment was not so important in an economy as long as income and profit rose. A critic, Simonde, replied “In truth then, there is nothing more to wish for than the king, alone on his island constantly turning a crank, producing through automata, all the output of England” [Introduction to The End of Work, Jeremy Rifkin 1995]. In other words, the ultimate aim of Capitalism is to remove costs and unpredictability – people. Once it can make profit without people, they become useless. What we are seeing now is the final breakdown of the old-world working model, and it’s particularly evident in the US. Society is crumbling and the least well-off are hurting most. I don’t think Biden is the solution.
Mike Harrington says
Great message here, Larry!
Howaya Mike, thanks for reading!