Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Tomorrow's leaders

He whom the establishment labels crazy is usually the leader of the future.

Oatney On the Air-April 25, 2007



At Wednesday, April 25, 2007 5:36:00 PM, Blogger Kat Coble said...

Why do I not take comfort in this? I envision a day when Gallagher is elected Prime Minister.

At Wednesday, April 25, 2007 6:23:00 PM, Blogger Dave Oatney said...

You may not "take comfort" in it-but history also shows that these outcasts who people write off-the ones who tend to become leaders...they become the best leaders.

At Thursday, April 26, 2007 10:18:00 AM, Blogger Kat Coble said...

My, yes, indeed.

That Nero fellow was PHENOMINAL at his job.

At Thursday, April 26, 2007 11:44:00 AM, Blogger Dave Oatney said...

Apparently you do not read your Roman history.

Nero was indeed crazy, but he was not labelled as such when he came to power. Indeed, when Nero took control, he was one of the most popular Emperors (up to that point) in the history of the Empire. He did what most tyrants tend to do, he gave the people "bread and circuses."

It was not until Nero had been in power for some years that there were any problems with his reign. He was extremely popular with the common people. The stories of his madness come to us from, among other sources, the histories of Tacitus.

Based on a combination of the histories we have of Nero's reign and what we know of modern medical science, many scholars believe that Nero was probably bipolar and/or manic depressive. Today we have medications and other methods to treat these kinds of illnesses, but they didn't even have knowledge of them in Nero's time. Nero reigned for 14 years, during most of which he was extremely popular. Indeed, his persecution of Christians did not begin until the Great Fire of Rome in AD 64, and took place on a wide scale during the final four years of his reign.

The once-popular Nero was labelled as "mad," not by those who had been his opponents during his rise to power-during that time he had very few, but by people after he had been in power for nearly a decade.

Hence, trying to use "crazy Nero" as an example of who should not hold power would actually serve to prove that the ones labeled compitent and seen as good administrators who cater to their constituents (which is how Nero was seen for the vast majority of his reign) are actually the ones most likely to be madmen.

At Thursday, April 26, 2007 4:44:00 PM, Blogger Kat Coble said...

Okay, so I take your point about Nero, (which you could have made without slamming my knowledge of history...let's have a conversation, not a grudge match...) but that still doesn't answer the larger point I'm inferring from you.

You seem to be saying that crazy behaviour is okay because it underscores the temperment of a true leader. In previous conversations you've brought up the Andrew Jackson example,and you seem to be casting Campfield in a Jacksonian light.

And this is where we disagree. Yes, in some cases a maverick is the best leader for certain times. (Think Churchill.)

But that doesn't mean that you can automatically assume that EVERY "maverick" is destined to become a great leader. Or that every crazy person has the stamp of leadership upon him. Or that just because no one likes you that you deserve to rise to political power.

I happen to think that while Campfield may be a very genial fellow--I've not met him and don't know him-- he doesn't have the fabric of greatness about him. He's not a Churchill or a Lincoln.

I've known a lot of crazy people in my life. My cousin Bobby has an IQ of 185, but she never takes off her members-only jacket and eats paste at 50 years of age. She's crazy. And she's not leading anything now OR in the future.

At Thursday, April 26, 2007 10:28:00 PM, Blogger Dave Oatney said...

I don't infer that Stacey is necessarily the next Churchill or the next Jackson, but my point is that he is like those folks in one critical respect: The people who write him off say the same kinds of things about him that the detractors of Andrew Jackson or Winston Churchill said about them.

The beautiful thing about Stacey is that he doesn't aspire to be the next Jackson or the next Churchill, he just wants to serve the cause of Right. He does it daily with a lot of humility (and you really have to meet him to see that).

If there is one thing that I have come to learn over the course of my life, and that is that the people who do the right thing always take the most grief.

Stacey is no different.

At Thursday, April 26, 2007 11:17:00 PM, Blogger Donna Locke said...

It's fascinating how people throw around the "crazy" label. I'm probably one of the more stable, steady-as-she-goes people around, but I have been called "crazy" by some people who should know better. Sometimes a person is ahead of his or her time, and that may look crazy to those of short sight. A mayor of a large Georgia city called me crazy in the press once, and she wasn't mayor for very long after that. She's also dead now, though I didn't have anything to do with that.


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