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Perhaps that's the problem. The Cons, people stuck in an antagonistic stance, can't differentiate between words that sound so much alike. Or, they don't want to be asked, tasked or taxed because they can't respond. Poor Boehner. His "no, you can't" rant really was more of a plaint, an expression of his own frustration, discovered in the other because the self is unknown.

No wonder "Yes, we can" was such a frightening anthem. It hit the nail on the head of the Cons' problem -- endemic incompetence. How does that happen? Well, if man is a tool using animal and a person is born "all thumbs," then getting along is bound to be hard. "Poor eye/hand coordination" is what it's called when children have a hard time learning how to write. Do they then run their mouths to compensate?

Compensation seems to be a Con constant. Being in a state of antagonism must be very draining. But which comes first? Perhaps the antagonism, which seems characteristic and can't be missed, is actually a response to the incompetence resulting from deficits that aren't readily perceived -- or didn't use to be. That would explain the almost palpable envy with which special education programs, designed to overcome minor developmental deficits, are perceived by older folk, whose impediments were probably ignored. The children are getting something their elders never got and that's resented.

"Ask and you shall receive" is all fine and good advice, but it doesn't help the person who doesn't know what he lacks. Never mind that there's no guarantee of getting what is asked; only that if one doesn't ask, one is sure not to get. "Don't ask" is how one achieves certainty. "Yes" is a risky proposition and "No" is a sure thing. So, the "Party of No" is like balm for the endemically insecure.

One more conundrum. Republicans, or at least modern day Republicans, seem unable to relate to "re," the first syllable in their name. "Receive," "represent," "respect" and "recycle" all seem foreign to their way of thinking. Perhaps that's because their "re" suggests something solid to them, a person of regal stature, rather than actions that occur over and over again. Perhaps that accounts for the opposition to recycling. Concrete thinkers simply don't perceive a world in motion, things going 'round and 'round. If so, then it makes sense that taxes are seen as an imposition or extraction, for example, rather than as part of the process of recycling dollars from Washington and back.

The perception of process. That's what seems to be missing in the binary mind -- envisioning nothing but solid substances in a state of oppostion or antagonism, always on the verge of cancelling each other out to nothingness. But, if that's the case, no wonder they're scared. Anything but stasis spells disaster. On the other side of obstruction, the effort to maintain stasis, there is only nothing.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tell Congress the dollar needs to be recylced, (15+ / 0-)

    not rationed.
    Taxes are part of the recylcing process.

    We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 04:22:39 AM PST

  •  Absolutely WOW! (6+ / 0-)

    Your last paragraph just blew my mind. We have in the handworking field, two types of people -- those who are interested in Product -- "How long did it take you to make this?" "Oh, I wouldn't have that much patience." etc. And we have what we refer to the "Process" people, who enjoy the work for it's own sake. Never mind that I have been working on a particular project for three years, I love the doing of it. This distinction is so marked that people I know tend to comment on it, often. Those of us who do a lot if observing know there are product people and process people, and the one group really doesn't understand the other.

    To get back to your theory -- I wonder if the folks you are talking about, the "Don'ters", can't see that it takes time to accomplish things, and that sometimes a little improvement is all you are going to get. To use one of your examples, take programs for the developmentally disabled. Are the youngsters immediately "cured?" Do they all read at grade level by the end of the school year, or whatever? No, probably not. Well -- then it's all a waste of their money. They want results.

    I have seen a lot of absolutest reasoning, that may also be part of the same thing. Is it black or is it white? Tell me the answer now. Whose fault is it? The idea that there are shades of gray just is not something they are willing to consider. Or can consider!

    I just wonder if there isn't a whole group of thought processes here that are related. We, as progressives, see process and appreciate it and see progress and celebrate it. W also see the shades of gray. We realize that things take time, money, and planning, and that maybe a bit of improvement is what we need to hang onto.  

    Food for thought, Hannah -- as always from you.

    •  I suspect that what is missing is a sense of (7+ / 0-)

      time and the perception of sequence. Some brains, it seems, do not perceive motion.
      I think we can compare it to moving pictures. We see movies or videos as a continuous stream, but they are actually made up of static images (30 frames per second), which go by too fast for us to see the breaks. But, what if some brains actually perceive the static images and never see the connected whole?  
      It has recently been discovered that some people do not recognize human features. They don't recognize people by how they look, but by how they sound or perhaps a peculiar movement or posture. Obviously, how people see things and what they see differs.
      I do know that some people can't remember the sequence of the steps involved in completing an action like tieing shoe laces or closing a zipper. With hands on guidance and repetition until the behaviors become habitual, they can be taught these skills. But, they never know "how" or "why." Indeed, the inability to answer such questions accurately may be an indicator of the disability. They know that "how?" is a question and an answer is expected, but the answer is as likely to be irrelevant as not. The brain spits out something from a neighboring compartment -- a convenient response. :)

      We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

      by hannah on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:13:34 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  ever since the slaves were freed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    there has been a retraining problem for former masters, not that they can't grasp process, but just think the old system couldn't be improved. The motivation to learn is lacking.

    •  I'm not entirely sure. (6+ / 0-)

      I have known individuals who could not learn but what repetition inculcated. They did benefit from a modicum of imitation.  That is, sometimes admiration of another person prompts imitation and that introduced a new behavior into their repertoire, but it isn't accompanied with the conscious perception of the process by which a particular end is achieved. Indeed, sometimes a welcome result is achieved serendipidously as a consequence of fiddling.
      Anyway, in a supportive environment where there are people eager to take up the slack or correct for mistakes, incompetent people are not much of a problem, unless we put them into a position where they make life and death affecting decisions. Dubya is a good example.

      Dubya got elected as a consequence of many somebodies fiddling with the electoral process, but that's different. The people who did that understood process and how to subvert it.

      We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

      by hannah on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 06:55:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This makes a lot of sense. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, RiveroftheWest, hannah

    It comports with my observations of kids with learning challenges.  Many of them develop coping strategies that really work.  They were often reluctant to share those strategies with me until they were sure I was going to work with them, rather than try to change the way they did things.

    Of course, my students weren't so totally stuck that they wouldn't even listen to or try anything new. It does make me wonder if there would have been some ideal point at which the Cons might have been able to readjust their thinking...

    -7.62, -7.28 "Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly." -Langston Hughes

    by luckylizard on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 02:10:54 PM PST

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