Why do people go crazy when they assume positions of power?
Jimmy Fallon is a TV personality who has a show called “Late Night” on NBC.
In November of 2010 he did a bit with Bruce Springsteen where they covered Willow Smith’s “Whip My Hair.”
I found out about this when I heard Terry Gross interview Fallon in May of 2011 for her NPR show “Fresh Air.”
This morning, in bed, I found myself thinking of that interview and cover song, and began singing it.
This lead to a long philosophic conversation with myself regarding many and diverse topics, beginning with, if I recall, why people go crazy when they assume positions of power.
The Power Formula
In Scientology we have something called Ethics Conditions, and each condition has a formula that you apply to get through that condition and move up to the next one. At the bottom is Confusion, and at the top is Power.
I realized that this is probably the first time anyone has tried to educate the general public on how to hold power without going insane. LRH wrote quite a bit about the subject. And Scientology technology is really all about enabling a person to do this.
The way I described it to myself, the technology gets a person to confront two major types of incidents in his own experience. One type is when you did certain things to other people. And the other type is when other people did certain things to you. You go up the Bridge by alternately confronting these two different types of incidents. But only (hopefully) the ones that are actually important to you personally. When you get to the point where you feel like you can do this by yourself, you’re a Clear. Then, on the Advanced Courses, you get the chance to try it. After learning how to audit solo, LRH gives you some pointers on where to look, and hopefully you find some important incidents and audit them out on yourself.
My guess is (not having done them yet) that the main thing you learn on the Advanced Courses is that you weren’t as well-prepared to audit by yourself as you thought. Because the next actions you have to do must be done with an auditor. The OT Drug Rundown, and audited New Era Dianetics for OT’s (NOTS). After you have had the help of an auditor to confront some incidents in your OT case, you really are ready to audit yourself. So then you train for and do your Solo NOTS. This is the longest level so far released in Scientology. It takes most people in excess of a year to complete. On the old schedule, many took several years. These days you are expected to audit more intensely than in years gone by.
And what does all this work enable you to do? Handle power without going crazy. Most people who do these levels are in positions of power (relative to most of us) like heads of companies, artists and entertainers. So every day they feel a need for this technology; they have a real incentive to reach for it.
At about this time in my solo discourse, I noticed someone leave their apartment, and I looked at my clock. 6AM. That’s when I used to have to get up when I worked.
I had to catch a bus a little before 7 to get to Bellevue by 9. The trip home also took about 2 hours, from 5 to 7 pm. That’s 12 hours from leaving home to arriving. With only 8 hours spent at work. 12 hours of time spent for 8 hours of production time. That’s an efficiency (Pout/Pin) of only 67%.
We should work where we live
For 26 years I worked about 100 yards away from where I lived. Why isn’t society arranged that way?
Farmers live where they work. But migrant farm workers only do this by moving around a lot. That’s called “nomadic.” “Primitive” people were nomadic because of seasonal changes in their environments or because they would ruin an area after living in it for a year or two.
I once saw a TV show (It was a 1973 Canadian show called Bellamy on Botany – that’s Dr. David Bellamy, now 78 and still an environmental activist.) that demonstrated how overgrazing of sheep and goats in Spain had caused rampant deforestation there, and a resulting significant change in the local climate where this had occurred. Sounded like those sheep herders should have been more nomadic, but something was preventing them from being so.
Private property ownership
Nomadic agricultural practices cannot occur in a modern context unless the herders own all the land they use for grazing. The “modern” agricultural paradigm uses a private property model that effectively prevents such forms of communal ownership in most parts of the world.
Private ownership of land is definitely a contributing factor to the inefficiencies found in “modern” society. This concept, as practiced in “modern” times, treats land as a commodity that can be owned by a person the same way one owns his shoes or his food until he eats it. But who manufactured that commodity? Nature; mother earth. So who should really be profiting from letting us use the land? Mother earth.
Why can I survive on $1,000 a month when most people need $3,000 or more? Because they believe a lot more in private property than I do. Per one website, in 2006, the average monthly cost for a mortgage in the US was $1,687. People think they are paying for their house. But in recent times (per one study) almost half the price of a house is in the land. Between 1975 and 2006, per this study, the price of residential land increased by 4 times, while the cost of building a house remained basically constant. (Davis and Heathcote, 2006)
The earth has only so much surface area. If we price land by its surface area, then as population increases, land prices will move up. But 4 times in America is way beyond the rate of population growth. There was another factor: The cost and availability of mortgages. Over the same period, the supply of mortgage money increased dramatically. This resulted in “houses” increasing in price from
$30,000 to $130,000. But almost all of this increase is due to inflation, per the graph I am viewing, indicating that the price rise was driven by the money supply. I found a graph of “mortgage originations” from 1990 to 2008. It starts at about $100 billion in 1990, and goes up to almost $400 billion in 2006. There’s your 4x. This does not included mortgage refinancing. This was nearly zero in 1990 and peaked in 2003 at about $700 billion.
In the late 1800’s Henry George warned us about the dangers of treating land as a commodity subject to price speculation. We should have listened.
I got up to write this down
It is a bit after 9am now. I have watched Willow Smith’s music video for “Whip My Hair” and watched David Bellamy debunk greenhouse gasses on the BBC.
I expanded the previous section with data from the internet.
And I look forward to a new day full of things to do.
Who do I have to thank? My father? He used part of a government grant to finance a house in the Berkeley hills in 1961. He used the proceeds of that sale to buy a new house in Ann Arbor in 1964. And in the 13 or so years that we grew up there, he earned, saved, and invested. Even I did. But today he can afford a nice retirement, and I can’t. I bought out of that dream so violently that I became a pauper, depending on handouts from my family to survive.
The slave model versus the family model
My family had 5 members. Two parents and three children. That is a correct size for a group. “Primitive” people knew this and used the family as the basic organizing model. Scientology still uses this model. How? By means of a simple transformation (math term). One parent becomes the I/C (In Charge), the other becomes the Deputy I/C, and the children become juniors. The deputy runs the juniors and the I/C spends most of his or her time working for the group above him (or her). The I/C also serves as representative for his (or her) group in meetings of the higher-level group. This pattern can be extended ad infinitum to make an organization of any size and complexity.
Why didn’t we use this model originally?
Someone thought the “primitives” were primitive! Lie!
Those liars believed in the slave model. One master, many slaves. The slaves are supposed to do what the master tells them to do. The ones that don’t are punished or killed. That’s called “natural selection.” This model has been used extensively by liars throughout recorded (and unrecorded) history. It has been uniformly unsuccessful. Yet it was chosen as the model on which to build societies on earth. What was wrong with those rulers to choose a failed model? They must have been crazy!
So now you know why I worry about how to make the powerful sane.