Monday, February 15, 2016
The bait and switch
These are dark and evil times, full of bitter problems, and most of us suspect that the end is coming soon.
But it has always been just so because this describes all of the times of mankind.
I am generally up for a political scrap, and I am also keen to discuss just what we, or they, (you know, them), should do, about all of our problems. I am ready to rage righteously against racism, disastrous class inequalities, national hypocrisy, religious fanaticism, and the corruptions of Capitalism. But sometimes when I am confronted by passionate misguided people, or even when I am confronted by passionate guided people, I'd rather chat about cheese, or weather, or books, or how pretty it is in Rome. Sometimes I don't want to look into the eyes of inequality, strategize against venal politicians, and sometimes I just don't want to take part in all those seemingly useless arguments and discussions that tend to run away with us all. I know you feel the same way sometimes too. I have seen it in your eyes when I was telling you about how we're killing all the tigers, or maybe about how all the corporations are bleeding us out like the Matrix AI did with all their farmed humans.
Luckily I have come up with an infallible system of political evasion. My system, which I call "The rope a dope" will not only kill any political tirade, but it also takes the moral high ground. It quickly exhausts any political discussion before anyone can get revved up, but it leaves one's moral and political reputation intact. One can avoid uncomfortable and depressing political discussions, like maybe about world hunger, while remaining the enlightened, caring paragon one is, at least somewhere, probably, deep down inside.
Here's how it works:
A colleague, friend, or family member approaches you with a politically impassioned, possibly do-gooding statement. Or maybe they're just angry or slightly stupid. The beauty here is that it doesn't matter either way. If you want to discuss it, don't let me stop you, but if you don't want to get all involved, and you want to follow my precepts, you will need to heed these three imperatives.
1. Never disagree.
2. Always agree, but do so vaguely, tepidly, and even glancingly.
3. Most importantly, move on and just keep moving on.
And the third here is key. Keep that stone rolling. As befits the name of this technique (The rope a dope), no one can lay a hand on you if you're no longer there. Keep moving the subject matter just out of reach. Eventually your conversational partner will become exhausted, and you will be freed.
You need an example. Here:
Them: I just find the whole Trump thing so offensive!
You: Mmm hmm. But until we look at global warming squarely we have nowhere to go.
Them: But people are so stupid!
You: First we must tackle the rising inequity of wealth.
Them: Er, but the rich control the media and set the discourse...
You: You understand clearly, but most of all I worry about the Panda.
Them: Which panda?
You: A lot of problems would be solved if we were registered to vote automatically when we turn 18.
Them: Have you read anything good lately?
And with that you've made it through to safety. Plus, even though you were avoiding it, you solved a lot of problems in the world anyway.
"But won't people eventually catch on to what I'm doing?" You wonder.
I love writing blog posts that can help people!