Forces Against Change

The November 12th issue of The Economist and November 22nd issue of the New York Times provide interesting analyses of forces against change.  The Lexington column in The Economist, “Farmers vs. Greens,” outlines rural America’s opposition to anything that will increase the price of fossil fuel.  It notes that senators representing 11% of the U.S. population can block any legislation.  This is a strong force against change.

Tom Friedman in his New York Times column, “Advice from Grandma,” outlines six factors that are pushing our political system towards paralysis.  Money, gerrymandering, cable TV loudmouths, permanent presidential campaigns, web-enabled extreme views, and intense lobbying, especially when combined, are forces against change.

Finally, the Schumpeter column in The Economist, “The Cult of the Faceless Boss,” argues that flamboyant, visionary leaders change the world.  These are the people who create the future rather than just manage change.  The column references George Bernard Shaw’s notion that progress depends on “unreasonable” people who feel no need to apologize for themselves or their calling.  Discouraging such behaviors is a force against change.

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