Well not to be. I got dragged into Olympic frenzy and became a mindless spectator. Yes, Insane Bolt, Rudisha, Semenya, Ms Johannes, Mo, that gorgeous Jamaican midget sprinter, the cyclists, sailors and horsey lot, all had me glued to DStv almost without respite!
But all was not lost as I found a constant bit of my mind taking a broader and deeper view. Good, media attempts at organisational assassination failed; almost without exception it all worked, events, transport, security, accommodation and apart from the initial empty seat problem caused by the “Olympic Family” (!) components came together; racial, tribal, political and religious frictions all subsided quietly to the purpose of competition and fair play. The predominant flavours were happiness, enthusiasm and cooperation. Even the weather cooperated.
Small significances do matter. That BBC anchors dumped their corporate suits for casual wear, informality, a shift in the nature of journalism towards optimism and pushing the good and the vision of more normal people, not the normal “think tank / expert” classes heard, were all significant small but important changes.
There were others but, oh what a model in a world where division and hate seems to be the only growth visible!
Maybe our media are seeing our world is struggling towards necessary change as it realises 99 years after the brilliant invention of Henry Ford’s Model T production line that all brilliance ultimately reaches a logical insanity.
Ford’s original, successful intent to benefit both workers and profits has now reached a point of total imbalance where workers are sidelined to machine, computer, organisation and the raw pursuit of profit and power.
Our organisational machine on a global basis is failing the masses resulting in massive social and economic imbalances. The question is are things likely to change, how and when?
History, while an unreliable basis to predict the “how” or “when”, does show that social and economic imbalances within nations and regions eventually result in change.
History also shows that massive changes do occur, I suggest roughly about every 500 years, and when it occurs is a consequence of indecision, greed and social frustration and “jumping off the cliff” to a new reality happens. Change will be unpredictable, severely uncomfortable, largely theoretically irrational and takes years to consolidate in practice and intellectually. Our new global world makes predictions and likely consequences new territory but ...
Let’s look around us now. The financial crisis, the Euro, unemployment, youth frustration, institutional badness in financial institutions, rogue governments, political polarisation and unwillingness to talk and organised crime are primary elements fuelling potential social disorder, and close!
The Middle East with its oil, incredible wealth in the hand of the few, tribal and religious bigots with a Syrian civil war likely to spread to Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq, Saudi, Gulf States and maybe eastwards looks more and more likely to explode!
Equally global climate and natural events, especially melting ice and carbon dioxide levels, are sweeping into significance as water, pollution and factors yet unknown add to the equations!
However, maybe the recent cataclysmic algorithm of Knight’s Capital, a huge US trader, which could not be turned off, could indicate how our drone-infested planet could suffer a cyber event that triggers war, economic implosion and a climatic event that will drive us all off the cliff simultaneously.
How I loved the Olympics, the calm before the coming storm!