Written October 22, 2019 Clinton Halladay
…Is the Win Really the Thing?
“I am convinced that people are much better off when their whole city is flourishing than when certain citizens prosper but the community has gone off course. When a man is doing well for himself but his country is falling to pieces he goes to pieces along with it, but a struggling individual has much better hopes if his country is thriving.” Pericles in Athens in 431 BC.
Sage advice for the politicians and citizens of today. We have just experienced one of the most obnoxious election campaigns ever conducted in recent Canadian history and have emerged with a country more divided than probably ever before. The negativity and divisiveness are frightening to say the least.
Many of the party “leaders” were so focussed on winning, they abandoned both rules and ethics. They spent most of their time and energy trying to undermine the others, rather than focus on us, the voters and citizens and the good of the country. This tactic may have lead to a change in the number of elected officials for any given party, but it leaves all ill equipped for success.
Now is the time for politicians and citizens to stop focusing on domination of the other guy(s) but to learn from them instead. What are the strengths and abilities these “rivals” possess and display that can be used to move forward, improve and innovate?
If you follow the political spectrum even one iota, you realize that, regardless of the promises and the hype, the objective is to be the winner and subsequently everyone else losers. But in politics, as in life, there is no defined finish line. It keeps moving, and the participants keep changing. Hence, there are no winners or losers, simply those ahead and those behind.
Much to our chagrin, and the peril of our country, our politicians appear to be “playing” with a win mentality. This can work in the short-term, one day a majority, the next a minority, the cycle continues, and in the long term we all lose. Leaders who can move past their ego and embrace the positive strengths and contributions of others will thrive in this changing world. They have to stop thinking of others as competitors to be beaten and start thinking of them as contenders who can help inspire and innovate.
Pericles was right, “…a struggling individual has much better hopes if his country is thriving.”
Other views are welcome.