Sunday, July 31, 2011


    We see on TV and hear speeches all the time where conservative speakers are deriding " business as usual ".  Business as usual must be some horrible thing, almost a fate worse than death.  Perhaps worse than being dismembered by mechanical means while hopped up on mescaline.  At least, that's the way conservatives always sound when they say it.

    There is, however, another use for that phrase.  My internet went out this weekend.  It would have been " business as usual " if it had not.  My employment situation could use all kinds of " business as usual " before its current state becomes usual.  When we go to the grocery store when its supposed to be open, when we get paid when we're supposed to, when our car starts when we turn the key; are all examples of  " business as usual ".  Without routine, boring things happening every day, life would be as " nasty, brutish, and short " as Rousseau's description of the state of nature.  People cannot live without knowing that certain things will happen in a routine way, for example that fish will swim and grasshoppers will hop grass.  A note to young people:  Just because something is boring doesn't mean it's bad.

    The next time you hear the phrase " business as usual ", think about how you live.  While you're thinking, perhaps you can project your own well-intended personality onto someone you don't know, and think that perhaps your situations are somewhat similar.  Try out the notion that what people use is probably still needed.   It is operation, not speculation, that gets things done.  It is repeatability that makes experiments valid; it is " life in a rut " that saves up money.  Since we cannot change that, perhaps we should be careful what we try to change.  Everyone who doesn't already know it should learn a new word: reliability.

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