Friday, October 22, 2004

Power Corrupts

Realists tend not to be very funny people. I recall hearing Henry Kissinger speak a number of years ago and even though he told a couple of jokes at the beginning of his presentation, he was no Jon Stewart. Power, the realist's Rosetta stone, just doesn't lend itself to comedy. (Powerlessness is another matter. Just think of the late Rodney Daingerfield's "I don't get no respect" routine.)

Dr. Steve Rouse has led me to a great web site that specializes in demotivational materials such as the poster that shows a ship sinking with the caption: "MISTAKES: It could be that the purpose of your life is only to serve as a warning to others." One of their posters quotes Lord Acton's famous line about power . . . and adds what many people with power have no doubt thought.