So tonight, I had a little quiet manual labor, and with that came a little philosophy.
I was assembling a new grill, and it had been beat up pretty bad in the process of delivery or handling either on the way, or while in my local store. I had to take pliers to it, reshape it back to it’s original configuration before it would fit together according to the instructions.
I was thinking about this particular big box store, and how it had once been one of the dominant forces in consumer goods, and was now just kind of a shell of it’s former self.
That reminded me that I’d seen one of my old coworkers on LinkedIn list working at that particular store in his online resume.
I’d kept in touch with one of my old bosses, and we’ve both had our various personal issues, but we were mostly friendly. Until one day, he responded to something that I’d posted on xbook with a general rant about all people of a certain religious persuasion having a singular goal of murdering all people not of that religion.
I told him that wasn’t cool – that not only did it offend me, but it reflected on me poorly in a personal and professional capacity, and I wouldn’t allow it anymore. Henceforth, he would no longer be on my collection of personal contacts for that book-site.
Since that time, he’s gone from being a technical manager, to less awesome jobs. I wondered if his changing fortunes – ending up working at a big box store, were related to his bias when it came to people with a religion other than his.
Thinking about it, I realized that I’d seen multiples of people with this same set of circumstances repeated. I’d ‘unfriended’ at least two people for the same sort of blanket hate, and indirectly stopped associating with a bunch more for similar situations.
There seemed to be a pattern. Those with limited perspective remained stagnant, or diminished in job prospects. Those with a more open mind, even if less technically skilled – continued to advance in their career.
I thought to myself – well, that makes sense. I certainly wouldn’t hire somebody who couldn’t work well with a diverse group of people. That would make them a business risk.
Then I thought – what if the long term repercussions are that we end up with a better pool in management, but a bunch of people in underpaying jobs, crappy dead end careers, and overall poor circumstances.
What if all those people, sensing some sort of conspiracy against them, collect together and create some sort of political group? Some vaguely angry, racist, *phobic, unintelligent group?
And I realized, the Tea Party kind of fits that bill.