Everything You Know is Wrong
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Friday, May 28, 2010
Years ago, the Firesign Theater comedy troupe recorded an album entitled
"Everything You Know is Wrong" (Yes, I am a fan and still have the original LP).
This particular album was a satire of New Age beliefs whereby they contend
everything we have learned is absolutely wrong and we are all being
intentionally misled. Large or small, everything we know is wrong; e.g., that
the south won the Civil War, that the Aztecs invented the vacation, etc. It's a
very entertaining album which Firesign fans know well.
As I grow older I get the uneasy feeling everything I've learned to date is
wrong. It's hard to describe, but it is a very frustrating feeling and leaves
you somewhat bewildered. Let me give you some examples...
I was brought up to believe if you worked hard, and kept your nose clean,
everything would work out for you; that your company would keep your best
interests at heart and, in the long run, you'll do just fine. As we all know,
there is no such thing as corporate loyalty anymore and, in this dog-eat-dog
world, trouble somehow seems to find us, regardless of how honest and forthright
we try to lead our lives. Further, it seems unscrupulous cheating and dishonesty
is rewarded as opposed to punished. "Quick and dirty" solutions also seem to be
preferred over craftsmanship and quality. Instead of getting to the root of a
problem, we only address its symptoms for the sake of brevity. In other words,
facade is preferred over substance.
I was also taught you should pay your bills on time, and avoid incurring debt
which would be difficult to pay back. Now it seems "take the money and run" is
the modus operandi of a lot of people, businesses, and government. Between our
lenient bankruptcy laws and our inclination to spend, people are taught not to
pay their bills. After all, someone else will take care of it for you, right?
This also gives me the uneasy feeling that perhaps my money is not my own, even
though I worked hard to earn it.
As I was growing up I was taught everyone should be treated fairly; to give each
person the benefit of a doubt until proven otherwise; that it was also important
to be responsible, and your word was your bond. However, it seems morality is
not currently in vogue and notions such as honor and principles are politically
Finally, in grade school I was taught the United States was a great country we
should all take pride in, and that government was a servant of the people, not
the other way around. Boy, I guess I really got this one wrong.
It's a bit disheartening to realize what you thought was right is wrong, and
vice versa. That two plus two no longer equals four anymore. It's all very
confusing. Then again, perhaps it's not my age that caused this epiphany, but
maybe I'm sensing nothing more than changes in our culture. If, in fact,
everything I learned is wrong, I sure hope I come down with a bad case of
Alzheimer's Disease soon so I can blot all of this out.
It is disturbing to discover the world described in Firesign Theater's album
makes more sense than the real world.
Keep the Faith!
Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective
Copyright © 2010 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Tim Bryce is the Managing Director of
M. Bryce & Associates
(MBA) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the
management consulting field. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2010-06-04 11:07:04 in Personal Articles