There is a phrase on my mind today – “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” This phrase was penned by British historian Lord Acton in 1887. A simple thought and an enduring truism. What is it about power that causes folks to start believing they are untouchable and unaccountable?
My friend Paula, who has spent a lot of time with folks in higher levels of government, once told me that she had witnessed that type of corruption again and again. She says folks just seem to lose their mind about what they can and cannot do – they become drunk with power and believe they are untouchable. And that of course is ultimately their downfall, because no one is untouchable.
Then there are the folks, who in the big scheme of things have very little power, but manage to overuse what they do have to the point of corruption. These folks seem to believe that they will not be held accountable. But ultimately, they are accountable – if not in the here and now, then later via karma or by a higher power.
I have to hold on to these thoughts – that the corrupted will get their due. If I didn’t I think I would go mad. I do not like to watch power wielded inappropriately and with disregard for others. It makes me want to be a crusader for truth, justice, and the American way. Alas, I do not have enough hours in the day to fight all the battles I see out in the world. I also don’t have a cape (and we won’t even get into my feelings about having to wear a body suit and tights). Not that I have managed to successfully walk away from these situations all the time. Sometimes I feel compelled to take up the cause and to raise my voice to illuminate the corruption…sometimes the corruption hits me right between the eyes and avoidance is impossible.
Today I had to deal once again with a very bitter individual who revels in his power with no regard for the impact on others. I would label him to be a sociopath (and I would do so without feeling I had exaggerated my assessment even a fraction). In dealing with folks like this the key is to recognize that there will be no come to Jesus moment – no time where they realize or admit that they are corrupt absolutely. One must just bide their time and wait for the universe to come back around to issue retribution. And make no mistake, it will come – because no one is untouchable and ultimately everyone is held accountable. All I selfishly hope is that I am able to be there to see that retribution. That won’t require a cape, body suit or tights – it will only require a “what goes around, comes around” smirk. Enjoy your power while you have it buddy…I’ll just be over here warming up my smirk.
Day one thousand four hundred and forty-five of the new forty – obla di obla da