We expect people follow rules, tell truth – expect good citizens, good corporate citizens. We rely on products, on brands. Cheaters get caught, frauds get exposed, crooks get jail.
When we buy food products – we trust labels, count on safety.
We buy cars manufactured to government safety standards – expecting just that, expecting gas tanks won’t explode, expecting required recalls to happen, expecting airbags will deploy and expecting gas mileage/emissions will be ‘as per the label’.
We’ve learned to be skeptical, haven’t we?
Tobacco companies said, for decades, nicotine wasn’t addictive. Tobacco didn’t cause cancer. They knew different. Why didn’t we?
Innocent trusting consumers, we the easily duped, where is our responsibility for looking out for our own self-interest, for safety? We’ve wrongly abdicated to government, media – Ralph Nader, Deep Throat and Erin Brokovich types.
Is VW the culprit? Was GM? Was Ford? Who owns responsibility? CEO’s, mid-hierarchy managers/technicians, whole boards of directors, or ALL shareholders?
Hard, to leaven corporate malfeasance with horror – seemingly so divorced from one another. Were Ford’s Pinto scandal or Corvair’s dangers really different from Volkswagen’s software trickery?
Each, horribly wrong.
Their carnage far different.
Tobacco has no comparator.
Really? Consider Thalidomide? Acutane? Asbestos?
Those harmed get compensated, right? When something goes wrong in our country, aren’t all shareholders/citizens responsible? When government has to pay for gaffes, failures to regulate and outright wrongdoings, we ALL pay for that.
Purposeful wrongs, ethical lapses, stupid mistakes – happen all the time, in plain view. But not painful in our minds unless happening to us, or someone we care about. Or seen by our own eyes …
And, unless it is fed to us by blurred-line media (news and paid), governments, NGO’s – we don’t care. Not collectively. Not individually.
Belief, is defined as “the state of mind in which a person thinks something to be the case, with or without there being empirical evidence to prove that something is the case with factual certainty.”
Disbelief, as “inability or refusal to accept that something is true or real”.
Suspension of disbelief – well, that’s the experience of being drawn into some story as if it’s really happening … a good book, an average movie or a good TV drama. When we pause for just a second, we realize that which we are reading or watching is completely fictional – that those villains really aren’t – they’re just actors, those people who died didn’t, the blood was fake, the bomb was fake – just stunts, and those doom-happenings didn’t happen.
Around the world, every day, real people die, starve and flee their homelands. No actors, that’s real.
Every day governments jail their citizens for having a contrary opinion. Every day!
Every day – every imaginable injustice is perpetrated.
Somehow we experience this collective suspension of disbelief whether or not we see something on page one – we just trust, but what are we trusting? Our belief, or our disbelief?
In ignorance, absence of news media coverage or paid-boasting – we believe everything else is OK. Think about it. We know that isn’t true. We go right back to mindlessly watching the movie. Should we should sit in our seats watching that same movie without questioning?
Pass the popcorn please …
Who/what can you trust?
What do you believe?
And why do you still believe it?
written / published from Calgary, AB
morning walk: 10C/50F, fantastic light breeze, mostly clear, light on my feet – thank you caffeine – looking forward to work/play day that will be long and fruitful. Yay fall!
If you liked any musing column, it would mean a lot to me if you would respond. Comments are welcome, so please contribute to the discussion. To reply, use: firstname.lastname@example.org . You can also connect with me on LinkedIn . You can sign up your friends here at MarkMusing.com . This site is updated daily ...