Leadership (Or Not)

 Seek the best rulers;
People do know that they exist.
They love and they praise;
Next they fear,
Or, for many, soon to be reviled.
When they do not command the people’s faith,
Some will lose what little faith they had in them forever.
They resort to oaths!
But, of the best when their task is accomplished, their work done,
The people all remark, “We have done it ourselves.”
The people are those who lead the people.
A true leader is heard to say, “There go the people, I must follow.”
He made the city no greater than when he took it, the greatest and richest of all cities, and grew to be superior in power to kings and tyrants. Some of these, actually appointed him guardian of their sons – but he did not make his estate a single drachma greater than it was when his Father left it to him.
Does it matter where or when? What matters is socially and politically acceptable as of now, and now only. The value of a drachma or a dollar has no true meaning. What matters to most of us is the so-called level playing field. If it is God’s will, we come on to this earth, planet, hemisphere – what have you – with an unequivocal set of equal rights: breathing in and out — the two that are obviously the most important.
Joe Disciple, upon entering his neighborhood with a seemingly larger than ordinary set of lungs, set his rights to work immediately. His cries for equal justice began at birth.  At first, the masses applauded his screams, then his first words, and then, within a short period of time, his innate ability to get others to bend to his will by making promises of equal amounts of drachmas for all men, women, and children — no matter their color or their beliefs. He promised endlessly, have me as your leader and you will have as many drachmas as your neighbor who lived on the hill above you.
One day, a group of people from his village asked Joe Disciple a question.
“Where will you get the drachmas to deliver all that you promise? Your Father left you none noticeable by us.”
“I will borrow them,” Joe responded. “If you make me your leader, I will borrow from those who have and give you what I get. It will help level the playing field.”
“But won’t those who have still remain on the higher ground above us?” They asked. 
“Ultimately, they will be seen waving to you as they pass on their way down to a level beneath you.”
“What then will happen to their homes on the hills above us?”
“They will lose them, just as you have lost yours.”
“But sir, if they lose all, as you have planned, and they have no more to give, where then will our drachmas come from; where will we live and what level will our playing field be at?”
“You will all be at ‘C’ level – average — middleclass. The level will be equal for those of you who continue to follow my beliefs, as opposed to my predecessor. Soon, I will be long gone (in less than four short years) and there will be vast areas for you to move into; places like Detroit, Cleveland, Chicago, Los Angeles — all empty now, and awaiting the return of the people.”
“But Sir, isn’t that where most of us have come from?”
“You must never question me. Look what happened to the people who used to live up there on the hill.”
“Used to? They still live up there.”
“Not if I have my way. Besides, look how great things have become for all of you during the last four years. You must continue to believe. Everything is shoveled and ready. Forgive me now, but it’s once again time for me to make another speech in the far away land of California.
And, if you like, I’ve left some signed copies of the latest biography spelling out my essence.”
In his own mind, the guy was a living-breathing brute.  Way back when in law school, he came down with a terrible case of sore throat. He called upon his unbelievable brain, hand to eye coordination, and pain tolerance in order to remove his own tonsils without an anesthetic of any kind. Only with the aid of Lawrence Welk’s polkas playing in the background as a diversion, the operation was a huge success.
That night, he studied until dawn, slept for twenty minutes, and proceeded to ace his final exam. He went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude while carrying the unbelievable load of being a triple major which explains why, in later life, people referred to him as doctor, doctor, and doctor. Some of the women even managed a breathy sigh after the second doctor reference; rumor had it, there were some who couldn’t help but do doctor, doctor, oh doctor and then a noticeable groan.
But, this guy was so cool. He had his goals and wasn’t about to succumb to the inherent dangers of the flesh. He was, after all, a man on a mission. He was destined to save the world, one country at a time; of course he began with his own.
This looks like such a great place for me to begin my life’s journey. I’ll mingle my way into the crowd, wait for someone to say something profound, and then begin getting signatures from all of them.
Now, let’s see — what will I have them sign an testament to?
I know; I’ve got it!
They’re going to love this: free transportation tickets to be able to ride anywhere around the city and the campus.
Hey everybody, let’s all join arms together!
(The chant begins)
“We want a free ride! We want a free ride! We want a free ride!”
He’s got them going now. It’s frenzy time for one and all.
But then, without warning, another group comes into sight and sound – they are about the same number of people and they’re all chanting: “No more free rides! No more free rides! No more free rides!”
The mold is set. His future is cast. He joins both groups. The noise, and now the smells, are over powering.
Barking Dogs
Before joining in and barking with the rest of the dogs, why not find out if any of them really believe or even know or understand what in the name of hell they’re barking about. 

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