Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The Evil of Indifference

oday is March 4th and thanks to a couple oddities in the English language we can hear someone say that and interpret it as "march forth" a call to action. Here is a far more eloquent call to action.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
— Edmund Burke

But how much action is enough? Our world is almost always competitive, occasionally combative. It's the result of billions of people responding to situations, to each other, and to their own desires and needs. Once we decide what we want, deciding what we are wiling to pay or do follows. 

In economic terms, when the desired outcome isn't a must, we seek a solution at minimum cost. EBay handles millions of transactions this way, peacefully resolving competition for things people want but can do without. 

If we are dealing with evil, or with vital goals, incremental bidding or incremental effort risks failure. Evil can triumph if good men do just a little less than is necessary. When the stakes are high, incremental action can be a huge risk. 

Tony Robbins recommends massive action, imagining and doing everything you can. Don't choose between skipping a donut or going for a walk, do both--and more--to achieve your weight goal 

Burke's famous quote isn't telling us to buy an item cheaply, it challenges us to recognize the real stakes, to exchange apathy for action. The best day for that is always today, even if it isn't March 4th. 

What's important to you? Find your cause. Take action. Fight evil, even if it is the evil of your own indifference. March forth!

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