A Modest Proposal: Tapping The Mavens of Failure

There are vocations that thrive on the emotion of fear. Terrorism is one such that immediately springs to mind. But there is another vocation that shares similar dynamics to terrorism; which isn’t enchained to be carried out surreptitiously, which (generally) does not involve loss of life and – most importantly – is untouched by the law: Astrology.

Centuries of evolution and progress in knowledge may lead us to think that collective ignorance has been South-bound with the passage of time. It is safe to posit that in the tug-of-war between Time and Ignorance, the latter will emerge triumphant as Time eventually runs out of steam…

Blind faith in a greater good and fear are the common elements linking the two. They attract young, impressionable souls that are easily oversold on the idea of the great nobility of the Path. Both are assisted by the problem of the counter-factual. Most times, if-then scenarios cannot be tested to determine the alternative; especially when the scenario(s) involve possible dalliances with the after-life, in some form.

The Sun has just entered Aries and the time is right to focus on relevant matters.

While consensus is easily achieved against Terrorism, the Astrology camp is a fractious one. Some nations are less polarised than others and it is the latter that is of focal interest here. In these countries, intelligent souls exercise strong opinions in condemning the vice of Terrorism but habitually extol the virtues of Astrology.

Nuptial beginnings frequently originate from the Stars, long before the eventuality is consummated. Aeons of experience, favouring failures, has failed to ignite a spark of inquisitiveness in this matter. When Astrology appears to fail, a mighty swipe dismisses the failure as an exception; even as Rule takes umbrage at being renamed as Exception.

The advance of society has fostered a litany of voices supposedly opposed to this art. As with matters pertaining to society, persistence culminates in a sighting of reality, as the curtain of cultivated artificiality gradually drops away. The vociferous public denouncers are often found among the enthusiastic closet-adherent community.

Those who despise predictions from the Stars generally find a believable adaptation in Economics and Financial Market Prognostications. Two areas closest in character to Astrology but not recognised as such. Both have impressive records of failure often spread over several centuries; involving Nostradamuses in suits. Yet, the legion of Intelligents continues to attract the gullible and other wannabe Intelligents, who move from one form of gullibility to another in making that transition.

Generally, these mavens do a good job of predicting the past, although their track record in this respect is suspect. The practitioners operate under the omnipresent threat of ignorance, preying on the emotion of Fear. Prognoses generally originate from the Stars, except that the Stars are rechristened as Theory. Equilibrium and Efficiency theories are eulogised in a world of Entropy. Miraculously, chaos and order are confused almost perfectly.

Adherents wilfully suspend (dis)belief and independent judgment and intriguingly, welcome the opportunity of paying for this privilege. The experts meanwhile conjure up one prediction after another, without attaching a time-frame within which their prognostications would apply. When Lady Luck courts them, the practitioners are quick to partake in the credit. In this respect, they are similar to their Astrologer brethren.

As with Astrology, these morphs attribute failure to the Stars. The practitioners themselves are irreproachable sages, often being rewarded richly for achieving failure. In some cases, failure is a non-negotiable passport to more lucrative assignments. Considering the repeated engagements of such artists specialising in failure, the world, in the very least, cannot be faulted for being unprepared for the eventuality.

How many areas can you think of that reward practitioners, repeatedly and handsomely, for failing spectacularly?

So, here is a modest proposal.

Given this history of organised failure, ways to turn blundering predictions into useful outcomes ought to be thought of. When years of solicitations for predicting correctness has ended in failure, the opposite course of action is likely to be successful. With this in mind, a fool-proof method of hitting upon useful (and correct) prognosis is to pay the mavens to accomplish the opposite. In channeling their vast industriousness in the pursuit of failure lies the mantra for success. Once diligent and reasonable basis in incorrectness becomes the norm, pretentious prognosticators would be eradicated, leaving the arena to the truly successful Mavens of Failure.

Failing is a tough art, learnt through years of rigour and intense resourcefulness. Expecting to be recompensed handsomely for these efforts is, therefore, not an immodest expection. It is likely that in following the suggested course of action, many mavens would (un)fortunately lose their Banking jobs – Central and Investment – but they would find this alternative a(n) (en)viable proposition. As for the Astrologers, in putting together marriages that end at the Lawyer’s, they would finally be doing justice to the evolutionary rule of sympatric mating.

What about the failures among the Failures?

Occupy Wall Street is alive and well.


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