Bang the keyboard harder, make the world better

Warning: this can be confusing. There is Bill, there is Bob and there is a bit about writing to save the world.

Let me begin with Bob.

Yesterday, in the course of another exasperating meeting, he flushed all that we discussed down the decision drain. When the wild horses of conflicting interests pull in different directions, Bob simply fires the Boss gun, abandons the reins and drives off in his Ferrari. The writer, with all the wise words carefully structured after deep contemplation of all options and outcomes, limps out with ringing ears and a whining ego.

Let me jump from Bob and his small canvas to The Question of this post.

In a country where accents, idioms and values change from one street corner to the next, how do I write in a tone, color and intent to gel with all?

I know. That does sound like useless, frustrated, philosophical ranting at the end of another bad day.

At least it did, until I read Bill.

Image of spectacle like Gandhi's
Time, Oct 1 2012

In the October 1, 2012 issue of Time, Bill Clinton makes an eloquent case for optimism and talks of “five ways the world is getting better all the time.”

“In 2011,” he writes, “I attended a global sustainability conference in Manaus, Brazil, at the edge of the rain forest. Remarkably, utility companies and all the oil companies were represented. The native Brazilian tribes that live in the rain forest, which are protected by law and will be hurt if there’s further development, were represented. The woman who ran for President on the Green Party ticket and spoke out against all this development was there. Small businesses and environmental groups were represented. The delegates sat around small tables, speaking to one another with great respect, believing that if they worked together, they could find an answer. They all understood that if this were a simple issue, someone would have already solved the problem.”

Let us throw a writer in the middle. Let us assume that the writer does not owe his breakfast to any person or organization present, Clinton included. The writer’s only motive is peace and prosperity for all. What can the writer do to lubricate, to facilitate and to motivate?

When the stakes are high, should the writer be a leader first? Does it help if the leader is also a persuasive writer?

Didn’t writers inspire revolutions once upon a time?

Will it help if I simply bang my keyboard harder to make the world better?


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