As political upheaval in the Middle East shows, unbalanced societies are bound to fail. Justice and freedom are universally defined as the meeting point between the will of the people and the government’s ability to assist that will. But sometimes people and governments are only interested in themselves. Call this a contest between the top-down “powers that be” and the strength of bottom-up “grass root” movements. Balance in the flow of these principles is essential to face the challenges of modern times.
Just as people everywhere strive for more balanced societies, we also need to strive to improve our personal lives, skills and careers. Whatever our line of work—sometimes we govern, other times we are governed—we always need to govern ourselves. There is nothing wrong with recognizing that sometimes you are the authority, and at other times, you need to work with others. Trusting that those around us are working toward mutually beneficial goals is essential. Most of the time, the greater whole functions well. But at other times, both societies and individuals can lose that trust. All of us need to be responsible, transparent and accountable in our actions. We do so by uniting the principles of “top-down” and “bottom-up” in order to discover the best solutions for what works best for all. (6/10/12)