mike fettis

@michael.j.fettis

Everything is broken. What now?

It’s broken and its your fault!
It’s broken and it’s always been that way
It’s broken and lets fix it

There are many problems happening in the world, problems and broken situations happen all the time. The government is broken and its your fault! The financial institutions are broken but lets fix them with cryptocurrency, and blockchains. Government oppression has broken the people, and its always been that way. Technology, and social media has broken our social circles and devolved society into tribal communities, how do we fix it? All of the things that are broken can be related to three basic types of problems. How does someone solve their problems and the problems around them?? Lets start by talking about each of the three types of problems and how to handle them.

It’s broken and it’s your fault.
Blame: assign responsibility for a fault or wrong.

You elected the wrong president, there was collusion and its all their fault! My echo chamber is louder than yours, because I can’t hear you. My social feed has been manipulated and I don’t realize its their fault because they did it. Why did you release that code change to production you broke it now you fix it. Seeing something is broken, or wrong and immediately assigning blame, and then telling that person. “You broke it, now you fix it”. Assigning blame. While there are a few exceptions, assigning blame does not often help the situation. Assigning blame may give an ego boost, to the originator whom found the problem. However offering no solution is often an act of futility and will no benefit the greater good. Oftentimes the net result is simply ostracizing them further. The issue then remains unsolved and any type of relationship that could have been built is destroyed. This is possibly the worst result when finding a problem, where the issue is worse off than when it was discovered, not only is their a problem but now there is guilt and anger on top of the issue. There are better ways to solve problem instead of casting blame. However first there is another type of problem that can some times become as the result of merely casting blame and leaving the issue to burn.

It’s broken and it’s always been that way
Defeatism: the attitude, policy, or conduct of a person who admits, expects, or no longer resists defeat, as because of a conviction that further struggle or effort is futile; pessimistic resignation.

Student debt is broken and its always been that way. Financial institutions rule the world and there is nothing to be done. The rich get richer and the poor owe more. Cynicism, may be the result of a problem that has gone on too long. Perhaps someone has attempted to fix something only to fail, or have a recurrence. This is where a person should step in with a new idea and try to iterate on the problem, or offer a new set of eyes on the problem to see it from a different angle. However many times the cynicism runs deep and it may require much effort to resurrect the situation from the ashes. The momentum may be difficult to get rolling but if one can find the allies amongst the defeated then the ensuing avalanche may be able to truly get something accomplished. Often time those that are defeated can offer, some great insights in to what failed for them. Take their advice and see if a new viewpoint can offer a spark to light the fire. The spark can often fix it but two sparks are always better than one.

It’s broken and lets fix it
Bootstrap: get (oneself or something) into or out of a situation using existing resources.

Person to person payments are broken lets use blockchain to fix them. Need a ride across town and there are all these cars, lets make an app for hitching a ride with someone else in their car, with this handheld gps and computer in my hand. Seeing a problem, identifying the issue, understanding who or how it became an issue, and then working the problem. This is engaging with the person that may be the source of the problem or perhaps engaging with another person who sees the problem. Then, there can be multiple viewpoints and more iterations to work. Let’s make an ally interested of blaming an enemy. Leave the ego at the door and create a better situation than the one discovered. The arab spring, #occupyWallstreet, any number of social media storms. All of these were groups of people coming together the work a problem, lets work together find allies and we can change the world. It has bene shown time and time again that there is no problem too large in the world today that enough people cannot find a solution. The more minds the more angles to work. Lets work this so far outside the box that an entirely new industry is created in the process. All of the great solutions in modern times have come from people solving the problems together.

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