Has back-channel back-biting become a minor league sport in the III community? Was it always this way? Or, was I just too wide-eyed (read that as stupid) to notice?
In the world of men and women and the endeavors in which they dabble, to try is to sometimes fail. It is simply a fact of existence. Unless one goes through life managing to never take a risk, failure on some level is inevitable. Failure can be forgiven. In fact, most failures ought never to rise to the level of requiring forgiveness. Shake it off. Move on. Distill the teachable moments and persevere. You’ll do better next time. At least, that’s how it should work. But that’s not always so.
We have all met these so-called Patriots. You know them as the individuals for whom personal failure is somehow ALWAYS someone else’s fault. They embark on quiet crusades to curry favor, cripple relationships, and destroy alliances. It’s one of the hallmarks of the Poor Me Patriot. Absolutely fascinating to watch!
As a psychological archetype, these Poor Me People -- or “Career-Martyrs” (my made-up term) -- are intriguing character studies. These are the folks who have never seen a cross they couldn’t climb. Career-martyrs will readily sacrifice another’s reputation both to achieve and to shore-up coveted Victim-Status. There is a reliable payoff for running the “Victim Racket.” Victims are automatically absolved of any accountability for personal failings. The sly use of shifting blame to misdirect all attention from one’s own failings is the sharpest arrow in a Victim’s quiver. And, it works! For the Classic “Poor Me Personality” self-deception is usually so complete, chances are, they utterly believe their own tortured fabrications.
It’s a curious study in abnormal human psychology to observe the Sad-Sack, Poor Me Personalities who complain relentlessly about being forced to abdicate this or that throne of success because they were – you guessed it – Victims! Listen long enough and one finds they are victims to nearly everything and everyone in their lives. Yet, it all happens MOSTLY at the level of the unconscious.
Poor Me Personalities usually live an unexamined life. They are strangers to themselves. But then again, self-deception does that. It causes permanent damage to the human psyche. Poor Me Personalities know they’ve achieved success (not actual success, mind you, but scapegoats for why they cannot succeed) when others referring to them reflexively put “Poor” before their name.
I recently did a reality-check. It is impossible to make right others’ manufactured wrongs. To try is a fool’s errand. Truth becomes invisible when viewed through the prism of quaking personalities imprisoned by their own self-deception. Put such sad souls in the company of morally bankrupt saboteurs of anything not utterly self-serving, and no good ever comes of it. Just sit back and watch the warped web of deceit. Dye-packs thrown into waters on eastern shores wash up in the west. One wonders as these “Patriots” preen with positive delight and bask in the glow of self-satisfaction, whether self-deception can be so complete that every last ray of truth forever eludes their personal event horizon.
To that I have no answer. I simply cannot say.
I can, however, say this: No III endeavor in which I am involved will be sacrificed at the altar of rumors wrapped in rancor, cloaked in convenient half-truths, and swaddled in simpering self-pity. No III Endeavor in which I am involved will fall prey to the weak wailings of those who cry, “Woe is Me!” rather than “Where was *I* responsible?”
To such individuals I can only say: Do us all a favor. Grow a spine. Do yourselves a favor. Grow a conscience. Want to sate your personal desires to assign blame? Find a mirror.
Check your Six!
- Guest Post
[ K addition: 'Check your Six! = Karma's a Bitch! ;) ]