Sunday, May 09, 2010

Don't blame the tools, blame the craftsman

President Obama gave a commencement speech today:

"You're coming of age in a 24/7 media environment that bombards us with all kinds of content and exposes us to all kinds of arguments, some of which don't always rank that high on the truth meter," he told the students. "And with iPods and iPads, and Xboxes and PlayStations -- none of which I know how to work -- information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation. So all of this is not only putting pressure on you; it's putting new pressure on our country and on our democracy."

I don't know how to work them either, so? He's absolutely right on all of the distractions; but, he's wrong in the message. Electricity way back allowed diversion from the basics of existing; though, it was indeed a tool of empowerment (a word I don't like). There are lots of things that can have bad results.

Things aren't the problem, people are. Choose your tools wisely. Then use them well.

5 comments:

Thomas said...

The first thing I thought of was that old adage, "If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail." So I'd add "Choose more than one tool."

Dave said...

Addition accepted, to be used wisely.

Tangentially related, I was at IKEA this morning looking for several things, one of which I found. IKEA got a buy on "15 Piece Tool Sets" which consisted of a baby hammer, a vice-grip kind of thing, a baby crecent wrench and a handle for which there were eleven little inserts for, I assume screwing things. It was cheap, something like seven bucks.

Dave said...

Got should be had; and, i missed a big part. Damned if I can remember what it was. Ah, pliers.

Jeni said...

Very good, very wise words, indeed!

Annie K said...

I think you would look really good with a handlebar mustache, for which you will need, I believe, some mustache wax, small scissors, and a comb.