Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Theology and Bureaucracy (2): Dr. Faust Goes to Washington

In response to the burgeoning growth of independent thinking in his day, Frederick the Great is reputed to have said, “Reason as much as you wish, but obey.”  In so speaking, Frederick laid the foundation of modern bureaucratic government.
The mechanics of bureaucratic rule must be obeyed.  If you are a bureaucrat, you are not permitted to reason, to create, or to feel.  You are not permitted to be authentically human.  You are permitted only do as the manual prescribes, or else be replaced by one who will.  Bureaucrats are functionaries and servants, not persons.
In response to the challenges they face daily, bureaucrats are not permitted to say, “Let me think about that.”  The may say only, “Let me look it up.”  If the manual is silent on the point, they say, “Let me ask my boss” (who will in turn ask his).
If you want a place in the bureaucracy, and especially if you want that place to rise, you have to pay a price:  a soulectomy or a conscienceotomy.  Take your pick.
Many there be who pay it.
Faustocracy flourishes.
Humanity withers.


Keythus said...

Come visit australia sometime, Doc. You'll see there are many here who have no soul. We gave it up, without much resistance too. It is hard to come to terms with our loss - worse still to know we haven't even become aware of it yet.
Keep writing

Dr. Michael Bauman said...

Thanks for your comment.

Bureaucracy is the one-size-fits-all delusion that human differences can be safely ignored; that the path of wisdom, creativity, and love can be antecedently known and determined; and that the infinite variety and complexities of life can be reduced to zero without loss, confusion, distortion, or damage.