Captain First, Then Rats! (by Mark St. Cyr)

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The disgraceful actions taken by the Captain of the Italian cruise liner Costa Concordia once again remind us that there are people in places of authority regardless of the stellar credentials they may have are nothing more than poor examples of vermin. (My apologies to vermin everywhere)

In the wake of the despicable actions displayed by the captain, it seems that many in the crew were just as easily persuaded that responsibility for passengers ended as soon as something endangered them. All of this so deplorable as to the sanctity of trust it makes one wonder if we can take any refuge in thinking maybe, just maybe, I can put my faith here. It’s starting to seem more and more you can’t.

In today’s world there are so many places that we need to put some form of trust into an individual or company. We can try our best to learn about things so that we can make informed decisions but that goes only so far. You can’t fly a jet liner so you have to trust that the pilots and crew are competent. Neither can you ensure that the money in your retirement account is actually there. Why? Need I remind you of Bernie Madoff? Maybe that’s ancient history now since it happened over 2 years ago so let’s give another example MF Global. You remember them. Their the ones with that guy with the title “The Honorable” John Corzine. (They made sure that placard was shown when he first appeared at the Congressional hearing) It seems for some reason he doesn’t know where BILLIONS of his clients funds are. Maybe we should cut him some slack since billions in his past government positions can be the equivalent of a rounding error. And I guess while we’re at it we should cut the captain and crew of the cruise liner some also. I mean really, did anyone think that if the ship was actually sinking they should be there for help and guidance to the passengers? C’mon the ship is sinking “everyman for themselves” is the true battle cry of these disgusting examples of humanity. So what if an airline captain is found to be drunk as he was flying an airliner full of passengers 30 thousand feet above the Earth near the speed of sound. Maybe it was just a once in a career event, not like anyone got hurt right? It’s us who should lighten up, these guy’s are under real pressure, we don’t understand the tremendous pressures this class of us are under. This is what we’ll hear almost verbatim by the lawyers that will be hired. Just pathetic in my view.

As disgusting as all these example of late may be, it just goes to show you that character matters. And the only way one can reserve the right to be mad at this collection of vermin is that you yourself are leading a life of telling the truth, doing what you promised, doing your best no matter what you’re doing, and just because no one would ever know you did it, you do the right thing because you know. If you don’t, then you have no right to complain when it may be done to you or to others.

Character matters and it begins and ends with you.