Monday, December 26, 2011

The Problem of the Bureaucrat

  This essay is not about what is normally and frequently called the bureaucrat; a paper-pushing, buck-passer, but rather about a certain personality type. I call this personality bureaucratic because it's essence consists in the desire to please others and follow their orders.
  Now everyone would desire to have someone to be their retainer, follower, order-taker, etc.For the order-taker, Libido Domiandi  fires their breasts unto service and Vindicius is their muse. I suppose such a character is not so curious when you realize that it can be easily inculcated in anyone who is consistently concerned about the fate of their fellows. The busy-body is essentially the teacher's pet, the obedient son, the mothering girl, etc. This personality trait however, in accord with our theme of analyzing intersubjective ironies, can be extremely counterproductive.
  One would think that the servant and benefactor of a man would be his perfect instrument and vice versa however this is frequently not so. Imagine this, a boy/girl is told to always behave and observe proper respect for authority. However, sooner or later, that authority tries to carry out a command like "go get a wooden plank". However, since the bureaucrat follows orders to the letter, he doesn't know whether to get a wooden plank quickly or slowly or at medium speed. So he/she leisurely searches it out much to the chagrin of the commander, who has an immediate need for it.  The bureaucratic person, responding to his concern for people and to other's love for servants, tries to be as nice as possible and ends up being as injurious as possible. The saying "respect your elders" soon becomes "if you want something done well, then do it yourself".
  The disturbing implication of this is that, if you wanted something done correctly, then the virtue of obedience must be seemingly exorcised or at least your concern for people must be eliminated. Was your selflessness vicious or was your virtue impractical? These are the two equally probable and haunting demons which ,alternately, taking his turn scourging our bureaucrat's poor soul.
  Are there people who exhibit the bureaucratic personality most, and what does this imply, if anything, for society? These questions will be answered later.

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