Sunday Thoughts: changed, because I had to

Sunday, December 21st, 2008 - sunday thoughts


I was going to say much this Sunday, but in light of one piece of journalism, pulled it. I was going to say:

  • That there is a miracle in modern science, in the worlds second face transplant in America: and a lesson for the economy, and hence jobs
  • That Woolworths was a business that had for a while stumbled around. The credit crunch was just the excuse it was looking for to fall over
  • That the same thing could apply to the Detroit big-three – poor product is a function of long term poor management, so why give them the money? They need a Lee Iacocca Mk2
  • That the representative from the IAW who suggested that it was Congresses fault by not raising fuel taxes as to why the big three were in trouble was a chump. Often, in such long-term crisis situations, there appear when the failure occurs at least two sides and two wholly separate agendas – each is at fault if resolution is the required teamwork answer
  • I wondered what other whole industries and businesses would be walking to their governments for help? I hoped their managements and people came as one
  • And I summary concluded that, much like the spokesperson for the hospital said, they didn’t know that was going to happen or if the operation would be a success until the blood flow was established, that all was going to be OK
  • And that because there still is insufficient cash flow from the banks to the economy- RBoS and Lloyds TSB/HBoS only got their money less than three weeks ago – that it was going to be until at least Easter 2009 before the bottom could be seen; but that as Estate Agents were reporting increased enquiries, there were already good signs

The only piece of that editorial I have kept is still here, and will come below. So your question is – why did you change it Ian?

The BBC series Our World holds a series of what one could call “serious” journalism interviews. It sends a good correspondent out to interview people in various parts of the world to ask “serious” questions. In summary, it is a bit like Radio4 with a bit of video, and can be as easy to consume and as dry as old water biscuits.

This month, they sent Alan Johnston, the Scottish BBC correspondent who covered the Gaza strip, and was kidnapped for four months; to interview Ingrid Betancourt, the Colombian/French national and politician, held for six years by rebels in South America. Well, that was the theory. In effect, it is a conversation between two people who shared the same experience, and what is captured on camera is both parties asking quite simple questions of the other (which because of the shared experience, only they could ask), and getting some of the most emotionally and wholly personal answers.

(NB: I would give you a link to it on the BBC website or YouTube where I am sure it will eventually appear, but as it is still being transmitted it won’t appear for a few days)

Towards the end, Johnston surmises that somewhere, there is probably a hostage listening to them on an old radio, and asks Betancourt what advice she would give to them? She thinks, and says: “Simply, love yourself.” He then finalises by asking how she thinks the process changed her, and she says: “It didn’t change me, it transformed me. I know I can change things now, and how easy that is.” The interview ends emotionally, as Betancourt says she knew she and Johnston would speak, and have this great shared experience; and from Johnston’s reaction, it is pretty clear he is also thankful.

So my thought to you today, as many face uncertainty in 2009 is: what ever you do, love yourself. You can face any challenge, and change anything you want, if you just love yourself.

I am sure the lady who had the face transplant never really wanted to make such a choice. I am sure that many who redundant or the uncertainty of possible unemployment in 2009 don’t want that either. Some times, you don’t have a choice in these situations – you just have to accept them, and get through them with a choice for life. And to do that, you need yourself, and your friends and family – and you need to love yourself.

The piece I kept from my original article? On this shortest of days, I am off to light a candle to life. Wherever you are at this time of the year, may it be in peace, and may your God be with you.

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