Coercion as an impediment to success
I’ve watched a Star Trek Voyager episode last night called “Think Tank” and was a little intrigued by a strange group of problem solvers that it was about. It was mostly the idea of being able to find a solution to pretty much any problem that could ever come up by just thinking through all of the variables, correlations, causalities, probabilities and other factors to come up with actual solutions. It’s about manipulating everything that can be manipulated and in a Star Trek world, it’s just about everything, albeit in this particular episodes, the issues were of tactical nature.
The think tank persona in the episode talked about expanding one’s abilities by exploring the unknown. Given the context that would more likely be “cracking” the unknown, that is, making it known. Actually, every problem is a problem for no other reason than lack of knowledge anyway.
I identified with this immediately in terms of my self improvement and self government efforts and individualist thinking. I believe an individual not only has the right to, but the ability as well, to become far more than (s)he currently is. The individual in the think tank, however, was willing to use coercion in his quests. People were nothing more than another variables in his equations, something to be manipulated, by coercion if necessary, to achieve the desired result, or “solution” to his particular problem.
And so I thought.. if I were someone who developed his thinking skills to the point at which I actually can often manipulate other people to my ends, even through coercion, wouldn’t it be tempting to try that? After all, being “caught” or retaliated against is just another factor in the equation to deal with, and can theoretically be dealt with. Of course, I have a moral principle of non-coercion, so the answer is that while I would be tempted, I would find more greatness and satisfaction in achieving my ends without the use of coercion.
But the best realization came to me today just a short while ago.. It’s not really just about a moral principle for the sake of a principle. There is something intrinsic about coercion – it is actually always an anti-thesis to your victory, to your solution. If among your manipulative strategies you include coercion (including force and fraud) you are by definition leaving enemies behind, people who WILL eventually feel hurt and naturally have a desire to retaliate against you. Therefore, by using coercion in your strategies you keep on seeding the seeds of your own doom, your own ultimate or immediate failure.
If, on the other hand, you consider coercion itself to be an inevitable problem creating tool rather than an effective solution solving tool and therefore ban it from all your strategies and success formulas, you are gonna leave behind yourself a trail of people whom not only have no grudge against you, but have also genuinely benefited from an encounter with you. They wont tell people you’re a fraudster and conspire to take you down in retaliation (like they did in the mention Voyager episode). They will recommend you. Thus would would keep planting seeds of your ultimate or immediate success.
Coercion is a value destructor. Value cannot exist without a person assigning it to something therefore all value is subjective and individual. Your interaction with a person can either have him or her have more in value (material or immaterial, things, feelings, knowledge etc.), less in value or equal as before. Coercion is always a sure way of leaving someone not only with less in value, but feeling determined to in seeking justice have YOU have less in value as well. Therefore coercion is a tool of poverty and failure generation whereas voluntary interaction void of all coercion is a wealth and success generation tool.
Coerce and you shall be coerced. Violate and you shall be violated. Give and you shall receive. Bottom line is, what you do to others you can expect others to do to you. If you want to be rich, happy and wealthy make others rich, happy and wealthy.