On honor and faith

I just read something on CrossRoads Dispatches that moved me, as always Evelyn’s posts do, and it’s a snippet from Dave Roger’s Groundhog day,

There is something that keeps a group of people together that is more than just a paycheck. We "honor" individuals within our group as a way of renewing and strengthening that thing that keeps us together. It’s about faith, which is a word that is much abused of late. It’s about keeping faith with one another, and the really important things we believe, even if we don’t think about them much. To honor someone is to keep faith with them. Honor, the noun, is the quality of having kept faith with one’s fellows.

Honor is self esteem made visible in action – Ayn Rand

And then I clicked through to the original post and read these words,

That failure in leadership was not an accident. It was the product of a political system that has embraced the ways and the methods of the marketplace to manipulate people, to command their attention or distract it. To craft clever, meaningless messages intended to obscure more than to illuminate. To appeal to fear rather than courage. To value appearance over substance. A marketplace in which honesty and integrity are often perceived as impediments to a healthy bottom line.

and I was reminded of a similar prediction, on a more prosaic topic, but one whose roots were sown by the very same "methods of the marketplace to manipulate people" here, where I’d said,

Now if you consider that these concepts were put in place in the 1920’s
and 30’s and were observable in the late fifties, when Packard was
interviewing leading industrial designers of his day
such as Loewy and Lippincott
on their ethical concerns regarding this trend, what do you think is
the likelihood that the backlash today, spearheaded by Godin, can trace
its roots back to the establishment of these very practices. We have
grown up with obsolescence as a fact of life, in some areas, in fact,
as a matter of pride viz., Moore’s Law. But what then of the social and
cultural impact of almost a hundred years of making to break on
people’s attitudes to products and services that they offer?

I was talking about planned obsolescence in that post, but reading both Evelyn’s and David’s writing made me recall these words. Can’t we not say that these systems and services that failed so dramatically are in one sense, products designed with built in obsolescence? I’m not making vapid comparisons to a horrific tragedy here, I’m pointing out the cultural impact on a society that gets accustomed to "throw away", "disposable", "convenient", "easy to use" in their daily lives and how it will impact their professional lives.

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