You tune your car radio or filter your database query. Scan the market stalls for what you want in spite of traders shouting their ‘deal of the day’. Or search amongst the kids pouring out of school at home-time, to locate your own child to collect. It’s all about improving the signal and avoiding the noise (or the explosion).

The Signal and the Noise

  • The power and the glory.
  • The substance and the style.
  • The actions and the words.
  • The battle won and the skirmish lost.
  • Progress achieved and changes made (contrast manning the lifeboats, with changing your personal wardrobe to leave the Titanic).
  • The sacrifice and the ritual completed (try significant respect and personal risk incurred, not just chivalry and lip service. The impact and reward will likely be greater in the long run).
  • The power of one and the committee (someone once said, a committee is a group that lures good ideas down dark alleys and quietly strangles them!).
  • The single equation/graph/phrase and the wad of report appendices.
  • The child’s simple solution and the grand plan from the adult expert (do we ever see things clearer than we do as kids?).
  • The value and the cost.
  • The empowerment and the immediate need.
  • The fresh evidence (indicating a paradigm shift?) and the historical patterns/prevailing wisdom.
  • The benefit to society and the published research findings.

The Signal and the Explosion

  • Fixes that endure and fixes that backfire (remember the phrase, no good deed goes unpunished).

The Signal and the Signal

  • Helping the one and helping the many.
  • A sign of global warming and another sign of global warming.
  • The age of mass communication and the personal choice to remain out of touch.
  • Multi-national companies avoiding tax and unemployed people not being in a position to pay tax.
  • The battle won and the damage incurred (on one level, war might achieve short term gain, but what gain could all the people killed in the war have created, if not for the war?).
  • The obesity epidemic and the starvation epidemic.
  • The age of reason and the incentives of politicians.

The Noise and the Noise

  • Reality TV show one and Reality TV show two (the more we watch, the more they proliferate. And perhaps, the more implicitly we identify with the characters’ lives?).
  • One politician’s promise and another politician’s promise – guys, please don’t promise what you cannot guarantee, it’s just demeaning to us all. Also, voters memories grow longer the more they suffer. Act so suffering doesn’t become a repeat game.
  • Myths and doctrine, taken past the point of observation and reason. (Some might say religion is essentially doctrine. Personally, I think there’s an element of doctrine in religion, but that the best religions offer humanity so much more. I should disclose, I’m not a religious person. However, I have loads of respect for religious people who do good work for society and the moral principles that various religions offer us all. An after thought – perhaps what’s missing from the major religions is an explicit ‘green’ chapter on environmental protection).
  • The ‘static’ of hate and the ‘static’ of bitterness (swamping the ‘channels’ of love, personal contracts, charitable acts and goodwill. Incidently, its a real shame the emotion of bitterness can’t be dropped from our ‘menu of human emotions’ altogether. Bitterness just gets in the way of progress and drags people into places they don’t belong).
  • Deals too good to be true, free lunches and people promising complete solutions.