For expediency sake, we’ll use Loving as an example, and environmental Armageddon. Stick with this essay. There is must-see information on Crossing the Chasm – why the fatal mistake of the last 40 years activists must end – the notion that we can go right from idea to masses, without the cannot avoid steps of pioneers and early adapters. Unless a few individuals, stand, and are willing to stand alone, for a long time, blazing the trail, oh, we will raise millions, sell lots of books, and kill every second that is left to save the next 2000 generations.
You know that objectively all is lost, right? Objectively, there is no chance we are going to avert environmental Armageddon - zero. That's the only conclusion that anyone watching the history of the last 5, 10, 15, 30... years of dire warnings going back actually to1960 at the UN by the indigenous nations, about our destruction of Mother Earth - the number one threat they announced to the world - the brutal destruction of mother Earth. Nothing but ever-increasing, ever more skillful denial has resulted from these warnings. We're done. Down by three and there are is one second left on the clock.
This is objectively a 1 in a million campaign. Loving, is a 1 in a million messenger. I didn't just say good, I could be a bad 1 in million, but it's a 1 in a million messenger. It seems there's no one has the start-up, and turn-around, general leadership and real world management experience, the constantly running toward emergencies that others are running from, that I do, the situation analysis / diagnosis experience, the failure is not an option attitude - in the entire so called environmental movement. A lifetime of turning and facing dire, emergency situations, and turning them around. That's been what I've done for my entire adulthood.
And all this happening in the sickest America, the sickest culture, the most Affloholic addicted culture that's ever been, I'm not being derogatory. I'm being clinical, and if you want this disagree, you can disagree on that basis.
You want to bet that if a crisis with the apparent moral clarity of Pearl Harbor happened today, you want to bet that America would respond the same way that it did so many decades ago? I don't. We'd happily send poor people's kids in uniform, but would we stand up as a country? Not as fast, not as well, and maybe not all. Our sick, deathly cowardly populace is not my fault, or yours, but that's what the situation is that needs to be dealt with.
In my library on my blogs is a book called Crossing the Chasm. It became the bible in silicon valley that averted what was an ongoing bloodbath of promising startups. And the fatal mistake they were making was trying to go from any new, promising concept, right to a message and a product that would appeal to the mass market. It's impossible. It doesn't work that way. And the fundamental reason it doesn't work that way is that the intermediate group, which is only about 2% of the population, ‘early adapters’ they're called, as I recall, the pioneers being the .01% of the of the Bell curve, the next group being the early adapters - these are not normal people. They're very un-normal people. They're people of enormous courage, enormous vision. When shown an extremely important emerging opportunity or situation, their first question isn't, 'how are we going to do this?,' their first responses is 'we are going to do this. I am going to buy that, I am going to be part of making this work.' They're problem solvers of profound initiative; doers. They have profound energy, extremely high risk curves. This is nothing I made up - Crossing the Chasm. If you Google that, the authors name is Geoffrey Moore, you'll find some pretty good graphics and synopses of the same concept.
This is how everything starts if it is going to succeed, and in this sick, mass media, meaningless-impotent-activism society that has been based on the idiocy of trying to pass that step - not bothering to inspire, attract and harness the early adapters, not even any pioneers taking arrows (sorry for the incorrect pc) - the 200 women in prison in 1918 prior to getting Suffrage, for example.
Fatally, it has been these last 40 years - Let's see the population we want help, let's go right to the fund-raising, let's go right to the messages that attract everyone, that appeal to everyone, and off we go. And, you know what? In years we didn't save anyone in Darfur with that approach, but we raised tons of money, hobnobbed with movie stars, and killed years of time. We haven't eliminated poverty with that approach, or made really a dent. It’s idiocy. It's murder. The approach we use, religiously bypassing the immensely courageous, creative, high initiative early adapters, it raises lots of funds, it makes people feel really good, and it accomplishes nothing, except killing time. That's not what I'm about. That's not what the effective activists in history have been about.
This is an extremely high-stakes, extremely high risk, extremely low probability venture, these Death Fasts. But you know what? The option is certain Armageddon. Death Fasts ARE the weapon. The question is if folks will rise to use it. So for those of you, my beloved sisters and brothers all, that conclude that messages are too cryptic, messages are too narrow, too long, rambling, they don't appeal to a wide audience - I agree that they don't appeal to a wide audience.
There are few people on earth that have taken the time to study the original texts of Gandhi, of the great psychologists, etc, and that's fine, but that's what I do, and that's what I'm presenting; and that’s what pioneers and early adapters always insist on doing – getting to the root - radical. And the one in a million, the early adapters, or the early pioneers, they actually will flee from anything other than what I'm doing.
The early adapters don't want ready answers. They want someone that sees the problem and is living and dying (giving all they are) in the attempt to solve it and that's actually what they're looking for. This is exactly the opposite of what the early majority is looking for - clarity, simplicity, other people doing it, easily digested, clear, safe. That wasn't the established women's suffrage movement; the established women suffragists fled from Alice Paul and her group, far too radical, far too narrow. But Alice and her team, they were the indispensible, missing spark plugs.
I'm looking for the spark plugs. How do you come up with messaging that attracts the Navy SEAL? I don't think you do. The Navy SEALs sees other Navy SEALs and says, 'that's what I'm gunna do,' or they don't, and there's no amount of messaging that can get the normal population ever to want to be a Navy SEAL. And there is probably little bad messaging that can discourage the potential recruit.
That's what this is about; that's what I'm about - being a Navy SEAL is the only way to attract and join with other Navy SEALS. The rest is pretty much details.