Charlie's Blog


SOC 51

Comfort is the enemy of progress.

Bigger is not better. Someone should tell this to the crew at Church Militant. If they reflect, they will see that the early days of EWTN were far better than the current EWTN. I'm not sure why people always feel the urge to upgrade, expand, and all the rest. I think the better path is to be LEAN AND MEAN.

Alex Jones is paying the price for going bigger and badder. When Trump got elected, Infowars rode the wave of that popularity with a big expansion. Now, without YouTube and social media, Alex Jones is paying the price for his hubris. Church Militant is riding the wave of the sex abuse crisis. I see a similar crash coming for them.
Zero Hedge had a similar story about Stroh's. They overreached and ended up destroying themselves. Then, there was Sparatacus who defeated the Romans and won his freedom from slavery but returned to fight them again and ended up on a crucifix on the Appian Way. He couldn't let it go.

I believe in staying small. Going big is stupid. This begs the question. When are you going too far?

This is a vexing issue. When is big too big? And when is small too small? One clue has to do with money. You should never go into debt to build or expand. Your plans should be built on your surplus and not your ambitions. Another clue is time. Do you have the time to accomplish the plan? Speaking from personal experience, I find the lack of time to be the biggest curb to my ambitions.

The best model I can give for the Lean and Mean philosophy is the United States Marine Corps. I work with a lot of Army and Marine guys, and I have come to appreciate the different strategies of those two branches. The US Army along with the Navy and the Air Force is definitely the model of Bigger and Badder. Those branches have big budgets and big equipment. They focus on fighting wars of attrition where materiel is the deciding factor. The Marines are different. Being subject to the US Navy, their budget is considerably smaller. Marines get the hand me down equipment. Within these limitations, the Marines rely upon strategy and grit to get the job done. And they do.

They say that the Marines win battles while the Army wins wars. The Marines occupy the space between guerrilla force and full army. They aren't fighting with a rifle and a bowl of rice. But they are not a juggernaut. Instead, the Marines operate by the principles and tactics of maneuver warfare. Because of this fighting philosophy, the Marine Corps is able to defeat enemies with less materiel.

Krav Maga has a similar strategy as a fighting system. The goal of Krav is to neutralize your opponent as quickly and efficiently as possible. This involves striking soft targets on the body that are the same for everyone with one variation between men and women. It doesn't matter how big your opponent may be. Krav Maga assumes this. No frills and no fluff. Just simplicity and brutality.

I began this SOC before my accident at work. I never write about my day job. But this accident has forced me to mention that I work for a living, and this work could kill me and almost did. I am able to write a bit now as I recover from my injuries. I won't discuss the accident or my physical state of being except to say that I was not at fault. I don't know why God allows these things to happen to me. I just accept them and offer them up.

When I talk about suffering on this blog, it is not academic. It is real. The upside of all of this is that no one envies me. No one ever looks at me and thinks, "Man, that cat has got it made." 2018 has definitely been a bad year for me.

I accept suffering as the new normal for my life. People might ask me if I have learned anything from this ordeal. I have learned that I work with some awesome people. Beyond that, I haven't gained any major life lessons from this calamity because I already know them all. In my younger days, this sort of thing would have lead to some kind of existential crisis like when I found my housemate dead from suicide in my twenties. That event now would just be another thing to throw on the pile. Life is suffering. This is not going to change.

I can tell the difference in my mindset when I refused the painkillers in the hospital. Some people think this is some badassery on my part until I tell them I wanted to cry when they took some body hair when they ripped the leads from my chest. The simple fact is that I did not care to leave the hospital with an opioid addiction. They wanted to give me fentanyl. I told them that was the stuff that killed Prince and refused it. Nobody ever died from pain, but plenty of people have died from painkillers.

Pain is not a big deal. The thoughts that ride on top of the pain are the big deal. Because I am Catholic, I know that suffering is normal and to be expected. I don't wonder if I did something to deserve it. If Jesus suffered, then I must suffer. No servant is above his master. There is happiness in suffering. Once you know that, you don't need fentanyl.

The hardest thing I have had to endure for the past two weeks is seeing my wife suffer over this accident. She has been with me through all of this trial. I wish I could have spared her all of this. I tend to want to suffer alone because I hate being a burden or concern for others. I imagine that it must have broken Jesus's heart to see His mother at the foot of the cross. I would rather endure a hundred beatings than see a tear in my wife's eye.

I have to recover from my injuries now. Then, there is all of the extracurricular stuff I must now go through which feels like a second crucifixion. For some odd reason, this is harder for me to endure than the actual accident. Dying is easy. Living is hard. This is why I could take a bullet for my Lord, but I find it hard to not cuss.

I love God, and I will take whatever He gives me both good and bad. Please pray for me. Prayers are derided by atheists as a way to help without any heavy lifting. But trust me, I need those prayers. They do me more good than money, and I am grateful for those prayers. They sustain me. And for those who pray for me, thank you so much. Your kindness is much appreciated, and the Lord will bless you for this.