I swear, the longer I live and more I read the more I realize that I’m a lout! Recently I read two articles that have no relation to each other that clued me in on a strategy that organizations can use to distract their opponents.
Here it is… You are a big super power like the USA. You have a lot of resources and guns, but your society members are free thinkers and really don’t like going to war, which results in a lot of free people dyeing. And in free societies, dying is not a good thing for the people.
Your opponent is say the USSR. They on the other hand are not free. Leaders routinely kill society members to instill fear via the “Iron Fist.” War and death and the killing of society members is not a deterrent for the leaders, although it is still a bad thing for the people.
Hmm… So how does a ‘free’ society keep from having to fight a war? Well, you create a diversion. Your enemy (opponent) perceives this diversion as being so important that they will dedicate precious resources to the diversion, which in the long-run makes them weak and in this particular case helps collapse the USSR.
Such a diversion the US created with the USSR was the (drum roll in the background) Space Race!
Why do I think this? Well, there is this New York Times article that quoted Chinese commentators saying the same thing. They believe that the US is baiting them into a “space race” to “drain China’s resources so it will collapse, without a war.”
Another column by Cringely on computer technology talked about the same tactic.
It really makes my head hurt thinking about the complexity of human thought and interaction and made me realize I’m really just a LOUT (noun)!