Earlier today when flying from Florida (where I was vacationing with the PatriotFamilyWest) to Cincinnati (to visit the ol’ Homestead), I was reading the dead tree copy of the Wall Street Journal. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed reading a newspaper. It’s an experience you just don’t get reading articles online. I didn’t seem as hurried as I do when surfing the web.
As I reading Peggy Noonan’s reflection on the past ten years, I wondered if the explanation she offered for the failure (and/or disappointing performance) of many institutions in that era could also apply to one whose decline accelerated in the “aughts,” all but collapsing in the year just concluded:
Maybe the most worrying trend the past 10 years can be found in this phrase: “They forgot the mission.” So many great American institutions—institutions that every day help hold us together—acted as if they had forgotten their mission, forgotten what they were about, what their role and purpose was, what they existed to do. You, as you read, can probably think of an institution that has forgotten its reason for being. Maybe it’s the one you’re part of.
The problem with Log Cabin, however, was that its leaders never really seemed to develop a mission beyond their own advancement. Or so it often seemed to those of us Republicans who happen to be gay. If they had a mission, they didn’t do the greatest job of communicating it.
As did many institutions about which Peggy writes in her essay. Their leaders, like those of the Catholic Church, “forgot they were servants of a great institution, and came to think the great church existed to meet their needs.”
One leader of Log Cabin departed to take a job with a left-wing group which had generously supported the organization during his tenure, causing one to wonder if he adopted its agenda while at the helm of the supposedly Republican organization not merely because of their financial support but also in order to further his own career.
Food for thought. And perhaps future blog posts.