Theory and Practice

Let me introduce you to theory and practice. In theory we should all get along. In practice we don't. In theory winter should start on December 21st. In practice it doesn't. In theory all of the brilliantly educated people of the world should learn enough about everything to insure that everything that could possibly ever happen is foreseen, has a contingency plan and is taken care of neatly. In practice.... Wait a minute. That's not even decent theory. Who do we think we are? God?

Let's look at some items currently in the news like Afghanistan and health care. In theory we need to be kind, enlightened, open-minded and pacifistic while fighting and winning a war against terrorists. In practice it is just another rotten theory. In theory we should give everyone all the free health care service they need insuring it will never cost too much, make anyone have to do anything they don't want to do or come to be in short supply. This is rotten theory, too.

Why are we talking like this? Because we have a president who is so short on practice and so long on theory that he seems to be entertaining theories that can only be classified as world class in their stupidity.

Who am I to be saying this? I'll back up a second. I am a guy who was born in Los Alamos, New Mexico, where they took the theory behind the atomic bomb and made it work in practice. A lot of people up there, the plethora of Ivy League Physics Doctorates, are too long on theory and need a group of people called technicians to make things actually work.

My father was one, and so was I. We technicians know from experience that the most stupid human tricks of all are attempted by the most educated.

For example, I know of a very educated physicist who duct taped a heavy camper to a truck and drove up a hill. This celebrated Doctor of Physics had been a science adviser to Winston Churchill during World War II and was the head of a research division at our esteemed National Laboratory.

It didn't matter. He failed a test that most farm boys pass by age 12.

He didn't have the experience to pull off what he attempted to do.

Let's go back to the beginning. In theory we should all get along. In practice we don't. In theory a strong convincing leader could force this to work by limiting the rights of those who don't, "get along." When we look at the President's White House we see the emergence of wild-eyed, academic-minded advisers, closed door, one party agreements, gargantuan un-funded budgets, carte blanche for unions, one thousand page legislation written by "who knows?" and revolutionary public mandates including big fines and prison time for those making barely enough to pay taxes. I am getting the feeling that getting along is no longer something we dream of and attempt daily but something we force on people. History has been down this nightmare road before.

Have we, in theory, hired a part time professor of law to, in practice, ride a rodeo bull?