In the last few days, Evoke has been making me feel like I'm part of Raphael's School of Athens with Plato and Aristotle arguing in the center over idealism versus realism. Plato points towards the heavens and in that gesture he incorporates his entire view, his belief that a perfect society could be created, that perfect knowledge could be had. Aristotle, his former student, points to the ground and towards a way of knowing and acting in the world that comes from experience. I'm in Aristotle's camp in this regard., but that isn't what matters.
In Evoke, there are idealists and there are realists. There are people who want to work within the system to create change and there are people who want to scrap the wh*** darn thing and start again. There are people who want to create what can be done with current human consciousness and there are people who believe that human consciousness could be radically transformed for everyone's betterment.
I'm not going to ask anyone to change their belief system - to become realists and pragmatists. We need the visionaries. However, I would love see the rhetoric about who is to blame for this or that and that maybe bankers, politicians, lawyers, and throw in your hated group of choice should be "done be away with" (having family who are trying to do good and do right within those professions makes such rhetoric personally offensive to me though I understand where it is coming from) get toned down. History is littered with Utopians who thought that if only everyone shared my vision or creed, everything would be perfect. As a realist, I haven't seen it yet. It doesn't mean it won't, but in the meantime, I and I assume other pragmatists would rather build on and change what is.
I suppose the counter argument is, but Mark, what about social innovation? Aren't we here to change the world? Sure, but behind every prophet of passion, there have been people who implement it, make it facts on the ground, deal with how to make it reality. Otherwise, they are just guys on street corners holding a badly written signs.
So to all my idealist friends, if you doubt the commitment and sincerity of the pragmatist - we are here, engaging the conversation and wanting to change the world (if more incrementally than you). Enough with the anger and lets get down to work.