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Stumbling Towards Innovation

Sometimes the best way forward is just to start, knowing you’re probably going in the wrong direction. Simply breaking with the status quo and getting in new kinds of trouble stimulates innovation.

Just found this during a search on “innovation” and thought it hints at a deeper truth:

Stumbling to energy innovation

Public Forum Letter
In “Congress must allow energy innovation” (Opinion, May 1), David Brooks recounts the controversial, frequently set back, corrupt, scandal-ridden saga of the government legalizing and Union Pacific building the transcontinental railroad, and then he concludes: “When you read that history, you’re reminded that large efforts are generally plagued by stupidity, error and corruption. But by the sheer act of stumbling forward, it’s possible, sometimes, to achieve important things.” Brooks then argues that the complicated and flawed “energy innovation is the railroad legislation of today.”
Yes! That kind of “stumbling forward” may not be the ideal any of us yearn for, but since we are humans, it’s the best we can expect. It’s not the “change we need,” but it’s the change we get. And right now, Obama and the Democrats are better at imperfectly stumbling forward than the “just say no” Republicans.
Not only is energy today’s railroad legislation, but so is health care, comprehensive immigration, Wall Street, education and business competitiveness. All desperately need addressing, and their reforms should be done so as to empower forward-moving creativity and innovation, which makes up for the inevitable corrupt and dumb stumbling
Pete Berlin

Salt Lake City

I don’t have much to add. When facing big issues, often any change is better than no change. Status quo has inertia and defenders, but mistakes draw energy and attention. So don’t be afraid to make a mistake. If people hate it, they’ll work to fix it, whereas if you don’t take the risk, the current situation will endure.

Are you a leader? Then stir things up! See what happens. Maybe you’ll stumble into a game changer. Today, right now, answers are not necessary. Movement is.

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