What do you do when you have no ethic of risk? You make sh#t up.
I was sent a marketing video this week from the National Safety Council (NSC) claiming they had ‘saved 7 million lives’. In the same ideology as ‘safety saves’, we see in this a complete delusion about self-identity. Let’s note a few fundamentals about this marketing:
- Isn’t it interesting that when the NSC personify Safety it’s good, when I personify Safety its bad.
- It’s clear the NSC believe that Safety is sacred. When you sacralise an activity it is made religious. All its rituals and rites that follow then become salvic. When you ‘save lives’ you become as gods. When you attribute capability to an archetype, you have entered into Jungian territory, of which Safety knows nothing. Just read any religious text, substitute the word ‘safety’ for ‘god’ and you will discover how safety speaks of itself.
- When you attribute salvation to inaction (there is no direct saving of lives by the NSC or Safety) and argue from silence, it’s clear the cycle is complete, you believe your own lies.
- Safety does this all the time. It defines safety as no injuries and so when there are no injuries everything is safe. What utter nonsense. When the absence of negatives defines the presence of positives, you truly are dumb.
- Presenting an ideology of zero (the NSC mantra) I could just as easily claim the bullying of 7 million people by the NSC.
- The language of ‘salvation’ fosters arrogance, indifference and superiority, evident in NSC marketing. Didn’t you know, if you ignore the marketing of the NSC, you die! (How ineffective must the NSC be to only save 7 million lives through spin and marketing, surely over 40 years saving the whole of the USA would sound better?)
- Marketing is propaganda, and all propaganda is not real but presents a myth as true. We see this in all counting in safety – lies, damn lies in statistics. The same logic applies to the marketing of 1% safer (https://safetyrisk.net/1-safer-than-what/ ). Hey this washing powder will make your clothes whiter than snow!
- Attribution is attribution, where there is no evidence other than claiming a truth that is not demonstrably true. The same logic applies as in Figure 1 below
- If Safety wants to hold any credibility and give meaning to the word ‘professional’ it must be ethical and logical. Presenting a logical fallacy as true is unprofessional. (https://thebestschools.org/magazine/15-logical-fallacies-know/ )
- You can find a neat poster on logical fallacies here: FallaciesPoster24x36 (1) This should be 101 (but it is not) for an industry that has not a skerrick of critical thinking in its discourse. What we see in this marketing is that risk is the enemy of safety and yet, when you take away risk there is no value in living. Yet the argument of this marketing is that Safety enables people to live their lives! What kind of life is it worth if there is no risk?
- So, let’s press the logic of this fraudulent claim. I haven’t committed child abuse over the past 40 years and I have met on average 500 children a year so I have saved 20,000 kids from child abuse. I preached salvation in church to more than 20,000 people, so I have saved 20,000 lives. I have been driving for 40 years and have passed 7 million vehicles without hitting anyone so I have saved 14 million lives!
- This video is a framed by the brand ‘professional’ yet being professional relies on not saying stupid things to people. (https://safetyrisk.net/meerkat-safety-can-it-get-more-dumb/ ) It is very clear that Safety has no ethic. Then again Safety is so professional at being unethical (https://safetyrisk.net/dumb-down-safety-on-full-show-hse-uk-poster/ ).
- There is nothing more dangerous than Safety delusion. Declaring a myth as true doesn’t make it true. Then believing you are a saviour or a hero is the first step in alienating people so they won’t listen. So, does this mean that anyone not in the NSC is doomed to death? If you are not in the NSC or ignore the NSC you are now unsafe?
- Do yourself a favour and have a look at this zero nonsense from the NSC (https://www.nsc.org/workplace/safety-topics/work-to-zero/summit ). Look at all this tech-filled delusion and not one second focus on persons, conversation or an ethic of risk. When your god is Technique, abuse and brutalism of people in the name of safety is easy. I wonder how many millions have been brutalized in the name of safety over the last 40 years?
- Just read the executive summary for this zero convention and the thesis is that technology will save us from fallible humans (https://www.nsc.org/getmedia/e02f23c4-6d75-4ddd-9db9-e40724859cf1/summit-exec-summary.pdf ). Risk and humans are NOT the enemy of safety.
The foundation of professionalism (https://safetyrisk.net/not-a-professions-bootlace/) is ethical conduct, moral integrity, non-religious discourse and a focus on helping persons. And, without an ethic of risk, transparency in conduct, integrity in communication or truth telling (https://safetyrisk.net/standing-on-the-myths-of-safety/ ), safety can never be professional (https://safetyrisk.net/three-lessons-in-how-to-be-unprofessional/ ).
This marketing by the NSC demonstrates this.