The Importance of a Social Gadfly or In Praise of Social Gadflies

Was Socrates after drinking hemlock pondering his life? Was there any regrets? Did he regret being a gadfly? Probably not and we will likely never know since he did not write it down. It was his student Plato who did and according to Plato, Socrates never regret to be a gadfly. for a gadfly is an essential part of society and the state.

The role of the Gadfly can be best explains if one where to view the State and Society as a beast of burden a cow moving so slowly and from time to time commits a mistake of doing something or nothing. An important of the Gadfly was to buzz around the ears of the State and Society to make make it take action.

I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long …arousing and persuading and reproaching ? Plato, Apology

This role is a vital one in State and Society. As the author of Dune Frank said he thought that Richard Nixon was best president the US had because Nixon taught the Americans not to trust government. Nixon also known as Tricky Dick resigned the Presidency under a cloud pf mistrust and scorn because of his attempt to cover up his involvement in the bugging of the Democraric Party at the Watergate Hotel. Dune and Dune Messiah are science fiction novels that tells the rise of Paul Atreides as Emperor of the known Galaxy The Dune series is a story that interweaves politics, science fiction fantasy and ecology, And our leaders, even good leaders are hut human and like all humans commit mistakes.

This humanity, the humanity of the State and Society means that the State and Society is not perfect and there is a need to tell the State and Society when it is about to or it did commit a mistake – in order to avoid the mistake and in the later reprimand.

The role of Gadfly is constant and ubiquitous: The Gadfly should always be there otherwise sooner or later a mistake will happen with dire consequences.

Gadflies comes in many shapes and forms. There are gadflies who are bombastic and those that are cryptic. Also can be very angry, snarky, melancholic, phlegmatic and sanguine. Others are funny and some well are not. Regardless though each fulfil a purpose a whether State and Society likes it or not.

The nightly and the proud will hate them and even try to swat them and even extinguish them but without them the State and Society will be a kingdom of the blind being led by the blind.

The highest function of ecology is understanding consequences- Frank Herbert, Dune

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