English / 17.01.2022 / 2145

The destructive energy of creation...

Nikolay Mokhov, author from the Dark Side of Business

Philips and Sony unveiled their invention, the CD, in the ’80s. Owners of music studios tried the novelty out. How can one make a music lover buy a Beatle album again? Release it on a new medium.

The production costs of the CD were lower than those of vinyl, and yet the invention was being sold for more money. Music producers destroyed the vinyl market and set revenue records. The ’90s were the platinum time for studios.

“It will destroy this," one literary character said while pointing first at a book and then at a church. Book printing destroyed the power of the Pope and the CD destroyed vinyl.

the Indian Deity Shiva is not only about creation, and not quite about the eternal and the good either...

Except the label companies had no idea that by destroying vinyl, they were killing their own industry. Twenty years after Philips and Sony’s presentation, the Napster website appeared without much fanfare. A student had come up with a way to exchange songs online. And no one had to pay to listen to the Beatles' album; the music had already been digitized for CDs. The only thing left to do was to download it...

The printed Bible surpassed the power of the church over a few centuries. It took the CD only a quarter of a century. YouTube and Apple had the industry secured. Now, to make a few billion dollars from one album... an impossible task for anyone. "Creators" took their seats at the “factory machines” and were called "content creators". Their bosses won’t understand talks of inspiration in the factory because in factories, there is one guiding principle:

- Take more, throw further!

Came up with a melody today? Why are you sitting down? Go on and think of another one, come on! And then one more! There's no time to relax – we have a production cycle and a plan. How many new songs come out in a year? Twenty, thirty million? So, don’t just stand around! At the end of the shift, I want to see ten more units of production. The faces of those who slave away at creative work are not joyful. With their foreheads drenched in sweat, they work and fail to understand – how did they manage to go from artisans to workers?

In terms of natural energy, what happened in the music industry is a pattern. But coaches and psychologists won’t tell you about this pattern. And the yogi in bright European gyms will not mention that the Indian Deity Shiva is not only about creation, and not quite about the eternal and the good either...

Anyway, what those "yogis" can’t tell us, we can find out from physicists. Let's ask them a simple question. It takes energy to create anything, but where does it come from?

Energy is made when we destroy something. When gasoline burns, energy is released – energy that powers engine pistons. Uranium decays in a nuclear reactor, and as a result, a power plant generates useful electricity. Food is processed in the stomach, and the human being gets the strength to move and think, explain scientists.

In business, the same thing happens. Apple digested music studios and energy was released. The energy gets used, but then the corporation needs fuel, too. There’s no one big to sacrifice anymore, so it’s time to go after the little ones. The singer is no longer a wizard, but a fuel cell for two companies, Google and Apple. It's nothing personal. It's physics.

I should notice that my contemporaries are still lucky. Mankind has now discovered humane ways of generating energy. In ancient times, there were no factories. That's why people were killed to get energy for military campaigns or other good causes. Hearts were ripped out, people burned alive... And now? And now even a fuel cell in Europe can walk on over to a doctor and get a diagnosis:

- Burn out, meaning, burned out...

I'm not writing this all to criticize the current world order. It's so that the reader can ask a simple question:

- So what do I use as fuel? What do I use to fuel the car that I’m driving to my goals?

The answer is not always pleasing. Great people have often ruined the lives of their loved ones. The Greek billionaire Onassis used to drive his wives and lovers crazy. Hollywood producers were fed by the energy of young actresses. And how many millionaires "ate" their own children? I've seen some examples live. It wasn't a pleasant sight. You’re better off intimidating staff, because at least the staff can quit. Where would a child go?

A clear way of understanding where the source of your life is located is by avoiding nonsense. For the sake of clarity, I'll give you an example. My friend is a programmer. Several times, he’d make a new startup. All the while, he would work in corporations. And here's the trick: While he works in corporations, his project grows and brings money. When he quits – his project bites the dust. This has repeated several times. What's the trick?

The trick is that this future freelance programmer drove both his bosses and his subordinates crazy. Unlike his colleagues, he did not lose energy in the office, but on the contrary – recharged himself. He converted it into his startup's success. Being removed from the corporation resulted in him losing his energy source. Compare it for yourself – in a large company you can get two hundred people, and in an ordinary startup, five people max. If you cut your diet by 40 times, you won't have the strength to do anything...

The energy source is not always hidden in the sphere you’re creating in. Sometimes, it’s in unexpected places. I’ve seen it so many times. The entrepreneur will start legal battles on the spot. He’ll spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on them. These battles take time and money, and it would seem that the core business must suffer, but no. He's growing. In war, enormous amounts of energy are released. And if these volumes are directed at something useful, it develops at an unprecedented rate.

Understanding the destructive energy of creation allows you to make gigantic structures, but expansion leads to a loss of stability. Like the story of the CD. The emergence of the CD has allowed the music industry to increase its revenues. But CDs are also the reason that the music industry, as a creative process, has fallen. Ancient Greece fueled the Roman Empire, and Rome was captured by barbarians...

Expansion is the goal of any system. And expansion is the cause of death of any system. And that's the way it's always been, is, and will be in the world. And where do we get our energy now? How do we interact with the world now? That's an interesting question. Are you ready to discuss it? We’re more than glad to.

Don’t You Worry, Dear, You’re Tripping

There are hallucinations that we join in on. And there are those that we walk past. And there are people who hallucinate, but don’t want to share their world — we call them schizophrenics. Schizophrenics are outsiders in our hallucinogenic world. We’re not going to talk about them today. We’re going to talk about the leaders of the hallucinogenic world.


The story of the clubber-programmer, kinesiologist-cyberneticist, and writer-investment banker

— I need to self-determine myself! — our interlocutor started with a banality. Ilya and I experienced a toothache. From the depths of memory rose the shadows of businessmen who had lost their lives in attempts to determine themselves, or rather to put a label on themselves. In the meantime, our vis-a-vis was throwing the names of the great ones on the table:

— Nassim Taleb — this is the second writer after Nikolai Mokhov (Nikolai Mokhov's ego is growing like the bitcoin exchange rate during a hype), John (well, of course, Grinder, co-founder of NLP), Castaneda (no wonder our interlocutor practiced tensegrity)...

And then he told his story. And his story refuted the theories of many respected authors, including those mentioned. I would write this story down with a pen, roll up the paper, and put it in a bottle, go out to sea on a yacht, and throw it into deep waters. But I don't have a yacht, and I don't have a pen, so read the letters electronically...


Leonardo’s Notes

“The problem is, Nikolai, that you never finish anything you start. You don’t even have a degree,” my girlfriend scolded me. We were on the subway.
She had just received some money to make a website, where she would eventually put up some boring local news. The site had dramatically less subscribers than even her Facebook page. In a couple years, the project went bankrupt. But she never lost her faith in the magical formula:

“You need closure. Every beginning has an end…”


The Teacher's Label

A fat writer Dima Bykov in poor health with his head held high has distinguished himself. He has decided to rank in descending order the passed away colleagues. Some of them has been ranked first, others take second and even third places. Sergei Dovlatov has been taken down a peg next to his classmates. The teacher Bykov gave him a satisfactory grade. He even didn’t hide that he wanted to give him a poor grade.

Dima Bykov has unleashed a war on social media by his ranking. Somebody noticed that the teacher is not good even at his own domain. Someone replied that he have been aware of Dovlatov’s bad marks... I was astonished by the desire to make value judgements about literature and even the literary characters. This approach reeks of the judgments of school teachers. It's not the most pleasant aroma...


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