Friday, 4 June 2010

Domestic Strategy II

The strategy I described previously is effective for stripping paper off an old board, but how should we see it in the light of potentially wider applications?

First off, you should look at the reason why it works.
The principal reason for it's effect is that in stripping off the upper layers first, it exposes the lower layers to the action of water, which dissolves the glue, so making it easier to remove the layer as a whole.

To what extent can this be transferred?
This is a physical phenomenon - the ultimate result comes about from the reaction of water on the glue that lies under the bottom layer of the paper, combined with the physical action of the scraper. This strategy is effective because it allows the water quicker and more complete access to the area where it is required. Application before the looser upper layers of paper have been removed requires the water to soak through these layers first, before acting on the glue. This results in a loss of time as well as wastage of water absorbed by the paper.

There are also secondary benefits from adopting such an approach: it gets the activity going, providing a framework which allows the details or finer work to be filled in later. It is like the rough sketch of the painter which allows more detailed work to precede later. Overcoming inertia is important in any number of asks, and for this alone, it is worth considering the value of this approach.

If we allow our imagination free reign, we can see that if we applied this to large scale strategy, this approach would translate to peeling away the outer layers of defenses to reach the interior defenses; in small scale strategy, successful attacks upon outer defenses can also have a strong psychological effect, as well as setting an opponent up for more punishing attacks.

In examining an action for its strategic efficacy, it is necessary to establish the reason it works well and see if that end point is replicable. If it is, than perhaps it has meaningful applications in other areas. This is something that should certainly be considered before application in important situations, especially if it is an approach that comes from an activity that has very little downside to making a mistake - obviously, no-one is going to suffer greatly if your paper stripping is ineffective or slow.

And this, of course, is the value of traditions which have preserved teachings - both those that were learnt in times of extremity for use in extreme situations (strategy) and those that taught the use and application of difficult materials in the creation of beauty and durability (the arts).

No comments:

Post a Comment