Friday, November 26, 2010


Distraction is defined according to The World Book Dictionary as: "the act of drawing away the attention, confusion of the mind, disturbance of thought"(emphasis added). In aviation this distraction, this "disturbance of thought" has caused many accidents and an entire field of study on this subject is called Crew Resource Management (CRM). I have researched this field of study and have produced numerous presentations on distractions in the cockpit. Much of it centers around the pilot losing focus on the larger problem by fixating on the relatively minor fault. This fixation on the minor causes the pilot to "forget to fly the jet". As you can imagine, typically a crash follows. A tragic example that I have witnessed was on a practice bombing mission while flying fighters in the Philippines, the crew of a Navy A-6 was so fixated on the target to put "bombs on target" that the pilot flew the fighter into the ground trying to correct for a perfect bomb drop.

Target fixation = Forget to fly the Jet

Jesus Christ speaks to this distraction in Mark 4:19:

"Then the cares and anxieties of the world and distractions of the age, and the pleasure and delight and false glamour and deceitfulness of riches, and the craving and passionate desire for other things creep in and choke and suffocate the Word, and it becomes fruitless." (Amplified Bible)

Neil Postman, in his book Technopoly - The Surrender of Culture to Technology, writes on page 179 about how our culture is driven by technology to the detriment of society and family cohesiveness:

"Into this void comes the Technopoly story, with its emphasis on progress without limits, rights without responsibilities, and technology without cost. The Technopoly story is without a moral center. it puts in its place efficiency, interest, and economic advance. It promises heaven on earth through the conveniences of technological progress. It cast aside all traditional narratives and symbols that suggest stability and orderliness, and tells, instead, of a life of skills, technical expertise, and the ecstasy of consumption." (Emphasis mine - Vintage Books, New York 1993)

It takes an enormous amount of discipline not to become "target fixated" and thereby crash the jet. People and relationships are what matter, typically you realize this when you are old - not trophies, not stuff, and not technology (and sometimes tragically you are too old to realize this). Caution: target fixation can result in lost relationships.

The following video clip is found on YouTube and is one of the latest commercials promoting the new "Windows App" on a cell phone. I find this commercial interesting because is shows tragically the children left behind (relationships lost) and is about the newest technology to, again, takes us away from relationships. I see this a Pee Wee Football games or Little League Baseball games - watching the parents texting while their child (relationships lost) is playing the sport: "Are You Kidding" and "Come On Man!" Technology will save the day.

Eagle Driver
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Disclaimer: This blog is not intended to endorse any product nor does its author receive compensation for displaying this commercial. This blog neither endorses nor criticizes the product on the tagged YouTube video.

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