Creative Tension

I have been studying to become a US citizen recently.  (The green card just does not do it for me anymore!).  I am amazed by the system of checks and balances we have in place in the US.  They seem to be working in real time to control the impulses of the current president.  The result is a sort of creative-tension in which an enormous desire for change, is held in check by a design developed many years ago.  Instead of rushing headfirst into major re-writes of law, we are required to slow down and take the concerns of the many into account.  This is not what the executive branch wants, but it is the system within which it must govern.

You see the same thing in financial markets.  Everyone knows stocks are very likely to beat bonds in the long run.  However, a 100% stock portfolio contains more risk than 99% of the population can stomach.  The result is that we scale back on our first instinct for maximum return, and design resiliency into our portfolios .  The result is the balancing of risk and reward – a creative-tension that allows us to get the return we desire, while making accommodations for risk.

I think it was the Rolling Stones who said…..

You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes, well you might find
You get what you need