- August 5, 2020
The comic strip “Dilbert” mocks the contemporary business office. There is a character by the name of Asok, who is a brilliant young intern whose wisdom is not appreciated, and thus ends up doing the most menial of tasks. (Example: “Hey, my staple remover is broken. Somebody toss that intern to me.”) Scott Adams, the
The comic strip “Dilbert” mocks the contemporary business office. There is a character by the name of Asok, who is a brilliant young intern whose wisdom is not appreciated, and thus ends up doing the most menial of tasks. (Example: “Hey, my staple remover is broken. Somebody toss that intern to me.”) Scott Adams, the artist of this comic strip, makes a powerful statement about the corporate mindset, that despite Asok’s high IQ and exceptional ideas, he is not appreciated and even disparaged simply because he is an intern.
Kaleb Daniels, the current intern for the Lycoming County Commissioners, shows many evidences as being as smart as the fictional Asok, yet does not mind doing the grunt work. To give one example, I like to arrive early for Commissioners meetings, and almost always must wait patiently along with other county officials for the conference room doors to open. Last week, I was pleasantly surprised to find the doors unlocked, the lights on, and all the chairs turned in the right direction. Kaleb was on the job.
But unlike Asok, Kaleb knows he has ideas that should be heard. Evidence of this can be found in this week’s County Hall Corner, which featured Michael Burger, 2020 Census Partnership Specialist for Lycoming County. Kaleb heard Mr. Burger at a community meeting and arranged for him to make a presentation at the July 18th Commissioners Meeting. This is not an intern that sits around waiting to be told what to do — he finds what needs to be done, and makes it happen.
Kaleb Daniels is a Williamsport native who just graduated two months ago from Loyalsock Area High School. He is going to Lycoming College to major in Political Science. He has a huge head start. Since 2016, he has been highly involved in political activity. His essay on the presidential race was published in the Williamsport Sun-Gazette and Lock Haven Express. He is currently exploring running for an open position in the Loyalsock precinct for the Lycoming County Republican Party. He had to lobby very hard to get the county intern position, and keep in mind, this man right now is just 18 years old!
Kaleb felt that 2016 was his turning point. Like many his age, he felt drawn to Bernie Sanders because he was promising free college to all, and for a young man preparing for higher education, this had immense appeal. But, he felt himself drawn, almost against his will, toward Donald Trump. He heard Trump called a “racist” (yes, even back in 2016), but when he examined the man’s record, he could not find any pattern of racism.
At the same time, Kaleb was immersing himself in American democracy, studying the Constitution and the Federalist Papers. More and more it seemed to him that his friends and even teachers were substituting labeling for debating. Their logic of identity politics establishes that there can be no good-faith arguments. Rather than be cowered into silence, Kaleb Daniels decided to stand up and be counted. His favorite quote is from Ronald Reagan, “When you can’t make them see the light, make them feel the heat.”
As a professor who has studied and written about leadership at depth, I believe this is definitely a young man to keep an eye on. Several county officials have noted that Kaleb Daniels is the best intern they have ever seen. Congressman Fred Keller is already talking to Kaleb about his future after college. Coming back to the Dilbert comic strip, its creator Scott Adams, predicted a Trump victory as early as 2015. So you read it here first — don’t be surprised if you see “Kaleb Daniels for President in 2036.”2 comments