Light And Love
Today we celebrate the life and teachings of the great Martin Luther King Jr.
He had a way with words and among my favorites is this quote, which seems very apropos right now:
Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.
A favorite of mine as well.Really tough one to wear though in the climate of today.Thanks for the nudge to view the long game here,
that is the only game i play.
there’s no OT, so play it well until the end.
It’s the only game that matters.
Yes, but you play it in a way that Warren Buffet would approve of: WB on bubbles ‘ They prove the age old maxim that what the wise man does at the beginning, the fool does at the end. ‘
Time Inc’s former Chief Data Officer posted this MLK quote. https://uploads.disquscdn.c… So I asked him: “Where do you stand as a data scientist and AI researcher on the systematic biases in data sets and AI that are discriminating against sections of the global population?”* https://motherboard.vice.co…* https://www.recode.net/2017…* https://www.propublica.org/…* https://qz.com/1079284/anti…* https://motherboard.vice.co…What are your suggestions for how we can solve against these historical problems in the biased data and algorithms?”
Personality, philosophy, fulfilment and value are interconnected.Emotions, social status and knowledge are the focal points of humanity’s existence.MLK is justly praised for his commitment and courage. But, this quote merely illuminates his personal philosophy.A person’s ultimate measure can be taken many ways – I believe there are 9, but that is another topic.
JT Kostman, Time Inc’s former Chief Data Officer: “I believe technology, and not a deity, is all that can save us from the dark – and from ourselves. So yes, I believe in Our Benevolent AI Overlords (HAL be thy name).”So I shared some enlightening links with him. https://uploads.disquscdn.c…The tech sector isn’t aware of the AI darkness it’s in.https://www.technologyrevie…https://www.fastcompany.com…https://motherboard.vice.co…https://www.theatlantic.com…http://www.nytimes.com/2008…https://nplusonemag.com/iss…Their stupidity and limitations (prob+stats biases) are becoming ours.
Best album ever.
absolutely.art beyond measure, and beyond the personal property ownership and access control of billionaires, plutocrats, and sovereign wealth funds, unlike so many paintings, sculptures, et.c that disappear from the public space and are never seen again. his message will be heard. it’s one of the greatest works of art produced in the twentieth century, and yet is so relatively unknown to new audiences it seems.
Thanks for the reminder of this amazing song and album.Just had Alexa fire it up.
The story of how the album was made is quite fascinating – and instructive for creative people in all fields! http://performingsongwriter…
“The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.”
Appropriate right now.
light always triumphs over darkness. that’s at the core what gives kooks their spirit of relentlessness and what makes them so annoying to those who seek comfort in darkness. kooks know the light wins, and so they act accordingly on all topics — whether it is 9/11, pizzagate, jfk assassination, etc.
Great piece in the Washington Post today about the Birmingham jail letter and his indictment of the “white moderate.”When I was the CTO at Relay (a graduate school of education here in NYC), Relay’s founder and president, Norman, led study sessions for Relay team members of this and other King letters/speeches. When I read “white moderate” I see that person today in the white, affluent “progressives” of the leafy Brooklyn brownstone neighborhoods like mine, especially in lines like “Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection.”NYC and NYS have the most segregated schools in the country, and when you go into the public schools in those leafy, (now) affluent neighborhoods, you can see the correlation of race and privilege. Majority white district public schools have million dollars PTAs budgets, new laptops, part-time teachers added thanks to parent funding, and healthier lunch options. In those same neighborhoods elementary schools that are majority students of color, literally around the corner, have wifi networks that barely work, if at all, lack sufficient working laptops, and often lack the staff many days to do outside recess, resulting in children sitting in auditoriums watching cartoons while their white counterparts blocks away are playing outside.From what I see — and I’m as a big hypocrite as anyone on this, as I’m not marching (yet) either — many people, especially “progressive” affluent white, who will post (as I am here; again, I’m a white hypocrite too) on chat rooms, Twitter, and Facebook about the “fierce urgency of now”, can not bring themselves to take the type of direct action King references in his letter and which is so imperative now.Online and social are not even half measures — they are just the pissing away of valuable time and energy. Social is a way for the “white moderate” – today’s affluent white urban progressive – to virtue signal to others of their social class, maybe their friends at the local food co-op, their consternation while affording that same privileged person the luxury to stay middle of the herd, to play it safe, to not risk their career — to never really risk much of anything in the name of progress. Meanwhile, this same cohort concocts all sorts of excuses, contort themselves in all sorts of ways, to explain why they refuse to send their children to schools that are majority of students of color in a city wide school district where the student population is just 15% white. The most common excuse I hear for an affluent young white couple to zone-cheat into a majority white school (a “good school” as they’ll invariably describe it, despite lacking any professional qualification to evaluate schools; “good” is just a polite way for them to say “majority white”) is to cite test scores — the same state tests they’ll invariably protest and opt-out of for their own child just a few years later.If you are interested in these overall topics, check out some of the writing and work of fellow NYC public school parent Nikole Hannah-Jones. There’s also a march today at 3pm starting at 42nd and broadway to denounce racism. You can also of course get involved in the work our host does around CS in schools which is a concrete way of starting to address disparities.My overall point is that the time for talk (and tweets) is over. That’s an admonition for myself too. It’s put up or shut up time. No more room to play it safe in the margins.https://www.washingtonpost….
King fought a system.The issues of urgency today are not systemic, they are problems of uneven execution:- poorly trained police officers- state and city governments riddled with incompetence & corruption- gerrymandering of districtsThat’s not the system being wrong. That’s the players.
That all sounds pretty systemic to me.- poorly trained police officers = systemically under funded poorly focused training policies.- state and city governments riddled with incompetence & corruption = systemic failure to design and enforce anti-nepotism pro-meritorious based/enforced hiring/training policies- gerrymandering of districts = politicization of courts because their selection systemically lacks proper political policies/procedures to defend against political driven appointmentsIn an age of transactional everything the social substrate cannot be built upon the individual’s “moral fibre” alone. That “moral fibre” must be backstopped by clever organically designed codifications.American democracy is now coming apart at the seams under cultural pressures dominated by pure transactional advantage. Reliance on the “moral fibre” inherent in “democratic traditions/values” shepherded by heroic leadership personas doesn’t cut it under our contemporary, purely transactional, cultural environment !Our purely transactional cultural environment now demands that those long standing American “democratic traditions/values” be more effectively safe guarded by proper cleverly designed organic codifications.Trump’s historical political achievement is to make the case for a more effective organic codification of long standing “democratic tradition/values” clear to everyone. That is Trump’s silver lining !
.Court Districts are different from House Districts.Most Court Districts were originally set by how far a Judge could cover on horseback.Court Districts today are added and subtracted based solely on workload and backlog.House Districts are based on Census counts and are guided by the majority party in the state legislatures.When the House Districts are set – again, based on the ten year Census – they are subject to gerrymandering.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
When we bought our house, our real estate agent tried to talk us out of it because the school district is majority Hispanic. It turned my stomach to think she thought I’d be open to that kind of talk.We bought the damn house and my kids go to a great school with a staff and community that cares *deeply*. My kids’ friends don’t all look the same or even have the same first language, and I believe they’re going to be better humans because of it. Shame to my many neighbors who moved one block away, just to get into a majority white school district.Action takes many forms and presents opportunities every day.Great comment, Rob 🙂
Thank you.Perhaps the most profound lesson I’ve learned in 17 years in NYC (something I already knew a bit I guess growing up in New England) is that bigotry does not correlate to political party as many in the media and academia might have us believe. Affluent, liberal, progressives would do well to spend less time focused on the alt-right and/or deep south and more on their own neighborhoods, local institutions – especially schools, friends, family, and own attitudes.Great piece from Errol Louis today along these lines: http://www.nydailynews.com/…
I could not agree more.Not more.I swear I just used miles to buy four tickets to Birmingham. Four women all with totally blond hair, three generations, are going down to help a relative. They will drive 100 miles south from there into the deep south. There will be as many black men there helping as there will be blond white women.Martin Luther King’s message ended up resonating more in the places where bigotry was absolutely totally awful and people were reformed more than where it was not.I think people had to take a deep look into their hearts, know that they were going to live together and amongst each other because they didn’t have a choice. Let’s face it you can’t live in Park Slope unless you make serious coin, but you don’t have a choice in rural Alabama and come to a change of heart, not just a feel good slogan.
See my comment to Rob. When you live rural you don’t have that choice. You aren’t moving a block, and you aren’t putting kids in a $50k a year school because there aren’t enough people to pay that kind of money.
I grew up in the middle of nowhere Wyoming. I know rural 🙂 There was one school district. Nothing private.
I implore everbody to read that 7,000 word letter from Birmingham’s Jail:I will give you the money quote from the end:”I wish you had commended the Negro sit inners and demonstrators of Birmingham for their sublime courage, their willingness to suffer and their amazing discipline in the midst of great provocation. One day the South will recognize its real heroes. They will be the James Merediths, with the noble sense of purpose that enables them to face jeering and hostile mobs, and with the agonizing loneliness that characterizes the life of the pioneer. They will be old, oppressed, battered Negro women, symbolized in a seventy two year old woman in Montgomery, Alabama, who rose up with a sense of dignity and with her people decided not to ride segregated buses, and who responded with ungrammatical profundity to one who inquired about her weariness: “My feets is tired, but my soul is at rest.” They will be the young high school and college students, the young ministers of the gospel and a host of their elders, courageously and nonviolently sitting in at lunch counters and willingly going to jail for conscience’ sake. One day the South will know that when these disinherited children of God sat down at lunch counters, they were in reality standing up for what is best in the American dream and for the most sacred values in our Judaeo Christian heritage, thereby bringing our nation back to those great wells of democracy which were dug deep by the founding fathers in their formulation of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.”Powerful, and I think he reached his audience in the South.
Isn’t the real long standing problem here the fact that America does not have a strong traditional commitment to a well funded universal public school/health system ?It seems to me that a “democratic = middle-class-inclusion” focused society will require a shared commitment to higher levels of equitable taxation to pay the freight on said democratic middle-class-inclusive infrastructures/goals.Don’t “democratic = middle-class-inclusion” political systems imply by definition a more distributive inclusion in the collective wealth ? This is not a left vs right conflation issue I”m talking about here. It is a foundational democracy issue.Everyone wants to stand on the shoulders of democratic rule of law to secure their corporate profits. No one want to limit those corporate profits by committing to funding the underlying substrate costs inherent in a true equitably-distributive democratic middle-class-inclusion focused society.Truly middle-class focused democratic societies that chose corporate free enterprise institutions as foundational to wealth production and I’m all in for that must surly need to solve this complex organic balance point dilemma. Low taxation completion with non-democratic nations with no commitment to distributive middle-class wealth inclusion seems disingenuous at best.Yes a solution is of monumental organic complexity and I have no clue as to its resolution. Maybe my framing is bull shit as well? I don’t really know as I’m am trapped here like everyone else living in a jail of limited perspectives.Still I’d make the case that more collective efforts to properly frame the corporate profit machine vs middle-class inclusion problem is long over due ?
.Schools in the US are funded by property taxes meaning property owners are the exclusive funders.Property taxes are regressive. The more property one owns, the more taxes one pays. If you have one child and live in a big house, you pay way more in tax than less fortunate persons.There is an inverse connection between older, wealthy property owners – who have no children of school age – and the funding of education. They still pay more in taxes.I am not protesting that arrangement, just noting the reality.As to healthcare, pre-Ocare, almost 85% of US had employer administered health insurance with substantially better coverage than post-Ocare.In retrospect, we would have been better off to fund the uninsured directly under Medicaid.Now, it is so screwed up, I fear we cannot right the ship.I think we will have to seriously consider single payer.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
You mean proportional, not regressive. A flat property tax would be regressive. Income taxes are progressive recognizing, without stating, that network effects are evident everywhere and contribute to the outsized wealth/income capture by those in control or near the center of said networks.
If one views everything as a network, then the answer is fairly simple. Value grows geometrically and is captured at the core (and top) whiles costs grow linearly, and more or less uniformly, and are borne at the bottom and edge of the stack. We need settlement systems that equilibrate the value with the cost, recognizing that needs to occur at the margin to ensure pareto optimality and normal distributions across populations. Done correctly every actor pays a settlement to ensure there are price signals providing incentives and disincentives; although the larger player always pays the small player a slightly higher relative settlement. In the end the larger player still captures a larger network effect, but we end up with sustainable and generative inter-networked ecosystems as opposed to today’s mess (which you document so well in this thread) everywhere we look. Not socialism, communism or capitalism (neoliberal or keynesian); rather equilibrism. The greeks didn’t know about digital network effects and how we could achieve governance and risk mitigation and advancement through mechanisms that are more natural. http://bit.ly/2iLAHlG
One of the great civil rights leaders was Barbara Jordon. To those who don’t know or forgot who she is, today would be a great day to honor her.https://www.c-span.org/vide…
Very sneaky way to inject anti-immigration policy while conflating it with civil rights :-(Immigration is like osmosis. The most effective way to fight massive unwanted economic migration is to invest not in expensive walls, it is to invest in reducing the underlying economic gradient. To help your national-state neighbours become more successful self-reliant economic partners.The costs associated with NFTA are in the long run much more effective than building wall that block international economic symbiosis.
Wasn’t my intention, but since you brought it up, the mendacity is there for anyone to see.https://youtu.be/swtDFqaXy6Y
You miss my point.I was not make a left/right defence of either Clinton/Trump immigration policies.I was simply pointing out that the problem is in the long run is intractable as long as solutions from either the right or left continue to be aimed at the flames and not the underlying coals.Helping our national-state neighbours become more successful self-reliant economic partners in not a partisan thing. It is a global strategy for planetary success/stability.
I agree. It’s may be time to question the idea of incentivizing foreign graduates to remain permanently in the US. We should be exporting our knowledge not trying to lure all of the the best and brightest.
. She was an articulate, brilliant Texan. Her role in civil rights was only one facet of her brilliance.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
It would be really cool to see you hand the blog post over to a black person next year this time. Maybe someone like Arlan Hamilton. That would be powerful.
True story.I once had a boss who offered me and the one other black person on the team the option of taking MLK Day off. He reasoned that it was only fair since he gave the Jewish team members the day off for Yom Kippur.I argued that it was not a “black” holiday and refused to take the day off unless he offered it to everyone.
So, so, so strong.+100,000,000.
Does my suggestion strike you as a way of making it a black-only holiday? (I didn’t intend it that way, but we all know what the road to Hell is paved with 😉 ) I value your thoughts very much!I feel like what I’ve learned the last few years is that white people with privilege/a platform/an audience/reach can do a lot to make positive change by using that platform to amplify black voices. I feel like the best thing I can do is listen to and boost those who weren’t born into the same privilege as I was.I look around the web today and see a lotta white people quoting MLK. It just seems like there are more tangible ways to try and continue his work.
If Fred wants to help Arlen he can do put her in touch with some of his LP’s and give her intros to get her more investment capital. I am not suggesting that he do this either. But making a point that simply checking a box [x] and giving someone a blog post and saying ‘I’ve done my job’ is the equivalent of someone who shows up when your mother dies at her funeral but wouldn’t help you in a way that you really needed to be helped. It’s ‘do my part’ theater.
You’re constructing a false choice here. I wasn’t suggesting that he *only* have a guest blog post. Nor am I suggesting he only do it on MLK Jr Day. Frankly, I assume he already does the kind of thing you suggest.I think tossing out your favorite MLK quote and checking that box is more like ‘do my part’ theater. I’m not accusing Fred of that. I’m just making a friendly suggestion of something I think would be more meaningful and impactful and more beneficial to the AVC audience.
Social media is mostly virtue signalling theatre Kirsten.Kudos to you on your choice to raise your children as visible minorities. It will steel them for the future.
.Having a celebratory appropriate guest blogger is a cool idea. Run with it.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
Dr. King is a voice of freedom and fairness. Pasting identity politics onto it does his legacy a disservice.
Kirsten– I appreciate you immensely and would never think this was your intention. And I understand the larger connotation of your suggestion.I’ve heard this kind of thing over many years from well-meaning people but whose intention and thinking is much less expansive than yours.
Thanks for your patience with me 😉 I feel like I broke one of my own rules there, which is not to ask someone to explain something to me that I can likely look up myself. I really do appreciate your conversation so much. I try to grab opportunities to check myself, think deeper and won’t let this one go to waste.
I could say the same, but my interactions with you do not require patience. Anything, but.Why is it that the highly evolved are the ones who keep looking for ways to self-improve?Oh wait… I can answer that. 😉
Aw! Moowah!!! Takes one to know one 😀 Here’s hoping you engaged in some self-care on this MLK Day.
Kristen Lambertsen:Your comment is similar to hitting a double to bring in one run. If you used the word “using that platform to amplify marginalized voices” it would have been like hitting a grandslam and bringing all the runs home.The poor of all ethnicities have more in common than people of both political parties desire them to realize.There is without any doubt if African American’s had not received assistance from White Quakers (1800’s) and Jewish adherents during the 30’s-60’s (no reappropriation of history required, view the Gay Black male and Jewish male who helped create the NAACP) the struggle for being recognized as human (Human rights should have been the vision) the civil rights accomplishments would have experienced a bumper ride.Also many times when there are injustices upon marginalized people if the Whites given so much responsibility (audience) don’t take a stand the abuses will continue. More action is required with less talk.And don’t think for one minute one African American with no life experiences in an intercity can speak for 50 Million plus that don’t agree upon too much but the problems and not the solutions. (Not one of the supporting racist, bigot, misogynistic supporters should attempt to take any comment to support your 1600 thinking)Jessie Jackson & AL Sharpton are definitely viewed in 2018 for who they really are in the Black community. They are not leaders of the intercity but for the elders who are now in their 70’s & 80’s who sacrificed so much for the younger generation but had been hoodwinked.What people continue to overlook that MLK stood for and promoted regarding injustices that all poor people. (MLK definitely wasn’t perfect he was human)Free market supporter’s wince when rereading his speeches not republished for obvious reasons._________ “First, I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man’s freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a “more convenient season.” Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection.”— “Letter from a Birmingham jail,” 1963_______________Captain Obvious!#UNEQUIVOCALLYUNAPOLOGETICALLYINDEPENDENT
Does the thought still count with a topic like this so slippery with convoluted perspectives ?I liked your gracious response !
.Brilliant rejoinder.Stronger than 10 acres of garlic.I would argue that white folk have more to learn, celebrate, and honor in the legacy of MLK.MLK had a PhD from Boston U and his written messaging speaks profoundly to intelligent and thoughtful persons.Read some of his writings.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
Sorry I hate to joke about this  but hopefully Arlen will end up having to declare email bankruptcy like Fred does:”Arlan answers the phone 24 hours a day. She busts her butt to get us meetings, intros in front of the right people. I really feel like she’s a partner in the business.”That is pretty much how I won my first big account with no employees competing against Xerox Corp. after graduating from college. (And yes Xerox did want the business and worked hard to get it..) I looked at her site http://www.backstagecapital… and some of the companies look like they are doing real things. In particular shearshare.com who I might contact since I know of something similar they could do that I would benefit from. (Empty therapy offices..)
As new residents of the South, we took the time to watch both ‘Marshall’ & ‘Selma’ this weekend. Both very well done.Interestingly, in Selma, the climax is MLK’s speech in Montgomery, in front of the Alabama state legislature.The theme of the speech: rich white people tell poor white people the lie that they are inherently better than black people, to protect the elite white person’s position of power over both.I disagree strongly with so many of you as to the nature of the current President. What worries me is not the darkness that you see in him, but that you, as the rich elite of America, willingly create darkness for yourselves by curating your experience here and elsewhere.If LBJ had not spoken to both Wallace and King, he would have never made the choice to push the voting rights legislation through.Humanity’s greatest atrocities have always been wrought by ‘ true believers’, who are ruled by emotions and not reason. The type of person who is so consumed by their beliefs that no light can pierce their veil of darkness.If evil succeeds when good people fail to act when they see evil occur, then the action here is not to ‘Resist’ a shameless, graceless Ugly American President but to resist the urge to become old in spirit and feeble of mind……and to work harder to overcome the emotions that block the light.America is the greatest idea ever delivered by mankind unto itself. It’s greatest threats are a closed mind, a thin skin and a cold heart. Raucous is what humanity is and always will be.As a start, this WaPo piece is an excellent source of illumination into the nature of the inhabitant of the Oval Office – https://www.msn.com/en-us/n…
Thought provoking comment, James.Your comment prompted this thought:A closed mind ages more quickly.
I agree that an open mind is essential to life and your thought is well articulated.Where we differ potentially is whether the ethically bereft warrant an open mind as well. I do not.
whether the ethically bereft warrant an open mind as wellPondering…
i’ve put a huge amount of time into this and am comfortable with where I came out.The end never justifies the means.I learn nothing from being tolerant of racism. Zilch.People are how they act and who they support.That is not being closed it is being ethical.Friends I have lost. A number of people on Disqus are permanently blocked.Miss them not at all.
I think I misunderstood. Now I see that you meant being open-minded TOWARD the ethically bereft rather than whether there is value in someone who is ethically bereft BEING open-minded. And I had finally drawn a conclusion as the thought simmered in the back of my mind while working.I would definitely be guarded toward someone who fits this category. But I can’t say I have come across many who fit this category at AVC even though I find plenty to disagree with.
People are how they act and who they support.No real argument with the first part of this sentence, with a caveat. Most of the decisions I make in business (as a recruiter) have to do with understanding as much as I can about a person based on their behavior. However, I also want to know the motivations behind that behavior to really make assessments based on their actions. You know… doing the right things for the wrong reasons vs. the wrong things for the right reasons.However, regarding the second part (who they support), I don’t think it is that simple — especially if we are talking politics. So many factors involved.But you have the choice of where you draw the line in terms of who you interact with… or not.Just don’t block me or I will hunt you down.
ha!and nothing is ‘simple’ but we still make decisions. ambiguity is not the same as nuance.in politics especially.and yes, in my opinion, you define yourself by what you support and the language you use to put your actions in context.you are not polarizing by saying that there is nothing to be learned by engaging with those with racist beliefs.it is completely polarizing to define the world as liberal and conservative which i refuse to as it gets us nowhere.beliefs can be challenging and helpful to understand when different than you own. labels not. and racism is not a label it is an aberration and a sickness clearly defined and recognized as such.
I applaud you for simply stating that you believe you define yourself for what you support. Many, many people believe that.Its too bad that you have such certainty that your views are nuanced, while also having such certainty that Trump supporters views are neither nuanced nor ambiguous. It projects arrogance.It’s factual impssobility is nearly certain.This last paragraph is just baloney.Racism is a belief that certain races are superior to others.Prejudice is the belief that certain races or cultures or groups of people act in a specific way.Bigotry is the dislike of a person, solely because the belong to a group of people.None of these terms are a sickness or an aberration. They are just factually incorrect (racism / prejudice) and simple minded (bigotry).
Don’t you think that a person reduces their contribution to the group while increasing their extraction from it, when they are actively eliminating voices from their experience of the community?
.One is forced to wonder what the basis of your friendship was originallyAre you only capable of being friends with those who agree with you?There is an arrogance to standing in judgment of another’s ideas. An intolerance which suggests that your ideas cannot prevail in open competition.Many learn the most from those who have different ideas. Diversity of ideas is a good thing.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
On this we agree. I have always learnt more from people who disagreed with me. As humans, we all have too many subconscious and unconscious mental models that color the way we think and judge. The more conscious we are of these biases and the less we hold on to preconceived assumptions, higher the probability of getting decisions right.
The theme of the speech: rich white people tell poor white peolple (sic) the lie that they are inherently better than black people, to protect the elite white person’s position of power over both.After reading the article you linked to I couldn’t help but thinking the same with regard to academics and the status quo educational system.Academics (and journalists) tell other academics and people who have been schooled in that formal way and that believe in the pecking order of life that they are better than those that haven’t in order to protect their power over outsiders and those that are different or haven’t achieved or been able to get anywhere in that system.  Degrees and formal recognized accomplishments in particular. I went to the same school and came to the same conclusion regarding not being impressed by those credentials but have marveled how others do (and benefited from it). I remember a professor in particular who sniffed ‘so you want to be a big fish in a small pond’ when he heard what I wanted to do after graduation.
+ 1,000,000.Street smarts and inherent talent ( which I believe all people have, in some form ) are the most American of traits yet are now devalued.
Street smarts and inherent talent ( which I believe all people haveHah! I actually don’t. I see examples of lazy losers all the time. I marvel at how I can ask a question of the guy who delivers my mail ‘the mailman’ and how he isn’t able to answer it. I think ‘you have spent your entire life delivering mail and working at the post office. How can you not know what happens when mail is forwarded somewhere?’  Answer: It’s lack of curiosity and ambition and having ‘single function machine’ talents basically. This is actually separate from academic ability and aptitude.
I think you are wrong here.I use the Enneagram personality system and I believe that the every one of the 9 numbers not only identifies a person’s natural state but also their natural talents.Sure, some people have talent in abundance, in both depth and breadth and others have only a modicum of both.Success in life is aligning your talents to your activities.I agree with you that people who are not that curious and lack ambition can seem like lazy losers. But, many of them are both agreeable and obliging. Good company too. Happy and satisfied, which in and of itself is a talent.Success is relative. Fulfilment is not.
can seem like lazy losers. But, many of them are both agreeable and obligingThis is actually one of the upsides of legalizing marijuana. It’s a way to keep people ‘agreeable and obliging’ when used properly, not abused and they can afford to pay for it.
Smarts is a spectrum not a narrow point.
to 1cup of truth add 1cup of conflationrecipe for the worst of both worlds 🙂
There’s a lot wrong with academics, but the rock solid truth is that the best of academics, and there is a LOT of it, is by a wide margin the best of civilization over the past, for the present, and in the future. To short academics is to risk extracting miserable defeat from the jaws of magnificent victory, by a wide margin the worst mistake possible now and by far the worst mistake in all of history.
Yes, yes, yes. That is part of the backlash.
I love the comments section of this blog because of discussion like this. It is a rare place to engage in civil, intelligent discussions on big topics like these. So with that preface, I ask…Can you please elaborate on, “I disagree strongly with so many of you as to the nature of the current President.” (Given the holiday, Fred’s post, and the rest of your post, I believe you mean the President’s view with regards to race/race relations.) Specifically, can you share how you interpret the President’s nature on this subject?PS – I think we all agree on the remainder of your post about closed and open minds. I think where the two sides disagree is they each see the other as closed, unwilling to have their minds opened. That, I think we agree, is especially dangerous.
The basic disagreement could be stated as agreement or disagreement with Fred’s recent statement of ‘ Why do they hate us? ‘ .It is a terrrible ‘ Us & Them ‘ identity politics mistake.Trump used extremely sound strategy, tactics and his genius at connection / persuasion to identify a path to the White House. His success is a testament to his talents and his social / political genius.He is not a wonderful, uplifting human being, but few of us are. But he is not a racist, he is an opportunist who saw an unrepresented group of people who could get him to where he wanted to go.Some of those people are racists and Trump, tactically if not morally, was correct in his assessment that he needed those votes.But the vast majority of Trump voters like some assortment of:- his policies;- his belief that government is bloated / ineffective;- are aware of his personal shortcomings;- willing to take a huge chance after voting for Obama twice with no change to their rather desperate situation;- appreciate and believe in his global philosophy of military strength makes peace;- or his sovereign states in competition creating progress philosophy;- think America should pay its fair share but not fall into the superiority complex / ego trap of paying more;- or have some doubts as to the cause of global warming ( dearth of sunspots suggesting global mini-Ice Age my fave newest idea );It’s hard to fathom how people can be excited about King or Obama uplifting the historically downtrodden while disqualifying rural poor white people from that same succour, based solely on the colour of their skin and their personal dislike of the President who was willing to become their champion.But, IMO, that is the true evil of identity politics – it’s selective, based on popularity.Sadly, it is likely because these new ruling elites – the coastal, overeducated, high tech globalists who hang out here – are likely projecting their knowledge that those heartland ex-factory workers probably SHOULD hate them, even if they don’t: 3 consecutive Ivy League educated Presidents sold those people out with an agenda that made educated suburban / city dwellers lives better.
to 1cup of truth add 4 cup of conflationStirring up the legitimately disenfranchised only to further disenfranchised them via your political/economic ignorance/self-interest is a strange definition of social/political genius.Trump is in no way Martin Luther King Jr. friendly !
.In every relationship, as you sow so shall you reap.Sow love, get love. Sow hate, get hate. Sow intelligent discourse, get intelligent discourse in return.Honorable people can disagree without being disagreeable. Our ideas can do fierce combat and improve in the process.If one hates someone who thinks differently, it is because that is what is invested in the relationship.I can disagree with any person’s ideas without personalizing that disagreement.A lot of times, we allow ourselves to be the victim. That is silly. This happens often when our ideas fail to prevail.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
> It’s hard to fathom how people can be excited about King or Obama uplifting the historically downtrodden while disqualifying rural poor white people from that same succour, based solely on the colour of their skin.Simpler: In recent decades, the Democrats have concluded that they can get lots of votes and, thus, power by playing their two favorite cards, the race card and the gender card. By now they have played these two cards so often in such silly circumstances that the cards are essentially meaningless — the situation is worse than the guy who called “Wolf!!!” too often.The Democrats have four really big problems:First, Bill C. had an easy time against stiff, elitist Bush 41. Times were too easy.Second, W was such a doofus that, again, the Democrats had an easy time.Third, with the race card and gender card, they got eight years of Obama and Hillary and talked themselves into believing that their nonsense was good stuff. The beliefs led to delusions even at the tops of the FBI, national security agencies, the EPA, etc. The MSM, somehow far left, kept telling the Democrats that they were really great stuff.Fourth, finally, with Trump, the first adult as POTUS since … before Bill, the Democrats are getting a “reality check”. They keep playing their race card and their gender card, one after the other, over and over, keeping hoping that their good times at the top of the hill will return, but they won’t. Not now. And not for some decades.There is nothing strange going on here with Trump — he’s just the first adult as POTUS in a long time. The Democrats just need to grow up — real life isn’t a party school with Daddy sending lots of money.
“But he is not a racist, he is an opportunist who saw an unrepresented group of people who could get him to where he wanted to go.”I think I’d ask again how you think Trump sees race? (If we can derive his true feelings from comments we know he has made of that he has reportedly made.) There are a bunch of reasons you listed why people voted for and/or still support Trump. I’m less worried about general reasons to support Trump in the context of this conversation and more trying to pinpoint on how you interpret how Trump sees race/race relations (his true thoughts on the subject as opposed to how he may have played the subject as an opportunist).
I have no idea.His life is about getting what he wants. People like that, aggressive positive people, aren’t typically people who limit themselves.Most KKK members were racists as an offshoot of their anti-progress beliefs. Trump’s not that person, although I would wager his father was more that way.If you can help him get what he wants, he doesn’t care.
.Go to Johnson City, Tx. Read the Caro books on LBJ. Go to the LBJ Library at the U of Tx and listen to the tapes.It was Ladybird who drove him in that direction.There was a greatness inside that flawed man. He knew exactly what he was doing and the attendant costs.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
Created at 14:06:55 on Monday, January 15th, 2018.I don’t see Trump as anything like you are describing.Before I explain just why, my long sick computer (motherboard with a lot of data corruption) finally really quit, just before I finally was able to get the parts ordered and shipped for building two new computers. So, I had to rush out and just BUY a computer. So, at Sam’s Club I picked up an HP Laptop 17 something or other. It has an Intel i5 two core processor that will run four threads, one hard disk drive at about 1 trillion bytes (TB), and a screen 17″ on diagonal. In some ways it’s nice, but I would prefer one of the two computers I have planned to build. With this new HP, I’ll just build the larger of the two I’d planned.That was just Thursday. So far I’ve gotten a lot of my old software tools and data copied over so, now, can post again at AVC!!For the Trump critics, so far I have yet to see any credible evidence that (A) Trump has done anything seriously wrong or (B) there is anything seriously wrong with him. Since Trump announced, and especially since he won the nomination, much of the mainstream media (MSM) have spent nearly 24 x 7 touting a lot of really nasty accusations against Trump.As has long been totally clear here at AVC, I’ve been strongly for Trump starting soon after he announced his candidacy. Well, since I don’t want to be wrong, I do pay attention to the accusations.So far the worst the MSM has found that has any credibility is (A) something about two scoops of ice cream and (B) that he could stand to lose 25+ pounds.Basically the MSM has been pumping out nasty gossip. But gossip or their motivations aside, the first, crucial issue is that do the MSM have any credible data, evidence, or arguments, and apparently so far they don’t. So, so far all the really nasty MSM attacks have in effect given Trump a very clean bill of health.E.g., the link to the WaPo piece seems to claim that all Trump knows about concrete is that it comes in trucks. Uh, WaPo guy, there’s a LOT to concrete, and not nearly all of it is the same. My experience is that people who buy lots of concrete know a LOT about concrete. I’d bet that Trump has essentially high end expert knowledge of concrete from the point of view of an architect, civil engineer, high end developer, and buyer. To me, the WaPo guy is just spouting garbage as bad propaganda. Okay, okay, okay, the WaPo guy doesn’t like Trump. I do get that. Maybe I’d have just to guess just why he doesn’t like Trump. But so far WaPo guy has (A) not given me any good reasons not to like Trump and (B) given me even just in that one piece the concrete and several other good reasons to regard anything from the WaPo as just anti-Trump propaganda, very much along the lines of the J. Goebells’s’ IIRCIf you tell a lie often enough, then people will believe it. Even you will come to believe it. Does Trump sometimes speak in the language of a blue collar steel worker, promote Trump, or exaggerate? Maybe. Are these serious criticisms? No. Do such things help Trump be effective? Maybe.In the end, what I care about for Trump is what he DOES. So far, I like what he’s done, doing, and trying to do. It looks from good to terrific to me.And what he is doing and trying to do very much look like what he promised to do during his campaign.So, in particular it seems that he is working to keep his campaign promises. Maybe that is surprising for politicians, but I welcome it. Also, Trump gets some credibility, and he is about the only well known politician who has any credibility. A politician with low credibility is like a company with a bad brand name — both cases mean low value.In Congress a few Republicans and essentially all the Democrats are trying to oppose Trump, especially on immigration. To me that opposition has been bought by some people with a lot of really bad, dirty money to push for their own, narrow, personal, selfish, really nasty gain a new version of slave labor against nearly all US citizens and the US. Apparently such bought off, bought and paid for, slaver Members of Congress include Pelosi, Schumer, Durbin, and Flake.This is MLK Day, right? Well, I’m against slave labor.E.g., will Mexico end up paying for the wall? With some tariffs, maybe so. For that, we will have to see how some of the NAFTA and trade negotiations go. IIRC, there is plenty of room in the deal making to cover the $10-30 billion or so for the wall. So, even on his “And Mexico will pay for the wall”, he may yet be proven correct.And even if I did see something seriously wrong with Trump — and I still am lacking any good reasons to believe or even suspect such — I would have to ask whom I would like better, and for that I can’t think of anyone else even close who would be in any real sense a candidate.Net, Trump is fine with me. I’am thrilled with him and believe that the US is very lucky to have him. Gee, guys, the alternative was that lying, crooked, US national security disaster opponent.
Would suggest you read this take by the NYT’s Editorial Board on Mr. Trump to better understand the man and what he represents for so many, both here and abroad. He’s a disgrace on so many levels, including to his own family. He’s a charlatan, a liar, a narcissist and a scam artist all rolled into one. One can debate his accomplishments and uncanny ability to claim success for any metric that potentially raises his profile, including, but not limited to, the safety of air travel, irrespective of any hard data to support a direct causal relationship. It’s a strategy built on creating chaos, divisiveness and obfuscation, facts be damned. A successful Presidency should never be defined solely in economic terms, which is how he interprets it. With Trump the end will never justify the means for me and so many, and even his base has and will continue to tire of his antics. He has no moral compass— none, zero, zilch—most recently illustrated by his intelligence boasting (“I’m a stable genius”) or bigotry (insert “shit hole” or “shit house” here—take your pick, like it really matters.)Again, please read this editorial.https://mobile.nytimes.com/…
There is little to understand in my opinion. People are how they act and what they say.With Trump there is no nuance. It is as it is.
This is amazing.Trump would argue ( and believes ) the exact opposite – how you act & what you say are merely tools……. what you do or achieve is who you are.As football coach Bill Parcells used to say ‘ You are your record. ‘For Trump, that means Wins. For you, that means how you play the game.It seems those views should be able to co-exist.
First off, thanks for continuing to read my comments. As I continue to express, its my greatest concern for America.Second, I agree with most of your characterizations of the President. I think the WaPo article provides a great explanation for his behaviour. I am a fan of their explanation over the NYT explanation, because the NYT editorial is mostly about how they feel about him, not about him.This is my main argument. Just say you don’t like him – that is a valid argument. The resistance and the Not My President and he is a racist and all the other arguments don’t hold water, under close scrutiny.The Trump family long claimed they were Swedish, so as to not upset Jewish tenants – http://nordic.businessinsid… .Race is just a fact of the world to Trump, not a belief. Do you think Fred was wrong, on the economics, to racially profile his buildings in the 1960’s and 1970’s? I think its a great story of the law changing behaviour of an individual actor for THE BENEFIT OF THE COMMUNITY. There is no sign that Fred ‘hated blacks’; their is every indication that actually figuring out who to rent to, on a unit by unit basis, would cost a lot more.I also disagree with your view that the Presidency is not mostly about economics. Obama is the rare exception of people not voting with their wallets. It was identity politics that got him elected and when a white woman succeeded, him, those voters disappeared. Is that a better way to elect a President (skin colour)?Obama is a fraud, in the sense that he was such an outlier: primarily raised by old white farmers from Kansas and his hippie white mother, while living in Hawaii and Indonesia who goes Ivy league constitutional lawyer route. That wouldn’t cut it as a TV President’s background. Now, he has followed the Clintons lead and will continue to bilk people out of their money so that he can run a Foundation…..with the side benefit of providing him the lifestyle of the billionaires he so carefully cultivates as friends.His wife spoke in Vancouver last week. There were almost no black people there, according to an online friend, because the tickets were so expensive. I think the term for that is Sellout.SO, everything else is usually window dressing (‘Are you better off than you were 4 years ago?’). That is what Trump is betting on and why people who dislike him should prepare for 2 terms.Take DACA for example: does anyone ask these kids how they feel about the jackpot THEIR PARENTS put them in? That is an example of how there is always a hard out for Trump on every heart tugging liberal landmine -he will pull out a 1950’s personal accountability angle, which will negate all the issues that are not economic.So, you have a President who is a doer (he needs those ‘Wins’), who has a clear outcome in mind (see other comment) and who is, for many (likely most) people, no worse a person than either Clinton.As an aside, the Clintons are a scourge upon democracy, not just America. Hopefully they are close to the dustbin of history. They started this circus of politicians selling out their constituencies for personal gain, which includes Cheney & W IMO. As JLM says, I hope Ross Perot is happy.I would not have voted enthusiastically for HRC or Trump. They are horrible people and bad candidates. So, I would have likely voted the economics or the policies, which comes down to being a believer in big or small government.
“Now, he has followed the Clintons lead and will continue to bilk people out of their money so that he can run a Foundation…..with the side benefit of providing him the lifestyle of the billionaires he so carefully cultivates as friends.”As opposed to make billions and helping no one, spending it all on helicopters, yachts, mansions, dance clubs? Would you also say Bill Gates is a sellout because he has friends that are millionaires/billionaires??
No, Gates was upfront with his desire to accumulate wealth.Obama and the Clintons profess a love of public service, while corrupting the role of government in society (the Clintons actively, the Obamas by creating the perception of special interests getting special attention).Gates will likely spend more than 50% of his life donating his $ ( and Warren Buffet’s) in a way that is more effective than government.
I’m not sure. I guess I’m in the camp that would rather see him use his influence to try to actually do something in the world rather than disappear and do nothing. People like Obama and Clinton (aka political leaders/figures) do exist in this world. The question is what do they do with that influence/power.
The Clintons should retire, as should a ton of public servants that are still serving their massive egos after decades of ‘service’.Obama should have become a VC. He’d be good at it.Now he’s getting paid to be a celebrity. No one cares what he says, other than the fact that it makes them feel good about their beliefs. He’s a walking Confirmation Bias.He’s like a political Joel Osteen.And, to be clear, when he was campaigning in 2007, I thought he was a world beater. But, he is not – he is not effective enough to be anything other than a great marketer of himself. Its why Justin Trudeau loves him – they are peas in a pod.
As I sit feebly watching the vacuum in true leadership grow with the election of each coin-operated politician — I try to remember the true leaders in my lifetime. They are all black.
You do Lyndon Baines Johnson and many others a great disservice.No peaceful change in society has been accomplished without leadership from within the establishment.Your statement feels right, but is factual wrong.
.Who do you admire?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…
Love is what hold us together and where our strength comes from.I wish you could have stayed with us longer…https://youtu.be/G6Kspj3OO0s
Beautiful song, sad news.
Such sad news 🙁
apropos everyday! Happy MLK day. I also like how MLK focused on the goal and not the plan. I’m sure he had a *plan* but we remember him because he had a *dream*.
A great quote indeed! Here’s the one I shared with my circle: “I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.”