• IN THE LATEST “EFFORT TO REPLACE ‘RACIALLY FRAUGHT’ TERMS which can make a difference when avoiding subtle or unconscious acts of discrimination, called ‘micro-aggression,’…techies at Twitter have selected words that don’t harken back to oppressive parts of U.S. history & culture.” So far, gendered pronouns like guys, he/his – are now folks, people, y’all, they/their; man hours – now person hours; whitelist – is allow list; blacklist – is deny list; grandfathered – becomes legacy status; sanity check – becomes quick or confidence check; dummy value – now placeholder or sample value. CNET reports the objective being “inclusive language seeking to treat all people with respect, dignity & impartiality… While changing words doesn’t necessarily change underlying concepts, picking words carefully can make a difference” to sensitive folk.
  • AD HOC DISCUSSIONS OF CURRENT CHAOS in Covid, political or protest arenas, especially in virtual zoom groups, often lead to drawn out, time wasteful and/or useless debates. Distinguishing between “informative discussions versus Me-Too vanity events or distracting gripe sessions” is particularly difficult when scientific public health or economic impacts reported by agenda-motivated media or politicians are so inconsistent. To at least minimize the conflicts stemming from such discussions, a few tips: (1) Don’t wing it. Plan ahead to be clear on which subjects to debate and what your position is; (2) Don’t presume that agendas are common. Clarify before debate the core issues to be discussed, and in logical sequence; (3) Capture and record relevant discussion points, since presented ‘facts’ often change during arguments; (4) Distinguish between input from informed & knowledgeable people versus those uninformed but with Power; (5) Challenge ‘experts’ for most current and alternative explanations. (6) Do your best to not scream & shout idiot.  [CORPORATE BOARD MEMBER – 7/2/20]
  • NOTWITHSTANDING THE INCONSISTENCIES & BIASES IN POLLING, it’s disconcerting that an Ipsos poll last month found “an overwhelming majority of people in 14 countries on six continents supporting the protests that have erupted across the U.S. Much of the world believes our country is racist, battered & bruised…with deep social inequities, while obsessed with the stock market as the barometer of national health – economically, politically & socially… That inequality is so deeply baked – in education, property, job opportunities, gerrymandering of voting districts, policing, justice and the media – America is now a ‘toxic brew’ of problems, leaving not much bandwidth for thinking about anything other than its culture wars…  That, long the bedrock of the Western Alliance, the U.S. is less inspirational today… with the proportion of Europeans who still view it as a key ally is vanishingly small (as low as 6% in Italy)…Over more than two centuries, having stirred a very wide range of feelings in the rest of the world: love & hate, fear & hope, envy & contempt, awe & anger, there is one emotion that has never been directed towards the U.S. until now: pity.”  [THE NEW YORKER –  7/3/20]
  • THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEK – Other perspectives:

     The absolute BLAME for today’s backwards charges of ‘racism’ (a word which has now lost all definition) is attributable to the re-writing & teaching of history in education over the past several decades, and outright lying by power-hungry politicians and media empires. A quick legitimate reality check on how the leaders of government have abandoned integrity in America’s evolution:   https://www.youtube.com/embed/OURy5WFp0zk

    “Race war or Class war? The vested interest of billionaires in maintaining lockdowns:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_DC0luaGcM

     The ANT AND THE GRASSHOPPER is a timeless children’s story of how an ant works hard in the heat all summer to build a home & gather supplies for the winter, while a grasshopper laughs and dances the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed while the grasshopper, without food or shelter, dies out in the cold – the moral being ‘Responsibility for oneself.’ Today’s version is this story is that come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference demanding to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while he is cold and starving. Most Media rush to provide video of poor grasshopper next to video of the ant, in his comfortable home and table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast and protest ‘How can this be fair – poor grasshopper suffering so? ‘Occupy the Anthill’ stages a demonstration with protestors singing We Shall Overcome, kneeling to pray for the grasshopper, damning the ants and blaming the current President (along with Christopher Columbus & the Pope). Partisan politicians exclaim in heartfelt interviews that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and call for immediate tax hikes to make all ants pay their fair share, with confiscation of all ant houses & food supplies redistributed as repatriation to grasshoppers. The story ends with the property crumbling for lack of maintenance, the ant disappearing in the snow, the grasshopper found dead in a drug-related incident, and the abandoned house taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the ramshackle, once prosperous and peaceful, neighborhood. MORAL OF THE STORY is somehow related to America’s 2020 election results.