Saturday, March 3, 2018

Branding America

Branding America

Huddled masses breathing free
Credulous citizenry on bended knee
Truth and tolerance, spin and venom
Home of the brave, house of cards
One person, one vote
One fortune, sour notes
Free schools, broken rules
Voting rights, civil wrongs
Loving kids, buying guns
Too rich to care, too dumb to dare
Companies with brands, countries too
From sea to shining sea
In pursuit of life and liberty
Still yearning to be free

Mike Spector
Feb 25, 2018

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Thought for a day: Ask an expert

I am thinking about a new aphorism to guide my thoughts and actions. It pertains to seeking ideas and advice from others. 

It goes like this: Ask a novice and you are likely to get one answer that looks like one of these: “I don’t know,” I’m not sure,” or “Maybe X” [I omitted the “I know not what” part for those not familiar with John Locke’s notion of substance].

Ask an expert and you are likely to get at least two answers that look something like these: “It could be X or it could be Y,” and “Research shows different results in different situations” and “In this case Z might be best – give it your best shot.”

Ask a world-class scholar (assuming you can find a living one) and you are likely to get at least three answers which resemble something like the following: “Well, that is an interesting question which deserves some scrutiny; I am familiar with a case somewhat like this in which X was tried with somewhat mixed results; in a different situation Y seemed to work but it may not be appropriate in this case; on the other hand, you might consider Z; what do you think?”