The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age

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The Fall of the Alpha Male

The alpha males still control the top of the hill.  For now. Their time, however, may be coming to an end, a victim of necessity, of survival.  In their place will not be a replacement, a mere shifting of their hierarchical ranking from them to their conquerors.  There will be no conquering. Rather, there will be a truce of sorts, an agreement, a reconciliation. Who will be there on the top of hill will shift in a collaborative act of play and thought.

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Stockholm (Resilience) Syndrome

I was nine years old in April 1974 when the images of  Patty Hearst -- newspaper heiress and Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) kidnapping victim -- wielding an M1 carbine while robbing a San Francisco bank with the SLA splashed over the news.  Because I was nine, I wasn't aware of the whole back story or who the SLA or Randolph Hearst were.  I knew Ms. Hearst was some kind of an "important person" who normally doesn't go around robbing banks.  I was aware of the debate as to whether she had voluntarily joined in the SLA or whether she had been somehow brainwashed into doing so.  And somewhere along the line, I became aware that Ms. Hearst's apparent new revolutionary tangent was purported by some to be a consequence of the Stockholm Syndrome.

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Happy 20th Anniversary, Agenda 21! (Rio+20 or Bust)

Has it really been 20 years?  Well, 2012 minus 1992 equals 20, so I guess it has been.

In case you didn't know, twenty years ago the UN convened in Rio the Earth Summit officially known as the Conference on Environment and Development. 

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Architects on the Edge

We as a nation can begin a meaningful march

toward a sustainable and just society. 

A national paradigm shift, however,

will be a necessary prerequisite.

And it will be the architects who will show us the way forward.


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Born Rich: Romney and the Taboo Topic


Why is Romney having so much trouble talking about his taxes and his wealth?  It isn't so that he is uncomfortable with talking about it (which he is); it is (in my opinion) that he is literally not used to talking about it. 

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Raging Newt

In the thread on Articleman’s latest blog, he responded to one of my comments with comment about Mitt:

You can't offload muscularity to your superPAC.  Mitt has a glass jaw…. Mitt lacks that gear, which works if you lack any plausible alternative who does. The problem is, Newt is back to plausible and cannot be eradicated with superPAC drones.

I was just musing that we might want to replace muscularity to rage.  And the difference between Newt and lot of other politicians is that he doesn’t have to work to get into that rage (muscularity) gear.  He is already there.  His rage isn’t an act that other politicians put on to appease the base.

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Our Political Ecotone Dilemma

Ann Pendleton-Jullian in Design Education and Innovation Ecotones writes [emphasis mine]:

Ecotones are typologically unique ecosystems connecting two distinctly different plant and animal communities and the physical characteristics that support those communities.

But these zones are more than just zones of transition. They are areas of disturbance, catalyzed by the differences in the two ecosystems, and they are often zones of conflict as well. The word’s etymology derives from a combination of two Greek words: eco(logy) and—tone, from tonos or tension; ecologies in tension. Ecotones are not merely the blending of two habitats and their characteristics, but actually a third thing. “Although ecotones share some characteristics and species with the habitats on either side of them, ecotones also have their own distinct characteristics and species.”

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Envisioning Small...or Gwnewch y pethau bychain mewn bywyd

A recent IBM commercial had a man opening a office door to an empty room save for a group of people lying on the floor. The man asks, “what are you doing?” One the people on the floor answers, “We’re ideating.”  “Well,” the man responds, “good luck with that” and closes the closes the door, leaving the group to their ideation activities. 

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Tebow, Santorum and the American Cultural Wars

If you watched the Bronco-Patriots game yesterday, you probably saw the commercial that began with a child reciting a bibical verse John 3:16, then another child.  It turned out to be a commercial for the Colorado Springs-based Christian ministry Focus on the Family, who knew that there were going to be people tuning into the game who otherwise not be: and his name was Tim Tebow.

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The Allusive Common Ground

Continuing on from my previous blog Time to Retreat, I have further refined the group of 25 individuals who would participate in the five-day national community visioning process.  As I stated, the characteristics of the people is based on Gallup polls and the US Census data.  I have now added religious identity.  I have also attempted to match up the religious identity with the distribution of age, race, regional location, ideological identity and party affiliation as detailed in the previous blog. 

Looking at the make-up of the diverse group, the challenge to the facilitator is obvious:  how to design the process to not only increase the likelihood common ground can be discovered, but also to develop a vision that will provide guidance to real change.


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