J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 08-15-2018

Don’t be so hard on yourself! Study on first-year student stress

Researchers from the faculty of education’s school of kinesiology found students who reported higher levels of self-compassion felt more energetic, alive and optimistic during their first semester of university. When the students’ sense of self-compassion levels rose, so too did their engagement and motivation with life. The study was part of Gunnell’s PhD work at UBC. Self-compassion interventions can involve exercises to avoid negative self-judgment or feelings of inadequacy. One example involves writing self-compassionately about a negative experience. 

Self-compassion emphasizes self-kindness, which means to not be overly critical of oneself; common humanity, which means to recognize failure is universal; and mindfulness, which means being present and calm in the moment. Crocker said his research group has previously shown that self-compassion interventions lower self-criticism and negative ruminations in high performance female athletes. The researchers said their findings highlight the potential for colleges and universities to enhance self-compassion for first-year students through the development of workshops or campaigns. Explore further: Self-compassion helps to cope with symptoms of menopause. More information: Katie E. 

Gunnell et al, Don’t be so hard on yourself! Changes in self-compassion during the first year of university are associated with changes in well-being, Personality and Individual Differences. 

Keywords: [“self-compassion”,”research”,”university”]
Source: https://phys.org/news/2017-01-dont-hard-first-year-student-stress.html

7 Reasons Why You’ll Never Do Anything Amazing With Your Life

Because you did what everyone else did; you studied what they studied and read what they read. Because you learned what you had to learn in order to pass their tests and you think that makes you smart. Because you think learning is only something people do in schools. Because while you were away at college, I was studying life; because instead of learning about the world in a classroom I went out and learned it by living. Because smart is not what you learn, it’s how you live. 4 :: Because You Don’t Read. 

Because you read the things you are required to read or nothing at all. Because you are probably not reading this article even though you know you should. Because the people that are reading this already know these things. Because while you’re busy playing Candy Crush, or Megalopolis, I am reading about string theory and quantum mechanics. Because you don’t understand the power of properly placed questioning in life, respectful disagreements and standing up for what you know to be right in the face of someone telling you otherwise. 

Because you refuse to admit that you don’t even know the things you don’t know. Because even if I told you everything could be different tomorrow you would wait until then to begin doing anything about it. Finally able to understand your lack of understanding, and then you would see; then you would know that the only thing holding you back from doing something truly amazing, is you. 

Keywords: [“read”,”know”,”learn”]
Source: https://raymmar.com/7-reasons-youll-never-do-anything-amazing-life

How we care for Googlers

Your family matters to you, so they’re important to us, too. Many of our benefit programs and onsite amenities are aimed at supporting you and your loved ones through life’s various stages-we offer generous parental leave policies, retirement savings plans, death benefits, and much more. In some of our offices, you can even bring your canine family members to work! All Googlers have access to excellent healthcare choices. In some locations, we also offer onsite wellness and healthcare services, including physicians, chiropractic, physical therapy, and massage services. 

Many of our offices are equipped with on-site fitness centers and classes to save you time and keep you fit. Our wide assortment of on campus cafes and micro kitchens provide nutritious meals and snacks to keep you healthfully energized throughout the day. We match Googlers’ charitable donations and add donations for hours Googlers work as volunteers. We all need time away from work to recharge, travel, take care of personal stuff, or spend time with family and friends. From our highly-rated retirement savings matches to financial advisors and planning services, we offer many resources to help keep you financially fit. 

That’s why we offer extensive opportunities for personal and professional development. Whether it’s onsite coding or cooking classes, degree programs, or the guitar lessons you’ve been meaning to take, we’ll support you in doing what you love. 

Keywords: [“offer”,”Googlers”,”onsite”]
Source: https://careers.google.com/how-we-care-for-googlers

Animal or Human Compassion

America is a rich nation with seemingly limitless compassion, partially evidenced by our $5 trillion failed effort to eliminate poverty and dependence. After 30 years of failure, we might start asking some questions about the nature of our compassion toward the poor. Compassion toward animals includes making sure the animal has adequate food and water, medical attention when needed, suitable shelter and a toy or two for entertainment. That compassion must be extended to the animal’s offspring. Animal compassion bears none of the hardships and complexities of human compassion. 

Behavior that’s compassionate toward humans may qualify as cruelty to animals. If you were to supply a human with a week’s supply of food, and he ate it in a day, letting him do without for the remainder of the week would be a good lesson as well as just desserts for his lack of foresight. Expecting an animal to defer gratification, plan for the future, and bear the burden of unwise decisions is cruelty. Today’s welfare debate should focus on our pretense of human compassion. Human compassion towards the poor cannot be engineered in Washington; it’s even doubtful at the state level. 

After all forcing people to bear the burden of unwise decisions is part of the lesson not to make unwise decisions. The most important component of human compassion is forcing, demanding and helping people to learn they can be better than animals. 

Keywords: [“compassion”,”animal”,”human”]
Source: http://capitalismmagazine.com/1996/02/animal-or-human-compassion

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 07-26-2018

Human capital

Many theories explicitly connect investment in human capital development to education, and the role of human capital in economic development, productivity growth, and innovation has frequently been cited as a justification for government subsidies for education and job skills training. Pierre Bourdieu offers a nuanced conceptual alternative to human capital that includes cultural capital, social capital, economic capital, and symbolic capital. Just as land became recognized as natural capital and an asset in itself, human factors of production were raised from this simple mechanistic analysis to human capital. It is broken down or defined, human capital is vitally important for an organization’s success; human capital increases through education and experience. Human capital is also important for the success of cities and regions: a 2012 study examined how the production of university degrees and R&D activities of educational institutions are related to the human capital of metropolitan areas in which they are located. 

The transformation of raw human resource into highly productive human resource with these inputs is the process of human capital formation. The intangible human capital, on the other hand, is an instrument of promoting comprehensive development of the nation because human capital is directly related to human development, and when there is human development, the qualitative and quantitative progress of the nation is inevitable. United Nations publishes Human Development Report on human development in different nations with the objective of evaluating the rate of human capital formation in these nations. Human capital is distinctly different from the tangible monetary capital due to the extraordinary characteristic of human capital to grow cumulatively over a long period of time. Rate of human capital formation in the future generation happens to be more than the rate of human capital formation in the current generation. 

Specific human capital refers to skills or knowledge that is useful only to a single employer or industry, whereas general human capital is useful to all employers. When human capital is assessed by activity based costing via time allocations it becomes possible to assess human capital risk. 

Keywords: [“Human”,”capital”,”development”]
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_capital

Global Capitalism at War with Itself

This week the threatened tariffs from Canada, China, and the European Union that were initiated in response to the U.S tariffs initiated by #45 have gone into effect. Thousands of migrant parents from Central America have been separated from their children, while others are being detained in tent cities in the blistering Texas heat. At the same time, a similar scenario plays out in Europe where German Chancellor Angela Merkel is under fire for imploring the German people, as well as her European allies to develop an open and compassionate approach to immigration in this time of a global migrant crisis. In language that echoes the words of Jesus in his famous sheep and the goats parable of Matthew 25, Merkel has challenged her colleagues and citizens with the idea that how they handle the migrant crisis is a reflection of whether or not they truly embrace the democratic values of justice and freedom they freely proclaim. While these two issues at first glance may not seem connected, in reality, they are deeply connected as they are the result of a neoliberal capitalism run amok, benefitting the few at the expense of the many. 

It’s a philosophy in which there are winners and losers, with no regret or recompense for the losers. Those in between are the pawns manipulated to justify the inequity. What is seldom acknowledged is that global capitalists made sure the game was rigged in their favor so that elections were bought and paid for, and few if any radical voices – like a Bernie Sanders or the new Mexican President Obrador – get in. Now the capitalists are fighting among themselves, instituting tariffs as a way of somehow protecting their economies that are inextricably linked together in the global capitalist web. Rather I could only marvel at how the people whose countries control an overwhelming percentage of world’s wealth could be so petty with each other and so callous toward the truly poor in their midst and the migrants on their borders. 

God who abides with poor and the oppressed, looks on as thousands at borders long only for a comfortable bed, a safe home and the basic essentials of life, weeps. Metcalf, S. Neoliberalism: The idea that swallowed the world. 

Keywords: [“migrant”,”45″,”global”]
Source: http://drickboyd.org/global-capitalism-at-war-with-itself-while-migrants…

There is No Third Way

Writing during an age in which the expropriation of the means of production by the state and the imposition of full-scale socialism with central planning was a real possibility even in Western Europe, Röpke bravely defended private property, the free market, free international trade, and market-determined prices and wages. While out of step with the prevailing economic orthodoxies of his time, Röpke nevertheless helped save at least part of his fatherland from the poverty and stagnation that would have followed inexorably from the statist economic policies favored by German social democrats and Anglo-American occupiers. The neoliberal economists of the GermanFreiburgSchool, Walter Eucken and Wilhelm Röpke, denied that what Germany needed was more government control of the economy. If there is one area in which Röpke’s ideas can be praised without qualification it is in his advocacy of political and economic decentralism and the closely related idea of subsidiarity. Röpke pointed out that Switzerland was more genuinely democratic than any other Western country because political power was divided between a federal parliament and numerous self-governing cantons. 

According to Zmirak, Röpke opposed the supranational economic and political organizations that began emerging in the wake of the Second World War. Although Röpke defended the autonomy of historic regions within larger political entities, he also defended the independence of the sovereign nation-state as a bulwark against the emergence of such supranational bureaucracies. According to Zmirak, Röpke accepted many of the socialist and traditionalist criticisms of historic capitalism. Röpke made a fatal concession to the socialist cause in agreeing that unrestrained capitalism had proven socially destructive and unsustainable. There are three inherent weaknesses with Röpke’s distinction between compatible and incompatible market interventions. 

A passionate critic of socialism and the welfare state, Röpke was nonetheless keenly attuned to capitalism’s destructive elements and the intrinsic limits of the market. We need Mises, not Röpke, to save us from the despotic hand of the modern WelfareCorporatistState. 

Keywords: [“Röpke”,”state”,”capitalism”]
Source: https://mises.org/library/there-no-third-way

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 07-07-2018


Salesforce’s Integrated Philanthropy Model – Forbes 400 Summit | Forbes

Albert Einstein Quotes: Famous Quotations on Religion, Science, War, Peace, Education, Morality, Philosophy of Physics

Introduction A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. The true value of a human being is determined by the measure and the sense in which they have obtained liberation from the self. A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. Modern anthropology has taught us, through comparative investigation of so-called primitive cultures, that the social behaviour of human beings may differ greatly, depending upon prevailing cultural patterns and the types of organisation which predominate in society. If we ask ourselves how the structure of society and the cultural attitude of man should be changed in order to make human life as satisfying as possible, we should constantly be conscious of the fact that there are certain conditions which we are unable to modify. 

My passionate sense of social justice and social responsibility has always contrasted oddly with my pronounced lack of need for direct contact with other human beings and human communities. A leader of his people, unsupported by any outward authority: a politician whose success rests not upon craft nor the mastery of technical devices, but simply on the convincing power of his personality; a victorious fighter who always scorned the use of force; a man of wisdom and humility, armed with resolve and inflexible consistency, who had devoted all his strength to the uplifting of his people and the betterment of their lot; a man who had confronted the brutality of Europe with the dignity of the simple human being, and thus at all times risen superior. The development of mechanical methods of warfare is such that human life will become intolerable if people do not discover before long a way of preventing war. These are old sayings, coined by men for whom human personality has the highest human value. Albert Einstein: Quotes on Morality & Human Rights What the individual can do is to give a fine example, and to have the courage to uphold ethical values. 

In talking about human rights today, we are referring primarily to the following demands: protection of the individual against arbitrary infringement by other individuals or by the government; the right to work and to adequate earnings from work; freedom of discussion and teaching; adequate participation of the individual in the formation of his government. We are listed as one of the top philosophy sites on the Internet and have a wonderful collection of knowledge from the greatest minds in human history, so people will appreciate your contributions. 

Keywords: [“human”,”time”,”sense”]
Source: http://www.spaceandmotion.com/Albert-Einstein-Quotes.htm

Communities

Within each of these communities from Mongolia to Mogadishu to Managua to Minnesota, human beings experience compassion for others, relieving pain and suffering for their families, for their neighbors, for their communities. In a Compassionate Community, the needs of all the inhabitants of that community are recognized and met, the well-being of the entire community is a priority, and all people and living things are treated with respect. Although the early work of the Charter was focused on building a network of cities, it soon became evident that communities both larger and smaller than cities wanted to join the global movement in which compassion is at the heart of a community’s activities. No single community in the world is a Compassionate Community in any abstract or formal sense, just as no community is devoid of compassion. Any individual, group, or organization that recognizes the need for greater compassion in a community is encouraged to begin the process for creating a Compassionate Community. 

The cities and communities that sign on to become Compassionate Cities and Communities have often begun their work by identifying the issues that are troubling the community and need to be addressed through compassionate action. Others may decide to work to provide empowerment to youth or to educate their communities about the need for compassion in addressing environmental issues. The Campaign for Compassionate Communities has produced viable results that can be attributed to the Charter for Compassion. In cities and communities around the globe, those involved in Compassion initiatives have worked on community service, anti-bullying, homelessness, healthcare, restorative justice and education efforts. The Charter’s Community Tool Box presented in this section of the website is a way to offer more help to cities, regions, communities and other organizations as they seek to fully develop as compassionate entities. 01.To energize, broaden and deepen the compassionate communities network with active outreach to existing and prospective members. 03.To link community partners and their work and needs in one place in the world with partners in another area of the world that can help each with their efforts to bring compassion to their communities. 

Keywords: [“community”,”Compassion”,”compassionate”]
Source: https://charterforcompassion.org/communities

The best of times, the worst of times

Actually, no – providing you think of achieving such a world as an endeavor over time. As a professional facilitator and a citizen activist, I’ve worked with thousands of people around the world – in business, civil society, communities and governments – to foster cooperative action among adversaries to help them recognize the value of working collectively to resolve issues for their respective and mutual benefit. While cooperation is not synonymous with compassion, it is an integral element of advancing compassion because it requires meaningful, lengthy communication among people who might otherwise never interact. The first affirms the concept of relay versus sprint in effecting social change; the second asserts the importance of individual effort – one person can make a difference; the third is a sobering reminder that when we’re not working for the light, we’re allowing the dark; and the fourth brings me to Compassionate Capitalism, also known as Conscious Capitalism. Fostering conscious, compassionate capitalism has been a substantial part of my work in the business arena through my company, beCause Global Consulting. 

His book Stirring it Up: How to Make Money and Save the World shows the value of his business model. Roberta Laing, General Counsel of Whole Foods Markets and trustee of Conscious Capitalism, Inc., a company that promotes and facilitates Conscious Leadership in business and other areas based on having full integration of a higher purpose, compassionate culture, and conscious leadership. A global movement of individuals and groups is working creatively and diligently to foster compassion in every area of human life and endeavor. Dr. James Doty, a widely noted clinical professor of neurosurgery and founding director of Stanford University Medical School’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education. 

There are myriad companies, organisations and individuals who have embraced the idea that compassion is the key to peace, freedom, justice, health and well-being in a world that often seems to have gone mad. I can’t name them all; I don’t even know them all. Creating a compassionate world begins with believing it’s possible. Step three is to promote creating a more caring world through concrete actions. 

Keywords: [“compassion”,”world”,”compassionate”]
Source: http://www.because.net/compassionate-living-is-a-relay-race

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 06-22-2018


Why Capitalism is The Most Compassionate System On Earth

The Art and Science of Contemplative Practice

Mindfulness and Compassion: The Art and Science of Contemplative Practice For thousands of years the art of contemplative practice has been used to explore the nature of mind and its potential. Today the emerging science of contemplative practice promises to shed new light on these essential human questions. Facilitating conversation between these two worlds may provide a catalytic mutual benefit, exploring how contemplative practice and scientific research can best inform each other for a greater common good. Dr. Briggs’s research interests include the renin-angiotensin system, circadian regulation of blood pressure, and policy and ethical issues around clinical research. 

Robert A.F. Thurman is the Jey Tsong Khapa Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies in the Department of Religion at Columbia University, President of the Tibet House U.S., a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and promotion of Tibetan civilization, and President of the American Institute of Buddhist Studies, a non-profit affiliated with the Center for Buddhist Studies at Columbia University and dedicated to the publication of translations of important texts from the Tibetan Tengyur. Dr. Britton holds a B.A. in Neuroscience and a Ph.D. 

in Clinical Psychology, and is currently an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Public Health at Brown Medical School and Research Director of the Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative. Geoffrey Samuel is Emeritus Professor in the School of History, Archaeology and Religion at Cardiff University and Director of the Body, Health and Religion Research Group, and an Honorary Associate of the Department of Indian Sub-Continental Studies at the University of Sydney, Australia. Dr. Saron has had a long-standing interest in the effects of contemplative practice. Dr. 

Rosenberg is a senior teacher at Stanford University’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education and a faculty member at The Nyingma Institute of Tibetan Studies in Berkeley. In his research, he has investigated historical changes in meanings of mindfulness and meditation, ethics and politics of the mindfulness movement, mindfulness meditation as a psychosocial research methodology, interactional aspects of ‘inquiry’ sequences in mindfulness courses, rhetoric of promotion in mindfulness self-help books, and pluralism in mindfulness-based mental health care interventions. His teaching explores mindfulness and socially engaged Buddhism as styles of contemplative education for social science and Social Work. Dr. Shapiro is the recipient of the American Council of Learned Societies teaching award, acknowledging her outstanding contributions to graduate education, as well as a Contemplative Practice fellow of the Mind and Life Institute co-founded by the Dalai Lama. 

Keywords: [“research”,”Buddhist”,”study”]
Source: http://www.cmc-ia.org/mcc2015

Dreaming Beyond Capitalism: A Culture Without Fear – Kosmos Journal

Soon after white people did approach them, coming to them however with supportive intentions – a group of activists from the United States, searching for ways to protect Indigenous Peoples from the oil industry. Rewarding people with profit and status for the most competitive and destructive behavior, worshiping the golden calf of maximal economic growth, capitalism has effectively manufactured and then exploited people’s dream image. The First Peoples used this word specifically because they could not fathom any other explanation for the behavior of the European colonialists. Patriarchal conditioning – carried out worldwide, generation after generation, with the most aggressive means – has created a cultural matrix of violence and fear, which at present nearly all of humanity more or less unconsciously follows. Duhm started out as a leading Marxist writer during the anti-imperialist struggles of the 1960s and 70s in Germany, when he asked himself how it could be that billions of people comply with and obey the rules of society without being forced to do so. 

Working as a psychoanalyst, he faced the same basic structure in all his patients – no matter whether they suffered depression, heartache or schizophrenia – deep-rooted existential fear. For Duhm, the consequence was clear: If we want to escape from the wetiko disease of our current capitalist culture, we need a credible concept for a new nonviolent global society and for transforming the old matrix of fear and violence into a new matrix of trust, compassion and cooperation. Healing wetiko would be nothing short of reinventing our entire civilization and basing human existence on new social, ethical, spiritual and sexual foundations allowing profound trust between people as well as between humans and animals. In 1978 Duhm started out with a group of people to engage in an interdisciplinary research project for social and ecological sustainability to develop precisely such a concept. Having witnessed the failure of countless communes in the 1970s, most due to unresolved interpersonal conflicts around money, power and sex, the project focused its cultural experiment on creating new social structures able to resolve the psychological substratum of fear. 

In order to subjugate people under their systems of dominance, patriarchal rulers systematically destroyed tribal communities, thereby inflicting a profound collective trauma onto humanity. As we are reaching the pinnacle of a culture of global wetiko, the last throes of late-stage capitalism, healing our collective trauma, re-establishing functioning communities based on trust, and making our human existence compatible with the biosphere and nature again, may well be our only opportunity to secure ourselves and our children a future worth living on Spaceship Earth. 

Keywords: [“fear”,”people”,”Human”]
Source: https://www.kosmosjournal.org/news/dreaming-beyond-capitalism-a…

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 05-05-2018

Compassionate Nationalism

Given the virulent opposition Trump seems to attract, particularly with respect to policies that embrace the principle of America First, it would be helpful to try to explain some of its moral foundations. The crucial moral argument in favor of nationalism is that America cannot be a force for good in the world unless it is internally cohesive and economically strong. Therefore protecting the American way of life is a prerequisite to America helping the rest of the world achieve that way of life. America needs to restrict immigration primarily to individuals who are highly skilled in professions where there are shortages of American workers. The moral argument against this, of course, is that America should rescue the impoverished refugees and offer them safe haven. 

America Cannot Possibly Accommodate the World’s Poor.America currently has a population of 330 million people. According to the latest projections from the United Nations, not including China, the 50 nations in the world with the greatest projected increases to their population include only two developed nations: America and Great Britain. America is projected to add 55 million people to its population in the next 20 years. These arguments miss the point, which is that even if America admitted millions of economic refugees, there would still be billions of people who will continue to live in desperate poverty in the nations those relative few who escape leave behind. The Moral PathIf America is economically strong, with skilled, capable immigrants who have left behind a diverse assortment of poverty-stricken nations, foreign aid isn’t the only way to help those nations. 

Embracing compassionate nationalism is the moral path towards making America great again. If America truly recovered the energy and vision of the nation it was a century ago, Americans would invest in mega-projects in developing nations. 

Keywords: [“America”,”nation”,”people”]
Source: https://amgreatness.com/2018/03/25/compassionate-nationalism

Corporate Compassion. NOW

This week NOW talks to both Jonathan Schwartz, the charismatic chief executive officer and president of Sun Microsystems, and billionaire venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, about their efforts to invest and grow programs that help the world be a better place. Khosla describes a radical proposal to move all U.S. automobile fuel consumption from gasoline to ethanol, the most widely-used biofuel, according to the latest government figures. Jonathan Schwartz is chief executive officer and president of Sun Microsystems, and a member of Sun’s board of directors. Schwartz was promoted to president and COO in 2004, and managed all operational functions at Sun. 

Prior to his position as CEO, Schwartz served as Sun’s executive vice president for software, its chief strategy officer, and held a variety of leadership positions across product and corporate development. He joined Sun in 1996 after the company acquired Lighthouse Design, where he was CEO and co-founder. Prior to that, Schwartz was with McKinsey & Co. An inveterate blogger, Schwartz received degrees in economics and mathematics from Wesleyan University. Vinod Khosla is the head of Khosla Ventures, a company that offers venture assistance, strategic advice, and capital to entrepreneurs. 

The company focuses on traditional technologies, such as computing and mobile, as well as innovative technologies that offer environmental benefits. Khosla is one of the co-founders of the technology firm Sun Microsystems as well as Daisy Systems, a computer aided design system for electrical engineers. Khosla is a charter member of TiE, a not-for-profit global network of entrepreneurs and professionals founded in 1992. Khosla graduated with a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi. 

Keywords: [“Khosla”,”Schwartz”,”Sun”]
Source: http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/249/index.html

Compassion and the Humanities

That this is a reasonable, indeed an essential, way of thinking and feeling is intrinsic to the idea of the humanities, the study of what is human. It is within this moral frame that Terence’s line, clichéd though it has become over the centuries, becomes so vital: Homo sum, humani nihil a me alienum puto – I am human, and nothing human is alien to me. By its very nature every embodied spirit is doomed to suffer and enjoy in solitude. Sensations, feelings, insights, fancies-all these are private and, except through symbols and at second hand, incommunicable. We can pool information about experiences, but never the experiences themselves. 

From family to nation, every human group is a society of island universes. In certain cases communication between universes is incomplete or even nonexistent. The greater the suffering of that neighbor, the more rigorous must our attention be if we are to reach some understanding. For the last 25 years or more what used to be the humanistic disciplines have ignored the vital Terentian claim that nothing fully alienates one human from another. Not by acknowledging the power and shaping force of race and gender and sexual orientation and culture, but by treating them as a series of hermetically sealed boxes, they have made it increasingly difficult, if not impossible, for their students to see themselves as sharing common experiences and common pursuits. 

If you cannot see your fellow students, or colleagues, as engaged in a common and intrinsically human search for knowledge – maybe even wisdom – then you will have no incentive to cross the boundaries of race, gender, or culture. If our young people are going to see that there are less confrontational alternatives, something other than zero-sum games, they’ll need instruction in the humanities. 

Keywords: [“human”,”feel”,”experience”]
Source: http://www.theamericanconservative.com/jacobs/compassion-and-the-humanities

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 04-22-2018

Poverty Capitalism: Interview with Ananya Roy

Ananya Roy: Microfinance is one of those rare poverty alleviation ideas whose popularity cuts across the ideological spectrum. Proponents of social justice have hailed microfinance as an instrument to fight the redlining of the poor by exclusionary financial institutions. Although microfinance is not a substantial sector in the budgets of multilateral and bilateral donors, it is quite literally everywhere in the world of development, repeatedly touted as a poverty panacea. New portals of development, such as Kiva.org, have also made it possible for the globally minded citizens of the global North to feel an immediate and intimate connection to microfinance and to the poor women who are most often microfinance borrowers. There are at least two distinct paradigms at work within the world of microfinance: one where microfinance is a global financial industry and an increasingly profitable asset class; the second where microfinance is a part of an overall package of pro-poor development. 

Ananya Roy: Yes, this is a fundamental contradiction that lies at the heart of microfinance, and indeed many other poverty-alleviation efforts as well. Many proponents of microfinance see it as an alternative to state-led development, and as testament to the entrepreneurial efforts of the poor. Ananya Roy: Microfinance bears many of the characteristics of subprime lending. Very few genres of microfinance tackle such issues; those that do not systematically depoliticize the question of poverty. Josh Leon: Microfinance has long been applied in rural settings, an obvious place to look for the world’s poor. 

Ananya Roy: Many poverty alleviation interventions have been developed and implemented in rural areas-such as the famous conditional cash transfer programs of Mexico and Brazil and the microfinance programs of Bangladesh. Ananya Roy: Your poetic question is about microfinance but it also speaks to broader trends-to millennial challenges and hopes. 

Keywords: [“Microfinance”,”Poverty”,”Development”]
Source: http://fpif.org/poverty_capitalism_interview_with_ananya_roy

The End of Capitalism Has Begun

Postcapitalism is possible because of three major changes information technology has brought about in the past 25 years. Second, information is corroding the market’s ability to form prices correctly. The biggest information product in the world – Wikipedia – is made by volunteers for free, abolishing the encyclopedia business and depriving the advertising industry of an estimated $3bn a year in revenue. Information is a machine for grinding the price of things lower and slashing the work time needed to support life on the planet. We’re surrounded not just by intelligent machines but by a new layer of reality centred on information. 

There is, alongside the world of monopolised information and surveillance created by corporations and governments, a different dynamic growing up around information: information as a social good, free at the point of use, incapable of being owned or exploited or priced. I’ve surveyed the attempts by economists and business gurus to build a framework to understand the dynamics of an economy based on abundant, socially-held information. Once you understand that information is physical, and that software is a machine, and that storage, bandwidth and processing power are collapsing in price at exponential rates, the value of Marx’s thinking becomes clear. I’m concentrating on the economic transition triggered by information because, up to now, it has been sidelined. Today, the thing that is corroding capitalism, barely rationalised by mainstream economics, is information. 

The equivalent of the printing press and the scientific method is information technology and its spillover into all other technologies, from genetics to healthcare to agriculture to the movies, where it is quickly reducing costs. The main contradiction today is between the possibility of free, abundant goods and information; and a system of monopolies, banks and governments trying to keep things private, scarce and commercial. 

Keywords: [“information”,”new”,”capitalism”]
Source: https://www.alternet.org/economy/end-capitalism-has-begun

SparkNotes: The Jungle: Chapters 27-28

Marija’s entrance into prostitution culminates the essential accusation that Sinclair levels against capitalism: throughout The Jungle, he charges capitalism with trafficking in human lives. Human beings are despicably regarded as useful resources-means to an end rather than individuals-and are used until they are worn out and then ultimately thrown away. As a prostitute, Marija epitomizes this trafficking in human bodies, as society’s perception of her worth lies wholly in her ability to satisfy the basest desires of humankind. Just as the prostitutes are kept in a form of slavery, Sinclair often compares wage laborers to slaves, another form of trafficking in human bodies. Throughout the novel, human lives are bought and sold, although most wage laborers don’t even realize that they are part of a vast market of human flesh. 

To this point, the meaning of the title The Jungle has been made painfully clear: the world of the wage laborer is a savage realm characterized by a Darwinian struggle for survival. The structures of capitalism are a jungle of hidden nooks and crannies, each containing yet another dirty secret. Sinclair’s novel exposes the various levels of deception within the factories as well as the day-to-day details of the wage laborer’s life. Having gone to such great lengths to illustrate the evils of capitalism, Sinclair now offers socialism as the solution to the problems that the first twenty-seven chapters of the novel have explored in detail. The socialist political meeting proves anything but a jungle; rather, it is a haven from the cruel reality of capitalism. 

As the speaker catalogues the abuses and suffering of wage laborers, Jurgis reacts to socialism like a new, devout religious convert. Unlike the preacher at the religious revival meeting, who wanted commoners to better themselves according to the existing system, the socialist speaker wants commoners to motivate for change outside the system. 

Keywords: [“human”,”capitalism”,”laborer”]
Source: http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/jungle/section9/page/2

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 04-18-2018

COMING SOON – Leafwind the Compassionate Capitalist

Dreaming Beyond Capitalism: A Culture Without Fear

Soon after white people did approach them, coming to them however with supportive intentions – a group of activists from the United States, searching for ways to protect Indigenous Peoples from the oil industry. Rewarding people with profit and status for the most competitive and destructive behavior, worshiping the golden calf of maximal economic growth, capitalism has effectively manufactured and then exploited people’s dream image. The First Peoples used this word specifically because they could not fathom any other explanation for the behavior of the European colonialists. Patriarchal conditioning – carried out worldwide, generation after generation, with the most aggressive means – has created a cultural matrix of violence and fear, which at present nearly all of humanity more or less unconsciously follows. Duhm started out as a leading Marxist writer during the anti-imperialist struggles of the 1960s and 70s in Germany, when he asked himself how it could be that billions of people comply with and obey the rules of society without being forced to do so. 

Working as a psychoanalyst, he faced the same basic structure in all his patients – no matter whether they suffered depression, heartache or schizophrenia – deep-rooted existential fear. For Duhm, the consequence was clear: If we want to escape from the wetiko disease of our current capitalist culture, we need a credible concept for a new nonviolent global society and for transforming the old matrix of fear and violence into a new matrix of trust, compassion and cooperation. Healing wetiko would be nothing short of reinventing our entire civilization and basing human existence on new social, ethical, spiritual and sexual foundations allowing profound trust between people as well as between humans and animals. In 1978 Duhm started out with a group of people to engage in an interdisciplinary research project for social and ecological sustainability to develop precisely such a concept. Having witnessed the failure of countless communes in the 1970s, most due to unresolved interpersonal conflicts around money, power and sex, the project focused its cultural experiment on creating new social structures able to resolve the psychological substratum of fear. 

In order to subjugate people under their systems of dominance, patriarchal rulers systematically destroyed tribal communities, thereby inflicting a profound collective trauma onto humanity. As we are reaching the pinnacle of a culture of global wetiko, the last throes of late-stage capitalism, healing our collective trauma, re-establishing functioning communities based on trust, and making our human existence compatible with the biosphere and nature again, may well be our only opportunity to secure ourselves and our children a future worth living on Spaceship Earth. 

Keywords: [“fear”,”people”,”Human”]
Source: http://terranovavoice.tamera.org/2016/07/dreaming-beyond-capitalism-a…

Essays-960329 Economic Growth

The Clinton administration and Democratic congressional leaders are so bereft of ideas that they can only propose an increase in the minimum wage! The Republican leadership, Bob Dole in the Senate and Newt Gingrich in the House, has shamefully given up again on even a minor adjustment in the capital gains tax – the one growth ingredient of their 1994 mandate. Now carry the impressions forward to the modern mechanisms of the market- the banks, credit unions, insurance companies, stock and bond markets, and all other market elements that can extend or withhold capital. Unhappily, the western economists who advise the democratic government of Boris Yeltsin have little appreciation for the role the market plays in assessing macroeconomic tax and monetary risks to capital investment. The capital gains tax is not the only tax that bears upon the market’s assessment of ROI, but it is by far the most important. 

The market mechanisms that absorb and dispense capital must cope with the monetary variable in reckoning the true after-tax ROI. Riskier enterprises cannot hope to find capital and credit in an inflationary environment, even without the compounding effect via capital gains taxation, because sources of capital simply disappear. Sources of capital become more plentiful in a deflationary environment, but those who might otherwise employ that capital are discouraged by its high real interest costs in a world of falling nominal prices. As a matter of simple arithmetic, the risks to capital in a combination of inflation and unindexed capital gains are at a maximum. In a U.S. 

economy that would suddenly shift to a gold-standard with no tax on capital gains, untapped capital would rapidly flow into the marketplace and be dispensed according to a steepening schedule of risks. A mature enterprise that has all or most of its capital gains behind it does not need a gold standard or zero capital gains taxation in order to coax working capital out of those who have it, promising to repay it with interest or dividends. The most worrisome complication for Big Business is that policy changes that enhance the flow of capital to the market put upward pressure on the price of labor. The American Council for Capital Formation, for example, is a Big Business Washington lobby, which technically supports a lower tax on capital gains, but which spends little of its time or resources toward that end. A dramatic increase in the flow of capital to the market would have the unusual effect of eliminating jobs over time. 

Keywords: [“capital”,”market”,”tax”]
Source: http://polyconomics.com/essays/esy-960329.htm

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 04-11-2018

Zombie Apocalypse / Analysis

Common to virtually all Zombie Apocalypse tales is that, regardless of the reason zombies attack living/non-infected people, they never attack other zombies. Any truly large-scale zombie apocalypse is likely to demand a heavy degree of Hollywood Tactics or handling of the Idiot Ball by the military. Overwhelmingly, zombie apocalypse stories tend to fall into one of two categories of political allegory. The zombie horror can be used to make a political statement against consumer capitalism, with zombies representing the bulk of humanity as unthinking sheep. The bite of a zombie is infectious, and is always a fatal injury, even if it seems a trivial scratch. This results in the victim returning as a zombie, much to the horror of the Zombie Infectee, though this is essentially coincidental, as zombification would equally result had the infectee died of, say, rabies. It is generally the case that a single zombie is not a tremendous threat, owning largely to the previous two rules. Zombiism results only from being bitten by another zombie, though event zero created the first zombie that starts off the chain reaction. Most non-Romero zombie films prefer this convention to Romero’s, including the recent remake of Romero’s Dawn of the Dead. A zombie bite results in zombification, though the transition is slow, with the victim becoming progressively more zombie-like. Often, zombie apocalypse stories are tied with a Science Is Bad message, or an allegory about human nature. The Zombie Apocalypse is so iconic that perfectly sane people will formulate emergency survival plans in case of shambling corpses. Zombie films have an ace in the hole for directors, too.

Keywords: [“Zombie”,”human”,”brain”]
Source: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Analysis/ZombieApocalypse

compassionate conservativism

In is his view that the Pope seems to fear Capitalism, with the apparent ‘worship of wealth’ more than Socialism, with the inevitable worship of government. Let me start with Our Lady’s promise of a conversion of Russia. Russia has been ruled for centuries by the czars, a royalist form of government that the Western world had started to reject in the 18th century. From 1917 to 1991 Russia and its surrounding countries emerged as the imperialistic Soviet Empire with nuclear teeth. If Russia’s conversion were to eventually take place, it would have to be a complete social, economic and most importantly religious transformation. Since Mary is an important figure in Catholicism I would think that a conversion would entail that Russia rejoin the Catholic Church it left in the 11th century. At Notre Dame President Barack Obama opined in 2009 that practical atheism was the working religion of governments and by inference, economies. The pope need only to look to his own country of Argentina to see what big government interference does to a population. In the United States capitalism flourishes and all boats rise when there are logical and humane rules that limit the excesses of capitalism and promote more of the general welfare. One might even borrow George W. Bush’s phrase of a compassionate conservative into a compassionate capitalism. Government acts merely as a referee that sets fair and equitable laws that will not favor big business, big labor or big government. Maybe too many opposite currents of thought have come down the pike since then but this is the way things ought to be and that’s what we can all hope and pray for, but not just in Russia.

Keywords: [“government”,”Russia”,”more”]
Source: https://bbprof.wordpress.com/tag/compassionate-conservativism

This site lists free online books

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Keywords: [“Download”,”pdf”,”keyword”]
Source: http://www.sixsensespsychicreadings.com/compassionate-capitalism-how…

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 04-03-2018

Whole Foods CEO John Mackey On “Conscious capitalism”

Starting my own business was kind of a wakeup call in a number of different ways. We had to… The wages were under competitive pressures, so there was all this competition on us that of course made operating the business successfully difficult. It’s kind of like having to meet a payroll and having to meet the demands of our customers is a great destroyer of utopian fantasies and utopian ideologies. I just found that the belief system that I had going into operating that business was inadequate to explain the experiences that I was having in business and I began to look around and read other books and other philosophies to try to make sense out of my life and out of my business experience and it was really through encountering the free market capitalist philosophies of Milton Friedman and Friedrich Hayek and Ludwig von Mises and many other free market philosophers that I came to realize that this explanation made a lot more sense in my business experience and made more sense in terms of how the world really operated and so that is when my worldview began to shift and I began to let go of being sort of a democratic socialist. John Mackey: Any type of political ideology is going to have a lot of different variants of it, a lot of different…. Libertarians are constantly arguing with each other who is the most pure libertarian and who is most ideologically pure. What I resist… one of the strains of libertarianism and that I reject: I reject the idea that human kind is essentially selfish, not only as an observation that we frequently are selfish, but there is a strain of belief, particularly in the Ayn Rand part of the movement that believes people ought to be selfish, that that is a virtue, that humans are always self interested and altruism is evil and love is something that makes us weak. I’m a caring, compassionate person and I believe that free markets and free minds leads to the greatest human flourishing, so I really want humans to flourish and I believe liberty and market economies and capitalism are the best strategies for full human flourishing. John Mackey: I do believe that many libertarians are animated by human flourishing. They… we sincerely believe that human flourishing… That we need to be free and that we need to be creative, and that through human freedom entrepreneurship that humans are creative; they create new ways of creating value for each other that expresses the self through the economic system and leads to greater prosperity, not for a few, but for most people and eventually all people. So there is a strain of deep idealism in the libertarian movement. It’s again sometimes masked over by that ideology of selfishness, but the human flourishing element is definitely a big aspect of I think of the motivational structure of many libertarians. John Mackey: I think the zero-sum worldview is the predominate one.

Keywords: [“human”,”business”,”flourish”]
Source: http://www.valuewalk.com/2018/02/whole-foods-ceo-john-mackey

Capitalism and the Free Society, Part 1

For the classical liberal, the most fundamental property right possessed by an individual is to his own person. Now if the individual has a right to his life and his liberty, and to the fruits of his own labor – the harvested crop – then it logically follows that this individual has an equally just private property right in the tools, implements and equipment that he has produced through his mental and physical labor to assist him in his productive efforts. Capitalism is an economic system based on the principle of every individual’s right to his own life, his own liberty and his own honestly acquired property. The capitalist system also is based on the principle that the recognition of every individual’s right to his own life and liberty requires that all human relationships and associations be established through voluntary consent and mutual agreement. To have production goods in the economic sense, i.e. to make them serve one’s own economic purposes, it is not necessary to have them physically in the way that one must have consumption goods if one is to use them up or to use them lastingly. To drink coffee I do not need to own a coffee plantation in Brazil, an ocean liner, and a coffee roasting plant, though all these means of production must be used to bring a cup of coffee to my table. In the society that divides labor no one is exclusive owner of the means of production, either of the material things or of the personal element, capacity to work. The individual who owns nothing but the labor of his own mind and body is able to sell his talents and abilities for what others may consider them to be worth, either in directly satisfying some others’ consumer demands or in assisting an employer in producing a product to be sold to consumers in the marketplace. With the wages earned for services rendered, this individual who owns nothing but himself now has the outputs of the world placed before him by all the other private owners of various means of production who can only earn revenues and income by finding interested and willing buyers for the goods and services they offer on the market. In their own self-interests, so they also may demand the outputs of others in the arena of market exchange, the owners of the physical means of production must apply themselves in their producer roles to successfully fulfill the consumer wants and desires of everyone else in the society. Just as each of us helps in determining everyone else’s relative income position when we spend portions of our own earned income on various goods we desire and for which we are willing to pay. The capitalist system generates the institutional framework and incentive structure that leaves everyone free as an individual to live his own life, enjoy his personal liberty, and use his private property as his peacefully and honestly considers best for his own betterment.

Keywords: [“own”,”individual”,”other”]
Source: https://www.cobdencentre.org/2017/11/capitalism-and-the-free…

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 03-29-2018

A Christmas Carol Themes

The financial success that Scrooge enjoyed is precisely the goal of capitalism, but a fixation on the accumulation of wealth seduced Scrooge into seeing every aspect of life in such terms. Not only Christmas, but his fiancé, his dying friend and business partner, his reputation, his office staff, and his only living family member are all weighed against their financial cost and found unworthy. The costs of such selfishness and bitterness are not borne by Scrooge alone, however. Dickens’s portrayal of the social costs-prisons, workhouses, increased mortality, the creation of ghettos and slums, the miserable state of both wealthy and poor alike-clearly makes a case for morality and social justice on a larger scale. The world becomes a better place almost immediately following Scrooge’s conversion. The story implies that a renewed connection to humanity is the very essence of redemption. Though the Christmas setting invites a traditional Christian interpretation of Scrooge’s redemption, his change is rooted not in a commitment to deeper spirituality or orthodoxy but in an authentic connection to and investment in the lives of other human beings. While the results seem to change nothing about the social structure itself, the compassion shown by individual people changes the social relationships they share.

Keywords: [“social”,”Scrooge”,”Christmas”]
Source: https://www.enotes.com/topics/christmas-carol/themes

For Equal Rights by Sophie M. Gray

In the world of today, where you have a racist neo-nazi uprising in Europe, where Trump gets a free pass in saying racists slurs, and ISIS talks about global domination, I see history repeating itself – over and over again. I have over the years tried to understand what it is that gets millions of people to follow such a man and do horrible unthinkable things. I wanted to understand how it was possible for this one man to convince millions to believe his own reality and perception, acting on his beliefs, and follow him blindly. I came to realise that Hitler is not the only one with this power, and this is why history keeps repeating itself. In all cases they use fear to recruit more into their movement and convince them about the cause, a cause they would die and kill for. Fear is a powerful emotion, and from there comes hate. A lot of this fear comes from lack of knowledge, the fear of the unknown. Leaders that preach war and hate use fear to reach their goals and start movements. With fear they make people believe their cause, and with fear they win. Our strongest tool against these movements is knowledge and critical thinking. That is how we stop governments cheating us, companies abusing us, global wars and bullies. We have therefore the obligation to each other to spread knowledge – not fear.

Keywords: [“fear”,”over”,”knowledge”]
Source: https://forequalrights.wordpress.com/tag/capitalism

discordion {Artist Ian Pritchard}

Here’s the list of companies that took advantage of taxpayer-funded workers courtesy of the DWP. Feel free to use the information in whatever way you see fit. The Tory government has been forced to reveal a vast list of firms that hoovered up free labour from benefit claimants after spending four years trying to keep it a secret. Poundstretcher, Tesco, Asda and Morrisons are among more than 500 companies, charities and councils named as having used Mandatory Work Activity. Others on the list from 2011 included payday loans firm Cash Converters, chicken diner Nando’s, WH Smith, Superdrug and DHL. More than 100,000 jobseekers were put on the hated ‘workfare’ scheme, which forced them to work 30-hour weeks unpaid for a month each or have their benefits docked. The Department for Work and Pensions mounted an astonishing and costly legal battle to keep the firms’ names a secret. The DWP stood its ground for nearly four years despite being overruled by the Information Commissioner watchdog in August 2012. The saga finally ended at the Court of Appeal on Wednesday – where a trio of top judges threw out the DWP’s argument by a 2-1 vote. Campaigners and Labour condemned the vast cost of the cover-up – in which taxpayers had to fund lawyers for both the DWP and ICO..

Keywords: [“Work”,”DWP”,”firm”]
Source: https://discordion.wordpress.com/tag/capitalism

Mental wellbeing, capitalism and fluminism. Notes.

Photo by me On social media, I read of a woman who recently experienced rejection from mental health services during a crisis of severe distress and suicidal thoughts. I know something of the absolute fear and isolation suffered during times of severe distress and suicidal thoughts. Humans are biologically social beings, yet our social foundations have been shaken to the core. Families and institutional service providers have been hammered by the pressures of a failing economic system ~ Neoliberal Capitalism. A globalised machine based on competition rides roughshod over mental wellbeing. Tensions manifest directly upon loving and supporting relationships, right across the globe. Humans are biologically responding to internal and external stimuli. The externals are largely ignored in our systems of care. Even the monetisation of nature is being forced at a pace, adopted by advocates of a growth-oriented market system dominated by corporate interests. Lives are worn down and snuffed out by competitive examinations, interviews, PIPS, job markets, mortgage payments, rents, bills, the weekly shop. I will not accept all-out competition is the god-given ‘natural state’ of human existence. We can perpetuate and proliferate positive interconnections between all living beings.

Keywords: [“human”,”system”,”market”]
Source: https://seasonalight.wordpress.com/2018/01/06/mental-wellbeing…