Index of

Blog Index

Apr. 23, 2017 9:54 am
Yesterday was April 22nd 2017. On that day scientists marched for science. They marched to protest about the interference of politics in science. They marched, according to some of the leaders of the March for Science movement ( here ): " ... to uphold the common good and for political leaders and policy makers to enact evidence based policies in the public interest." Undoubtedly some did...  Read More
Apr. 23, 2017 5:01 am
“Oh my God, Emily…you are such a liar !” This was the opening sequence of a night no one in The Smith household had foreseen coming, but things have now descended to the point where her father had nearly called me up and asked if I was married yet. Precluding him from the Facebook crowd he doubtless was too pious to descend and mingle with, he would not know that yes, I am (married). He would...  Read More
Apr. 23, 2017 4:47 am
If one good turn truly deserves another (as the timeless axiom goes), then it’s no small feat that Washington D.C. manages to accomplish anything at all. The plot has thickened and twisted and turned over the past year-plus (before the 30 April, 2016 official launch of ModState ) in a mind-numbing array of shocks that often are no longer considered as much. Case in point? While I follow this...  Read More
Apr. 23, 2017 4:09 am
Yesterday, April 22, 2017 scientists marched for science. At rallies in capital cities across the world they took to the streets to support evidence-based policy and reject policy-based evidence. And it was a remarkable event. Because this kind of thing does not happen in science. From time to time, individual scientists - Linus Pauling, Albert Einstein, Carl Sagan - have...  Read More
Apr. 22, 2017 11:50 am
My son, Brian Shoaf, has written and directed his first feature-length film, AARDVARK, which is premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival this week and next. He is participating in interviews about his film-- & -- and you can find information also at I am very,...  Read More
Apr. 21, 2017 9:54 am
Overheard, said in harsh rasping cockney tones, truth as hard as flint, just as hard to digest. A throwaway remark couched in racism, homophobia and plain old hatred. He had those dead codling eyes, and a half-whispered threat, at the bar footrail. It was half-time and his team were losing. Business as usual in the boozer, at lunchtime. Prelude to violence, either domestic or...  Read More
Apr. 21, 2017 8:46 am
Some say it's a panacea, some say it's a curse; that love of alcohol. In all of its guises, deftly advertised, a lifestyle no less, in its bottle, keg or draught, easily obtained, taxed by the exchequer, it's the acceptable face of self-medication and addiction. Government drugs for the masses. may as well sup up while Rome is dismantled. the 8th of June looms, like a link in an...  Read More
Apr. 21, 2017 8:39 am
It's a grim occupation; presiding over the demise of nature, in its beauty and majesty, but you seem to manage it with no real problem. In the gilded towers of your living spaces, you are light years from the real. Why worry?  Read More
Apr. 21, 2017 8:00 am
Another false dawn; Blair, blurring, blurring the boundaries of politics and spin, that sociopath Campbell waiting in the wings, in the grip of more big visions. The night New Labour drove socialism off the literal cliff; the TV feed of partying now-celebrity MPs, the stench of betrayal of all the core values, the ushering in of a far-from Golden Age. And now? A sclerotic party running...  Read More
Apr. 20, 2017 6:00 pm
Paying The Trust Tax I am a big believer in Stephen MR Covey’s definition of trust dividends and trust taxes . I believe along with a number of other organizational development professionals and behavioral scientists that trust forms the foundation of all high functioning relationships, whether personal or professional. I also believe that trust is not an entitlement. Our old leadership...  Read More
Apr. 20, 2017 11:00 am
The realisation that there were 3,000,000 people on the dole; it hit hard and heavy. No feasible future, Industrial wasteland abonding, fear in all its forms setting in. It seems wholly prescient of the current age; an age of uncertainty and doubt. Nothing much changes.  Read More
Apr. 19, 2017 8:08 am
easy to implement, like boiling a frog. Easy. Adverts. Easy. Credit. Easy. Celebrity endorsement. Easy. Spoon-fed lies and cant. Easy. Kicking-down to the lowest. Easy. And then curfews are called. blacklists drafted, military co-opted, freedom's a very fragile and relative term. We've been at the brink many times, and are again, almost daily. It's become a form of...  Read More
Apr. 19, 2017 8:01 am
And front pages scream lies, damned lies, and other scheming trivia, designed to discombobulate, filibustering, all the while the top percentile counts the money, the stocks made by the blood of the poor. Westlands helicopters killing East Timorese, anyone?  Read More
Apr. 19, 2017 7:53 am
Another election, one called to protect the guilty, is almost upon us. Democracy is so relative now, it's practically absurd. I will vote, though with zero enthusiasm. Mediocrity and sadness abound.  Read More
Apr. 18, 2017 8:18 am
One of those days; too many questions, too many presumptions made, too much time wasted on trivia. All the while, the festering mass of humanity, rots on your doorstep, teetering on the brink of a fake Apocalypse. I turn away from my screen, and resume life in the margins.  Read More
Apr. 18, 2017 1:35 am
Stephen K. Bannon, President Trump’s chief strategist, argued against the recent cruise missile attack on a Syrian air base. But Trump went ahead with the strike, which resulted in several days of what the president craves most: applause. And not just applause, bipartisan applause. Bannon has bickered openly with presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner in recent weeks, and Bannon’s trademark...  Read More
Apr. 18, 2017 12:58 am
Ton was the first resident I met on arriving at the New Life Thai Foundation. It was a fine, hot Saturday afternoon in mid-February and I taxied my way to the complex from Chiang Rai Airport following the short flight from Bangkok. After settling into the room that I would occupy for the best part of the next three weeks, I took a moment to better appraise the environs – hills, valleys, lakes and...  Read More
Apr. 17, 2017 6:00 pm
I want to share with you a simple tool that two people whose work I respect highly use regularly to improve decision making and head off highly probable but overlooked "gray rhino" risks: the humble Post-it Note. One of the key take-aways from my new book, THE GRAY RHINO: How to Recognize and Act on the Obvious Dangers We Ignore, is that we need to pay more attention to ideas from people who are...  Read More
Apr. 16, 2017 3:22 am
1. The Spinach, Popeye and Decimal Point Error Myth 2. The Chemistry of Crime Myth 3. The Zombie Cops Myth 4. Darwin's Dual-Immaculate Conception Myth Follow me on Twitter Here Don't be one of the zombie horde: Get your brain Nullius in Verba zombie-proofed at  Read More
Apr. 15, 2017 12:10 pm
Contemplating Dimensions Science fiction writers, as well as, scientists – cosmologists, astrophysicists theoretical physicists (e.g., Michio Kaku, Hugh Ross et al) - often discuss dimensions and movements through dimensions and time; such movements provide good entertainment. If one observes such programs, listen to such lectures and/or read some of these author’s books – particularly...  Read More
Apr. 14, 2017 2:35 pm
The “hard power” budget unveiled by President Trump last month proposes to boost military spending at the expense of many projects on the home front. Pretty soon, the Defense Department will find that there is nothing left at home to defend. It also proposes to slash the budgets for foreign aid and the United Nations. The budget is intended to "send a message to our allies and our potential...  Read More
Apr. 13, 2017 1:40 pm
During his campaign, President Donald Trump's professed admiration for Russian President Vladimir Putin and seems Russia was behind email hacks that meddled with election, in favor of Trump. Now it appears the budding relationship has soured over the war in Syria.  Read More
Apr. 13, 2017 12:54 pm
At the heart of the Subscription Economy is the idea that customers are happier subscribing to the outcomes they want, when they want them, rather than purchasing a product with the burden of ownership . ...Nicely put by Zuora , the SaaS platform company that drives many of the largest subscription services. They have popularized the term " subscription economy ," and recently created a ...  Read More
Apr. 13, 2017 8:26 am
Lying in, choking the alarm; Instant Zen. Avoiding the crush of traffic, heading off to an urban green space; Instant Zen. No guru, no doctrine, no road or city map. Just an insistence on the now. Hard to achieve, if you think about it. And that's the point; Don't think, act.  Read More
Apr. 13, 2017 8:19 am
He never was one for novelty, Frippery or throwaway lines. Neither am I, though frequently I head off into comedy territory. After all laughs win over tragedy.  Read More
Apr. 13, 2017 8:13 am
Through the wires; internet microfibre and phone lines, we made a bond, fragile at first as I myself was. And then we met. There is much to celebrate within our circle, a hard-fought romance, one that would not die, despite nature and experience throwing us curve balls galore. And so the summer of love happened, 24 years after the abortive one. Lucky me, lucky you.  Read More
Apr. 12, 2017 3:28 pm
Note: The parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32) is at the bottom of the page, but we have altered the parable so as to address what we think is neglected by the modern Church (we do not address why the Church has come to neglect - sin, and discussions of sin - but we do note that to any casual, but thoughtful observer, that the Church decidedly avoids seems to want to avoid discussions of...  Read More
Apr. 12, 2017 12:44 pm
Ditched in The Netherlands, led by my nether regions, into a bargain for my soul; easy enough as mine doesn't exist at least not in this version of my consciousness. In this version I ceased to exist in any recognisable sense, And gave up on this husk of a body. And then I awoke. Six months recovery, Much ridicule and long slumbers. I was ill then, I'm ill now, though at least wise to...  Read More
Apr. 12, 2017 8:16 am
It was those beers bought with dole money, money we didn't really have, money we still don't. We were burning out before our times; sitting on hillsides and re-imagining Charlie Parker, Kerouac and Ginsberg occupying the silences, as William S Burroughed into our heads and guts. It was never heady, more heavy, those summers spent dreaming, as some of our number quickly capitulated to...  Read More
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