Recyling – How did they get me to care?

RecyclingEmpty six pack in hand, but not for much longer, I am just about to drop it in the earth saving blue bin right outside my garage. I am far from an Al Gore inspired environmentalist and yet here I am taking the extra steps to help save the world. How did I get to this point?

I was never the type that would be careless with my trash but I just wasn’t all that interested in recycling. I knew it could be helpful to the environment but in the past it was inconvenient for two reasons #1. I had to make a special trip to do it and #2. It would clutter up and be unsightly until critical mass was obtained to make the special trip worthwhile. I resisted changing my behavior to adopt what I knew was a good thing until they made it easy and took away my objections by providing a big blue container and regular every other week recycling that required no special trip. Pretty sneaky but effective way to inflict change on someone that is not all that interested in changing  behaviors. Here is the process in a nutshell

1. Communicate the benefit of the desired change. Let it seep early and often to help bring the objections to change out into the open and to start building consensus that the change is worthwhile.

2. Understand the objections to change

3. Modify and make continuous improvement to the approach and take away objections on why the change isn’t worth adopting. Make it simple for people to adopt the change you want by taking away the objections and making it easy to do something different. (Think about the evolution of recycling from having no recycling > Far away recycling centers > Closer recycling centers > Curbside recycling on a routine basis.

Make change so easy that even those that don’t care go along anyway…

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The most overrated trait in modern day America

Spontaneity. It has become the substitute for being short sighted and irresponsible. Let caution to the wind. Buy one more useless thing you don’t need to put yourself in long term financial straits. Or worse yet do something idiotic and dangerous for a short term fix much like a heroin junkies next hit. No thanks I get my excitement from achievement and living by my terms not by making excuses for being short sighted and irresponsible.

It is spontaneous to take a dump in a public restroom without first looking if there is any toilet paper to wipe. How smart is that? How much different is most of what passes for spontaneity in this day and age?

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A disturbing trip to the local library

libraryI took my kids to the local public library today so they could get some books for an upcoming book report. Usually, I relax with a book and let them hunt down the books they are looking for while keeping an eye on where they are going. This time I decided to help them browse and was pretty depressed at all the garbage books just waiting to help indoctrinate our youth with the most popular liberal ideology of the day. Just  a quick glance showed me crappy offerings on:

  • Global warming included the Inconvenient Truth aka that hypocrite Big Al who helps pollute the world at will with his private jet flights.
  • Numerous books on Islam the religion of peace
  • A book indoctrinating youth to the evils of capitalism
  • More Obama worship than even a middle of the road can stomach

After seeing that I was wondering what kind of parent would encourage their children to become a mindless leftist drone and found this funny little question on the Internet from a parent seeking to indoctrinate educate their future sheep on left wing causes:

Do you know any good left wing propoganda for toddlers?

Please help me identify some lefty / liberal children’s books appropriate for a 3 year old (and up as I have noticed she tends to get older every day).

I have a 3 year old daughter, we read a lot of books together. Her mom and I are committed to progressive political action and would like to introduce some cool, fun, lefty books to the collection. We have a handful, but I’d like to expand. I am thinking about books that discuss race, class, struggle, civil rights, gender issues, environmentalism, etc. We are well to the left of the American mainstream, but we’ll take liberalish stuff too.

Can’t wait to see if their daughter grows up to be an empowered carousel rider when shes all grownz up!

Posted in Family Life | Tagged | 5 Comments

Does faking it til you make it work?

FakingItThe self improvement strategy of faking it til you make it is often preached as an effective way to improve. Faking it til you make it has been advocated as a way to improve health habits, financial discipline, career prospects, and by pick up artists as an effective way to become a modern day Porfirio Rubirosa. How effective is it? It is hard to say for certain since there are a lot of factors that are hard to isolate.

If you are already self confident and assertive I am skeptical that faking til you make it will bring about the desired changes in your life. Most forms of lasting self improvement require a more Napoleon Hillesque form of self improvement that involves developing and sticking to a plan, self control and aligning yourself with a powerful network that can aid you in your desired goal.

Faking it until you make it feels like a modern day lone wolf digital apprenticeship but that is a poor man’s substitute to finding a real life mentor that has achieved what you seek to do. Someone who is accomplished, has a strong network that you can benefit from and is willing to show you the ropes is the old school wisdom of the ancients known as an apprenticeship. Studying with a mentor has been the method of successful men from Cro Magnon hunters, Alexander the Great who studied under Aristotle all the way down to modern day oligarchs of finance and politics. If oligarchs are not your thing this is also how highly skilled blue collar tradesmen like electricians and welders hone their craft. When it comes to electricity would you fake it til you make it?

I have no doubt that faking it til you make it can help for making minor life changes especially when someone is starting from a relatively fragile foundation. True power moves require participating in what Napoleon Hill called The Mastermind network. There is nothing more powerful than a network of talented people unite for a common purpose.

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Living a life of adventure

wildwestI had a few friends over last night and we were reminiscing about adventures of the past. It’s funny how the stories we always retell are not the present day ones. After all we have high(er) status job now and make awesome money to support a comfortable living and have plenty left to invest for the future. We are at the peak of what worldly wisdom says is the time of our lives but we tell stories about the times when we had freedom and recklessly sought excitement around the world. Freedom and the ability to own your time make for a more exciting life than being a clock punching big wig. Even with a great career I am still part of the desk jockey club that Hawaiian libertarian speaks of. It’s not soul killing because I now like what I do after a recent career direction change. But it’s not Thailand in a rickshaw with a good buzz next to a smoking hot 18 year old on a highway with cars whizzing by at 70 miles per hour.

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Taking the bullet when it isn’t yours to take?

bulletI understand it is healthy for a man to take a look in the mirror and see how he can improve for the future based on previous experience. But sometimes this goes to far into letting another responsible adult off the hook. Take the following quote as an example:

“For the record my ex-wife may be crazy but in retrospect it was me who lost my alpha edge in the   marriage and pushed her into being a bitch towards me.”

Can you really make someone be a bitch? No, men need to stop letting women’s bad behavior off the hook and subscribing to some false concept of “manning up”. You may have contributed to the situation but ask yourself a few questions:

Didn’t both of you promise til death do you part?

Was she the one to break that vow?

Is losing your alpha edge mentioned anywhere in the vow ? In sickness and in health, til death do you part (unless he loses his alpha edge!)

Why accept blame that is probably at most 20% your fault? Put the blame where it belongs and don’t let her off the hook. You didn’t make her a bitch, genetics and a poor disposition did that.

Posted in Deep Thoughts, Divorce | 1 Comment

Everyone has regrets

Jacksonuel“I have only two regrets: I didn’t shoot Henry Clay and I didn’t hang John C. Calhoun.”

Everyone has regrets. But not many are as bad ass as General Jackson’s are. By far my favorite president he was a warrior who did everything with style. Don’t live in the past unless there is a Calhoun on your list you haven’t settled affairs with…

PS: These 2 schemers would have run at the site of our good General.

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How do you find love if you are focused on protecting against divorce?

A new poster to one of my old divorce threads asked an interesting question “How does a man find love if you are focused on protecting against divorce?” My reflex reaction was that what followed was going to be a trollish comment and I was going to reply “How do you enjoy your new home when you have to get fire insurance beforehand because you are focused on protecting against fire?”. After reading the rest of the comment it became apparent it was actually a legitimate question and one that I really can not answer. It is a bit like asking how can you love as deeply and as blindly as your first time before you suffered a life changing heart break. Some people can repress it and throw themselves right back in and make like it never happened. Others are forever changed by the experience and will no longer trust or love as deeply quite again. There is no playbook answer in those circumstances a lot of it will depend on your previous life experiences and how you best cope and move forward after tough circumstances come your way.

Can you find love if you are focused protecting against divorce? To me the better question is if you find love will you still protect yourself and what you have worked for against the possibility of ruin. No fault divorce, cultural disintegration of divorce stigma, and the potential lure of cash and prizes creates risk. You can still plunge in and take that risk, that is what life is about. But when you go sky diving you take a backup parachute just in case. How are you going to protect yourself while still giving yourself a shot at love? I do not see many benefits that can not be obtained through a committed relationship vs. what has become of modern day marriage.

Posted in Divorce | Tagged | 2 Comments

Is teacher quality soon to be history?

FoundersI was enjoying a laid back Sunday afternoon at an out of town sports bar watching the early football games on Sunday. Was enjoying some banter with a reasonably attractive recent graduate sitting next to me. She mentioned she was a soon to be history teacher for high school so I figured she must be a bit of a history nerd. Told her I’d buy her a beer if she could name the first 5 presidents in order. She didn’t get past Washington without suggesting Aaron Burr as the 2nd. I had to mercifully let her off the hook after several other failed guesses of people who were never president and a bold proclamation that anyone can memorize facts and it really wasn’t that important. She will soon be teaching some soon to be perpetually ignorant students of history. I guess some history nerds are actually fleeing from math, science, and facts.

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Ten types of Churches/Christians I don’t trust

thecrossI consider myself a currently lapsed Catholic that will return to the fold at some point in a traditional Church where the mass is still conducted in Latin. There is still truth out there but it is increasingly rare these days. So much of what passes as the Christian religion is fake and disgustingly anti gospel. Here is the worst of the worst the 10 types of “christians that in true Bon Jovi style give Christ a bad name”

1. Churches that placate women’s bad behavior and shame men to distract the truth. Dalrock covers this on a regular and that is why I read his blog and avoid these type of hell on earth holes.

2. Prosperity gospel preachers that enrich themselves by selling false hope and bad theology. Try to get one of these hacks to explain why suffering exists and it will likely be because you haven’t Creflo’d enough dollars in their collection plate.

3. Christians that have no appreciation for ancient traditions and don’t understand history. If you don’t understand where you came from how do you know what you are?

4. Churches that make sin cheap and excuse bad behavior if it keeps people in the seats and dough in the coffers.

5. Churches that worship the Bible but do not understand where it came from. Without understanding the history of how scripture came to pass you really know nothing about the early Church or the true faith of the Apostles.

6. Churches that split over ever misunderstanding and difference. What is 0 / 0 again?

7. Christians that try to explain suffering.

8. Churches that focus on rapture theology and why they will be spared the impending doom.

9. Churches that claim to literally interpret scripture but upon closer inspection no one is missing any eyes…

10. Christians that turn Jesus into a boyfriend or a home boy. Wait is there a space between home and boy? On second thought who cares…

If you want faith why wouldn’t you take it like I take my Jack Daniels, straight?

Posted in Religion | 3 Comments