Three Old Blog Posts Came Back to Haunt Me This Week

Where Are We Heading? What Does July 4th Mean? The Key Questions Call Us Out

What Started This Blog in The First Place?

This little blog came to life in June of 2018. The first post raised the issue of how we could relate to each other going forward as fellow Americans:
Of Tribes, Truth, and Our Country –
https://agentsofreason.com/of-tribes-truth-and-our-country/ .

This was followed the same week by a sobering reminder of what I saw on the ground in trips to the Middle East – Countries that had lost the ability to talk among themselves,

An Homage to Our Senses

We May Overlook the Gifts of Our Senses. Today, We Recognize Them

A Change of Pace for Agents of Reason

More times than not, this blog talks about our lack of sense – as in Common Sense. National and international news has been so intense of late (and will get more so over the next 6 months), I thought we could use a little change in focus for today. About those other senses, not about common sense.

I have mentioned from time to time how important our senses are, but only in passing.

Core Issues – Balance and Perspective

Deciding Issues of Rights, Responsibilities, and Governance

Two Topics Dominate the News – More is at Stake Than the Obvious

 While Ukraine and other important issues continue to be important and visible, two new topics have seized the headlines and our consciousness: the sale of Twitter and the risks to reproductive freedom, especially for those without economic or political power, in today’s America.

Both issues have some components that often are overlooked but are key to why there is so much energy around both issues. Let’s take a look.

 Twitter

The still to be finalized but likely to go through purchase of Twitter by Elon Musk,

What We Need Is Trust

Part II of the Discussion – The Workplace and, Meeting Space Deficits

 

Trust Writ Large

We talked earlier this week about the serious erosion of social trust, including the all -important but often unrecognized weak link trust that makes for a functioning society. We discussed that while a bit of this is a part of human nature, the downside of such distrust got a long term and deep boost from the Reagan era, which fed right into what the conspiracy theorists and far righters have brought to maturity over the last 4-6 years.

So Much Comes Down to Trust

It Seems a Rare Commodity These Days. That Hurts Us All

 

First of a Two-Part Commentary

Let’s take a bit of time to talk about trust. Today, the general nature and specific outcomes from whether we have trust or not. Later in the week, we will talk a bit about how this is being reflected in the workplace and in other gatherings. Some important rumblings are happening that we should take account of, and address.

Trust as An Essential Social Element

A lot has been written of late about the element of social trust perhaps being another long-term casualty of the pandemic.

Reflections on Memorials

Memorial Services Remind Us of  Important Truths and Priorities

A First Such Gathering in a Long Time

 Last week I attended a memorial service for a friend. It was one of the first such gatherings I have participated in since the pandemic began. After such a long absence, I remembered of why such assemblies are important to us all.

By “us all,” I refer not only to the memory of those lost to us, but also to their families, friends, acquaintances, and the larger community.

Different Communities Do This in Very Different Ways

I am a  Unitarian Universalist,

Short Observations on a Busy, Weird Week

The Last Few Days Have Been Long on the Sublime and the Ridiculous

 

Starting with the Easy Stuff

The Academy Awards

I have long found it increasingly harder to care at all about the Academy Awards. It seems a party of self-congratulation among people whose lives have zero relevance or connection to the rest of the world. But, hey, I have my favorite movies, too and and sometimes the outcomes are interesting. The Big News this time, of course was Will Smith slapping Chris Rock. Four VERY short observations:

  • Way too much has been written and discussed on this little dustup already.

At What Levels Do We Connect and Decide?

What Properly Belongs as Global, National, or State Level Decisions – The Balance is Not Easy

The Traditional Answers

The standard answer for years, to the question of at what level of government should laws be passed, and rules made, has been at the lowest level possible. The underwriting principle is that such government is more likely to be close to the people and more subject to their desires.

Sounds right, and a case could be made that this a good starting point for any such discussion. But the reality demonstrates this is often not the best solution.

The Best Advice and Experience May Come from Wildly Different Sources

My Life Has Run That Course. Allow Me to Share Two Different But Shared Paths

What Skills and Mindset are Important in Life?

How about that for a “simple question” to begin this with?  Might as well go big and aim for the core issues, I think. Life demands a lot of all of us – some more than others, but all of us at one time or another. The list of important and desirable traits and approaches is long, but two seem to me to be pretty near the top of the list in a modern,

Big & Little Things Noted Lately

Funny How Things Catch Your Attention. Here are a Few That Caught My Eye Today

 TV Interviews at Home

 One thing the pandemic made routine was people on tv being interviewed in their homes. We have been doing this for two years now, and some people are on tv regularly being seen from their homes.

For these repeaters, I am really surprised that we see that we are in their bedrooms, or kitchen, or some other space that looks unprofessional. By now, one would think they would put up a background screen or use one of the electronic backgrounds readily available,