Reparations Mean Benefits for All

A recent July 12, 2021 New York Times Daily Podcast, “A City’s Steps Toward Reparations” helped me better understand how wonderful and needed reparations are for society. When I first heard about reparations I, I had many questions and doubts. While I thought it was a good way that we could possibly makeup for some of the horrible ways African American’s were treated, I was unsure how reparations would help. However after learning about how the reparations were done in Evanston Illinois, to subsidize housing, I realized it was much better than I had thought.

During our history, African American’s had difficulty getting and owning property, not because of what they had done, but because of redlining laws, prejudice, and as we learned, because it was stolen. I encourage you to listen to the linked wonderful NYTimes Daily podcast so you also can understand how helping others helps move society forward for everyone and everything.

A City’s Steps Toward Reparations

Success breeds success, good begets good (See Good Begets Good and Bad Begets Bad: Green Grass Theory). We must do all we can to enable people to be the best version of themselves. Helping African Americans get what was previously withheld from them will enable them to meet at least their basic needs so they can move toward self- actualization. This therefore is an example of not only how to practice paneugenesis, but how to enable Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

This would be an example of how society can’t generate comprehensive benefits by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless interactions from which everyone and everything will benefit and while all improve, we can fix some things we had done wrong.

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please share your thoughts and questions below.


Is being a CodeBreaker best?

alter Isaacson’s new book about Jennifer Doudna and her journey to gene editing and the Noble Prize. He ask many important questions about what it means now and for our future. He is able accurately highlight the value of this technology and its riveting development, while also acknowledging the scary side.

CRISPR technology is a simple yet powerful tool for editing genomes. It allows researchers to easily alter CRISPR is a technology that can be used to edit genes and, as such, will likely change the world. The essence of CRISPR is simple: it’s a way of finding a specific bit of DNA inside a cell. After that, the next step in CRISPR gene editing is usually to alter that piece of DNA.

https://www.newscientist.com/definition/what-is-crispr/

He describes how easy it is to end up wanting to have a child that is smart, athletic, ore even have blonde hair and blue eyes – the Nazi trap. Is that the outcome if we leave it up to the open market? People generally want what is best and if people can choose the best options, why wouldn’t they? Government regulation concerns have been written about from Orwell’s 1984 to Huxley’s Brave New World.

While these concerns are appropriate, my perspective on his little bit different. While Walter Isaccson does an incredible job describing and helping the reader understand this complex topic, I was left thinking that he had not addressed the obvious dilemma of unfulfilled potential. If we do take the path of altering our genes to get an unfair advantage, what suggest it would be used? Our world is full of smart and talented people that have not fulfilled their potential. I am sure all of us have unused potential. We could all be better at many things, this however takes deliberate work to get better. Would people put in the time and effort? If so, why do they not do that now?

In addressing the issue of what is too much for gene editing, he asks, “what’s the difference between people who hire extra tutors or provide more opportunity to help kids develop or instead pay to change one’s gene’s?” This question is hard to answer, however an even harder question is what inspire them to work harder?

From my perspective, to treat genetically inherited diseases makes sense. Gene editing then can and should be used to eliminate diseases such as Hodgkins or Sickle Cell anemia for which we have no treatment. As Isaacson asks, what is the difference between doctors to treating diseases or starting treatment before it happens? Of course, changing something before it happens means we don’t know if there were positive potential options also eliminated.

The big question, just because they have the potential, does it mean they’re going to have the associated outcome? The other question is what else are we losing? Would a nicer personality in Steve Jobs still have produced the same results?

I think they’re jumping the gun about gene editing. Does gene editing guarantee a better in life? What do you think? Can we edit genes so people are more likely to want to generate comprehensive benefits? Can we create genes that such that the default thought is to create pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits? Or is the practice of paneugenesis, creating all good, something that must be learned?

As I reviewed this post, I realized it was all questions. My answer: I think it the better world will need to be nurtured and natured into our existence by creating an environment that nurtures, supports, encourages, and reinforces the practice of paneugenesis, the creation of all good, or more, not less disorder is likely. What do you think? I encourage you to read the book and share your thoughts.

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Advancing Salutogenesis Ideas

From my perspective, research, and general common sense, salutogenesis must be the idea we use to advance society to a better place. I also believe it should be understood, while it will be less bad, creating more good is the major attribute. A better reality, not possible now must be created. Salutogenesis is the origins of health. It is the idea, concept, theory, and approach to health that from my view is about the creation of good health beyond the absence of problems. It is not a better way to treat disease or discomfort, rather it is a way to create better outcomes not possible otherwise.

Last week, June 17-18, 2021, I participated and presented (virtually) in the 6th International Conference on Salutogenesis: Advancing Salutogenesis for thriving societies (see schedule here). It had been delayed due to COVID from April, 2020. The salutogenesis conference was included with the 11th IUHPE European Conference on Health Promotion.

I was also fortunate enough to participate in the 2nd Research Seminar on Salutogenesis in Finland in 2009. I presented, “What Makes People Thrive? The Salutogenesis Wellness Promotion Scale (SWPS)“. (unsure how those linked slides got online – however they are accurate. Please contact me if you want to discuss). I am happy to see the idea of thriving continues.

Upon returning from the conference in Finland in 2009, I was concerned the idea of salutogenesis was being used pathogenically. By that I mean the salutogenic techniques discussed were more focused on treatment and helping people recover than on creating a new and better reality. Which also, by definition, must mean bad things get better or become less problematic. To voice this idea, my response was to publish the linked article, “Salutogenesis 30 Years Later: Where do we go from here?“. Nine years later, in 2019, those in Europe who chose not to participate in the article I published wrote a related linked article, “Future directions for the concept of salutogenesis: a position article“.

My Presentations

Fortunately, since this virtual conference started at 3am for me, it was in Girona, Spain, I was able to send videos of my scheduled presentations (below). Each 10 minute presentation was supposed to be a conversation starter to generate a discussion about how to advance salutogenesis.

My first presentation, for the Advancing the Measurement of SOC (Sense of Coherence) section was, “Measurement of Sense of Coherence Model Constructs using the Salutogenic Wellness Promotion Scale (SWPS)“. This 10 minute presentation suggested doing studies using both the SOC and SWPS measurement tools to learn about more effective methods to direct health improvement interventions. If you choose to watch, please share your thoughts.

My second presentation in the Multilevel salutogenic intervention section was, “Health Promotion Policy Implications of Salutogenesis: Evidence from the Literature“. This 10 minute presentation was about how to advance the idea of salutogenesis beyond health. If you choose to watch, please share your thoughts.

If you watch these presentations and it generates ideas or thoughts, please share. Of course each of these ideas are an attempt to help generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. As I have noted previously, salutogenesis is an effective way to practice paneugenesis or create all good. I look forward to hearing from you about how we can advance the ideas of salutogenesis.

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

🧘🏻‍♀️🧘🏽‍♂️🧘🏼‍♀️MorningYoga is Great🧘🏻‍♀️🧘🏽‍♂️🧘🏼‍♀️

My family and I have now found a way to do 10 minutes of yoga a day, each morning, and it is great! Most mornings we meet using one of the available technologies – WebEx, Zoom, FaceTime, MS Teams, since our girls live in different cities. My daughters were the inspiration for yoga and now my wife and I are amazed because 10 minutes of yoga each morning has helped us increase our mobility and have a better day. Smart girls!

There are many options on the internet. We chose to join Kassandra for 10 minutes of yoga each morning and have liked her sessions. Here is her day 0 video.

We started her 30 day challenge and are now doing those 30 days for a second time. I now feel a desire to do yoga each morning because it makes me feel better and helps me feel ready to start my day. I also now notice significantly better flexibility, all from just 10 minutes of yoga a day.

I encourage you to try this, it is only 10 minutes. You don’t need to drive anywhere or even change your clothes. We have enjoyed adding this habit to our day. Please let us know how it has helped generate comprehensive improvements because it is a pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions from which everyone and everything benefits. Also please share if you find other good videos online.

Yoga is a way to practice paneugenesis with selfish, selfless, synergy. It is selfish because it is good for me, I feel better so I am better to others, selfless, which also makes it pervasive and likely reciprocal which generates synergy so we all do better. Thank you Kassandra for helping!

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

#GoodMorning

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

 

A Promised Land by Barack Obama is a Good Book

I listened to this 29+ hour audio book. It was a far more enjoyable read than I expected. This book was chosen as one of NYT Best Books of 2020 (click here for NYT review). Listening to the book also enabled me to get a lot of walking in since I wanted to keep walking so I could continue to listen.

President Obama is a good writer. The book was interesting because it not only reviewed his first term, it also provided a history lesson related to all the events that occurred during his presidency. As he described the events from his presidency, he interlaced stories about his family. For each event he also provided a continual dose of the introspection he went through during his trying presidency. Those passages helped me understand the challenges he faced.

Overall, I kept thinking – how did he endure? I was exhausted just listening to all the things he did. After reading, upon reflection it seemed even more exhausting. I realized he did all these things while under time constraints, in real-time and with only limited information. When reading we now have the benefit hindsight, no time constraints and know more. 

The book started with a discussion of the work that was done on the financial crisis he inherited. While working on that solution, he would also have to do other things such as a commencement address to graduates in the US or in UAB, or to a meeting with national leaders, to meetings about ongoing issues such as Birthergate pushed by Trump, or the BP oil leak in the gulf,  or to his daughters basketball team practice. I say “or” but really it was “and” because all these events were ongoing. It was clear he did many things.

I encourage all to listen or read and I don’t think it matters which side of the aisle you are on politically. I force myself to listen to the other side at times, and generally gain increased understanding and or perspective. Once again, it is not that I am deciding which way is best, but learning about what can be a better way. As Stephen Covey helped me understand in his book, The 3rd Alternative, it is not about my way or your way, but about working together to find a better way. If you are interested, I discuss how to use the 3rd alternative in these posts: Honoring Justice Scalia – Dare to DisagreeProgress Trumps Problems and Perfection, and We Need to Use the 3rd Alternative.

It appeared to me President Obama was continually searching for selfish, selfish, and synergistic solutions. In my view he was often able to generate comprehensive benefits by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, interactions so everyone and everything benefits. I found this book entertaining, educational, and helpful. If you read, please share your thoughts about what you learned about how to generate comprehensive benefits so everyone and everything benefits. I look forward to hearing from you.

Be Well’r, 

Craig Becker

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

 

Getting Better as We Fix What we Broke

Without question, especially speaking morally, we must fix what we broke. Relatively speaking, despite being the most educated and advanced civilization to date, we are causing damage to our environment, we are sicker and less happy and more in debt than we should be. We are more materially abundant than ever. Despite striving for and getting much more, we only learned that we cannot buy happiness or health, it must be earned.

Fixing what is broken also relates to prevention. Even if we prevent all problems, we have not intentionally done anything to promote a better outcome. To promote better we must enable more capacity and increased potential. If the focus changed from fixing what we broke to building more capacity, potential and partnerships, so a better future could be realized, we would get better while also fixing what we broke.

This is the only way to be better than we were before. This better leads to an increased ability to overcome inevitable difficulties that also provides a better potential to prevent or avoid inevitable difficulties. Our increased ability to overcome would result from having developed more abilities from the beneficial interactions generated from the redesign of reality.

Relatedly, the health promotion or health care movement became the disease treatment and prevention movement, instead of the health generation, creation and improvement movement. On this trek the field has sought to continually find the root cause of the problem instead of designing a reality for success. I describe this in the evolution of positive health video:

Of course it is good to eliminate external or “special causes”, however we also need to develop better methods to move beyond not bad, or zero, the status quo. If we already had the needed method, our goals would have already been achieved. Using methods to generate more skills and ability through pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions benefits everyone and everything, due to comprehensive systemic improvements. To achieve this +3 outcome, we must exceed expectations.

Doing Better than Fixing what we Broke: In “The Improvement Guide: A Practical Approach to Enhancing Organizational Performance” by Gerald J. Langley , Ronald D. Moen, Kevin M. Nolan, Thomas W. Nolan, Clifford L. Norman, Lloyd P. Provost they emphasized maintenance teams should be updated to become improvement teams (For more see Evolve Maintenance to Improvement to Create +3’s). Maintaining keeps things as they and this is insufficient when improvement is desired.


For example, often people interchangeably use sustainability and regeneration. They are different. Both are good, however regeneration ALWAYS supports sustainability but not all sustainable actions are regenerative. Regeneration also includes restoration, rejuvenation, renewal, replenishing, healing, nurturing, revitalizing, reenergizing, harmonizing and more. Regeneration is restoring and renewing systems as it improves the ability of those systems to restore, renew and heal more effectively if damaged. That means it is an improved or better version. (see figure below) 

Regeneration Means more than Sustainability

 

All of this relates to the Concept: Create More Good, Not Just Less Bad as posted on . More good means something akin to what McDonough and Braungart describe in their book Upcycle. As the chart below, displays more good, not just less bad optimizes the positive impact that is possible with Upcycle efforts. 

 

What does this mean?
I had started this post prior to attending a retreat we had at work related to race relations. Without question, better relations and improved interactions are a valuable and important goal and this means better methods are needed. I am also reading Marshall Rosenberg’s, NonViolent Communication. While the title seems to suggest it would be a focus on less bad, the contents demonstrate how to generate more good.
In the book he describes a 4 step process for more effective communication.

Four Components of NVC

  1. Observations – objectively observed concrete well-being impacting actions 
  2. Feelings – how do we feel in relation to what we observe
  3. Needs – identify the unmet needs, values, or desires that create those feelings
  4. Request – concrete actions we request in order to enrich our lives
At the retreat I attended, the initial keynote outlined all the unarguable facts of disadvantages that have resulted from our current methods. Using the method above I observed what happened. When I checked in with my feelings, I realized I agreed with everything said – there are were problems and bad actions had been taken. However the presentation left me feeling defensive. As Marshall Rosenberg explains, defensiveness makes compassionate actions difficult.
 
I needed a better way. A better method would have been a plan for everyone and everything to benefit, which by default must help those more disadvantaged most. If it did not do that, it would not be an optimized process. My request, lets work together to find a way to generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.
 
Last year I posted: MLK Day FOR Everyone’s Benefit, where I acknowledged how W. Edwards Deming insisted:
Defend your rights, you lose. – W. Edwards Deming
Although it may seem contradictory, Deming said this because he knew that we needed to make it better not just for one group, we needed to make a better system so everyone and everything benefits.
 
Please share how you will help build a better system and generate comprehensive improvements by letting us know how you create pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Together We Can Cause a Better “Upswing”

Robert Putnam’s new book, Upswing: how America came together a century ago and how we can again suggests we are the verge of a move toward togetherness. He further documents that our initial move mid 20th century from from”I” to “We” did not set sights high enough for what we could be or with regard to full inclusion because we did not Operationalize an Idealized Outcome to become what we really needed to be for it to work. The precursor of inclusiveness he suggests was left out because it would have been helpful to help all do better. Here is the review I posted on Good Reads and Google Books.

 

Upswing: how America came together a century ago and how we can again provided an interesting perspective. It was unique because it looked at changes over a longer period of time than is typical, 125 years. Generally books examine changes and hypothesize why. This books longer time frame was interesting because the view was about multiple changes that occurred. He described the changes as the I-We-I inverted U curve.

He demonstrated, with abundant data, how the selfish, individualistic period of the early 20th century, the Gilded Age, evolved into a communitarian, altruistic mid 20th century stage, in the 50’s and 60’s, that then moved back toward an individualistic “me” stage. He explained how the mid century move toward “we” did not aim high enough because it did not include race and gender benefits. He also documented that by aiming low, nobody did as well as they could have. In other words, we did not seek to “Exceed Expectations” as we should have.

Helping all in the “we” benefit would have helped all succeed better than the less inclusive benefits produced. He also put to rest the ideas that social media, big government, war, abundance, poverty or even immigration as “the” cause of the move to or from “I” or “We”. He explained that they could not be the primal cause because each of these factors caused movements either toward or away from both “we” and “I” depending on many other factors.

Overall he suggested that Tocqueville’s initial assessment of America in the early 1800’s that America was pursuing self-interest, rightly understood would be most beneficial. My understanding of self-interest rightly understood is that self-interest is best served when communitarian interests are also served well because it is not a zero sum trade-off or competition between communitarian equality and individual freedom.

Communitarian interests and individual freedoms are cumulative and additive because they can be mutually beneficial. Overall, this suggests benefits from #SelfishSelflessSynergistic actions. In other words, actions can provide individual benefits in ways that also serve others and are holistically beneficial. My understanding of Putnam’s recommendations are we should aim to generate actions that produce comprehensive benefits through the creation of pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

In this new year it would seem wise to follow Robert Putnam’s recommendations to help everyone and everything benefit from another Upswing!

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

 

Do Good, Ending Demonization is Not Enough

As NYTimes Columnist Michele Goldberg predicted, “…America (did) jettison its leader…” “But…” as she noted, “…a President Joe Biden won’t be able to simply pick up America’s role…” In a similar way we cannot go back to how we were. We have to do better. President Elect Biden followed this trend indicating that ending demonization was not enough

How do we do better? Where do we go now: CHAOS OR COMMUNITY?

In my bias view of the mandates, the Mandate to build community requires us to Practice Paneugenesis to generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic, interactions so everyone and everything benefits. We can start by doing as President Elect Biden suggested and give each other a chance by listening. This is great and I suggest you take it a step further when talking with others that have different perspectives and search for how they are similar to you rather than how they differ. This is more likely if instead of thinking it must be your way or their way, develop a better way. (For ideas see We Need to Use the 3rd Alternative)

These ideas were driven home to me by a thought provoking “Freakonomics” Podcast where Steven Dubner interviewed Whole Foods CEO John Mackay. The interview with Mr. Mackay was great and a few comments that he says he has learned over the years seemed especially good to me. One comment that stood out was when he explained that one side does not have all the answers, supporting the need for a better way rather than your way or their way. Further he suggested he aims for a win-win-win outcome so he does better, the other party does better and the environment does better. It seems he practices this and the win-win-win philosophy is a driving force behind “Whole Foods”. This win-win-win idea is also what drives my push for Selfish, Selfless, Synergy where I benefit, you benefit and the world benefits. #SelfishSelflessSynergy.

This election season should remind us that -We the people- have the power to build a better future. One way I try to do this is represented on a T-shirt I bought from the Kind coffee house in Colorado. The shirt says, “Make America Kind Again”. I think this is something we can all agree is important and valued. We also can understand how being kind is something we can all contribute toward accomplishing.

Please share how you can be kind to create win-win-win, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions by creating pervasive, reciprocal beneficial interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

Be Well’r,

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

 

Vote for More Good, Not Just Less Bad

In 2015 I made a similar post about the value and importance of Voting. I encourage you to vote. Your vote should be about the future and think about who plans to build a better future, not just a less bad future. When you vote, think how can I help generate Selfish, Selfless, Synergistic benefits.

As I noted in 2015, I Voted Today & Every Day We vote everyday by what we choose to do and how we choose to act because

“Economics is a value system masquerading as mathematics.”

This saying is a guiding light to me because it reminds me that every time I choose to buy or do something, I am voting. My actions demonstrate to others what I value because those choices are my vote on how I use my limited resources. This choice of what I buy or use sends the message that more of the same should be provided.

All of our choices send a vote about what we think is important. I choose to  spend my resources on what I want more of, not less in the world. I choose things that make me and us stronger, healthier and more capable so if something happens, and it will, we can bounce back. For most of the time, when nothing happens, we just have the ability to have a better life.

Vote Every Day to Help Create a Better World

I try to keep this in mind with all the choices I make by thinking about the impact my choice has on the others and the world. Plant based foods for instance are good for me and the planet while animal agriculture has been shown to do damage to personal and planetary health.

As an example, in this election I voted for candidates that support sustainability and other helpful issues. After voting day I will continue to vote for the same  by making choices that demonstrate that I want a stronger and more sustainable world.

A short article in my local small town paper explains how we can make our communities better.

      Anti-immigrant policies weaken America

[Excerpts – link above]…I moved to the U.S. from Manchester, U.K…It wasn’t only the lack of universal health care and paid family leave…that shocked me…America had long been a place known for welcoming outsiders from around the world and giving them the chance to thrive

…people here in North Carolina…have never treated me with anything but warmth and kindness. Getting to know them, I understand…Please consider…anti-immigrant policies will reduce money for Social Security and Medicare …mean(s) fewer new companies, smaller workforces and a slower recovery

As a group, immigrants…pay…taxes annually…create jobs…add…to our GDP…and get more Americans working.

I encourage you to vote today and everyday on what will generate comprehensive improvements because it creates interactions so everyone and everything benefits. Your vote can be a way to help generate comprehensive benefits by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

Be Well’r,

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Thank a Teacher! They Deserve It

I’m sure I’m biased because many in my family are teachers, however I am watching the teachers at our primary, middle, and high schools work extremely hard. All of the teachers, principals, and at school administrators work very long hours. On top of that what they are asked to do continually changes during this pandemic. Please take a few minutes to give your kids teachers a thank you. If you don’t have kids, but know teachers, please thank them.

All the teachers I know do their best to help kids be a better versions of themselves. I know they helped me become a better person. The requirement to go to online teaching has required extensive work on their part. They spend numerous hours in front of the computer trying to help the kids and many parents and do so much more. Most would rather teach face to face, however they know this is what must be done and they are doing great work for the kids.

Every teacher I know practices paneugenesis. Teachers are the perfect example of what it means to exhibit Selfish, Selfless, Synergy. #SelfishSelflessSynergy  I say this because I know they are generating comprehensive benefits by creating pervasive reciprocal selfish selfless synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. Please give them thanks, they have more than earned it and I know they greatly appreciate a note for their efforts.

Be Well’r,

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

“Smarter Taxes” Can Help Build our Ideal World

I have been reading Kate Raworth’s “Doughnut economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st Century Economist” and it is fantastic. She indicates more “Undoing” of what seemed correct is needed (see Undoing Needed because Mental Illusions Impact Us and To Improve: “Undoing” Needed to Create Better!).

This book has captured my attention and it is keeping it because there are so many wonderful detailed plans about how to do things in a better way. Instead of just saying why things are wrong, she provides an explanation about better ways and then how and why they are better…with examples. It appears her aim is more good, not just less bad. She provides multiple examples of #SelfishSelflessSynergy.

If you follow me, you know I have been suggesting we should “Create More Good, Not Just Less Bad”. I also suggest we can do this if we “Exceed Expectations” or what I call  +3. I detail this in my YouTube Video’s and my articles. I specifically address this in the “Exceed Expectations” video.


As noted in the title, she also explains how this can be true for taxes. While the idea of “Tax Relief” seems desirable, we need to remember that taxes are great because they enable us to fulfill the desires and needs of our society. Libraries, schools, parks, roads, green areas and all the things that make life better exist because of taxes. These government developed projects are public goods that enhance the well-being of everyone.

We also need to remember that those fantastic innovators at Google and Apple and others were only possible because of the public internet infrastructure built from taxes. From this perspective, taxes are a form of selfish, selfless, synergy or a way to practice paneugenesis and create all good. In other words, taxes can be a way to generate comprehensive benefits by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone an everything benefits. Well at least they could be, let me explain.

Kate Raworth’s book helped me see taxes from an even more beneficial perspective. As she explains, taxes change behaviors. By that she means what is taxed causes people to adjust what they do. For example, in the past when they taxed windows, people built houses without windows. Now, because they tax labor with payroll taxes, insurance, etc., corporations work to find ways to eliminate the expense of labor. These efforts have generated the wonderfully innovative invention of artificial intelligence (AI). AI, sometimes as robots, can now perform the actions of humans at a lower cost. In this way, taxes adjusted behaviors.

Behaviors demonstrate that taxes adjust behaviors so less use of what is taxed is substituted for things that are not taxed. Knowing this suggests we must update the tax code so we tax what we want less of and subsidize things we want to increase. Succinctly, she explains we should switch from taxing labor to taxing capital. Right now the taxing system encourages us to be creative to find ways for machines do the work instead of humans. For example:

main image

Autonomous Forklifts Replace Manned Forklifts, One Unit at a Time

The code will subsidize these forklifts, the capital, because their purchase costs will be used to decrease income and related taxes. However, if more employees were hired, this would increase costs and related taxes. To create more good we need to switch from focusing on increasing labor productivity to increasing resource productivity. Doing this means we will tax what we want to get rid of and subsidize what we want to increase and creativity will be used to create better working conditions for humans. The result of this should increase jobs and decrease resource use.

In a related example she discussed the traditional Corporate Response for requests to go green. The first group would do nothing wondering why they should change when their job is to make profits. The second group would only do what pays back, or do what is green if it can earn them more profits. The third group she identifies would only do their fair share. This concerned her because it seemed to subliminally suggest everyone has a right to pollute. The fourth group, with what seems to be good intentions, attempts to only  do no harm or mission zero. While this is good, she cited Will McDonough, of Cradle to Cradle and Upcycle fame (please see Concept: Create More Good, Not Just Less Bad)  who said that is only about being less bad, it is not being good.

Her recommendation is that organizations should focus on being generous. That is they should design their efforts to be regenerative by design. Studies also demonstrate this is a more profitable focus from many perspectives. This means their efforts give back and is what I describe as +3. These efforts aim to be regenerative so they provide biosphere stewardship and the result will be leaving the planet better than they found it.

I look forward to hearing about your generous efforts that will help benefit everyone and everything. Please share your efforts so we can learn from your selfish, selfless, synergistic actions. Thank you.

Be Well’r,

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Guest on Derek Bell’s “Highway to Well” Podcast

I was honored to be asked to be a guest on Derek Bell’s Highway to Well Podcast. It was fun to talk with Derek Bell about wellness and the future. If you are interested, I encourage you to listen to our podcast “Highway to Well: “Fall on Me“.

 
Highway to Well: "Fall on Me,” with Craig Becker

 I hope you enjoy this podcast and I hope it helps you understand how you can generate #SelfishSelflessSynergy or comprehensive improvements. Please share your thoughts below. Thank you.

Be Well’r,

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Proposed NYTimes Letter to the Editor about a Better Way

I read Paul Krugman’s July 27, 2020 New York Times (NYT) Column: The Cult of Selfishness is Killing America: The right has made irresponsible behavior a key principle. I found it interesting, and disturbing. Can’t we do more than complain? What was his recommended course of action? Seeing an opportunity, I put together a response to his column that I pasted below. I also encourage you read is column. #SelfishSelflessSynergy

Dear NYT Editor,

I think we can all agree, there must be a better way. Most of the NYTs articles published complain about the outcomes from current societal responses. With interest I read Paul Krugman’s July 27th article, “The Cult of Selfishness is Killing America”. I agree with Krugman’s suggestion that America’s response has been a lose-lose for individuals and society.

Mr. Krugman suggested impatience and the rush to reopen was part of the reason we are getting a lose-lose instead of a win-win outcome. He suggested the economy and the well-being are worse and that we are losing the battle because we are using a selfish plan, rather than a selfless plan that would help those hampered by the virus. He says this approach has hurt the economy and the well-being of Americans.

He then suggests the cult of selfishness and the fight for rights was hypocritical because while it proclaimed wearing a mask was a right infringement, a blind eye was given to the rights of protesters being tear gassed. As W. Edwards Deming prophetically proclaimed, “Defend your rights, you lose”. This proclamation decried attempts for individual rights over efforts focused on improving the system. To confirm Deming’s hypothesis, Krugman ends by explaining how these selfish acts to open the economy to get more, cause them and everyone to get less.

It seems this was a sophisticated attempt to tell others that one way was right, and the other way was wrong without offering a better way? The reader is left believing the only option is to agree not wearing a mask was wrong and wearing a mask was right. Unfortunately, this approach generally does not inspire people to change, rather it causes people to dig in their heels. The 3rd Alternative, as suggested by Stephen Covey, in a book by the same name, seems needed.

A 3rd alternative does not mean your way, or my way, but instead it is about finding a better way. It also is not a compromise where each side gets less of what they want, but it is a mashing of both ideas, so both get more of what they want. If they don’t, it is not a better way. If we step back, most will realize we all want the same things: a more active economy, jobs, open schools, lower risks and less virus cases and deaths.

In other words, we all want selfish benefits that can only result from selfless acts (i.e. wearing masks and social distancing) to generate synergistic results, a healthier, functioning society. Synergistic results are better results than could be achieved by either method alone. This means the way to generate comprehensive benefits, more jobs, a better economy, safe schools, and lower virus incidences can only happen from people engaging in Selfish, Selfless, Synergistic interactions from which everyone and everything benefits.

To move society forward, Paul Collier’s recommendation of reciprocal obligations, which are duties owed to one another such that it binds them, offered in “The Future of Capitalism”, seems useful. Reciprocal obligations are doing things such as developing and implementing or following traffic rules, paying for and or providing quality products or services, or just saying thank you when others provide help, feedback, assistance and or constructive criticism. Complying with current virus tracing efforts provides an opportunity. Collier clearly explains, obligations are akin to societal revenue just as rights are societal costs. Using the idea of reciprocal obligations can create a “richer” and more fulfilling society that yields more rights to all…as a by-product.

There is no downside to this approach. Everyone gets selfish benefits, a fulfilling interactive life, jobs and less sickness, selfless benefits, people can feel good for contributing and for doing good which will mean all can benefit from this synergy or a society that is more than the sum of its parts. Reciprocal obligations will enable all to be selfish, selfless and synergistic. This is Paneugenesis which literally means creating all good. (Pan = all, eu = good, genesis = creation) #SelfishSelflessSynergistic

Unfortunately, I had not read the instructions related to writing letters to the editor at the NYTimes. The instructions explain that letters are to have only 150-175 words, not the 600+ I offered. I therefore cut it down to less than 200 words and submitted it. I tried to keep the message , however I think something was lost in its brevity. I am therefore sharing this with you. What do you think?

I will keep you posted if my shortened letter gets published.

It was not published. Oh well, I will try again.

Either way, I think we can all agree that it would be good if we all start generating comprehensive benefits by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. What is our option?

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Contact me: BeWellr@gmail.com

Only Better Interactions Enable Improvement

James Clear shared scientist Marie Curie’s quote on the importance of self-improvement.

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end, each of us must work for his own improvement, and at the same time share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.”

Source: Pierre Curie

Without question, individual improvement is necessary, however self-improvement is insufficient. As we all know, we are interconnected in so many way that we are really all part of one large organism that forms life on earth. Improving just ourselves without understanding how it impacts others can damage the whole system.

W. Edwards Deming demonstrated over and over again that if any department attempts to be the most profitable without considering the impact its actions have on the whole organization, it can destroy the organization. Even if it does become very profitable…an example of

     The operation was a success, but the patient died.

Our goal must be to simultaneously improve ourselves in ways that also positively contribute to  society. A system works better by finding ways for the interactions between its parts to work better. From this perspective then, the best way to improve overall is to improve how the parts work together, or our interactions with everyone and everything.

As James Lovelock explains in his scientific papers and in his Gaia Hypothesis, our interactions with earth must help it thrive, for us to thrive. If we create interactions that are beneficial to us and the planet, both do better and we co-evolve into a better way of being. If interactions are only beneficial to us and not to the planet, as is the current condition, we will cause environmental and human bankruptcy. I think we know what that means (i.e. earth takes an evolutionary trip without us).

We must develop interactions that provide Selfish, Selfless, Synergy to generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. #SelfishSelflessSynergy This means our daily aim, rather than how can I improve just myself can be, “How can I make my contribution today?” because this will create interactions from which everyone and everything benefits.

Quick examples of how to make contributions:

  1. Eat More Plants
  2. Bike or walk
  3. Plant a garden
  4. Learn how things are interconnected
  5. Help others
  6. Contribute to collective intelligence

Each of these actions are helpful because they are ways to generate comprehensive improvements by practicing paneugenesis. Collective intelligence can result from practicing paneugenesis.

Collective intelligence, as described by Geoff Mulligan in his book, “Big Mind: How Collective Intelligence Can Change Our World“, is the result of the ability to link observation, analysis, creativity, memory, judgement and wisdom in a way that is much more than the sum of its parts. Collective intelligence can only result from better collaborative interactions. This means collective intelligence is synergy such that it improves the ability to predict and improve (though he suggests prevent). Prevention is just less bad, not more good. Collective Intelligence can generate  More Good, Not Just Less Bad. More good being generated results by creating better interactions between man and machine, not just man but Man + Machine (see Will AI or Man be the Last Standing?)

Please promote and share how you contribute to collective intelligence and then are able to generate comprehensive improvements that make your and our lives better! We all look forward to hearing from you. Please share to generate collective intelligence…

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Contact me: BeWellr@gmail.com

Improve Your Life and Contribute to All as a Side-Effect

You can always count on Americans to do the right thing – after they’ve tried everything else.

Winston Churchill

Doing the right things is Selfish, Selfless, Synergy.  Although the movie is called, “EndGame2050”, it is not how to end the game but how to start living better so everyone and everything benefits. Remember, as explained in The Inner Game of Tennis Provides a Focus for Life“, playing competitive games are really just advanced collaboration because it helps participants perform their best, or better than they would otherwise. “EndGame2050” gives us clues on how to have the best life that also contributes to everyone and everything.

For those that follow, you know I continually promote comprehensive improvements. One thing that may not be as clear is that the most effective way to generate comprehensive improvements improves our lives. It makes sense that what is best for us is also best for the planet. In other words, what is best for each of us, selfish, is best for others, Selfless, as it benefits everyone and everything else, Synergy.  #SelfishSelflessSynergy

In another education, sober movie, EndGame 2050 ends by explaining the specific actions we can take to make our lives better that also benefit the planet. Remember, not only do you get to feel good, you also get to feel good for doing good! This means we feel even better due to secondary beneficence.I encourage you to watch this movie. Remember the beginning is difficult to watch.

This means the movie promotes ways to Practice Paneugenesis because it will help us generate comprehensive improvements by helping us see how to generate pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. Please promote how you generate comprehensive improvements that make your life better! We all look forward to hearing from you. Please share…

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

#SelfishSelflessSynergy

Please share your thoughts and questions below.

Contact me: BeWellr@gmail.com