Like any other sort of human vice, selfishness -- or the excessive concern with one's own individual desires and appetites -- can be threatening to the established social order if it slips out of control. Our own definition of selfishness takes into account its social effects: we establish selfishness as a vice by emphasizing not only the excessive self-regard it demonstrates, but also the excessive disregard for the well-being of others that accompanies it. Selfishness can thus be considered as an active potential threat to the established order under certain circumstances, but here we reach a paradox. The structure of American society is such that the economic and ideological system which serves as its underpinning, and which we may loosely define as "capitalistic," to a certain degree presents selfishness as a virtue, or at least regards it as an amoral process with no deleterious real-world effects for society. I…… [Read More]
Selfishness of Employees
There are a number of problems that need to be addressed by the company, and to do this will require decisive leadership. That leadership must combine a common strategic vision with the ability to transfer ideas between cultures. This paper will explain this concept of leadership as it pertains to running a global organization that faces some difficulties.
There are a number of different communications issues that have lead to the current situation. The employees around the world are not working to a common objective. Additionally, they each have a differing view on moral and ethical issues, and how to manage the company. There are also issues with employee fit, where some employees do not properly fit with their roles within the company. This leads to reductions in workplace satisfaction and other problems.
There are a number of different leadership theories that are applicable in this circumstance.…… [Read More]
Rand's Rational Self Interest
Rand’s philosophy regarding selfishness and altruism contains a crucial dichotomy, as virtually anyone’s philosophy regarding opposite concepts would. However, the opposition in Rand’s concept may surprise those who are not familiar with her philosophy. At a very basic level, Rand is stating that selfishness is actually good, and that altruism is really evil in “Introduction to the Virtue of Selfishness”. Thus, there is opposition found within this opposition, as most people would say the inverse of the aforementioned statement. However, the author reveals there are facets of selfishness which are morally beneficial, and aspects of altruism which are decidedly malefic.
Rand’s philosophy, then, is that the polarization of these terms is responsible for the moral boons of the former and the moral disadvantages of the latter. The author states that most people equate selfishness with a blanket “evil” (Rand 5), which they do not distinguish from…… [Read More]
In this example, morality is decided by the gain, pleasure, and other self-interest of the individual donning the ring. Such individuals would more than likely obtain this gain by committing illicit activities, such as robbing a bank, but use their winnings for fairly self-absorbed means to further their consumption of whatever suits their fancy. Houses, cars, women and other material items would more than likely be procured, for the simple fact that the individual is sating his own personal desires. In this case there is no need to act ethically, since the bearer of the ring is outside of the judgment (both literally and figuratively) of others, whose morals no longer apply to that individual.
The Rashomon effect describes the degree of subjectivity involved in the recollection of a memory, and is what is attributed to the fact that different people may recall the same incident with conflicting descriptions of…… [Read More]
Horatio Alger" by Harlon L. Dalton.
The Horatio Alger myth is the 'rags to riches' story that America likes to represent itself as. Hard work and perseverance can pull the poor out of poverty and make him rich. The problem is that this myth is only partially true. Analysis of the myth shows that accompanying conditions necessitate integrity and honesty. It is only the privileged few who can possess wealth within the framework of integrity and honesty. Dalton insists that the myth is false when applied to people of Black extraction. It seems to me that the myth is false when applied to individuals of any extraction for conditions of the corporate world, particularly of the world of today and particularly for the disgruntled poor, necessitate conniving, Self-centeredness, selfishness, and other omission of values to succeed. Black people -- as any -- can become wealthy; they may need to renounce…… [Read More]
Worst Faults a Military Leader Can Exhibit:
Incompetence, selfishness, and living in the past
"If America is to meet the multiple challenges of the 21st century, it is crucial that we develop a system that places the right people in the right places in government at the right moment."[footnoteRef:1] ut just as critical as being the 'right' type of leader is avoiding making some of the most typical mistakes of poor leaders of the past. Incompetence and disorganization; fighting the last war rather than the current conflict (i.e., living in the past); selfishness and a focus on the personal ego rather than the actual needs of the nation are the three worst faults a leader can exhibit. [1: J. McCausland, "Developing strategic leaders for the 21st century," Strategic Studies Institute, 2008. Available: http://www.StrategicStudiesInstitute.army.mil / (26 Sept 2013), xi]
On a very basic level, military leaders must have basic organizational skills.…… [Read More]
Unlike hadcoe altuism, no assumption of elatedness is necessay. Soft-coe altuism is diected beyond kin as a simple exchange of favos. (Gachte & Falk, 2002, pp1-25) Unlike hadcoe altuism, the soft-coe vaiety is less fimly tiggeed by the spontaneous calculus of the genes and moe "deeply influenced by the vagaies of cultual evolution. (Yamagishi, 1992, pp267-87) Unlike the hadcoe species in which the altuistic act is genuinely diected at othes even though one's own genes ae benefited, soft-coe altuism is ultimately moe selfish and dependent upon ecipocation as a condition fo its aousal. (Bingham, 1999, pp133-69) Unlike hadcoe altuism which is lagely "iational," soft-coe altuism equies calculation, "often in a wholly conscious way, to ensue one's needs ae seved, even though emotive mechanisms like deceit and petense may also infom this behavio. Wilson's tem "softcoe" app11es to the pinciple of ecipocal altuism fist outlined in a pape by R. Tives…… [Read More]
Family to Family by Pipes and Lee
After earning his Doctor of Ministry from Luther Rice Seminary, Dr. Jerry Pipes dedicated his life to the cause of using spirituality as the foundation for strengthening family ties, with Family to Family: Leaving a Lasting Legacy standing as one of his lasting contributions to that cause. Victor Lee -- Pipes' co-author on the project -- serves as the Minister of Single Adults & Evangelism at First aptist Concord, in Knoxville, Tennessee, and his specialized skill set in the realm of ministry to young people is prevalent throughout the book. Together, Pipes and Lee combine to tackle the age-old dilemma facing families everywhere: emotional distance between spouses, a lack of connection between parents and children, and rivalries between siblings. Rather than devote several chapters to a discussion of why these problems seem to afflict families across all spectrums -- including religious and secular…… [Read More]
Searching for One's Self
The rigors and difficulty associated with finding the self-presented by Robert Thurman and Azar Nafisi contrast with the idea of selfhood presented by Jean Twenge in markedly different ways. This fact is underscored all the more clearly by reading Thurman's "Wisdom," Nafisi's "Selections from Reading Lolita in Tehran" and Twenge's "An Army of One: Me." Specifically, Thurman and Nafisi are actually concerned with an exploration of the self to discover a unique identity within an individual. Twenge, on the other hand, is writing about the self in relation to the concept of selfishness, and largely posits the notion that the preoccupation with the self that typifies contemporary society is innately limiting in this regard. Quite simply, there is no difficulty associated with the sort of selfish selfhood that Twenge writes about, whereas such difficulties dominate the writings of Thurman and Nafisis because they are about finding…… [Read More]
This is a clear and explicit statement of the gods' selfishness, and in the context of the story of Zeus' in particular. There is no other reason provided for his desire to keep fire away from humanity; it is not out of a prudent and paternal fear of fire's destructive powers, nor because of something divine in the very essence of fire that is not to be sullied by human hands, but merely because it is part of the "stuff of life," and the gods do not feel like sharing. It is one more way in which Zeus can feel superior to man, and though this type of petty selfishness might not be very becoming to the king of gods in the Greek pantheon, maker of thunder and lover of swans, it is certainly appropriate for a villain.
So, too, is the ingenuity with which Zeus goes about punishing mankind…… [Read More]
The novels "Catch-22" and "Something Happened" demonstrates the inevitable presence of black humor, irrationality and immorality that prevails in times of war or conflict in human society, as humans pursue power and superiority -- that is, survival (of the fittest).
Outlining of the three major themes discussed in the paper, namely: black humor, irrationality, and immorality in Catch-22, mainly centering on the characters in the novel. Comparison of "Catch-22" against another Heller novel, "Something Happened."
Illustrations of lack Humor in "Catch-22" vis-a-vis "Something Happened"
Demonstrations of irrationality in "Catch-22" vis-a-vis "Something Happened"
Presence of immorality in "Catch-22" vis-a-vis "Something Happened"
Heller's consistent portrayal of humanity as ultimately irrational and immoral portrays humans' innate need to survive regardless of the means by which they achieve it (survival).
Conclusion: Reiteration of the thesis statement
lack Humor, Irrationality and Immorality of Human Society as Portrayed in Joseph Heller's novels (Catch-22…… [Read More]
William F. Baxter argues in favor of a people-oriented perspective on environmentalism in his article "People or Penguins." According to Baxter, measures to protect or conserve natural resources are only meaningful if they benefit human beings. In fact, the author asserts that concerns like clean air and water should be the means, not the end. Human beings, Baxter feels, are the end. Penguins and pine trees matter insofar as they please human beings, but they do not matter for their own sake. To support his arguments, Baxter first outlines four philosophical criteria by which he bases his observations about environmentalism. First, Baxter urges that all persons should do as they will as long as they do not "interfere with the interests of other human beings," (604). Second, Baxter notes that human beings possess limited resources, not just natural products like coal or water but also human labor resources. Therefore,…… [Read More]
Alexis De Tocqueville
In every era of equality each man looks for his beliefs within his self and in the era of equality men are unconnected of one another, isolated, and frail. (Vol: 2; Section 1: Chapter: 3) In a democratic society, the citizens are extremely defenseless, however the state, that characterize them all and holds them all its clutches, is extremely authoritative. In no other form of administration, citizens are irrelevant as in a democratic country. (Vol: 2; Section 1: Chapter: 12) Alexis de Tocqueville was of the view that increased forms of equality tend to move towards isolation. In case of a democratic nation where all the citizens enjoy equal status, and are observed from a proximal distance from each other, individuals are cocooned within themselves and contend upon evaluating the world from that standpoint.
The custom of Americans guides their minds to other habits, to setting up…… [Read More]
Dry hite Season
In Andre Brink's novel A Dry hite Season, the background of apartheid-era South Africa sets the stage for a legal battle which challenged the racial policies of the period. During Apartheid, the governmental regime set about a system of government-sanctioned racism which forced the black people of the area to suffer greatly. The story is on the surface a murder mystery which then enters the genre of political thriller. The central character of the story is white school teacher Ben du Toit. Although he begins the story as a selfish man concerned more with preserving the status quo and with it his own protection than in investigating the brutality of an assault on an innocent young man. Through the course of the story, du Toit evolves into a man who cannot stand by while allowing the present racist government policy to continue on unquestioned. His selfishness morphs…… [Read More]
Ayn Rand's The Ethics of Emergencies speaks about the value of selfishness or self-interest. Although "selfishness" might seem negative at first, Rand's explanation makes quite a bit of sense. Rand speaks about selfishness as a rational process in which a person sets his/her hierarchy of values and lives according to those values in order to achieve the moral purpose of life: one's own happiness.
Summary of The Ethics of Emergencies
According to Ayn Rand's The Ethics of Emergencies, the moral purpose of life is to achieve one's own happiness. Describing her belief in Objectivism in 1962, Rand stated, "Man -- every man -- is an end in himself, not the means to the ends of others. He must exist for his own sake, neither sacrificing himself to others nor sacrificing others to himself. The pursuit of his own rational self-interest and of his own happiness is the highest…… [Read More]
"The Envelope. In your mail, there's something from UNICEF. After reading it through you correctly believe that, unless you soon send in a check for $100, then, instead of each living many more years, over thirty more children will die soon" (Unger, 1996:9, cited by Gordon, 1998). But people throw the UNICEF envelope out and buy a new pair of shoes instead.
Evolutionary theory states that the altruistic impulse has survived because it is helpful for the species to survive (Lecture notes: Module Six, 2007:1). However, this does not explain why some people are generous in some instances, and less generous in others Social learning theory postulates we learn from our culture and family -- firefighters may have seen altruism championed within their family, while the New ork unspoken code of 'look away' in the face of crime, don't make eye contact or get involved is an accepted cultural norm…… [Read More]
It shows the selfishness of Dewey Dell, who is only concerned about her pregnancy and gives other family members little thought. It shows the long-suffering, to the point of self-immolation, of Cash. It shows the rivalry of Darl and Jewel, both vying for their dead mother's affection. And it shows the innocent simplicity, bordering on mental instability, of the young Vardaman. Each of these family members was affected in different ways by this destructive family dynamic.
Anse, in one of the most telling passages in the book regarding his relationship to the family, goes down the list of family members and whines about how each has cost him money in some way, further complaining that he has to work, when he does so, even though he doesn't have any teeth (35-37). Wadlington argues that because the story is set in the south and Anse is the "master" of the house,…… [Read More]
Nonetheless, an argument from common sense can be made based on our own observational context. For example, neurologically speaking, there is a wealth of evidence to illustrate that genes have an immense impact on the final structure of the brain, and thus on behavior. Schizophrenia is an obvious example of this.
Logically, though, there is also abundant support for Dawkins' thesis. oughly, an argument can be shown to be logically viable if its conclusions can be reasonably drawn from its suppositions based on the available evidence. This is abundantly the case in the Selfish Gene, wherein Dawkins (1976) draws on all the existing evidence on evolutionary theory and the development of life, including the mechanism of natural selection (p. 48) and DNA as the molecule of choice for genetic propagation (pp. 22-23). The evidence that Dawkins provides is, quite simply, sufficient to support his argument that the gene should be…… [Read More]
e may look at King Lear and see a bunch of messed up people but those people are some of the most realistic characters Shakespeare ever created. The best piece of advice to be gleaned from the play is to simply not allow any amount of wealth to blind one from truth. This is difficult because wealth attracts all kinds of people who feign affection. However, Lear illustrates that we can see beyond money and, if we try hard, we can do so and not have to lose our fortunes. People reveal who they actually are over time. The smartest thing anyone can do is pay attention and remember things. King Lear and Gloucester also show us that we are never too old to learn valuable lessons. e should never believe we know everything or even enough. An open mind and a bit of skepticism goes a long way when…… [Read More]
Sulfur in Homeopathy
As a homeopathic treatment, sulfur is recommended for both psychological and physical disorders. How it is administered depends on the situation and the individual's characteristics. According to Module 5, there is a "sulfur personality," characterized in part by selfishness and the tendency to get "stuck in their own world and mind," (p. 183). The sulfur personality can be also manifest as "an inclination to become creative and ingenious, but usually do not possess practical or common sense," ("Homeopathy Sulfur," n.d.). In other words, many frustrated creative types can be sulfur personalities.
A sulfuric mind can vary between highly active and dull, indicating a lack of cohesiveness to the research or alternatively, indicating the vast fluctuations in mind and spirit of the sulfur personality ("Module 5"). In fact, Lilley (n.d.) adds that sulfur is "forthright and open," contradicting the information about self-centeredness. It could be that sulfur types…… [Read More]
Modern capitalist philosophy has been advanced in a way that has little to do with what Smith really thought and taught. Smith believed that the invisible hand operated in a societal context. The reason Smith had such a positive philosophy of freedom was that he believed that human beings, would behave best if not compelled to merely serve the personal interests of a sovereign. Humans had a right to self-determination and to serve their own interests. However, when competition was threatened -- for example, when individuals by fair means or foul gained too much market power and created monopolies -- then it was appropriate for the government to step in. Smith believed that self-interest could prove to be beneficial to others but he did not believe that selfishness was an end in and of itself.
Justice and democracy are necessary for capitalism to function, but the rampant selfishness and lack…… [Read More]
Plato: Ok then maybe it does not matter if people are inherently good or
bad, but how does all this matter into the things in life that matter?
Confucius: But this does matter because the way people act towards each
other- the way people govern or treat others with selfishness is what
matters in this world.
Plato: But how can virtue then be taught if people are selfish, or
Confucius: hat do you mean? I thought we agreed that people can become
virtuous and that people can be in touch with heaven.
Plato: So are you saying people are good?
Confucius: No, I did not say that. hat are you saying?
Plato: That virtue is not something we can find, and it is not something
that is innate. It is something that is given (Cahn 19).
Confucius: Given by who?
Plato: Given by what you call the heavens,…… [Read More]
Richard Dawkins' the Selfish Gene Jonathan Kozol's Savage Inequalities: Children America's Schools. Plus, read websites: http://www.ou./cls/online/lstd5013/dawkins.shtml http://salmonriver.
Richard Dawkins' "The Selfish Gene"
Jonathan Kozol's "Savage Inequalities: Children America's Schools"
There has recently been much controversy regarding genes, as technology has made it possible for people to make intriguing discoveries regarding the topic and a series of individuals have come up with interesting theories concerning genes. Individuals like Richard Dawkins have gone even further than most of their colleagues and produced revolutionary theories relating to how organisms work as machines having the task of transmitting genes to generations following them, with animal behaviors essentially being caused by genes.
Considering Dawkins' theory, one can gain a better understanding of Jonathan Kazol's book "Savage Inequalities: Children in American Schools," with memes being most likely responsible for the fact that particular groups experience a series of benefits in educational institutes across the U.S.
hile…… [Read More]
He also did not consider that the attribution of goodness or perfection was not exclusive to early nobles, the Roman warrior, the Greek artist or the Jewish priest who trusted in a Messiah. Common people and slaves always held their own beliefs in what is true and good and by their own ethical codes, believed that observing them would justify their actions and choices. What went into historical records were the experiences and opinions of the nobles, scholars and others with the skills or access to those records. The lowly and incapable did not have that access to records, which could have taken note of their beliefs and experiences too.
Nietzsche could have grounded his argument that goodness evolved almost entirely or consistently from nobles, warriors and, lately, from inventiveness but abusive Jewish priests, according to commonly accepted and extant historical records. He should have allowed some opening for insufficiency…… [Read More]
Philosophical and Literary epresentation of Capitalism
Progress & Technology in Capitalism
John Steinbeck wrote the social The Grapes of Wrath during the interwar years, just after the Great Depression harrowingly illustrated the power of unchecked capitalism. His novel takes the position that revolutionary change is needed, is inevitable, and that a just and non-exploitive society can only come about when capitalism is eliminated. Steinbeck is reported to have made clear his intentions as he prepared to write The Grapes of Wrath. In his words, "I want to put a tag of shame on the greedy bastards who are responsible for this" [the Great Depression and its widely destructive effects]." Steinbeck's collectivist-leaning voice at the time of his writing The Grapes of Wrath would become so altered over the course of three decades that it hardly seemed to belong to this writer who created on the very edge of moral fervor.…… [Read More]
The main theme used by Dawkins in "The Selfish Gene" is that of doubt. For example, as Dawkins speaks about how due to the results of teaching, people have come to assume that traits inherited genetically are fixed and cannot be modified (Dawkins, 3). Even though genes may program one to be selfish, one is not necessarily forced to comply with the traits he or she inherited, all the time. It would also be somewhat difficult for one to learn how to be unselfish, if he or she was not in the first place, genetically modified, to be unselfish (Dawkins, 3).
Unlike all animals, man is largely influenced by the environment or culture, and other influences that have been inherited from his ancestors. Some would argue that culture is such an important influence to man in that whether or not one has selfish genes, it does not matter…… [Read More]
Biblical principles that are related to our intellectual and spiritual education. They have a basis in the Bible (both the New and the Old Testament) and can be applied to our lives in many ways. Often times, as is shown in this paper, our own experiences bear out what these principles teach us. In this paper, a discussion of 10 Biblical principles and their relation to Scripture is provided. How these principles have applied to the writer's own life is also described. Following these discussions are plans for how the ideas developed may be practically applied in life so as to give glory to God and better our own lives.
The education of young students takes place not just on an intellectual level but also on a spiritual level. It is part of what character education consists of -- the formation of the mind and soul in terms of the…… [Read More]
A practical book review of Surrender to Love - Expanded Edition (2015) by David G. Benner
The primary goal of counseling comes out through Benner’s definition of conversion and repentance. According to Benner, repentance is shunning the world and giving self to Jesus. On the other hand, the conversion is a life-long journey of change aiming to take the image of God (p. 71-73). The journey of conversion is a summation of the author’s goal in counseling, the transformation in the spiritual being to become Christlike. According to Benner, this journey requires selflessness, unforceful, effortless, and unpretentious love towards God (p. 73).
Development of problems and personal need
The problems and personal needs characteristic to man, according to Benner are as a result of the fact that humans have spurned the love by God to be what they commonly refer to as freedom (p. 27). Humans…… [Read More]
I realized that so much of my anxiety and trouble resulted from things I truly didn't care about. Who was that person who cared? I couldn't tell. It was a relief to find that beneath all the anxieties of daily life, anxieties propelled by rapid turnover and cliched expectations, that I had a personality. Beneath all the extraneous troubles, I had a conscience that would lead me where I needed to go.
Consequently, the peril of too much ambition also became clear to me. So much of life is spent idealizing far off things that when present seem to do little to enrich my life. The burning question of "and then what?" seemed to pervade me. Go to school. And then what? Get a job. And then what? I knew that even if all my goals and ambitions were to be at some point acquired, there would still be that…… [Read More]
Prisoner's Dilemma situations are more common than some might actually think they are, as most people often come across them in their daily lives. Given the fact that Axelrod has a background in political science, he observed that PD is frequently encountered in the U.S. Senate. Senators are accustomed to helping out their colleagues, as they are perfectly aware that their assistance will materialize in their colleagues repaying them. The help that U.S. senators provide to their colleagues ranges from trading votes to attracting voters for them. One can actually claim that reciprocity is one of the most important factors in the U.S. Senate (Axelrod, p. 5).
However, it appears that matters in the senate were not always like this, and, that just a few decades ago senators seemed more willing to support concepts like deceitfulness and falseness instead of assisting each-other. Surprisingly, people in the U.S. Senate have become…… [Read More]
How the respective societies responded to the various ideas?
Socrates would have a dramatic impact upon society, as the various ideas he presented would become a part of the moral code that is often cited, as a part of basic sociology. A good example of this can be seen with social contract theory. This simply states that humans are motivated by conscious / unconscious actions and the experiences, they have from different events. The ideas of good and justice can be directly seen with how humans react to various situations they face, either consciously or unconsciously. The underlying positive or negative experiences will shape how someone views the world around them. Those who can associate goodness and justice, to their actions will have the most positive effect, on the individual and within society. Over the centuries, this sense moral goodness has become a part of the moral standards within Western…… [Read More]
" Emecheta uses metaphors, similes and allusions with appropriate timing and tone in this book, and the image of a puppet certainly brings to mind a person being controlled, manipulated, made to comply instantly with any movement of the controlling hand. In this case Ego seems at the end of her rope -- the puppet has fallen nearly to the floor and is dangling helplessly.
The Emecheta images and metaphors are sometimes obvious, as this one is, but always effective. The reader is clearly aware of Ego's initial identity, and Ego's swift feet of lightness and intensity running in the misty darkness, presents a fluid sensation -- a hoped for escape. She is running towards a new identity and when she hits the gravel road the color is of blood and water and she runs like this will be her duty forever, like someone is following her. The image of…… [Read More]
If everything is an it you end up being an it. Does this imply a cold awareness of the self as a perishable being with limited powers or does it lead you to believe you can be a perfect robot able to manipulate nature and the world according to your specific needs and desires? Being an it means having no soul. Having no soul implies being immortal. Being immortal implies that God does not exist. At that point man-it becomes the most powerful existing agent.
But reality contradicts this assumption and the failures of the man-it can do nothing more but hurt him. Furthermore, the lack of faith and the failure of reason to provide answers regarding the questions " What is the truth? What is essential? Why do I exist?, etc." leads to strong alienation. Having such an attitude as a life philosophy is unhealthy and very dangerous.
The…… [Read More]
Is there such a thing as retribution, though -- or at least does evil ever regret its actions. As the story ends, Misfit seems to be thinking about goodness and probably thinking that evil is not the answer to the problems in his life. At the end of the story Misfit regrets killing Grandma, and says that "she would have been a good woman if it had been somebody there to shoot her every minute of her life." Everyone has evil inside them; sometimes we see only good or only evil; but the battle exists on various planes in a regular, almost evolutionary manner -- the conflict is what drives humans forward. What are these consequences, though? If Mme. Loisel would not have been so determined to rise above her station and show off, or if she had been more honest and less presumptive, she would not have spent a…… [Read More]
Certainly, the reason that some individuals become criminals has to do with biological predisposition, particularly in the case of many crimes of violence. On the other hand, circumstances, greed, desperation, and opportunity also play an undeniable role in many crimes. Social class and exposure to deviant subcultures also contributes to criminal behavior (Henslin, 2002; Macionis, 2003), but even so, those risk factors do not affect everyone the same; therefore, those approaches also fail to explain crime in many cases (Henslin, 2002; Macionis, 2003).
In some ways, the recent occurrences involving ernard Madoff and several other high profile white collar criminals do not seem to fit any of the traditional criminological theories other than rational choice and possibly psychological disorder. These perpetrators were already the recipients of the considerable benefits of social class and opportunity and were already wealthy even by contemporary American definitions of wealth before resorting to crime to…… [Read More]
Indeed, businesses today pride themselves upon their charitable, humanitarian and environmental efforts. Indeed, the very concept of "social" and "corporate responsibility" is built around this. Businesses today are recognizing the importance not only of functioning at an optimal profit margin, but also of doing so in a way that recognizes themselves as part of a larger and integrated whole in terms of human beings and the environment.
Kenneth Lux adds a further dimension to these ideas. Rather than directly disagreeing with Smith, as was my first instinct to do, Lux analyzes the specific elements in what Smith says and identifies a specific oversight. Firstly, Lux notes that Smith does not give due consideration to the paradigm of cheating. Cheating is self-serving, but does not serve the public good and is certainly not beneficial for the economy. Indeed, if Smith's assertions about self-servitude were to be believed, not cheating would be…… [Read More]
As this meme passed down through generations, it became more pervasive and it also became more complete. When slavery in the New World began, both blacks and whites were enslaved, black slaves could gain freedom, and slavery was not a condition of birth. However, as that changed, the memes surrounding African-Americans also changed. Not only were blacks seen as not equal to whites, but they were seen as incapable of becoming equal to whites. Therefore, when Jim Crow segregation was first challenged under the Fourteenth Amendment, the Supreme Court determined that separate facilities were not inherently unequal, despite overwhelming evidence that the facilities provided for African-Americans were factually inferior to those provided for whites. While this meme has been challenged by newer ideas and has, generally, not stood up to scientific, moral, and religious challenges, vestiges of it remain in almost every American person. As a result, many Americans, of…… [Read More]
Miller's play is very similar with respect to its main theme. Joe Keller also makes an economical decision at one point in his life: being in charge of the military equipment of the Air Force planes during the Second orld ar he provides the army with 121 defective cracked cylinder heads. As a result, twenty one of the planes crash and all the pilots die. Thus, faithful to the American Dream of prosperity and wary of his family's finances, Joe knowingly ignores the possible consequences of his act. Years after this tragedy, Joe is still in denial, refusing to acknowledge any personal responsibility or guilt. Thus, the structure of the play is almost identical with that of the short story previously discussed. Joe refuses to take responsibility in two situations, not just one: first for the pilots, and then for the death of his own son, Larry who commits suicide…… [Read More]
Mildred tries to imitate the economical management in her own family. Like in Faye's case, whose marriage had been a "business arrangement," her own marriage to Monty has the same business character: Mildred chooses Monty for his relations that could help her daughter to make the most of her musical talent. Also, Mildred's other attempt in getting a husband for money is telling for the way she is constantly selling or trying to sell herself, and not only her prettiness, but also her cooking talents. The analogy between her career as a waitress, and then a restaurant manager, trying to sell food and the way Mildred tries to sell herself as a wife to ally Burgan, using the same cooking talents as a weapon, is striking. It is here that we most clearly detect the parallel between private life and mass economy. Love, like in est's book, is nothing else…… [Read More]
social commentator, Thomas Frank, has published an insightful article in the February, 2011 issue of Harper's magazine assailing the members of what he describes as the privileges class in America failure to exhibit empathy and understanding for the plight of the working and middle class. In the article, entitled "Servile Disobedience," Frank states, "The rich are different from you and me (T. Frank). They are ruder and less generous. They don't get what others are thinking and apparently they don't really care." In offering these comments, Frank echoes the thoughts offered many years before by the writer and poet, Ralph aldo Emerson. Emerson saw the United States as being infected with "selfishness, fraud and conspiracy (Emerson)."
Frank in his article laments that, "e need the rich to be nicer. e need the rich to discover brotherly love, and fast." He recognizes that among the rich there are a number who…… [Read More]
The Dangers of a Self-Aware, Big, Human Brains in Galapagos
Kurt Vonnegut is always concerned with humanity's satisfaction with itself. Many of Vonnegut's books center around how humans believe they are the most divine creations in the universe and act from that presumption as well. The arrogance is crippling. This is a main theme in his novel, Galapagos. Yes, the end of the world may be an event that is out of humanity's control, but more than likely, humans are going to contribute to their own destruction and have no one to blame but themselves. He values humility, compassion, and what it is to be humane, to have humane thoughts, and perform humane actions. Kurt Vonnegut writes to tell us that if humans do not become less selfish and more selfless as a species, it will be their doom. This is true for the novel Galapagos. People who lack…… [Read More]
Neither the General's instructions nor Pablo's reluctance, however deter Jordan from his commitment to the Loyalist cause. Thus, with the aid of Pablo's courageous woman, Pilar, and his trusted guide, Anselmo, Jordan stays focused on the objective of blowing up the bridge. Indeed, Hemingway casts Jordan in the role of the archetypical war hero who is bent on accomplishing his task in spite of severe doubts over the viability of the mission and the sincerity of the Communist (Loyalist) leaders: "This was the greatest gift he had, the talent that fitted him for war; the ability not to ignore but to despise whatever bad ending there could be." (p. 393). Robert Jordan, therefore, is the antithesis of men like General Golz and Pablo, thereby allowing Hemmingway to highlight the difference between idealism and cynicism; selflessness and selfishness.
Besides confronting his own moral dilemmas, Jordan's mission is made more dangerous by…… [Read More]
wrong with this picture?
The viewpoint being espoused expresses some wonderful ideas but fails to take into consideration the basic selfishness of man. Expecting the kind of cooperation and dedication that would be necessary to accomplish what is being suggested in this scenario is highly idealistic. It would require the putting aside of both national interests and personal interests on a scale much larger than that necessary for the United Nations to operate. Suggesting that this might be possible is unrealistic. ather, the more reasoned approach is to allow the natural markets to develop.
In the short-term, the world's energy supply system will remain essentially as it is for the next several decades except that the demand in growth will continue due to sustained modernization in China, India and elsewhere. This means that new sources of oil and other energy sources need to be developed alongside strides in energy efficiency.…… [Read More]
One touching simile described by Jeanie Burton in this sermon is that of a child coming into her father's room and climbing onto his lap. When the father asked the child what he could do for her, the child merely says, nothing, I just wanted to feel close to you, father. This is exactly what one will feel for God at this stage of loving Him. This shows one's ability to get out of one's own self in order to love God just for what He is. (Love Grows Up)
The fourth stage of love as described by Bernard in his 'On Loving God' is that of love of one's self for the sake of God. This is an extremely surprising and radical viewpoint, and the fact that a theologian discovered it in the twelfth century is in itself quite amazing. Jeanie Burton, the preacher of this sermon, stated that…… [Read More]
Yet the reader can easily piece together this scenario: the harried working mother trying to find a spouse sends away her daughter so that (as an unattached woman) she can pursue romance and remarriage. That the daughter had been shuffled out of the way in favor of romance is made evident by the fact that once she returns she is severely marginalized by her mother's relationship with her stepfather. For example, they frequently leave this little five-year-old home alone when they go out together at night -- something that by modern standards is considered abusive. In fact, Emily is obviously traumatized by this, and becomes frightened and delusional. This overwhelming fear is made worse when her mother gives birth to a second child.
When her sister is born, Emily is entirely pushed aside in favor of the newcomer. One cannot easily justify her mother's selfishness in this case. When her…… [Read More]
Yet, we also see that he still does not understand the true origin of the beast -- the human within. The fact that he dies before he is successful, yet the monster obviously goes off to end his own fate, indicates that the evil both originated, and eventually died with him -- the true source from which it sprang.
Victor Hugo's Hunchback: An Illustrative Device
In Victor Hugo's Hunchback of Notre Dame, there exists a strikingly similar theme -- if different in form. Although it is definitely true that Hugo's famous Quasimodo is a bit more innocuous than the Frankenstein monster, he nonetheless evokes a certain horror if only in appearance. Yet, much like in Shelley's work, Hugo brings out the monster that is human nature within the other character's interactions, motivations, and actions in the story.
There is little question that Hugo fully intended Quasimodo to evoke horror in…… [Read More]
Fundamentally, the insurgents are fighting an enemy with superior weaponry, technology, and resources, so therefore, must seek avenues to mitigate these disadvantages. In other words, insurgent forces out vastly outdone in the traditional aspects of warfare, so they are forced to resort to unconventional modes of attack.
Early in his book, the Army and Vietnam, Krepinevich provides the broad game plan an insurgent force must follow to achieve final victory:
As developed by Mao in China and adapted by Giap in Vietnam, contemporary insurgency is a third world phenomenon comprising three phases: first, insurgent agitation and proselytization among the masses -- the phase of contention; second, overt violence, guerrilla operations, and the establishment of bases -- the equilibrium phase; and third, open warfare between insurgent and government forces designed to topple the existing regime -- the counteroffensive phase."
Primarily, this form of warfare consists of the formation of a political…… [Read More]
The solution that Hardin proposes is that of a coercive method; as always he gives a lucid example to support the point that he proposes. Hardin reminds the reader that society mutually agreed to make it illegal to rob banks, rather than appeal to the sense of responsibility to those who wish to rob banks as a means of deterring them. Bank robbers (real and potential) know that very immediate consequences await them, such as police chases which could end in injuries or fatalities, jail time and other comparable results. These consequences are real and immediate because they're reinforced by the state, the judicial system and by the police force. This form of coercion prevents more people from attempting to rob banks. Our natural resources of water need to be treated as though they're as valuable as banks filled with money. Dumping chemicals such as fertilizers, pharmaceuticals and personal care…… [Read More]
According to Freud, human societies require people to give up many of their most natural instincts and to replace their natural desires with the need to satisfy the "false standards of measurement" such as the "power, success and wealth [that they seek] for themselves and admire & #8230; in others, and that [as a result,] they underestimate what is of true value in life." Fred suggested that the need to live up to the standards and expectations set by society causes "too many pains, disappointments and impossible tasks" and that "to bear it we cannot dispense with palliative measures." By that, Freud meant that all of the psychological mechanisms, substitutions, and escapes that cause psychological problems and that often prevent human happiness. These ideas introduced by Freud about the psychological price paid by people living in society would later be part of the views of several other 20th century sociological…… [Read More]
Man, the State, and War: a theoretical analysis
Thoughtfully addressing the question as to why mankind enters war, international relations scholar, Dr. Kenneth Neal Waltz, surveys classical and contemporary theories of the behavior of man found in the cross-discipline literature of Western civilization. His inquiry includes the works of philosophers, anthropologists, and psychologists. "Man, the State, and War,[footnoteRef:1]" first published in 1959, categorizes theories of international relations into three images for analysis. The first image is that of 'Man." He describes the ways in which international politics are affected by the actions of individuals. The second image is "the State." He explains the workings of international politics and how domestic systems and policies play a vital role in international affairs. The third image emphasizes international systemic factors. He depicts these factors as being in the state of "anarchy." His reference, it should be noted, does not refer here as a…… [Read More]
In 1997, numerous key educational institutions including the AASA (American Association of School Administrators); ASCD (the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development), NAESP (the National Association of Elementary School Principals), and the NASSP (National Association of Secondary School Principals) worked in the auspices of ISLLC, funded by the CCSSO (Council of Chief State School Officers), to increase educational management standards. The National Policy Board for Educational Administration used the ISLLC principles for accreditation, efficiently holding educational administrative training programs accountable for not only creating pre-service instructive leaders' knowledge of moral concepts and structures but also for budding their capability to apply such ideas and structures to make moral decisions that would optimistically affect the experiences of pupils. This is in line with the fifth criterion deals with morals, saying that "a school superintendent is an educational organizer who promotes the achievement of all pupils by acting with honesty, justice, and…… [Read More]
Jack proceeds to let the audience know "…the vital importance of Being Earnest."
Distortion, Moral Conduct, and Restoration Comedy
Of course, deception and frivolity are part of a farce, and the way that ilde has written the play characters switch identities as a way for the theme to be deliberately distorted. So this bothers critic Mary McCarthy, who complained that the play has the character of a "…ferocious idyll" and insists that the only moral alternatives offered by ilde are "selfishness and servility" (Parker, 1974). By "deliberately distorting actuality" ilde is actually expressing what most people can see is a "comic version of the human condition," Parker writes in the Modern Literature Quarterly. Parker explains that though McCarthy is using standards that don't really fit with a farcical play (particularly in that era), she may be onto something with her assertion that the play is about selfishness because indeed the…… [Read More]
Pope and Swift: Satirists of Their Day
In Swift's Verses on the Death of Dr. Swift and Pope's An Epistle to Arbuthnot, the authors seem to vindicate their use of satire, while satirizing others. Alexander Pope, in his preface to An Epistle to Arbuthnot, identifies the motivation of the poem as a response to attacks on his "Person, Morals, and Family" and to give "truer information" of himself (Pope 1733). Pope warns readers that many would recognize allusions to them in it, "but I have, for the most part spar'd their Names, and they may escape being laugh'd at" (Pope 1733). In 1731, shortly before Pope wrote his Epistle, Pope's friend Jonathan Swift completed Verses on the Death of Dr. Swift and published it almost a decade later in 1739. After his friend Esther Johnson died, the theme of death "became a frequent feature in Swift's life" (Wikipedia, 2012). Swift…… [Read More]
Nicholas Hornby's About a Boy centers on the relationship between 36-year-old ill and 12-year-old Marcus. The novel is based, in part, on author Hornby's experiences teaching groups of "alienated kids" in Cambridge, England which adds to the palpable reality of the emotions in the story (Knowles 10). Both of the two males exist along on the margins of society, neither performing up to his potential because of a combination of laziness and fear, coupled with a dysfunctional home life which separates them from the majority. ill makes the choice to separate himself because he has enough money to pay for a lifestyle that he enjoys without having to work or accomplish anything. Marcus, on the other hand, has been more or less forced into the margins of society because of his mother, his lack of a father, and a less than traditional upbringing. These men, or soon to be…… [Read More]
Peter, Wendy & the Victorian ritish Family
In J.M. arrie's epic fantasy, Peter and Wendy, three children from Victorian England set off for a distant paradise of endless boy-centered adventures called 'Neverland'. This land that can be reached by Peter Pan's nonsensical directions, "second to the right, and then straight on till morning" (arrie 24), represents an upside-down world where the codes of Victorian England can be deeply analyzed and challenged. arrie utilizes the various characters and situations to illustrate how the ritish society of his time left no room for imagination, romanticism, or simple fun, which alienated men from their children and discouraged the latter from ever wanting to 'grow up' and become 'responsible'. Moreover, arrie illustrates the unjust roles that women are forced to play through the context of the story's matriarch, Wendy Darling. From knowledge of arrie's personal life and his usage of subtle, yet potent symbols…… [Read More]
Christ Was and How it Relates to His Work
To be a Christian fundamentally means to believe in Christ, in the person of Jesus. There are many different types of Christians, including aptists, Catholics, Evangelicals, and Lutherans.
Christians believe that there is only one God, and that God is a Trinity of God the Father, Christ the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. This is not an example of three Gods (tri-theism), nor is it an example of one God changing forms (modalism). Instead, to Christians, God has eternally existed as one essence with three persons.
Since Christ is the second person of the Trinity, Christians believe that Christ has eternally existed as well. Jesus Christ was "God with skin on." He was born of the virgin Mary, lived a sinless and perfect life, was fully man and fully God, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified as a sacrifice for…… [Read More]
Tune with the Infinite: Or, Fullness of Peace, Power and Plenty, by Ralph Waldo Trine. Specifically, it will report on the book, giving an overview of the book with some mention of the key ideas in each chapter, and finishing with a positive conclusion.
IN TUNE WITH THE INFINITE
Author Ralph Waldo Trine opens his book with this statement in the Preface:
There is a golden thread that runs through every religion in the world. There is a golden thread that run through the lives and the teachings of all the prophets, seers, sages, and saviours in the world's history, through the lives of all and women of truly great and lasting power. All that they have ever done or attained to has been done in full accordance with law. What one has done, all may do.
This same golden thread must enter into the lives of all who today,…… [Read More]
Not only is the phrase self-love used as synonymous with the desire of happiness, but it is often confounded with the word selfishness, which certainly, in strict propriety, denotes a very different disposition of mind." --Slewart. [Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary]
The novel "Things Fall part," by Chinua chebe, is a shocking account of the life and extinction of an frican tribe called the Ibo. The light is mainly on the main character, Okonkwo, who begins his search for self-perfection at a very young age. He was highly unimpressed with his father and vowed to never to be like him. Okonkwo and his family suffered through trying times but he eventually beat the odds and was very successful as the leader of the tribe. However, on beating his wives, he disobeyed the gods by refusing to offer animal sacrifice. The gods gave him a severe punishment. He was extremely selfish…… [Read More]
These values might seem obvious to some, but they are actually values which so many religious institutions may preach, but not practice at all in their religious thought. Ultimately, those who view themselves as spiritual but not religious don't feel that faith can be shoved into scientific or empiricitic frameworks, and these same individuals reject the notion that all is real and can be known: rather these individuals believe that love, kindness, generosity, awe and wonder are some of the most important pillars of life and that it's nearly impossible to put these aspects in a box or encompassed in black and white thinking of certain religious dogmas. Many people who ascribe to this belief system truly do believe that there are secular movements in the world today which have similar spiritual foundations, but that many of these religious movements are just out of touch with those foundations (NSP, 2013).…… [Read More]
One of the great ironies of Dante's Inferno is the centrality of earth-bound fame, moral reputation, praise and blame. The importance of reputation would seem to contradict Virgil's efforts in leading Dante through Purgatory to impart a more meaningful moral message. Yet it is important to remember that Dante travels alive; Virgil's lessons are instructive in a direct and practical manner. Dante ascertains life lessons from those he encounters in the afterlife, so that he may improve his prospects for earthbound fame. The importance of fame seems paradoxical when considered in light of the transitory nature of existence. However, Purgatory presents the consequences of a poor public relations scheme. Investment in moral reputation has the potential to strengthen The Divine Comedy's overarching pretensions, by linking the importance of one's earthly life to the life beyond.
Dante makes it clear that reputation does not necessarily have to be pristine to…… [Read More]