Thanksgiving Thought Starters-Fight Starters-Fight Enders-Podcast 679

Thanksgiving dinner is supposed to be a fun family get together. At times this fall celebration of the harvest can erupt into ugly political and social disputes. Time for some ideas to flip the script in Thanksgiving Thought Starters-Fight Starters-Fight Enders-Podcast 679.

Welcome To The Rollercoaster

Especially relevant is the fact that the holiday season from Thanksgiving to Christmas, can be an emotional rollercoaster for almost all families. Whether you’re hosting the dinner or heading out to a relative’s house it’s a good idea to be prepared.

Freedom of Choice

In Thanksgiving Thought Starters-Fight Starters-Fight Enders-Podcast 679 I share some personal thanksgiving and family experiences to get you thinking. Most important is to remember we all have the freedom of choice about what we think about social or political issues. If you want to hear an example of my own personal thanksgiving experience a few years ago, click here.

What He Said!

When it comes to politics these days, you can bet there will be discussion at the Thanksgiving table about much of the reactive coverage about politics. Add alcohol to the mix, and you will have to decide whether to engage or not, depending on your situation. Of course, give yourself permission to keep your mouth shut, or leave right after dinner, if necessary.

SeaChangeTone

Should you make the decision to engage your crazy uncle on a political level Thanksgiving Thought Starters-Fight Starters-Fight Enders-Podcast 679 gives you ideas on how change the tone of the conversation.

In conclusion when it comes to politics and social issues we could all do with a change in tone. Do we want to be leaders or followers? Rather than fighting about what someone else says on a TV Show why not talk about what we are for? What kind of a world do we think is coming? Where does our energy and advocacy belong.

The Old World Is Passing

Moreover we are seeing fewer positive interactions with the age old institutions of our society like government and religion. What kind of world is coming and what is our role in it? Throw that out over the mashed potatoes and see what happens. Or not.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and Ciro 3D Motorcycle Products and Accessories

Thanksgiving Thought Starters-Fight Starters-Fight Enders-Podcast 679

Podcast 506

Future Shock. As the 24 hour news media and talk radio fixate on gorillas and high school election antics, its hard to get a conversation going about the future. Is the future potential leaders want the future we should have? Is it the future we want? There are developments almost everyday now with autonomous cars, robotics, materials, aviation, and communications; the building blocks of a future wave that will leave nothing untouched and unchanged. A series of stories from today’s headlines shedding a light on one potential future and a question; Planners and government officials are  diverting resources to bring about a vision of the city of tomorrow, which is really the city of the early 1900’s. Is this what you want? Will the driverless car, autonomous software and machines, robotics, and other developments make trains, buses and the standard bureaucracy heavy city, state and federal government ‘obsolete’? If so, why is so much time, effort and authority expended to see that we plan for and create a urban spaces, and that suburban villages and towns conform to a vision of a city that probably never existed and never will. Driverless cars will render the amount of space needed for freeways and parking ramps obsolete. Remote technology, robotics and other technologies may mean that people will not have to travel to large office complexes for their work, with increasing freelance employment. What are our so called leaders talking about? Minimum wages, government controlled health insurance and trains. Trains. Why are we planning for 1940’s Chicago when reality could be closer to Jefferson’s vision than Robert Moses? The old world is being torn down and a new one is being built that will be very different from what we know. Do our leaders understand this? Future Shock. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and X Government Cars.

Podcast 492

Dramatic Distractions. Had a conversation with a friend awhile back and he said, “All these people and they’re shows. They’re asleep”. Didn’t think too much about it for almost a year, and today it popped into my head. To say that I love my shows is an understatement. So for this podcast I made a partial list of some of the series shows I have watched, or am watching on Netflix, iTunes, Hulu. It was a bit of a surprise. I didn’t even make a complete list and it’s way too long! Someone will hear this and think, “This guy does nothing but watch TV Shows”. Well. Uh. No. At least I didn’t think so until I actually made a list. Then I thought, am I that unusual? A lot of us watch these shows. Add to that screen time on FB, Instagram, Twitter and especially You Tube and you have the makings of a real distraction. And this AFTER I’ve scanned and read a huge portion of the news. I talk a lot about how people are watching the political news shows, and listening to talk radio and political podcasts as entertainment. Seldom do I talk about the escapism inherent in watching hour after hour of television drama, which. Is. So. Satisfying. The Walking Dead and the new Don’t Fear the Walking Dead. Ray Donovan. The Affair, Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Boardwalk Empire, The Wire, The Sopranos, Sons Of Anarchy, Justified, House of Cards. Mister White isn’t a meth dealer, he’s a TV drama producer in Hollywood! Do this shows influence our thinking about society? Or, are they just a guilty pleasure. By the way, who has time to read East of Eden, or In Cold Blood when these shows are being pumped out. It may be time for a news cleanse, as well as a drama cleanse. Then we get to a discussion of the delights available on You Tube. Endless Illuminati Conspiracy videos, horribly done but immensely entertaining horoscopes and tarot card readers. Finally, FaceBook has become nothing but posts and shares of dogs that can’t catch videos, cute kid videos, mom’s doing yoga videos, Bernie Sanders Memes, Ted Cruz Meme’s, and other nonsense. Who has time to work? Yeah, maybe it’s time we looked at this. Sponsored by Brush Studio In The West End, Saint Louis Park and by Hydrus Performance.

Podcast 478

On Media. It started out as an idea for a podcast on Friday. A departure from the increasingly tedious, even terrifying and depressing world of politics. As the weekend progressed and opportunities for socializing were offered, ‘On Media’ moldered, then morphed into something more complex. After several attempts to assess what the podcast would be about, one attempt to write it and three attempts to record it, I finally just said the hell with it and decided to talk it out. Thus ‘On Media’. Some of it is a repackaging of ideas behind the podcasts I’ve done about the fact that the mass marketing most of us have gown up in is gone, replaced with a new world of mass specialization. People ask me all the time what is going on in the world. What’s wrong with the media. Or, they tell me the media is at fault. The media is bad. What is the definition of media? What is it’s role in society? What’s really going on? These days we have millions of sources of information available at any time. Any one of those sources can be the most viewed in any single day. It is not unusual for You Tube channels to have more views in a few hours than the cable news channels have all week. In the middle of this is politics. All news coverage is emotional and symbolic. There used to be a tactic called political theater. Now it’s all theater. Politics is media. We are submerged in images of persuasion everywhere we go. From the logos on the clothing we wear, to the TV’s in bars pouring their images into our minds while we eat our burgers. All these images are emotional, and emotional because emotion persuades. You think people seem angry, frustrated, confused? Wonder why? We can’t seem to get a handle on what’s wrong. Our government is the product of something called The Enlightenment. Are we enlightened? Or enslaved? Sponsored by Brush Studio in the West End, Saint Louis Park, and by Hydrus Performance.

Podcast 435

How Tough Are You? How tough do you have to be? A new era is coming socially, economically, and politically. A selection of news stories about technology shows how quickly our world is giving way to something new. Socially our ideas about morality, fairness and even the nature of reality are evolving. Economically old systems are transitioning to new, even as industry and ideas minted at the turn of the twentieth century can still be dominant, new ideas in manufacturing, media, communications and the tools we use to do our work are beginning to take hold and to forge their own reality. Politically new issues, new ways to communicate and new kinds of candidates are emerging and wreaking havoc with ‘the process’. These are significant changes that make the world unfamiliar to people who became adults just twenty or so years ago. Our individual success, and our success as a country may depend on how tough we are and whether we adapt to these changes well enough not just to survive, but to thrive. It’s clear these days, that the new world will look nothing like the old. Even assumptions so called ‘experts’ make about the future are turning out to be not be so accurate. Rapid change can be disruptive and confusing to say the least. Especially when people have to live through it. With 64 percent of the working age population out of the work force in the United States, and the new jobs most vulnerable to new technology tough days might be ahead and we will have to be tough to deal with it. What is ‘tough’? What does it mean to be ‘tough’? We hear a lot about the difficulties individuals have these days, but we aren’t hearing enough examples of real toughness, and they’re out there. Maybe it’s time we started thinking that way as a nation? Sponsored by Pride of Homes and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.

Podcast 375

Where’s My ObamaNet? FCC Commissioner Tom Wheeler wants to expand a program that dates back to at least the Bush Administration, which became known as the ‘Obama Phone’. Originally the program was intended to make sure older people with no communication could get phone lines, then it was expanded to include cell phones, and was made famous during the 2012 election cycle. Now the FCC wants to expand the program to include free broadband Internet! Surprise! We all pay extra on our phone bills to fund this program, now we’re paying so people who don’t work, can get free or low-cost Internet. When is it time to draw the line? Warning! This podcast includes a freewheeling discussion of technology it all its many forms, economic growth, dystopia, Paul Krugman, Solar Power, Wind Power, the smell of cigarettes and Martinis on a warm summer night, the sound of planes landing, and more! Big argument in the tech world after The New York Times Astrologer in Chief, Paul Krugman claimed the technology revolution has produced no economic growth. Is that true? Then there is the bizarre reaction to Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Machines, Robotics and Additive Manufacturing (to name a few new technologies) threatening to eliminate jobs. Most of the time, it’s disbelief, followed by the darkest predictions about the future. And yet, technology revolutions throughout history while tumultuous, result in economic growth and more jobs. Why does the future have to be so bleak? What if the future is so bright, you’ll have to wear shades? Now, you might have to wear shades because you live next door to a giant solar farm — subsidized by the state and federal governments — while solar produces less than one percent of our power and pollutes the Earth. Why is it, news coverage of the spread of ‘friendly’ solar power doesn’t include stories about the pollution in creating, and eventually disposing of panels, and batteries? Sponsored by Baklund R&D

Podcast 336

Monday Updates. The week kicks off with a reply to one North Metro Tea Partier upset by comments in the previous podcast ‘Political Crossroads’. The point of the podcast? Is this group punching above, or below its weight politically? Is a true friend someone who tells you what you want to hear, or what you need to hear in order to be more effective? Yes, the nation is at a crossroads politically, and especially on the right. Either grassroots groups will mature and develop the kind of political power that changes political fortunes and history, or they will fade. In this time frame, that means more moderate republican candidates and leaders like John Boehner, for example. People tea partiers don’t generally like. While for voters 2016 is an ocean of time away, for political operatives, the election is already on. Just this past weekend in Minnesota’s open political process, local Basic Political Unit and Congressional meetings were held, with delegates chosen and rules voted on. If you weren’t there, you missed a prime opportunity to set the tone for, yep, 2016. In the end, the proof will be in the pudding. It would be nice to be wrong about the influence of these grassroots groups, but right now – and it brings us no joy to say this – the state’s Bicycle Lobby looks more effective. Meanwhile Minnesota has a surplus, and while the DFL wants to spend that cold, hard cash on programs, the republicans want to spend it in targeted tax cuts and other nonsense. Republican Chair Keith Downey says the money should be given back to the people, and he deserves credit. As usual the Minnesota Chamber of Italian Fascism and Speaker Kurt Daudt wants to split hairs; spend some money on roads and bridges and old people. Republicans need to be a strong voice for spending cuts, and tax cuts. The surplus is not a sign of success, but a sign of fiscal mismanagement. Give the money back, cut spending and then cut taxes. Lots of talk about layoffs at Target, and General Mills. Lots of people will be free lancing. Surprise, lots of people already are, and it may become the new way to work. 53 million Americans are freelancing and some surveys suggest as much as half the work force will be freelancing suggesting new ways to work, live and contribute. Here’s to the 1099’rs; You’re making a great contribution to the future of this country. Freelancers, and people working from home are happier and more productive than those in offices. In Austin, Texas this weekend at the SXSW Tech Conference, protesters demanded something done about stopping robots and autonomous machines. “If man was meant to fly”, they shouted, “God would have given us wings”. Not really, but they may as well have. Technology is fueling the greatest revolution in the history of mankind, and will change everything in the world in the next twenty to fifty years. Get on board, or get out of the way. The coolest development? If you could take a pill that reversed your aging, and allowed you to live fifty, one hundred, one hundred and fifty, maybe three hundred years, would you do it? Sponsored by Complete Basement Systems

Podcast 200

Back Into The News. The News Cleanse is officially over, but there will be some changes on the podcasts due to lessons learned from it. What happened during the News Cleanse week? US Journalist James Foley got his head chopped off by Islamic militants (or, criminals, or thugs if you prefer). And, we’re surprised by this? And – gasp – that convoy of Russian military trucks painted white got into eastern Ukraine despite the red cross refusing to escort the convoy. Oh yeah, and the President played golf. After the guy got his head chopped off. At ease people. Go back to doing whatever you were doing. Nothing to see here folks. Meanwhile, the media keeps putting out noise. Fortunately Bob Davis is on it, to bring some clarity to these events, such as they are, and such as clarity is. An earthquake in Napa, California. The price of corn is down, which is bad for farmers, but good for steak eaters in the coming months. Fox Television is copying something from Bob Davis’ old radio show on KSTP. Bobovia will become a reality show called Utopia. You’re welcome, Fox. The Minneapolis Tribune is now taking its stories from the Bob Davis Podcasts, doing a big spread this weekend about gentrification in Uptown (where did they get that idea). You’re welcome, as well. And, oh yeah, the President played golf. And, a few more final observations about the cleanse. Sponsored by Baklund R & D.