Friday, January 20, 2017

What if, Instead of Firing the Coach, We gave Him a Makeover?

  What if, instead of firing the coach, we gave him a makeover? What if instead of looking down a list of applicants, the A.D. looked down a list of traits he wanted, and asked his current coach to adopt them?
  I've never heard of such an approach, never heard of it happening. So, this would be a novel thing. But, I ask, why not, in some cases, try it.
   Age shouldn't limit us to what we've been; It should open windows to what we can become. So, reinvent yourself, coach, and here's what we want the new, improved you to be like. Here's how we want you to act when you are down by 20. Here's how we want you to think. Here's what we observed about Coach K in this situation; Can you do this? Etc.
   Some would say that those things have to come naturally, that you can't just fake them, but I believe some coaches could, indeed, reinvent themselves. When a coach is new in the business, he considers how he should coach, and what methods are best. Why is it he can only do this early in his career, and only once? What is to prevent the coach from doing it again, 10 or 20 years in?
   Age only limits those who are stuck in their pasts. The person who will change, always has a future.
   So, let the coach look at his assignment through the eyes of someone fresh in the business. Here's some changes I can make in myself. Here's some things I'm not doing that I might. What kind of game-day intensity should I have? What demeanor should I have? How does does my game-day atmosphere compare to that of Coach K's, and can I emulate his?
   People change; Why can't coaches? What if, instead of firing our coaches, we retrained them? What if we coached our coaches instead of replacing them?

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Wiser the Person Who Listens to an Enemy

   If you would be wise, then make wide the spectrum of voices reaching your ear.
   I considered the old adage from Bible in new light today. "In the multitude of counselors, there is safety," we are taught in Proverbs 11:14. I have always thought that meant no more than having counsel in order to be wise.
   But, that word "multitude" hit me today. Does it suggest diversity? Does it imply that you listen to not just one line of thinking, but many?
   If you would be wise, then listen to wisdom. You may not find it in your own thoughts, nor in the thoughts of people who think like you. If you too quickly reject those who do not think like you, you run the risk of rejecting wisdom. Wiser the person who listens to an enemy than the one who will only hear a friend.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Truth is Less Likely When You Pay Equally for Things Which are Untrue

   Perhaps, indeed, the intelligence dossier on Donald Trump printed just more than a week ago was newsworthy. CNN did the right thing by printing a summary, and BuzzFeed did the right thing by printing the whole of it.
   But, tonight, I have some thoughts that do go the opposite direction.  A group opposed to Donald Trump hired investigators to dig up dirt on the Donald. This was not just someone hearing something bad about Trump and deciding to find out if it was true. No, if I understand correctly, the investigators first were given the charge to find something evil. Now, if the definition of a witch hunt is to search out evil on someone you don't like, this amounts to no more than that -- a witch hunt.
   That does not mean truthful accusations cannot come out of a witch hunt. But it does lessen the odds. If you aren't looking for both sides of whether something is true, you are most likely just to find the negative. If you are getting paid to find the negative, that is where your incentive lies. That's not a healthy model for finding the truth.
   This, I would guess, is a true principle: If you dislike a person, you will surely find untrue rumors about them. Things can always be made up that aren't true about someone, and if you are looking for the negative, these untruths will fall into your bag.
   Truth is less likely to be found when you pay equally for things that are untrue.

Often, Truth is not Something You Have; It is Something You Earn

   Often, truth is not something you have: it is something you find. A search is involved. For all the times you can look at a matter and readily see the answer, other times you must go back and look at another angle. You must reconsider before you find the truth.
   For those times, truth is not something innate; rather it is something you earn.
   I consider this as I wonder if I my thoughts were complete a week ago on the dossier printed on Donald Trump.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Was Tampering with the Actual Vote the One thing they didn't do?

   Yes, it is in bold letters in the declassified report: "DHS assesses that the type of systems Russian actors targeted or compromised were not involved in vote tallying."
   And, the nation sits back, sighs in relief, and everyone assures each other the voting, itself, went untouched.
   I'll tell you why I'm skeptical. Thumb down, if you will, to page 13 of the report. Read how it say that since early 2014, the Russians studied our election equipment, our election processes, and our election technology. Oh, yes, I am not blind. I do see how it then reiterates that no messing with the vote tallying was observed.
   What? They study how to sabotage our polls, but we shouldn't worry that they actually did so? If we know their efforts were multifaceted, why should we suppose tampering with the actual vote was the one thing they didn't touch?

Monday, January 16, 2017

As Long as We have Crime, We have Witness that there is Agency

Laws do not take away agency; they give it birth. If there is no law, there is no choice between right and wrong. Choice comes out of having laws. This is not to say government cannot take away agency by taking away such freedoms as the right to say what you want, the right to worship as you will, the right to go where you choose, and so forth. And, if governments were able to prevent you from your choice of keeping or breaking the law, laws would also prevent agency. But, as long as there is crime, there is witness that there is agency. You can prohibit alcohol, but some will still choose to bootleg. You can ban marijuana, but many will still choose to smoke pot. You can say, Thou shalt not kill, but there will be killers, anyway. The question becomes, then, not whether we should get rid of laws to increase our agency, but which laws are beneficial to society.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Consider MormonLeaks in Light of Four Points from the Constitution

   I would find no great harm if my church were to decide to publish the amounts of income it gives to its general authorities. But, I also find no harm if it chooses not to publish them.
   This topic certainly has generated interest this week as a group called MormonLeaks published some of the information. The Deseret News has twice since came out against the MormonLeaks release, and printed a piece from MormonLeaks defending the leaks.
   I think this is an instance we should look to our Constitution for a little guidance. No less than three of the amendments in our Bill of Rights might have some pertinence.
   From the First Amendment:
   Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.
    This would suggest leaving religion alone.
    Also from the First Amendment:
   Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech.
   Freedom of speech includes the freedom not to speak. If the church chooses not to say what it gives to its general authorities, that is its freedom of speech.
   From the Fourth Amendment:
   The right of people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures. shall not be violated.
   Certainly, if you are to be free from the government violating you in such a way, you should be free from others searching into your records this manner.
   From the Fifth Amendment:
   No person shall . . . be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself.