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Specks and logs

For the sake of truth in advertising, perhaps 2.5-ish centuries of one national motto is enough and we should switch to go with a motto that seems to (too often) be the real tone in modern America. So how’s this for a redo on E pluribus unum:

“I see the speck in your eye, but haven’t a clue about the log in mine.”

How’s that for helping to chart the future of America in the world?

Maybe you’ve got other ideas?

Florence Snyder: A reflection for our third graders

Saturday started out so happily for me and moviegoers all over America.

The Metropolitan Opera’s centennial production of Puccini’s La fanciulla del West was beamed to big screens across America. Audiences were enthralled by the by rootin’ tootin’ lotsa shootin’ Old West romance staged in Italian by an international company of musical magicians, all plainly enjoying themselves. The afternoon orgy of opera and popcorn rendered fans mercifully oblivious to the real bullets flying at a New West strip mall in Tucson.

By the time I left the theater and turned on my car radio, the Perpetual Scream Machine that passes for political discourse was in hyperdrive. Police had not yet had time to notify all the families of Jared Loughner’s victims, but that did not stop any of the usual suspects from fingering all of their usual targets. Read all »

FloridaThinks: Do Communication Tools Drive Behavior?

Today’s FloridaThinks.com features a very smart article on the impact of texting and other communication tools on our lives and on our children. I don’t know if the author Barry Chudakov (founder of Metalife Consulting) coined the term “cyber tattoo” but I, for one, intend to start using it today and often with my teenage children. Every communication ever sent out, every photo ever posted to Facebook can become a cyber tattoo, following you around forever in life and possibly fundamentally changing it. At least when you walk into the tattoo parlor and take the plunge, you get to decide what will forever brand you. With cyber tattoos, someone else gets to pick. Here’s a snip:

Overnight, it seems, the intersection of our lives and our communications tools has gotten complicated. We’re seeing the complexity more often because these tools are reaching deeper into our lives, and they are now fundamental to how we touch and value each other. This entails more than simply acting on impulse. When we use communication tools, if we are not careful, we think and act at their speed and in their logic, instead of fully considering what we’re doing. In this scenario, the logic of the tool becomes the logic of our behavior. We need greater awareness of this process and how it changes us.

At The Village Square, we think a lot about how these same communication tools have changed the nature of our civic and political lives (sometimes we do so while we cuss about the need to express ourselves in 140 characters or less).

Read the whole article HERE.