Latest Observations

On the Simultaneous Experience of Joy and Agony

Topic:Philosophy
Posted on:Aug 23, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:David J

I do not understand how joy and agony can co-exist within the same person, even within the same instant. Life is an inversion of paradoxes. One can be full of joy and, yet, full of agony. The human container is too frail. A soul cannot contain the whole truth. This is what separates me from the ultimate. I cannot bear what I know. I cannot bear the knowledge of what I do not know, either. However, amidst the overwhelming desperation, is a sense that the edge of beauty is only experienced at the edge of frailty. When all I experience is too much, I come to value the marvelous potential of life. Joy and agony can co-exist. Beauty is evidenced when they touch.

On Balancing the Long-Term with the Short-Term

Topic:Personal
Posted on:Aug 19, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Austin M

My whole life has been a combination of short-term and long-term investments. In a sense, I am very sensitive to the cash conversion cycle of my own production. Twenty years ago I made investments in myself that I do not expect to pay off for yet another 20 years. But all along the way, I built a "cash position" with the rapid conversion of a small percentage of my activities into a "monetizable offering".

The key here is to adjust the differential between the short-term and the long-term so that one has a strong enough financial position to continue generating those major investments that will have the longest and greatest impact.

On Becoming Too Busy to Slow Down and See

Topic:Leadership
Posted on:Aug 18, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Austin M

Leaders can become overwhelmed by all that must be done. However, the No. 1 reason we carry the burden is not because we have too much to do; it is because we have too much to "see." We have not fought hard enough for perspicuous clarity. Beware of the “leadership fog.” We should not rush forward faster than we can truly see.

On My Work as an Expression of Experimental Philosophy

Topic:Communication
Posted on:Aug 17, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Flint M

I need to consider the impact of rational choice theory as it relates to my research on the value proposition. I think I hold to a subjective theory of value, at least on a practical level. And I would lean towards methodological individualisim. The danger is this: my work does not belong in any of these particular categories.  I am not an economist, and I developed my thinking independent of these disciplines. In effect, I have been engaging in experimental philosophy before experimental philosophy was a recognized approach.

On Conflating the Two Concepts of Convergence Theory and Enterprise Locus

Topic:Philosophy
Posted on:Aug 16, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:David J

I am conflating two concepts: convergence theory and enterprise locus.

Transformation assumes an external force working against an entity. In the event that force is being applied to an entity in a given dimension, the force must be channeled. In those cases where the energy itself is the only force, then the energy is all that is necessary. Nevertheless, if there is an item, such as a message being delivered, then you will have the content and the energy. The means of reaching the entity becomes the distribution. One might argue that this is not the means but, rather, the action of distributing the energy. Nevertheless, energy by its very nature distributes. It implies motion. Thus, one might be able to unify content distribution and energy as a single factor, depending on certain circumstances.

On Existence as the Unification of Subject and Predicate

Topic:Personal
Posted on:Aug 15, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Flint M

Reality may be interpreted as vertical and horizontal. Vertical reality manifests itself in levels; horizontal reality manifests itself in parts. My vertical reality is experienced in layers (they form my subject). My horizontal reality is expressed in actions (they form my predicate). – These actions can be combined to form the subjectification of predication.

The delineation between subject and predicate is useful, but misleading. I am not a subject who predicates. I am the whole of my subject and predicate. The distinction between subject, action, and object fails to recognize that the act of acting becomes subject, and thus object for another. The difference is more than semantic. The difference is perspective. Most of us labor under this illusion: I am (this person); I do (these things). But it is impossible to separate the “aming” from the “doing” (can there be space without time?).

The unification of subject and predicate, as the essence of “I”, points to the importance of tense. Every infinitesimal expression of the absolute “now” is a distinct instance of identity. What was before is no longer “I”. Moreover, the notion of predication collapses into an interval no longer than the absolute minimal instance of the present. The world sees my existence as a whole; I see it as an ever-renewing opportunity to express. Who “I was” does not have to be who “I am”. And while the tenuous strands of pattern may appear to stretch across my present-tense instances, I am relieved to know that the power of pattern is no more than the strength of its always-breakable strand. My past does not own my present.

On How a Leader Galvanizes Action

Topic:Leadership
Posted on:Aug 12, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Austin M

A leader galvanizes action. He spends his solitude in determining and discerning his way through decision processes. It does not mean he makes those decisions on his own, but he does come to a certain peace about what should be done.

When he steps out of his solitude – from the personal dynamic to the social dynamic – he galvanizes action, maximizing the production capacity of everyone around him. If he is a mature leader, he does it in a way that empowers his team. If he is an immature leader he does it in a way that (often) injures his team. Either way he does it. This is true, whether he is Gandhi or Attila the Hun.

On the Marketer as Both Scientist and Mystic

Topic:Communication
Posted on:Aug 11, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Austin M

The marketer must be part scientist and part mystic. While many would agree with the science aspect, others would challenge the mysticism. But the marketer is dealing with the complexities of the human being. The method of science cannot span the void in our understanding into the spirit and the mind. An essential aspect of the marketer's work is to predict behavior. This is not an exact science. Intuition, perception, and sometimes an almost mystic apprehension are necessary.

On Negation as the Determination of Possibilities

Topic:Philosophy
Posted on:Aug 10, 2016
Method:Dictation
Captured by:Flint M

A movement in the space-time continuum represents (ultimately) a negation. The positive cancels other possibilities. The positive is the concrete that fills the void of the possible.

If I move my hand to select an item from a shelf, I am negating all of the other items I may have selected instead. I am negating all of the other movements I might have made instead of selecting anything. I am negating a myriad of possibilities. Sartre understood the power of negation as it relates to the positive, but I see negation as directly connected to the termination of possibilities. 

If I had a large house with many items burning to the ground, imagine I am only able to rush in and bring just one out. That particular item serves as an indicator as to who I am and what matters to me. Its power is not derived only from what it is, but rather from what it is not. What about the other 10,000 items I abandoned? If I had $50,000 hidden in the closet but a photograph of my child on the borough, and if I choose the photograph over the money, what does that say about me? Not choosing the $50,000 tells me more about the photograph. It provides additional information. The myriad of negations in my life, the elimination of possibilities in favor of what I move from possible to actual, is a profound indication of my essence.

On Age as an Increasing Acuteness of Angle

Topic:Personal
Posted on:Aug 9, 2016
Method:Previous Writings
Captured by:Austin M

[Editor's Note: This is an excerpt from one of Dr. McGlaughlin's short stories. Read the full story here.]

It took Kierkegaard nine pseudonyms and a lifetime of artful indirection laced with riffs (parables, even Socratic irony) to unsay his theo-philosophical position. Often debated, mostly misunderstood, his work as a whole was more of a Zen koan than a doctrinal declaration. He lived as a poignant protest against despair, all the while bleeding ink. His background became indistinguishable from his foreground. This can happen when the angle of view becomes more obtuse.

For some of us, age is not a foreshortening, not a linear regression, but rather an increasing acuteness of angle. This is happening to me. My foreground is recessing into my background, till at some point my whole perspective may collapse into itself. What shall I do?