The Big Think

August 7, 2013

Got Something in My Eye….

Filed under: Movies — jasony @ 2:38 pm

20 Science Fiction Moments That Will Make Absolutely Anyone Cry: “”

And don’t miss the comments. I just kept scrolling down going “yup…. yup… *sniff* yup”


Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 11:33 am

The Indebted States of America by Steven Malanga, City Journal Summer 2013:

“If you define municipal debt simply as what states and localities have borrowed, the total nationwide comes to about $3 trillion. Nevertheless, these governments actually owe more than twice that much, according to estimates from groups like the States Project. The reason for the discrepancy is that states and localities carry another kind of debt—promises of retirement benefits to public-sector workers—and they have radically underfunded the systems that must pay for it. As Boston University Law School professor Jack Michael Beermann wrote recently in the Washington and Lee Law Review, the situation is a ‘double whammy’ for future taxpayers, who not only will have to pay for ‘the consumption of prior generations’ but also will receive ‘reduced government services’ as increased spending on retirement debt crowds out other programs.”

As Stein’s Law says, “Something that can’t go on forever, won’t. Debts that can’t be repaid, won’t be.” The only question remaining to be answered is: what then?

How to Build a Career Worth Having

Filed under: Disclosure — jasony @ 8:39 am

How to Build a Career Worth Having:

“there are three primary attributes of fulfilling work:

Legacy. A higher purpose, a mission, a cause. This means knowing that in some way— large or small—the world will be a better place after you’ve done your work.

Mastery. This refers to the art of getting better and better at skills and talents that you enjoy using, to the extent that they become intertwined with your identity. Picture a Jedi, or a Samurai, or a master blacksmith.

Freedom. The ability to choose who you work with, what projects you work on, where and when you work each day, and getting paid enough to responsibly support the lifestyle that you want. The order is important. People are fulfilled most quickly when they first prioritize the impact that they want to have (legacy), then understand which skills and talents they need to have that impact (mastery), and finally ‘exchange’ those skills for higher pay and flexibility (freedom) as they develop and advance.”

An excellent article all around, and one that many of my friends will appreciate. Erin and I have managed to hammer together somewhat non-traditional careers that meet all of these requirements and we are tremendously happy as a result. Yes, there are sacrifices, but if you offered me a “traditional” position with better “traditional” perks I wouldn’t take it for the world. As the saying goes: the only thing you can’t buy is more time.

Still it’s a personal choice, and one that I wouldn’t force on anybody. I’ve talked to self-professed “wage-whores” who are happy with the security of a regular job because it lets them do what they enjoy on the side. That’s certainly a viable approach, just not one I’m wired for. There’s also the idea that you get a good job as sort of a “temporary” career to pay off big student debt and save for other things (hello S.F.!). This is another great approach, especially in the early part of a career. Above all, having the flexibility and freedom to take crazy risks is always going to be better than allowing yourself to get bogged down with lots of consumer debt. Who cares about the Joneses? Let them compare giant credit card balances without you.

I guess the bottom line is that, whatever your chosen path, make it a deliberate one, so that one day you’ll look back on it and know that, for the most part, you consciously chose your direction instead of letting the currents of life push you and pull you onto their path.

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