In the last 30 years, there has been an exponential increase in private wealth, and in size and reach of the mainstream culture’s propaganda and reality molding machine; the de-centralized but highly coherent set of values-based messages and cultural cues – compete and win, dominate and control – in which we are immersed. This blog contextualizes these trends; making the magnitude of these trends – and their effect – more transparent.
Work dominates our lives and is, unfortunately, a place where the culture’s predominant values – compete and win, dominate and control – are typically rehearsed with unrestrained virulence. This blog discusses how salaried workers – even without a renewed workers rights movement – can apply the lessons of Radical Decency to infuse their relationships with greater ease, trust, and respect.
If Radical Decency challenges us to be decent at all times and without exception does this mean that those of us who are not saints are doomed to fail? This blog tackles this issue; framing Radical Decency as an aspirational practice; arguing that we realize its promise – not when we’re perfect – but when we practice it with focus, persistence, imagination, and guts.
“Holistic healing” typically refers mind, body, and spirit, an approach that focuses on mastering what is going on within the four walls of our body. Operating in a world in which compete and win, dominate and control are so dominant, the author offers a broader definition that includes “the practical” – effectively negotiating your place in the world, as it is – and “the radical” – being an active agent in molding the environments within which you exist.
Why do Republicans win so many elections? For years, this question has puzzled me. At a rational level, their policies clearly favor a wealthy minority and penalize the middle and lower classes; i.e., the vast majority of voters. Nevertheless, Republicans have won 7 of the last 12 national elections. They have these wins not because they’re smarter or richer, but because in contrast to more progressive politicians, Republicans wholeheartedly embrace and promote compete and win, dominate and control–they activate people’s fight/flight response.
It is stunning to realize how dismal “normal” ways of interacting are within broadcast news media – if the goal is to cultivate a meaningful and mutually respectful dialogue. Quite simply, listening and responding isn’t the media’s goal. Instead, the participants are collecting ammunition so that, as soon as the other person stops talking – or sooner, since interruptions are chronic – they can fire back, reiterating why they are right and he or she is wrong. What would happen if CNN, CBS, and other news outlets took meaningful steps to buck the system? Here are a few possibilities.
Have you ever felt that the social justice work you’re involved in is merely addressing symptoms rather than the underlying cause of what ails us? At its core, the problem we face is values-based. I’d like to make the case for embracing a very different set of values I call “decency” and practicing them “radically”–at all times and in every area of living. Radical Decency could be an approach to living that speaks with special force to the central challenge we face as we seek to create better lives and a better world.