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So far TomF has created 19 blog entries.

Yin & Yang

2018-11-18T18:01:05+00:00November 18th, 2018|Uncategorized|

In his famous Autobiography, Ben Franklin proffers the following 13 virtues as ‘necessary or desirable:’ Industry Justice Frugality Moderation Order Cleanliness Resolution Tranquility Temperance Chastity Silence Humility Sincerity He does not explicitly tell us ‘necessary or desirable’ toward what end, but it is apparent from context he means ‘necessary or desirable’ toward achieving material success. Indeed, what is the aim of Industry and Frugality, either

For Whom the Bell Tolls

2018-11-14T20:48:44+00:00November 14th, 2018|Uncategorized|

Over the years, I have had occasion to pick up one or another of my three sons at the local airport. I would park in the short-term lot, meet my son in the arrival lobby, and escort him and his carry-on to my car. I would ask my son, who would be riding shotgun, to hold the ticket and a bill, usually a $5 or

Party Time

2018-11-11T14:56:31+00:00November 11th, 2018|Uncategorized|

A two-party system of governance has prevailed in America for nearly as long as there has been a system of governance. It seems to be the natural order of things, set in stone by God Himself. Who, then, in his right mind, would even think of messing with it? Well, Teddy Roosevelt for one (Bull Moose), and Ross Perot for another (Reform) – but to

The Magic of Plants

2018-11-07T14:54:28+00:00November 7th, 2018|Uncategorized|

In the house I grew up in, a built-in cabinet stood at the very end of the hallway that passed by my bedroom. On top of this cabinet, I kept several potted plants as well as, in the spring, a few starter boxes containing mostly tomato and zinnia seedlings. A window above the cabinet faced eastward. The first thing I would do every morning when

Guess Who?

2018-11-04T16:24:15+00:00November 4th, 2018|Uncategorized|

Although our mystery man was heavily involved in the founding of our nation, he never sought elected office. He was elected to various offices anyway, but on each of those occasions he was essentially conscripted into office by people who knew what an authentic leader was and what a faux leader was not. Our friend was content to work behind the scenes, and rarely took

Leadership by Example

2018-11-02T15:30:51+00:00November 2nd, 2018|Uncategorized|

True leaders being the agents of all true leadership, here arguably are a few such, off the top of me ‘ead, roughly in chronological order: Eve (versus her feckless 'husband') Confucius Socrates Buddha Jesus (the man, not the myth) Joan of Arc Martin Luther Roger Williams Ben Franklin James Wilson (U.S. Constitution) John Quincy Adams Abraham Lincoln Crazy Horse Teddy Roosevelt Franklin Roosevelt Mohandas Gandhi

Missed Opportunities

2018-10-31T14:05:13+00:00October 31st, 2018|Uncategorized|

Barack Obama arguably gave up his moral authority (ability to lead by example) the moment he accepted the Nobel Peace Prize with little more to recommend him than he had little to nothing in common with his immediate predecessor. So badly, one senses, did the Nobel committee want to stick a finger in the eye of the verbally and intellectually challenged promoter of ‘advanced interrogation

The Blue States of America

2018-10-25T20:01:03+00:00October 25th, 2018|Uncategorized|

Considering the deep divides that exist today between the Blue States and the Red States, might it be time for the former to separate from the latter? If so, might the following principles be used to knit the Blue States into an alternative union? Every citizen benefits from every other citizen being educated and/or trained to the extent possible. Every citizen has as many undeniable

When We Were Children

2018-10-24T14:31:24+00:00October 20th, 2018|Uncategorized|

When we were children, many of us took great comfort in knowing that no matter how bad the scary things in our lives got, someone in authority – the U.S. Government, the Church, some of those really smart people out there – would step in and make everything all right. All we had to do, on our part, was simply have faith. We didn’t need

Panel of Our Peers

2018-10-24T14:27:18+00:00October 3rd, 2018|Uncategorized|

Our system of justice is based on the theory that we have a fundamental right to be judged by a panel of our peers versus by the king’s (or state’s) representatives. To field a panel of our peers, we use random selection (conscription). (Once upon a time, we employed this same technique to field an army of citizen-soldiers.) What if our system of governance were

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