Thursday, January 01, 2015

Of Two Minds in 2015

It is clear that we need both practical plans of action for individuals and households and systemic alternatives to the present dysfunctional and doomed status quo.

Occasionally readers inquire about the meaning of this blog's title, Of Two Minds. There are several answers, but the primary one is: Of Two Minds is the synthesis of two minds--yours and mine.

Longtime readers know that from the inception of the blog ten years ago in May 2005, I have published/incorporated (with credit) an amazing spectrum of reader commentaries and analyses, from long-form essays to short paragraphs.

The advance of my own knowledge depends directly on readers' commentaries, critiques and analyses, and the network of global correspondents that is Of Two Minds' primary asset serves the expansion of all readers' understanding of our troubled times.

In other words, all the other minds that contribute experiences, ideas and explanations advance our collective knowledge, in effect leveraging an enormous network to the benefit of all participants/readers.

In this way, I consider Of Two Minds a working example of New Media Journalism, as it is both individual and global in a way that was not possible prior to the Internet. Newspapers had stringers/free-lancers in various capital cities, but communications from these nodes to the center were too slow and hierarchical to duplicate the non-corporate, non-institutional model of journalism/commentary that is our work in progress here.

It's a one-person shop here, and so there are severe limits of time and wetware bandwidth on what I can accomplish in any given hour, day, week, month or year. But these limits do not constrain the extraordinary collective intelligence of the site's thousands of correspondents/readers.

The site has collected nearly 50 million page views in its first decade, and the content has collected tens of millions of other views on sites that republish our work, including Zero Hedge, Peak Prosperity, David Stockman's ContraCorner, Financial Sense, Seeking Alpha, Max Keiser, Washington's Blog and many others.

The other meaning implicit in Of Two Minds is that I am not dogmatic or ideological or married to any position or solution. I change my mind when presented with superior experience, knowledge or conceptual blueprints. Even when I am persuaded that an analysis presented here has got it right, I remain of two minds in the sense that I may be wrong, or have overlooked a key dynamic, or simply don't yet have some critical conceptual tool in hand.

I see Of Two Minds as a free tool anyone can use to better understand our complex, dynamic world. There are thousands of pages of content here, from foolish bits of whimsy and poems to songs, videos, interviews, analyses, commentaries and charts. Please explore the site's Archives for a taste of the loosely organized offerings.

Of Two Minds has several thematic interests. One is to be skeptical of official narratives, as these inevitably justify and support the status quo arrangement that serves the interests of a powerful few at the expense of the many.

Another is to sketch out positive, practical courses of action for individuals and households within the current arrangement. This is goal of my books Survival+: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the NationAn Unconventional Guide to Investing in Troubled TimesWhy Things Are Falling Apart and What We Can Do About It and Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy.

A third theme is to present systemic/structural alternatives to the current arrangement, a project represented by my books The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy: The Revolution in Higher EducationResistance, Revolution, Liberation: A Model for Positive Change and Weblogs & New Media: Marketing in Crisis.

It is clear that we need both practical plans of action for individuals and households and systemic alternatives to the present dysfunctional and doomed status quo.

This blog is my modest attempt to further both goals in ways that are accessible to everyone with an Internet connection.

On this first day of 2015, I want to thank those financial contributors who have supported the site throughout 2014, and especially those who renew their financial support like clockwork in January of every year. It is you stalwart financial supporters that keep the site going. Thank you for contributing your hard-earned money to this often-Quixotic project.

This includes the subscribers to the weekly Musings Reports ($5 per month or $50/year) who consistently support the site despite the thin gruel of reward.

In 2015, the site will focus on a fourth topic: new tools for alleviating poverty on a global scale. Yes, it's possible, and yes, it's practical. More to come on all fronts--thank you for sharing the journey.

Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy(Kindle, $9.95)(print, $20)
go to Kindle editionAre you like me? Ever since my first summer job decades ago, I've been chasing financial security. Not win-the-lottery, Bill Gates riches (although it would be nice!), but simply a feeling of financial control. I want my financial worries to if not disappear at least be manageable and comprehensible.And like most of you, the way I've moved toward my goal has always hinged not just on having a job but a career.

You don't have to be a financial blogger to know that "having a job" and "having a career" do not mean the same thing today as they did when I first started swinging a hammer for a paycheck.

Even the basic concept "getting a job" has changed so radically that jobs--getting and keeping them, and the perceived lack of them--is the number one financial topic among friends, family and for that matter, complete strangers.

So I sat down and wrote this book: Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy.

It details everything I've verified about employment and the economy, and lays out an action plan to get you employed.

I am proud of this book. It is the culmination of both my practical work experiences and my financial analysis, and it is a useful, practical, and clarifying read.

Test drive the first section and see for yourself.     Kindle, $9.95     print, $20

"I want to thank you for creating your book Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy. It is rare to find a person with a mind like yours, who can take a holistic systems view of things without being captured by specific perspectives or agendas. Your contribution to humanity is much appreciated."
Laura Y.

Gordon Long and I discuss The New Nature of Work: Jobs, Occupations & Careers(25 minutes, YouTube) 

NOTE: Contributions/subscriptions are acknowledged in the order received. Your name and email remain confidential and will not be given to any other individual, company or agency.

Thank you, Jay H. ($20), for your marvelously generous contribution to this site-- I am greatly honored by your steadfast support and readership.

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