Who’s In Charge Here?

This was a funny photo…


Sign around the ape says:

Laugh now, but one day, we’ll be in charge


I guess you never know who will be in charge. 

  • Be nice to everyone. 
  • Never burn bridges.


All of life is a circle–and everything and everybody goes around and around.  😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

There is a Place for Border Walls

There is a place for border walls. 


Walls are not bad. 


And neither are all people.


But some people are bad.


And we have the right to be protected from them. 


Walls help to manage the flow. 


Not everyone can just go whatever, whenever, wherever. 


Surely, some people need to move to and fro. 


But we must decide who and when and where. 


Walls define spaces and ownership.


Not every place and thing is everyone’s.


People have property rights as do sovereign nations.


Not everything is strictly defined.


There is the commons that we share. 


But also there is a mine and a yours. 


That’s how economics functions and how people give and take. 


Walls help separate and secure. 


Bridges help connect and transport. 


They are not mutually exclusive. 


I’ve never seen a house, company, organization, or government without walls. 


And neither have you. 😉


(Credit Photo: Michelle Blumenthal)

Them Tables Always Turn

Just wanted to share a saying that I liked.


It is an ancient Mongolian proverb and was in the movie, “Mogul” about the rise of Genghis Khan:

Do not scorn a weak cub; he may become a brutal tiger. 

I think this is the Asian equivalent of:


1) Don’t burn your bridges.

2  Don’t start a war you can’t win. 

3) Pick on someone your own size.

4) What goes around comes around.

The Asian version is better! 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Walls And Bridges

Walls

I was really surprised this week when the Pope entered the election fray and made a comment about presidential candidate, Donald Trump, not being a Christian if he is wanting to build walls (on the Mexican border) and not bridges


And then the Trump campaign pointing out that the Vatican City is surrounded by what of all things…a very big wall!


We have a history in the U.S. of separation of Church and State and a First Amendment that codifies this as law. 


To me, unless a candidate is truly criminal, discriminatory, or evil in their conduct, it’s not appropriate for a lofty religious figure to publicly question their personal faith like that. 


Further, when it comes to immigration this is not just an issue in America, but all over Europe now with the refugee crisis, and in many other places in the world. 


Of course, we most definitely need to welcome refugees fleeing persecution, conflict, catastrophe, or war. 


But when immigration is principally an economic migration, this is something for each nation to debate and decide for what is best for them.


This is not an endorsement of any candidate or party, but rather an acknowledgement that we shouldn’t:


1) Mix religion and politics (and impose undue influence in a sovereign nation’s elections)


2) Judge our neighbors faith by valid policy debates


3) Throw stones in glass houses (or walled areas as the case may be).


If building bridges is what is promoted and preferred here then the Pope and Trump should kiss (proverbially-speaking that is) and make up. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

When To Build Relationships Or Burn Your Bridges

When To Build Relationships Or Burn Your Bridges

Why marriages (and relationships) fail is a topic of discussion in the book Fighting For Your Marriage by Markman, Stanley, and Blumberg.

The book is anchored in research from the University of Denver and their Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program (PREP).

So here are the four main reasons:

1. Escalation–People escalate the fight, rather than deescalate it. Harmful words and actions beget more harmful words and actions as each side tries to win the fight, rather than save the relationship.

2. Invalidation–You put down the other person (their feelings, thoughts, and character) with sarcasm, disrespect, and contempt, rather than raise them up with understanding, concern, comfort, and encouragement.

3. Accusation–Assuming the worst, you negatively interpret the actions and motives of another person, rather than looking at and accentuating the positive and giving them the benefit of the doubt.

4. Abandonment–Leaving the person emotionally and/or physically, you withdraw and avoid them and possibly even cheat on them, rather than engaging with and cleaving to each other, and working together to solve problems.

Essentially, these relationship issues all have to do with a breakdown of communication and trust–where instead of trying to work it out, there is a feeling that nothing can be solved by talking anymore and that there is no reason to even trust the other person.

Once trust and communication are broken–it is very difficult to go back and rebuild it.

Then instead of mending fences, people may choose the nuclear option: go to war, fight it out, threaten, hurt, or leave–and the relationship spirals to a timely demise.

What was once a nuclear family, or close relationship (friends, associates, etc.), may end up a broken and shattered one, full of hatred and as enemy combatants, perhaps not much better than the Hatfields and McCoys.

So the first thing is you have to decide whether you want to build the relationship or end it.

If you love the other person and want to be with them (and they with you)–then say and do positive things to maintain communication and trust–give selflessly to each other.

Relationships thrive when people behave as true friends, looking out for one another, sincerely–when they help their partners achieve their goals, grow as human beings, and find meaning and happiness.

A relationship is not a business transaction, but a joining of hearts and an intimacy of soul–it is based on mutual respect and goodwill.

If you really value the other person and the relationship–don’t burn your bridges when things get heated, but cross and meet the other person (at least) halfway and embrace them with love and caring–most of the time, it will come back to you.

But at the same time don’t be a fool–if the other person is wicked and cruel, out only for themselves, and would throw you under a bus in a moment–get with it and quick because the bridge is already burning and at a very high temperature. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)