Dennis Toombs's blog

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What is our single greatest source of power?

For believers, our single greatest cource of power is God since he/she is all-knowing, ever-present, omnipotent and can give us the ultimate carrot, immortality.

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*The greatest story ever told.

If you are traditionally religious, God is your greatest source of power since he/she is perfect, all-knowing, all-powerful, ever-present and can give us the greatest carrot of all, immortality.  

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*What Is Our Most Valuable Possession?

What is our most valuable possession? Not power. Are you surprised? Not some of the other usual culprits like money, intelligence, social skills, knowledge, education, good health, physical beauty or charisma. If not any of these, then what? Some hints may be helpful. In varying amounts, all of us have at least some of it. No matter how much we have or how well we budget this critical resource, we will eventually go broke in spending all of it.

Dennis Toombs's picture

What Is Our Most Valuable Possession?

What is our most valuable possession? Not power. Are you surprised? Not some of the other usual culprits like money, intelligence, social skills, knowledge, education, good health, physical beauty or charisma. If not any of these, then what? Some hints may be helpful. In varying amounts, all of us have at least some of it. No matter how much we have or how well we budget this critical resource, we will eventually go broke in spending all of it.

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*The Story of Haiti--We Owe Them

       President Trump allegedly described Haiti as a “s---hole” country. That is an unfair and incomplete story. Haiti has a proud history and fascinating culture, the first independent country in the Caribbean, the second democracy in the Western Hemisphere and the first black republic in the world. It was France’s wealthiest colony until 1792 when slaves, free blacks and mulattoes revolted against their colonizer.

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In comparison to other countries, the United States has the highest standard of living and greatest social mobility. WRONG!

For the last forty plus years, the United States has experienced the greatest redistribution of wealth from the lower and middle classes to the wealthy and the slowest job growth since the Great Depression. Empirical data show that social mobility has declined dramatically over the last several decades.

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If hard work, talent and financial IQ are not responsible for our economic success, what is?

Whether we know how to spend our money better than government is at least debatable given the low financial IQ of most people. We may have earned our money through hard work and talent but should at least acknowledge that our country of birth or residence, parent’s income and education, genetic intelligence, physical appearance, social upbringing, and probably some good luck account for most of our economic success, circumstances over which we have little or nothing to do.

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Since the 1970s, how has ideology been used to justify great inequalities in the distribution of wealth and income?

Since the 1970s, conservative political elites and the wealthy have given other ideological rationalizations to justify the acceleration of economic inequalities in the developed countries of the world, especially in the United States. Upper-class financial investments and wealth create jobs that “trickle down” to the masses. Almost anyone can move up the socioeconomic ladder if they work hard and persevere. People know how to spend their money better than the government. We earn our money through hard work and talent and deserve to keep it.

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Historically, how has ideology been used to justify great inequalities in the distribution of wealth and income?

Rulers have used ideology in a variety of ways to explain and justify egregious inequalities in the distribution of wealth and income. From the seventeenth century until after World War II, colonial powers considered the indigenous people of their conquered countries racially inferior. They ruled through divine right and God’s will. Their destiny was to civilize the local inhabitants and for European countries to convert them to Christianity. Administrative costs, military dominance and battlefield casualties entitled the colonizers to whatever they could extract from the colonies.

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*Getting the message out

          Telling stories these days is easy. The hard part is getting the message out, standing apart from the crowd. How can we do this? For starters, we can select and support opinion leaders who tell the stories that we want to hear.

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