Generic Positive Quotes

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You “burn” your way into the mind by narrowing the focus to a single word or concept. It’s the ultimate marketing sacrifice. Federal Express was able to put the word overnight into the minds of its prospects because it sacrificed its product line and focused on overnight package delivery only. In a way, the law of leadership—it’s better to be first than to be better—enables the first brand or company to own a word in the mind of the prospect. But the word the leader owns is so simple that it’s invisible. The leader owns the word that stands for the category. For example, IBM owns computer. This is another way of saying that the brand becomes a generic name for the category. “We need an IBM machine.” Is there any doubt that a computer is being requested? You can also test the validity of a leadership claim by a word association test. If the given words are computer, copier, chocolate bar, and cola, the four most associated words are IBM, Xerox, Hershey’s, and Coke. An astute leader will go one step further to solidify its position. Heinz owns the word ketchup. But Heinz went on to isolate the most important ketchup attribute. “Slowest ketchup in the West” is how the company
Al Ries (The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing)
When the humanity of others who were previously invisible becomes apparent to us for the first time, I think it is because we have noticed something particular in them. By contrast, egalitarian empathy, projected from afar and without discrimination, is more principled than attentive. It is content to posit rather than to see the humanity of its beneficiaries. But the one who is on the receiving end of such empathy wants something more than to be recognized generically. He wants to be seen as an individual, and recognized as worthy on the same grounds on which he has striven to be worthy, indeed superior, by cultivating some particular excellence or skill. We all strive for distinction, and I believe that to honor another person is to honor this aspiring core of him. I can do this by allowing myself to respond in kind, and experience the concrete difference between him and me. This may call for silent deference on my part, as opposed to chummy liberal solicitude.
Matthew B. Crawford (The World Beyond Your Head: On Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction)
We must consider also whether soul is divisible or is without parts, and whether it is everywhere homogeneous or not; and if not homogeneous, whether its various forms are different specifically or generically; up to the present time those who have discussed and investigated soul seem to have confined themselves to the human soul. We must be careful not to ignore the question whether soul can be defined in a single account, as is the case with animal, or whether we must not give a separate account of each sort of it, as we do for horse, dog, man, god (in the latter case the universal, animal—and so too every other common predicate—is either nothing or posterior). Further, if what exists is not a plurality of souls, but a plurality of parts of one soul, which ought we to investigate first, the whole soul or its parts? It is also a difficult problem to decide which of these parts are in nature distinct from one another. Again, which ought we to investigate first, these parts or their functions, mind or thinking, the faculty or the act of sensation, and so on? If the investigation of the functions precedes that of the parts, the further question suggests itself: ought we not before either to consider the correlative objects, e.g. of sense or thought? It seems not only useful for the discovery of the causes of the incidental proprieties of substances to be acquainted with the essential nature of those substances (as in mathematics it is useful for the understanding of the property of the equality of the interior angles of a triangle to two right angles to know the essential nature of the straight and the curved or of the line and (the plane) but also conversely, for the knowledge of the essential nature of a substance is largely promoted by an acquaintance with its properties: for, when we are able to give an account conformable to experience of all or most of the properties of a substance, we shall be in the most favourable position to say something worth saying about the essential nature of that subject: in all demonstration a definition of the essence is required as a starting point, so that definitions which do not enable us to discover the incidental properties, or which fail to facilitate even a conjecture about them, must obviously, one and all, be dialectical and futile.
Aristotle
The primary method of mathematics is deduction; the primary method of philosophy is descrip- [16] tive generalization. Under the influence of mathematics, deduction has been foisted onto philosophy as its standard method, instead of taking its true place as an essential auxiliary mode of verification whereby to test the scope of generalities. This misapprehension of philosophic method has veiled the very considerable success of philosophy in providing generic notions which add lucidity to our apprehension of the facts of experience. The depositions of Plato, Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz,† Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, Hegel, merely mean that ideas which these men introduced into the philosophic tradition must be construed with limitations, adaptations, and inversions, either unknown to them, or even explicitly repudiated by them. A new idea introduces a new alternative; and we are not less indebted to a thinker when we adopt the alternative which he discarded. Philosophy never reverts to its old position after the shock of a great philosopher.
Alfred North Whitehead (Process and Reality)
[There is] no direct relationship between IQ and economic opportunity. In the supposed interests of fairness and “social justice”, the natural relationship has been all but obliterated. Consider the first necessity of employment, filling out a job application. A generic job application does not ask for information on IQ. If such information is volunteered, this is likely to be interpreted as boastful exaggeration, narcissism, excessive entitlement, exceptionalism [...] and/or a lack of team spirit. None of these interpretations is likely to get you hired. Instead, the application contains questions about job experience and educational background, neither of which necessarily has anything to do with IQ. Universities are in business for profit; they are run like companies, seek as many paying clients as they can get, and therefore routinely accept people with lukewarm IQ’s, especially if they fill a slot in some quota system (in which case they will often be allowed to stay despite substandard performance). Regarding the quotas themselves, these may in fact turn the tables, advantaging members of groups with lower mean IQ’s than other groups [...] sometimes, people with lower IQ’s are expressly advantaged in more ways than one. These days, most decent jobs require a college education. Academia has worked relentlessly to bring this about, as it gains money and power by monopolizing the employment market across the spectrum. Because there is a glut of college-educated applicants for high-paying jobs, there is usually no need for an employer to deviate from general policy and hire an applicant with no degree. What about the civil service? While the civil service was once mostly open to people without college educations, this is no longer the case, and quotas make a very big difference in who gets hired. Back when I was in the New York job market, “minorities” (actually, worldwide majorities) were being spotted 30 (thirty) points on the civil service exam; for example, a Black person with a score as low as 70 was hired ahead of a White person with a score of 100. Obviously, any prior positive correlation between IQ and civil service employment has been reversed. Add to this the fact that many people, including employers, resent or feel threatened by intelligent people [...] and the IQ-parameterized employment function is no longer what it was once cracked up to be. If you doubt it, just look at the people running things these days. They may run a little above average, but you’d better not be expecting to find any Aristotles or Newtons among them. Intelligence has been replaced in the job market with an increasingly poor substitute, possession of a college degree, and given that education has steadily given way to indoctrination and socialization as academic priorities, it would be naive to suppose that this is not dragging down the overall efficiency of society. In short, there are presently many highly intelligent people working very “dumb” jobs, and conversely, many less intelligent people working jobs that would once have been filled by their intellectual superiors. Those sad stories about physics PhD’s flipping burgers at McDonald's are no longer so exceptional. Sorry, folks, but this is not your grandfather’s meritocracy any more.
Christopher Michael Langan
ON THE MODUS OPERANDI OF OUR CURRENT PRESIDENT, DONALD J. TRUMP "According to a new ABC/Washington Post poll, President Trump’s disapproval rating has hit a new high." The President's response to this news was "“I don’t do it for the polls. Honestly — people won’t necessarily agree with this — I do nothing for the polls,” the president told reporters on Wednesday. “I do it to do what’s right. I’m here for an extended period of time. I’m here for a period that’s a very important period of time. And we are straightening out this country.” - Both Quotes Taken From Aol News - August 31, 2018 In The United States, as in other Republics, the two main categories of Presidential motivation for their assigned tasks are #1: Self Interest in seeking to attain and to hold on to political power for their own sakes, regarding the welfare of This Republic to be of secondary importance. #2: Seeking to attain and to hold on to the power of that same office for the selfless sake of this Republic's welfare, irregardless of their personal interest, and in the best of cases going against their personal interests to do what is best for this Republic even if it means making profound and extreme personal sacrifices. Abraham Lincoln understood this last mentioned motivation and gave his life for it. The primary information any political scientist needs to ascertain regarding the diagnosis of a particular President's modus operandi is to first take an insightful and detailed look at the individual's past. The litmus test always being what would he or she be willing to sacrifice for the Nation. In the case of our current President, Donald John Trump, he abandoned a life of liberal luxury linked to self imposed limited responsibilities for an intensely grueling, veritably non stop two year nightmare of criss crossing this immense Country's varied terrain, both literally and socially when he could have easily maintained his life of liberal leisure. While my assertion that his personal choice was, in my view, sacrificially done for the sake of a great power in a state of rapid decline can be contradicted by saying it was motivated by selfish reasons, all evidence points to the contrary. For knowing the human condition, fraught with a plentitude of weaknesses, for a man in the end portion of his lifetime to sacrifice an easy life for a hard working incessant schedule of thankless tasks it is entirely doubtful that this choice was made devoid of a special and even exalted inspiration to do so. And while the right motivations are pivotal to a President's success, what is also obviously needed are generic and specific political, military and ministerial skills which must be naturally endowed by Our Creator upon the particular President elected for the purposes of advancing a Nation's general well being for one and all. If one looks at the latest National statistics since President Trump took office, (such as our rising GNP, the booming market, the dramatically shrinking unemployment rate, and the overall positive emotive strains in regards to our Nation's future, on both the left and the right) one can make definitive objective conclusions pertaining to the exceptionally noble character and efficiency of the current resident at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. And if one can drown out the constant communicative assaults on our current Commander In Chief, and especially if one can honestly assess the remarkable lack of substantial mistakes made by the current President, all of these factors point to a leader who is impressively strong, morally and in other imperative ways. And at the most propitious time. For the main reason that so many people in our Republic palpably despise our current President is that his political and especially his social agenda directly threatens their licentious way of life. - John Lars Zwerenz
John Lars Zwerenz
But Linnaeus took one bold step which changed humankind’s view of our place in nature for ever. He was the first person to include ‘man’ (as they referred to humankind in those days) in a system of biological classification. Just how man fitted in to the biological scheme of things took him some time to decide, and the whole idea of classifying man in the same way as the animals was, of course, controversial in the eighteenth century. ========== Science: a History (John Gribbin) - Your Highlight on page 236 | location 3612-3618 | Added on Thursday, 5 June 2014 18:13:24 He also agonized about whether there ought to be a separate genus for Homo at all. In the foreword to his Fauna Svecica, published in 1746, he said ‘the fact is that as a natural historian I have yet to find any characteristics which enable man to be distinguished on scientific principles from an ape’, and in response to criticism of this position he wrote to a colleague, Johann Gmelin, in 1747: I ask you and the whole world for a generic differentia between man and ape which conforms to the principles of natural history. I certainly know of none… If I were to call man ape or vice versa, I should bring down all the theologians on my head. But perhaps I should still do it according to the rules of science.1
Anonymous
American accent. Broad shoulders, at least fifty years old. He was wearing generic sunglasses and a cap that read NASHVILLE PREDATORS. His lips were thin, sharp like a palm leaf. Lucie stood up; the man took up position behind her. The cop looked around for pedestrians, witnesses, but no luck. Alone and unarmed, she was helpless. They walked about a hundred yards without encountering a soul. A Datsun 240Z was waiting under the maples. “You drive.” He pushed her roughly into the car. Lucie’s throat was knotted and she was finding it hard to stay calm. The faces of her twins swam before her eyes. Not like this, she kept thinking. Not like this… The man took a seat next to her. Like a pro, he quickly patted her pockets, thighs, and hips. He took out her wallet, removed her police ID—which he looked at carefully—then turned off her cell phone. Lucie spoke in a slightly shaky voice: “No need—it isn’t working.” “Drive.” “What is it you want? I—” “Drive, I said.” She started the car. They headed out of Montreal due north, via the Charles de Gaulle Bridge. And left the lights of the city far behind.
Franck Thilliez (Syndrome E)
identify your employee adjectives, (2) recruit through proper advertising, (3) identify winning personalities, and (4) select your winners. Step One: Identify Your Employee Adjectives When you think of your favorite employees in the past, what comes to mind? A procedural element such as an organized workstation, neat paperwork, or promptness? No. What makes an employee memorable is her attitude and smile, the way she takes the time to make sure a customer is happy, the extra mile she goes to ensure orders are fulfilled and problems are solved. Her intrinsic qualities—her energy, sense of humor, eagerness, and contributions to the team—are the qualities you remember. Rather than relying on job descriptions that simply quantify various positions’ duties and correlating them with matching experience as a tool for identifying and hiring great employees, I use a more holistic approach. The first step in the process is selecting eight adjectives that best define the personality ideal for each job or role in your business. This is a critical step: it gives you new visions and goals for your own management objectives, new ways to measure employee success, and new ways to assess the performance of your own business. Create a “Job Candidate Profile” for every job position in your business. Each Job Candidate Profile should contain eight single- and multiple-word phrases of defining adjectives that clearly describe the perfect employee for each job position. Consider employee-to-customer personality traits, colleague-to-colleague traits, and employee-to-manager traits when making up the list. For example, an accounting manager might be described with adjectives such as “accurate,” “patient,” “detailed,” and “consistent.” A cocktail server for a nightclub or casual restaurant would likely be described with adjectives like “energetic,” “fun,” “music-loving,” “sports-loving,” “good-humored,” “sociable conversationalist,” “adventurous,” and so on. Obviously, the adjectives for front-of-house staff and back-of-house staff (normally unseen by guests) will be quite different. Below is one generic example of a Job Candidate Profile. Your lists should be tailored for your particular bar concept, audience, location, and style of business (high-end, casual, neighborhood, tourist, and so on). BARTENDER Energetic Extroverted/Conversational Very Likable (first impression) Hospitable, demonstrates a Great Service Attitude Sports Loving Cooperative, Team Player Quality Orientated Attentive, Good Listening Skills SAMPLE ADJECTIVES Amazing Ambitious Appealing Ardent Astounding Avid Awesome Buoyant Committed Courageous Creative Dazzling Dedicated Delightful Distinctive Diverse Dynamic Eager Energetic Engaging Entertaining Enthusiastic Entrepreneurial Exceptional Exciting Fervent Flexible Friendly Genuine High-Energy Imaginative Impressive Independent Ingenious Keen Lively Magnificent Motivating Outstanding Passionate Positive Proactive Remarkable Resourceful Responsive Spirited Supportive Upbeat Vibrant Warm Zealous Step Two: Recruit through Proper Advertising The next step is to develop print or online advertising copy that will attract the personalities you’ve just defined.
Jon Taffer (Raise the Bar: An Action-Based Method for Maximum Customer Reactions)
This is not antidemocratic. When the humanity of others who were previously invisible becomes apparent to us for the first time, I think it is because we have noticed something particular in them. By contrast, egalitarian empathy, projected from afar and without discrimination, is more principled than attentive. It is content to posit rather than to see the humanity of its beneficiaries. But the one who is on the receiving end of such empathy wants something more than to be recognized generically. He wants to be seen as an individual, and
Matthew B. Crawford (The World Beyond Your Head: On Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction)
You hired for the generic position. There is no such thing as a great CEO, a great head of marketing, or a great head of sales. There is only a great head of sales for your company for the next twelve to twenty-four months. That position is not the same as the same position at Microsoft or Facebook. Don’t look for the candidate out of central casting. This is not a movie.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
The 5C structure is generic—useful to product, marketing, and more—whereas the way we presented the sections in this chapter is very focused on product management. It’s good to know what the “C”s stand for because you’ll likely hear 5C mentioned. Plus if you need to do a situational analysis on your feet in a meeting or interview, it’s relatively easy to remember. Company: This refers to the company’s experience, technology, culture, goals, and more. It’s similar to the material we covered in the “Why Does the Company Exist?,” “How Do We Know If Our Product’s Good?,” and “What Else Has Been, Is Being, and Will Be Built?” sections. Customers: Who are the people buying this product? What are the market segments? How big are they? What are people’s goals with buying this product? How do they make buying decisions? Where do they buy this type or product? This is similar to what we covered in the “Customers and Personas” and “Use Cases” sections. Collaborators: Who are the external people who make the product possible, including distributors, suppliers, logistical operators, groundwork support personnel, and so on? Competitors: Who is competing for your customers’ money? This includes actual and potential competitors. You should look at how they position their product, the market size they address, their strengths and weaknesses, and more. Climate: These are the macro-environmental factors, like cultural, regulatory, or technological trends and innovations.
Product School (The Product Book: How to Become a Great Product Manager)
Excuse the cliché, but it is necessary to walk before you can run. You may even have to crawl before you can walk. This is part of accepting your position as a beginner, at the bottom of the hierarchy you so casually, arrogantly, and self-servingly despise. Furthermore, the deeply antihuman attitude that often accompanies tears shed for environmental degradation and man’s inhumanity to man cannot but help but have a marked effect on the psychological attitude that defines a person’s relationship to him or herself. It has taken since time immemorial for us to organize ourselves, biologically and socially, into the functional hierarchies that both specify our perceptions and actions, and define our interactions with the natural and social world. Profound gratitude for that gift is the only proper response. The structure that encompasses us all has its dark side—just as nature does, just as each individual does—but that does not mean careless, generic, and self-serving criticism of the status quo is appropriate (any more than knee-jerk objection to what might be necessary change).
Jordan B. Peterson (Beyond Order: 12 More Rules for Life)
We will continue to concentrate our energies entirely on prescription medicines and in vitro diagnostics, rather than diversify into other sectors like generics and biosimilars, over-the-counter medicines and medical devices.” ■ “With our in-house combination of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics, we are uniquely positioned to deliver personalized healthcare.” ■ “Our distinctiveness rests on four key elements: an exceptionally broad and deep understanding of molecular biology, the seamless integration of our pharmaceuticals and diagnostics capabilities, a diversity of approaches to maximise innovation, and a long-term orientation.” ■ “Our structure is built for innovation. Our autonomous research and development centres and alliances with over 200 external partners foster diversity and agility. Our global geographical scale and reach enables us to bring our diagnostics and medicines quickly to people who need them.
Glenn R Carroll (Making Great Strategy: Arguing for Organizational Advantage)
Back-flips are a basic intermediate gymnastics maneuver that many people have trouble doing. The back-flip, also known as the back-tuck due to the importance of the leg tuck, is a 360° backwards rotation from a stand. There are three parts to the back-flip: the set, the tuck and the landing. Just knowing how to do a correct back- on a # Do not stop in the middle of the move, the fall can cause broken bones and/or a trip to the hospital.Back flip is a generic term for an acrobatic sequence of body movements in which a person leaps into the air, performs one complete backwards revolution while still in the air, and then lands on the feet. Variations of back flips, such as the back tuck and back layout, are performed in acro dance, free running, gymnastics, tricking, and various other activities. Back flips can be started from a stationary, standing position and they are also commonly executed immediately following another rotational move, such as a roundoff, so as to take advantage of the angular momentum developed in the earlier move. This is in contrast to freestyle BMX, in which a person revolves in the air about a bicycle.
George Miller
There are four primary chemicals in our body that contribute to all our positive feelings that I will generically call “happy”: endorphins, dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin. Whether acting alone or in concert, in small doses or large, anytime we feel any sense of happiness or joy, odds are it is because one or more of these chemicals is coursing through our veins. They do not exist simply to make us feel good.
Simon Sinek (Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don't)
The job interview is perhaps the most obvious example of this sort of unpaid emotional labour: here the candidate must appear sufficiently confident and enthusiastic to satisfy a selection panel assessing "presentation" and "personality", as if these were objective scientific criteria. So the interview, regardless of the job, becomes a kind of talent show audition hinging on generic questions about change, teamwork etc. (the equivalents of the standard repertoire of X Factor ballads), while the interviewee must project an all-purpose positivity by extemporising around this script without revealing its artificiality. The candidate must project the right image and hit the right notes, and must put his 'heart and soul' into every performance, even for the most dreary role.
Ivor Southwood (Non Stop Inertia)
The best way to instill social values is to eroticize them...We can decode social priorities through looking at what's most commonly eroticized: male power and female submission, male violence and female pain. The most generically sexual images of women involve silence, performance, and artificiality: traits that leave male power intact and strengthened, by draining women's energy and wasting our time. Women are definitionally powerless in any of these situations, and certainly women have subverted and diversified sexual archetypes to far more aesthetically interesting ends. But still, it's worth paying attention to whatever cultural products draw straightforwardly on sex to gain position, even and especially if women are driving that concept.
Jia Tolentino (Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-Delusion)
Furthermore, it is not the people or the citizens who decide on what to vote, on which political program, at what time, and so on. It is the oligarchs and the oligarchic system that decide on this and that submit their choice to the vote of the electorate (in certain very specific cases). One could legitimately wonder, for instance, why there are not more referendums, and in particular referendums of popular initiative, in “democracy.” Cornelius Castoriadis perfectly described this state of affairs when he wrote: “The election is rigged, not because the ballot boxes are being stuffed, but because the options are determined in advance. They are told, ‘vote for or against the Maastricht Treaty,’ for example. But who made the Maastricht Treaty? It isn’t us.”127 It would thus be naive to believe that elections reflect public opinion or even the preferences of the electorate. For these oligarchic principles dominate our societies to such an extent that the nature of the choice is decided in advance. In the case of elections, it is the powerful media apparatus—financed in the United States by private interests, big business, and the bureaucratic machinery of party politics—that presents to the electorate the choices to be made, the viable candidates, the major themes to be debated, the range of possible positions, the questions to be raised and pondered, the statistical tendencies of “public opinion,” the viewpoint of experts, and the positions taken by the most prominent politicians. What we call political debate and public space (which is properly speaking a space of publicity) are formatted to such an extent that we are encouraged to make binary choices without ever asking ourselves genuine questions: we must be either for or against a particular political star, a specific publicity campaign, such or such “societal problem.” “One of the many reasons why it is laughable to speak of ‘democracy’ in Western societies today,” asserts Castoriadis, “is because the ‘public’ sphere is in fact private—be it in France, the United States, or England.”The market of ideas is saturated, and the political consumer is asked to passively choose a product that is already on the shelves. This is despite the fact that the contents of the products are often more or less identical, conjuring up in many ways the difference that exists between a brand-name product on the right, with the shiny packaging of the tried-and-true, and a generic product on the left, that aspires to be more amenable to the people. “Free elections do not necessarily express ‘the will of the people,’ ” Erich Fromm judiciously wrote. “If a highly advertised brand of toothpaste is used by the majority of the people because of some fantastic claims it makes in its propaganda, nobody with any sense would say that people have ‘made a decision’ in favor of the toothpaste. All that could be claimed is that the propaganda was sufficiently effective to coax millions of people into believing its claims.
Gabriel Rockhill (Counter-History of the Present: Untimely Interrogations into Globalization, Technology, Democracy)
Furthermore, it is not the people or the citizens who decide on what to vote, on which political program, at what time, and so on. It is the oligarchs and the oligarchic system that decide on this and that submit their choice to the vote of the electorate (in certain very specific cases). One could legitimately wonder, for instance, why there are not more referendums, and in particular referendums of popular initiative, in “democracy.” Cornelius Castoriadis perfectly described this state of affairs when he wrote: “The election is rigged, not because the ballot boxes are being stuffed, but because the options are determined in advance. They are told, ‘vote for or against the Maastricht Treaty,’ for example. But who made the Maastricht Treaty? It isn’t us.” It would thus be naive to believe that elections reflect public opinion or even the preferences of the electorate. For these oligarchic principles dominate our societies to such an extent that the nature of the choice is decided in advance. In the case of elections, it is the powerful media apparatus—financed in the United States by private interests, big business, and the bureaucratic machinery of party politics—that presents to the electorate the choices to be made, the viable candidates, the major themes to be debated, the range of possible positions, the questions to be raised and pondered, the statistical tendencies of “public opinion,” the viewpoint of experts, and the positions taken by the most prominent politicians. What we call political debate and public space (which is properly speaking a space of publicity) are formatted to such an extent that we are encouraged to make binary choices without ever asking ourselves genuine questions: we must be either for or against a particular political star, a specific publicity campaign, such or such “societal problem.” “One of the many reasons why it is laughable to speak of ‘democracy’ in Western societies today,” asserts Castoriadis, “is because the ‘public’ sphere is in fact private—be it in France, the United States, or England.”The market of ideas is saturated, and the political consumer is asked to passively choose a product that is already on the shelves. This is despite the fact that the contents of the products are often more or less identical, conjuring up in many ways the difference that exists between a brand-name product on the right, with the shiny packaging of the tried-and-true, and a generic product on the left, that aspires to be more amenable to the people. “Free elections do not necessarily express ‘the will of the people,’ ” Erich Fromm judiciously wrote. “If a highly advertised brand of toothpaste is used by the majority of the people because of some fantastic claims it makes in its propaganda, nobody with any sense would say that people have ‘made a decision’ in favor of the toothpaste. All that could be claimed is that the propaganda was sufficiently effective to coax millions of people into believing its claims.
Gabriel Rockhill (Counter-History of the Present: Untimely Interrogations into Globalization, Technology, Democracy)
First, people like to command attention, and one way to do that is to place yourself at the center of dramatic events. There is no reason to think that this incentive to claim special witness to high drama was any less powerful among hunter-gatherers circa 30,000 BCE than among midwestern Americans circa 1900 CE. Imagine that you are one of those hunter-gatherers and you walk past a place where someone died mysteriously, and you hear leaves rustle eerily. That’s a story that will get people’s attention, and you can heighten the attention by stressing how exquisitely timed the rustling was. And, by the way, didn’t you catch sight of a shadowy—almost ethereal—creature out of the corner of your eye? The anthropologist Stewart Guthrie has suggested that hunter-gatherers would be encouraged to make just such false sightings by standard human mental equipment—something called a “hyperactive agent-detection device.” Because the costs of failing to detect a predator lurking in the woods are much higher than the costs of detecting one that isn’t there, natural selection, he plausibly argues, may have biased our brains toward “false positives”: you hear a rustling, your mind flashes the vivid hypothesis of some generic animal that’s doing the rustling, and you turn toward it expectantly. Did you actually see something? Kind of.
Robert Wright (The Evolution of God)
That ideology is “positive thinking,” by which we usually mean two things. One is the generic content of positive thinking—that is, the positive thought itself—which can be summarized as: Things are pretty good right now, at least if you are willing to see silver linings, make lemonade out of lemons, etc., and things are going to get a whole lot better. This is optimism, and it is not the same as hope. Hope is an emotion, a yearning, the experience of which is not entirely within our control. Optimism is a cognitive stance, a conscious expectation, which presumably anyone can develop through practice.
Barbara Ehrenreich (Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America)
5. The most important sort of union that obtains among things, pragmatically speaking, is their GENERIC UNITY. Things exist in kinds, there are many specimens in each kind, and what the 'kind' implies for one specimen, it implies also for every other specimen of that kind. We can easily conceive that every fact in the world might be singular, that is, unlike any other fact and sole of its kind. In such a world of singulars our logic would be useless, for logic works by predicating of the single instance what is true of all its kind. With no two things alike in the world, we should be unable to reason from our past experiences to our future ones. The existence of so much generic unity in things is thus perhaps the most momentous pragmatic specification of what it may mean to say 'the world is One.' ABSOLUTE generic unity would obtain if there were one summum genus under which all things without exception could be eventually subsumed. 'Beings,' 'thinkables,' 'experiences,' would be candidates for this position. Whether the alternatives expressed by such words have any pragmatic significance or not, is another question which I prefer to leave unsettled just now. 6. Another specification of what the phrase 'the world is One' may mean is UNITY OF PURPOSE. An enormous number of things in the world subserve a common purpose. All the man-made systems, administrative, industrial, military, or what not, exist each for its controlling purpose. Every living being pursues its own peculiar purposes. They co-operate, according to the degree of their development, in collective or tribal purposes, larger ends thus enveloping lesser ones, until an absolutely single, final and climacteric purpose subserved by all things without exception might conceivably be reached. It is needless to say that the appearances conflict with such a view. Any resultant, as I said in my third lecture, MAY have been purposed in advance, but none of the results we actually know in is world have in point of fact been purposed in advance in all their details. Men and nations start with a vague notion of being rich, or great, or good. Each step they make brings unforeseen chances into sight, and shuts out older vistas, and the specifications of the general purpose have to be daily changed. What is reached in the end may be better or worse than what was proposed, but it is always more complex and different. Our different purposes also are at war with each other. Where one can't crush the other out, they compromise; and the result is again different from what anyone distinctly proposed beforehand. Vaguely and generally, much of what was purposed may be gained; but everything makes strongly for the view that our world is incompletely unified teleologically and is still trying to get its unification better organized. Whoever claims ABSOLUTE teleological unity, saying that there is one purpose that every detail of the universe subserves, dogmatizes at his own risk. Theologians who dogmalize thus find it more and more impossible, as our acquaintance with the warring interests of the world's parts grows more concrete, to imagine what the one climacteric purpose may possibly be like. We see indeed that certain evils minister to ulterior goods, that the bitter makes the cocktail better, and that a bit of danger or hardship puts us agreeably to our trumps. We can vaguely generalize this into the doctrine that all the evil in the universe is but instrumental to its greater perfection. But the scale of the evil actually in sight defies all human tolerance; and transcendental idealism, in the pages of a Bradley or a Royce, brings us no farther than the book of Job did—God's ways are not our ways, so let us put our hands upon our mouth. A God who can relish such superfluities of horror is no God for human beings to appeal to. His animal spirits are too high. In other words the 'Absolute' with his one purpose, is not the man-like God of common people.
Will James
Anyone who ever gave you confidence, you owe them a lot.” —TRUMAN CAPOTE Don’t leave a mess in your host’s bathroom. Have a variety of positive reactions, not the same generic smile for everyone.
Tycho Press (BOLD: 212 Charisma and Small Talk Tips to Engage, Charm and Leave a Lasting Impression)