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Viewing entries tagged with 'future'

The courage (and opportunity) to not know

Posted by Philip on 29 May 2017, 3:25 pm in , , , , , , , ,

When it comes to the future, we're pretty conditioned to expect certainty. Whether it's what we're going to say next, what's happening tomorrow, what the outcome of a project is going to be, or what life will be like in five years time, we want to know beforehand. We crave certainty.

Expectations are the outcome of this need to know what's going to happen before it does — and anxiety about things not going to plan.

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Everything's ok? No it's not.

Posted by Philip on 14 November 2016, 9:37 pm in , , , , , , , ,

It's ironic that a week after Trump gets voted as US president, NZ has another significant earthquake.

This is a quick post, just to make the point that anything you read, hear or watch, saying the world is ok — it's lies.

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Posted by Philip on 3 September 2016, 12:26 pm in , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I love this campaign. It speaks to the heart of an issue of fundamental importance: how do we create a strong, robust future society. Our children are that future. I submitted this to the #DearNewZealand website today.

I would solve child poverty by creating a culture where every kid has what they need, for free. Shelter, clothes, food, learning environments, safety and love. All these things should be provided for free by the Government.

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Hopeless or helpless?

Posted by Philip on 18 October 2015, 10:36 am in , , , , , , , ,

Helen Razer writes of her sense of hopelessness about the future over on The Daily Review citing, as causal examples, things like "the Global Citizens Festival, which attracted very positive international press, Sexy Celebs and a sell-out crowd of 60,000 ... an event that seeks to, and succeeds in, engaging young persons..." but which supports naïve UN Sustainability Goals — and the World Bank, which creates the poverty that the GCF purports to condemn.

Razer exemplifies nude selfie victim Jennifer Lawrence as another reason to lose hope, after the actress implied that pay inequity was a result of women not being tough enough with their bosses. Helen rightly points out that, without "J-Law's" privilege, toughing out their bosses would leave most women fired.

I share Helen's hopelessness for the future of humanity — a hopelessness without which, she muses, there can be no hope. Though a lot of my work involves promoting ways we can more constructively engage with one another, my reflection is that I feel a further burden: a wry sense of helplessness to impact on the world in any meaningful way.

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NASC from a client’s perspective

Posted by Philip on 3 September 2015, 6:06 pm in , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This week the Needs Assessment and Service Co-ordination Association (NASCA) held its national forum. According to its website, "NASCA provides leadership, assistance and peer support to NASC agencies throughout Aotearoa/New Zealand. NASC services are contracted by the Ministry of Health or District Health Boards to serve people with disabilities, people with mental health issues and older people needing age-related support."

I was invited to present the keynote plenary session on the first morning, providing a client's perspective. This, I explained in my introduction, was interesting given my well-known disdain for the NASC process. I assumed therefore, that I hadn't been invited to give a pep talk  — instead, I offered some critical analysis, drawing on the following model:

  • curiosity  — an eagerness to gather information and be open-minded
  • skepticism  — the comitment to question the information gathered
  • humility  — the willingness to change one's view

I asked my audience to embrace this mindset, as well as promising to do the same.

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The employment paradox

Posted by Philip on 7 August 2015, 4:37 pm in , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I attended a workshop on accessible employment recently and was reminded, as I've written about before, what a fraught topic employment is these days — for anyone, let alone those with access needs.

As welfare states come crashing down around the (western) world, the demand for employment and requirement to be employed increase. New Zealand's welfare lexicon has changed from "beneficiary" to the default "jobseeker".

Meanwhile industry and technology improves, meaning more machines, computers and robots do more and more jobs for us. I mean, that has been the whole idea of industrial and technological revolutions, hasn't it? To decrease the need for humans to do stuff.

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10 Everyday Things That Could Do With A Damn Good Creative Rethink

Posted by Philip on 29 July 2013, 2:03 pm in , , ,

Technology being what it is today, I'm often amazed at how far we've come in some areas of design and functionality, yet some things have hardly moved at all or — even worse — gone backwards. Here are ten things we use everyday that, I think, could use a damn good rethink and upgrade to 21st century existence. 

1. Petrol pumps

How long has petrol been around? Wikipedia says since the late 1800s though, in its more modern form, since the 1920s.  Yet how long since the design of petrol pump nozzles was updated. They're heavy, clunky, they leak and they're unsightly. Surely by now they'd be a neat little fitting that clicks in, clicks out and starts with the touch of an electronic button. Even better they'd robotically connect, fill, disconnect and allow you to pay by mobile EFTPOS. Don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating for increased use of fossil fuels; I just want it to be easier to use until I can choose electricity — or solar power for that matter.

2. Tissue boxes

They're fine until they get to about a third full and then all hell breaks loose. More than one comes out, they fall to the bottom of the box, you put your hand in to pull them out again, you rip the box and then it's all over. All you'd need is a false bottom with a little spring to hold the tissues up at the top of the box until they're finished. Easy.

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Employment — get over it

Posted by Philip on 15 February 2012, 9:06 am in , , ,

If you believe the hype about finding jobs, the economy improving, tra la la la la, personally I think you need to think again. The economy has been poked for a long time, if you hadn't noticed, and is just about as poked as it could ever be right now.

I'm no economist, hence the technical terminology, but what I do know for sure is that jobs as we know them will just get harder and harder to find. I told the NZ Welfare Working Group that according to the Zeitgeist Movement, it's likely the US unemployment rate will be 62% by 2030. They didn't include that in their report.

Technology, that thing we've been investing millions of hours and trillions of dollars in improving (particularly in the last hundred years, but actually since we realised we could smash stuff with rocks), is taking our jobs. Machines and computers, articulated vehicles, 3D printers. These marvellous inventions that we've deliberately created to make our lives easier are making our lives easier. Now.

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Stuck in the past or intent on the future?

Posted by Philip on 9 February 2012, 9:13 pm in , , ,

At a meeting I attended today, a lot of discussion centred on a process for planning a consultation hui, which those at the meeting thought was excluding of their perspective.

It was, but more than 50% of the two hour meeting was spent talking about how bad, unfair, hurtful, wrong, etc, etc the exclusion was. 

Maybe I'm getting too long in the tooth but I can't see the point of getting swamped in "should haves" and "shouldn't haves" in the past.

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To choose or not to choose: is it our choice?

Posted by Philip on 20 May 2011, 11:22 am in , , , , ,

A road sign pointing to many directionsThis morning I posted this quote on my Facebook page:

”Your feelings are your response to what you are being, but your being is not a response to anything. It is a choice." Neale Donald Walsch.

It created a great conversation with Sam and Sharon within an hour, early even though it was. I thought I’d summarise it as a blog as I think it brings up interesting about the nature of choice and whether the belief that we lack choice is the cause or the result of hurtful circumstances.

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