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Viewing entries tagged with 'light'

Terrible Trump and Clunky Clinton

Posted by Philip on 17 March 2016, 12:45 pm in , , , , ,

I'm no expert in politics but I'm feeling quite concerned about what's going on in America right now. Actually, I'm more than quite concerned — I'm a little terrified.

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump shouting

Never before have I been so apprehensive about the outcome of a foreign election campaign. But what started as a joke — Donald Trump running for US President — has emerged into a sure possibility and, even more scary, the alternative of Hillary Clinton seems less than hopeful.

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Vodafone, window washers, irony and paradox

Posted by Philip on 22 October 2013, 6:02 pm in , , , , ,

vodafone logo

[Update 23 October 2013: After making a complaint, I'm pleased to say I had a successful resolution to my issue with Vodafone.] Today I had shocking customer service from Vodafone and then watched news items saying the Government intends to legislate against window washers at traffic lights.

Sure, those window washing guys are sometimes annoying – but usually they're good guys. I never have cash to pay them (and couldn't get to it if I did) and they've always been sweet. But then, they're earning $100 an hour tax-free, according to one transparent TV News interviewee.

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Diversity through three social change lenses

Posted by Philip on 22 August 2013, 6:18 pm in , , , , , , ,

The notion of diversity is still, in my opinion, hopelessly limited. In the last month I narrowly missed the launch of DiverseNZ (their website diversenz.org is still dead...I mean, not live). Then I watched Helen Clark speak, albeit eloquently, but so basically, about women in leadership at TEDx Auckland 2013.

Clark, like DiverseNZ, spoke about women in leadership like it was a new idea. I wondered what year it was. Actually, what century.

The consistent and continual confusion of categorisation and representation with diversity is something I bang on about all the time. This week I guest lectured at Unitec's "Community Development & Social Change" and "Mental Health & Disability programmes". This time I banged a slightly different beat, thanks to a framework created by friend and fellow social change practitioner, Gael Surgenor.

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The light and shadow of police

Posted by Philip on 21 March 2012, 7:24 am in , ,

When I studied social work in the early 90s, we were taught that the Police were the "Government's gang" (back then, but not so much now, the "white gang", even).

The way they operate, their structure, their demand for loyalty — all have similarities to gang culture. They have a patch, just like gangs. The difference is, their actions are sanctioned by law and society.

Of course the parallels are not exact. But a visit to Manukau Police HQ last week with Leadership NZ reminded me that, through the Police lens, it is easy to divide society into good and bad, right and wrong, those who obey the law and those who don't.

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Be careful how you shine

Posted by Philip on 3 July 2011, 12:44 pm in , , , , , ,

In my recent post How to create more rainbows, I talked about the relationship between lightness and darkness in terms of colour. In this post I want to talk about another aspect of this relationship that I learnt in the recent retreat I attended, run by Sue Davidoff and Allan Kaplan of the Proteus Initiative.

The other part of the connection between light and dark is that light creates darkness by casting shadow. The two go hand in hand – they are the equal and opposite reactions of each other. They are a manifestation of nature's perfect balance of positivity and negativity. We cannot have light without shadow; nor can we have shadow without light.

In the social setting of human endeavour, "doing good" can be equated with "creating light". It may be providing a human service, parenting a child, setting up an environmental organisation, even giving pleasure others through entertainment.

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