The Tax Cheats in Silicon Valley

Wired Magazine has a story – and a gorgeous graphic – outlining just a couple of examples of how American corporate giants cheat everybody out of taxes. Another example of what happens when a system loses its fundamental integrity.


Can This Marriage Be Saved?

50 years ago, the Ladies Home Journal was a hugely popular magazine in America, reaching a peak of 6.8 million subscribers in 1968. The jewel of the Journal’s portfolio was a monthly feature called “Can This Marriage Be Saved?” In fact, it was one of the most widely-read columns in American magazine history.

Each month, a couple whose marriage was in trouble would each present their side of the story. Then an outside expert would analyze what had gone wrong in their relationship, and offer an opinion about whether this marriage could – or could not – be saved.

Perhaps we should be asking the same question about the way we govern ParticDemocourselves. The question for us might be: “Can Representative Democracy Be Saved?”

I don’t mean that as a frivolous question. Every living system is part of a cycle of birth, maturation, decline and death. Man-made systems are even more perishable than natural systems. So why would we think that our political systems will never need updating or replacing? Continue reading

A Whiff of Socialism Across the Sea

In American politics, Socialism has always been known as a “third rail” issue. That is, if your opponents could pin you with the socialist label, it usually meant the end of your campaign, if not your career.

But this year, something very different is in the air. Senator Bernie Sanders, who calls himself a democratic socialist, is doing far better in the presidential polls than anyone would have imagined. He is also the first choice among people under 40, for whom socialism is hardly a dirty word.  Continue reading

Investing in the Zero-Sum Economy

In the 1970s, when I was a young entrepreneur, I rewarded myself with a rather handsome “draw” against the profits of the business. I hadn’t yet begun to think about money as being part of some larger and more complicated human system. Like most entrepreneurs, I thought that since I created the business, I was entitled to all the money that I could make. Continue reading