A Woven Agenda
November 2, 2009  Volume 41…Number 23

Intent Sources Action Knowledge
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“Obama’s election marked a shift—from a politics that celebrated privatized concerns to a politics that recognized the need for effective government and larger public purposes.”  Michael Sandel quoted by Thomas L. Friedman,
New York Times, Sunday November 1, 2009, News of Week in Review, p.8l

When in San Francisco join discussion at.
11:00-12:00 540 Clement New York Times Weekly Summary MSNBC

12:30-1:30 3500 Geary at Jordon—The Cup and Cake

Constructing consciousness

Some items for consideration

The review of a movie about apartheid by Manohla Dargis.
New York Tumes Weekend Arts, October 30, 2009 p.C11

The four movies about women have begun. Amelia takes you on her flights and takes you into her marriage. 

Gail Collin’s Books America’s Women and When Everything Changed

“So there you are.  American women had shattered the ancient traditions that deprived them of independence and power and right to have adventures of their own, and done it so thoroughly that few women under 30 had any real concept that things had ever been different.  ……  They had not remade the world the way the revolutionaries had hoped.  But they had created a world their female ancestors did not even have the opportunity to image. ….

Gail Collins When Everything Changed Little, Brown 2009, p. 393

When the marginalization of women (and oldsters and newcomers and youth and those with disabilities and and persons of color and others) is the focus of our attention,  we need to focus on what we know, why we intend to act on it and what where and when we will act accordingly.

How do you estimate the situation in your locale?

Can you trace changes in the situation in your time?

Can you see opportunities for change that you can enact?

Michael adds:

date Tue, Nov 3, 2009 at 12:01 PM
subject Methoidology of Vision / Peter Hesse
mailed-by yahoo.com
signed-by yahoo.com

hide details 12:01 PM (19 hours ago)

Hi Malcolm,
Hesse's "Vision Works" is well worth reading in relation to our emerging website. He says some things better than I have been able to do myself. It's a classic work combining the personal and collective dimensions of ones life and professional aspirations. It seems to fit within your own paradigm to some extent or another. Would this qualify as an apropos case study?

Vision Works

From Vision to Action

"Das Ganze (alles) muss durch lernen wachsen"
"The whole (all) must grow through learning"- the first part of an answer to a deep question.

by Peter Hesse

isbn #  978-3-9811650-2-9

Scott adds:

Re: November 2009
by scott s - Monday, 2 November 2009, 05:45 pm

This week's Justice agenda talks about Rawls and his efforts at evaluating "justice as fairness" and how to get at that.  He hypothesized the wealth of a <culture> is measured by the status of the least well-off.  At this period in time where economics drives so much of our relation to politics, this seems a reasonable concept to talk about and speaks directly to the "leveling the field" concept as the title of the primer.

Are we able to detach ourselves from all we know about who we are and who we are becoming to think "objectively" about anything?  Probably not, but it's certainly a valid basis for gaining perspective.

Mary adds:

Check spelling of Sandel and local (as opposed to locale)


.Constructing Conscience

The work with Michael Sandel is proceeding apace.  It is increasingly clear where he comes out—we each have the task of formulating an ethic of our own devising—the next task is to live by it.  Lets explore that, using marginalization as a illustration.

Our usual assumption is that a behavior like racial or gender prejudice is a portion of our personality that can be changed by confrontation and agreement to change.  Maybe a realization of background factors, like Confederate mythology and partying as a complement to it, explains it as a root of prejudice enough to warrant a change in behavior.

Maybe, on the other hand, we need to look at what Sandel is saying and examine racial and gender prejudge as a matter of justice.  If we changed our intent, might our actions and accompanying emotions change?

The time has come to pull together our emerging work with Standel.  He summarizes himself on page 260.  After moving beyond utilitarianism and libertarianism, he proposes “The third (approach) says justice involves cultivating virtue and reasoning about the common good.”

As you reflect on your local, how do you feel it does in terms of justice?

As you think back, do you see changes for good and ill?  What are they?

Specifically, in terms of justice and gender and race and other marginalization how do you estimate the situation?

How does this affect you own intent?


Constructing character
Ventures like the Boy Scouts and the Church have long maintained that their
function is to build character.  The Boy Scouts refuse to work with young men who declare that their sexual preference is not standard.  The Church can be quite convoluted in its approach to persons who are different in one way or another.

Is this constructing character based upon one’s own consciousness and conscience?  Lets go back to an original list of 20 disciplines amendable to border studies as a way of summarizing consciousness.  Our task is to set these in juxtaposition with justice in order to clarify our own rationale for action.

journalism, medicine, law, technology, finance
anthropology, psychology, sociology
the arts: visual, auditory, literary; history; biography
geology, biology, ecology
cultural life, political life, economic life

We seem to be back to journalism, the social sciences, the arts and history and then our cultural, political and economic life as the arena in which we operate.  When you conjure up why you act as you do in matters of gender and race, would you concur with South Pacific—“we learn to hate”? 

If that is the case, can we unlearn?

How do you size up the situation where you live and work and play?

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Last modified: Wednesday, November 4, 2009, 10:44 AM