Tu Quoque

Tu quoque. The term sounds like a special ballet move or what a Shakespearean character might say before he dies. In Latin it means, “You too.” Rumor has it that Julius Caesar said, “Tu quoque mi fili” (You too, my son) rather than the question “Et tu Brute?” as Shakespeare has it. If true, Caesar wasn’t surprised at Brutus’ betrayal, he was uttering a prophecy. Caesar might have quoted the beginning of a Greek proverb, … Continue reading

The Effects of Lawlessness

Hardly a day passes which doesn’t show us the effects of lawlessness in our culture and how it has changed “normal life.” The effects range from mere “inconveniences” to jeopardizing one’s financial or physical safety. We are not talking about the normal dangers of life per se – human beings have lived with danger and mishaps to varying degrees all down through the centuries. There was a time not all that long ago that women … Continue reading

Dark Reason

Every now and then a news article comes along that scares me a little. The Washington Post reported on a social science study to test how politicians respond to evidence that contradicts their ideological positions. I bet you can guess how this went. Our research involved a number of “survey experiments” in which we varied the questions that we asked politicians. In our first test, we asked the politicians to evaluate parents’ satisfaction ratings for … Continue reading

Kim Jong Un: the Jim Jones and David Koresh of East Asia

The Wall Street Journal story titled “North Korea Backs Off Guam Missile-Attack Threat” appeared three days ago (Monday, August 14) at 9:36 p.m. (ET). Kim Jong Un had taken his military belt off his socialist pants and was all set to administer a nuclear spanking to the bad-boy U.S. when suddenly, for some inexplicable reason he strapped the belt back around his waist. Instead, he wagged his chubby little index finger at the U.S. armada … Continue reading

Black Lie Affairs

The first time I recall being aware of the devastating power of Black Lies was probably in the 2000 election battle between George Bush and Al Gore. I was running my daily errands, and while at the Post Office, I witnessed the woman ahead of me having a near emotional breakdown. She was pleading with the postal clerk to not vote for Bush, and finally made the hysterical assertion, “Bush wants to kill women!” Now, … Continue reading

The Art of Deception – Deux

Good deception (by “good,” we mean effective) uses language to guide one’s thinking in a particular direction. Sometimes deception is harmless fun, as in the case of “magic” tricks, surprise parties, harmless pranks, etc. When our son, Lee, was a lad, he and his friend Mike were great “magicians,” enamored with little tricks based on illusion, sleight of hand and/or misdirection – i.e. deception. One of his favorite (and most successful) tricks was called “Cups … Continue reading