George Washington’s farewell address (abridged and in modern English)

Yesterday, I shared George Washington’s farewell address from 19 September 1796. In it, he warned Americans against devolving into political parties and he encouraged them to remain neutral when it comes to international politics. I really, really like his speech, and I wish more people would read it. But it’s long (6000 words) and while… Continue reading George Washington’s farewell address (abridged and in modern English)

American Nations: Why the U.S. is So Divided — and Why It Always Has Been

Several years ago, our book group read American Nations by Colin Woodard. The book has a fascinating premise: While the United States is nominally a single unified country, it’s actually a conglomerate of eleven smaller “nations”, each with its own unique history, culture, and attitudes. The U.S. is more like the E.U. than we think.… Continue reading American Nations: Why the U.S. is So Divided — and Why It Always Has Been

The Law of Attraction and the Power of Action

I’m not a fan of the Law of Attraction, the idea that people bring into their lives the things they think about. In fact, I think it’s bullshit. In The Secret, Rhonda Byrne explains how this “law” is purported to work: Thoughts are magnetic, and thoughts have a frequency. As you think, those thoughts are… Continue reading The Law of Attraction and the Power of Action

Thoughts on Taking Risks, Making Mistakes, and Solving Problems

Last night, I met with my friend Faith. Faith is eighteen, and she’s just getting started in life. Her parents are two of my best friends, but they’re still parents. You know what I mean. Faith wanted to meet with me one-on-one to talk about family stuff and to talk about boys. I’m not the… Continue reading Thoughts on Taking Risks, Making Mistakes, and Solving Problems

Your Lifeline: A Quick Exercise for Looking at the Past and Projecting the Future

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve asked you to do some exercises to get at the heart of what brings meaning to your life. First, I asked you to find your big rocks in order to prioritize your time and life. Next, I had you answer George Kinder’s three questions to help figure out… Continue reading Your Lifeline: A Quick Exercise for Looking at the Past and Projecting the Future