Author Archives: Richard John Stapleton

The smartest person in the room: Stories about fact, fiction, good, and evil

Part One

Several times in recent weeks I have been lured into clicking on Internet posts purporting to show the IQs of US presidents, including the president-elect now waiting to take over. Continue reading

Why does Obama want the TPP ratified?

When Obama first ran for president in 2007 he told us he was out to improve the plight of we the people, not the corporations and the elite rich. Continue reading

On waking up and realizing your senior class in high school is now running the United States

With millions of others, I listened to and saw the speeches Monday night at the Demo convention on TV. Continue reading

Round and round it goes, why and how all US voters should and can learn something about Jill Stein, MD

A lot of water has gone under the bridge lately. Great Britain voted to withdraw from the European Union. Bernie Sanders conceded that Hillary Clinton won the Democratic primary and endorsed her for president. The US stock market has regained most of its losses. The world situation remains largely unchanged, fraught with conflicts and problems, insecurities, and uncertainties. Continue reading

Should Hillary have the leading role?

Hillary Clinton is a wonderful leader, so some memes tell us on Facebook and some pundits tell us in mainstream media. Continue reading

A dispatch from red state Georgia on empirical and spiritual issues

Attended Sunday services at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Statesboro, Georgia. The speaker reviewed The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion, by Jonathan Haidt. The book sets up a dichotomy between WEIRD people and not-WEIRD people. WEIRD people identify with Western values, are relatively well educated and are relatively independent, rational and democratic. Not-WEIRD people identify less with Western values, are less educated, and relatively put a higher value on tradition, community, hierarchy, authority, loyalty and patriotism. Continue reading

Hillary or Bush III?

There are thousands of US citizens who could do a better job as president than either one of these two, but they can never have a chance because of not being related to previous presidents, or other types of politicians or public figures giving them recognition, connections and inside information. Continue reading

Lies, lies and damned lies: The new Republican House of Representatives is insane and character disordered

I just read the following in the Statesboro (Georgia) Herald in its issue of January 7, 2014, in an article containing 36 column inches, about half a page, extolling the wonderful pageantry of the Republican takeover in Washington, with the largest majority in 60 years. Continue reading

When the cat’s away the mice will . . .

Sitting in my car in 1963 in front of my newspaper office at Wolfforth, Texas listening to Walter Cronkite tell us John F. Kennedy had been shot in Dallas, I was shocked and dumbfounded. Continue reading

A nation of Monday morning quarterbacks

A recent poll purported to have found 57 or so percent of US voters would now vote for Mitt Romney if they had the chance, whereas only 26 or so percent would vote for Barack Obama. Assuming these percentages are representative of the actual percentages among the population, so what? Who cares whether voters would now vote for Romney or Obama. Such percentages tell you little or nothing about the relevant underlying issue: how well Obama has performed and how well Romney would have performed had he been elected. Continue reading

On how reality happens

This article is an epiphany stimulated by Michael Adzema’s Funny God Facebook Post, January 14, 2014. Continue reading

Benefits and dangers of organizations and groups

Human affairs aboard Spaceship Earth have always been screwed up, and there has never been enough food and other necessities to go around. Unfairness has ever abounded. Homo sapiens form and join organizations and groups to increase their chances of getting their needs met, a right guaranteed by the US Constitution. Continue reading

So much for economic fairness and progress

Here is a well reasoned and said article, “The Doctrine of Fairness: It is Time,” and my reaction: One can build the case the Great Depression of the 1930s proved unfettered capitalism does not work for long under normal conditions. Continue reading

An eloquent speech about the State of the Union Address

Kshama Sawant, recently elected to the city council of Seattle, Washington in my opinion knows how to say what needs to be said about our current state of economic affairs in the US. She also knows how to win a political race in Seattle, and let’s hope many others can follow her lead throughout the US. Continue reading

Why the Trans-Pacific Partnership is a bad idea

H. Ross Perot, the independent candidate for US president in 1992, said if NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, were passed you would hear a “giant sucking sound” as jobs left the US for Mexico. Continue reading

The CBS whitewash of the JFK assassination

Saturday night, I saw Bob Schieffer of CBS News, playing the role of senior uncle of US culture with tears in his eyes, tell us how much it affected him to see John F. Kennedy’s little boy “in his little boy suit” salute his father at his funeral. The CBS program also featured cameo shots of the likes of Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather and Jim Lehrer of PBS making pronouncements. Continue reading

The Affordable Care Act—no gain without pain

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, aka the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as “Obamacare” in derisive, scurrilous tones, is a complex piece of legislation having significant consequences for millions of people. Continue reading

November 22, 1963—the day America started dying

For the first time in decades I bought a copy of the National Enquirer at the grocery checkout today to read an article claiming to know the actual second shooter of John F. Kennedy, based on what they say is credible evidence proving it was a conspiracy of the CIA, the Mafia and right-wing Cubans in Florida. Continue reading

Moving farther west to escape problems at home is no longer an option

Probably most Earthlings think of Americans as US citizens, but anyone living on an American continent, North, Central or South, is an American; and there is a major difference between Americans descended from Americans living in America before 1492 and Americans descended from Americans originating in Europe and Africa, or from anywhere else on Earth, America being the melting pot of Earth. Continue reading

Have Republicans no shame or sense of shame?

On page 1 of Sunday’s Statesboro (GA) Herald for all the world to see is the start of a 30 column-inch article headlined, “Report: Ga. should avoid tax proposal: Sen. Jack Hill takes cautious approach to trading income tax for higher sales tax,” by Jason Wermers. Continue reading

Is northwest Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma in another Dust Bowl?

I just finished reading “Dust Bowl Blues,” by Sasha Abramsky, in The Nation magazine; the most depressing article I have read in some time. Continue reading

My evolution in the Deep South of the United States

No one can change the evolutionary cause-effect chains that produced him or her, but it is possible to reduce some of their negative consequences. Of significance are the cause-effect chains producing family scripts, the personalities of family members, and family stories, some of which are told from one generation to another. Continue reading

Is modern technology rendering our institutions obsolete?

Watch out for Big Brother and Little Brother

Professor H.A. Anderson, one of my best professors as an economics major, put this question on one of his tests in his undergraduate economic development course at Texas Tech, in which I was sitting, in 1961. Continue reading

Jim DeMint—America’s number one chief executive mouthpiece

Driving to the office this morning, May 7, I heard Jim De-Mint being interviewed on National Public Radio. Continue reading

The greater the power, the greater the greed

Many, probably most, human beings are inherently selfish, greedy and grasping, whether acting individually or in groups such as families, businesses, governments, economies or religions. Continue reading

Why the US Supreme Court should legalize LGBT marriages

Here is a quote from page 576 of my book, Business Voyages: Mental Maps, Scripts, Schemata and Tools for Discovering and Co-Constructing Your Own Business Worlds, a business bible for people who want to do the right thing for all people: Continue reading

The Gramm-Leach-Biley Act, the most disastrous economic act of the 20th century

The Crash of 2008 was not caused by irrational exuberance, as Alan Greenspan euphemistically put it, but by greed, cunning and ambition, held in check since 1935 by the Glass-Steagall Act, which was unleashed when President Bill Clinton signed the Gramm-Leach-Biley Act of 1999. Continue reading

Would it be fair to restore the tax rates of big business and the rich back to their 1980 levels?

This question is one of the most relevant questions that could be posed to US citizens and their elected representatives, which, if answered correctly, could possibly restore the fiscal health and happiness of the US. Continue reading

A Democratic Town Hall meeting in the Deep South

I attended a Town Hall meeting last Thursday, from 3-4 p.m., in Statesboro, Georgia, sponsored and conducted by our Democratic US Representative John Barrow. He is a blue dog Democrat, a lawyer in his forties or fifties, who votes and talks like a Republican. Continue reading

Let’s not fiddle while Rome burns

Having voted for Obama, I was surprised when he came up with his my2k idea as a Christmas gift for middle and lower class US citizens in the last week or so, basically a red herring in my opinion, focusing on saving $2,000 or so per middle class family in 2013 by not falling off the so-called fiscal cliff, requiring cutting a deal around Christmas time with John Boehner and his grim unmerry band of know nothing Republican tea party Grinches in the House, who are determined to make the poor suffer if their rich Scrooge-like sugar daddies in the upper class have to pay a penny more in taxes, shamelessly violating, so they seem to think, the gift their Santa Claus lobbyist, Grover Norquist, gave to them to sign on a snowy night before their cheery fireplaces, a pledge never to increase the taxes of the elite rich for any reason, to receive wonderful Christmas presents from the elite rich every Christmas. Continue reading

A Christmas story about the US fiscal cliff

The largest headline on page 1 of today’s (December 4, 2012) Statesboro (Georgia) Herald, here in the Bible Belt, reads “GOP Issues New ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Offer.” Continue reading

Comprehending the US presidential debates

Is Romney winning in the 8th round?

The presidential debates with Obama and Romney having debated twice and Biden and Ryan having debated once, as of this writing October 19, 2012, show how difficult it is for humans to comprehend the political worlds in which they live. Continue reading