The classic 1939 film, The Wizard of Oz, is full of unforgettable images. We can envision Ray Bolger as the Scarecrow whose “head” was filled with straw, Jack Haley as the Tin Woodsman without a “heart,” and Bert Lahr as the Cowardly Lion without the courage to act, suggesting his lack of “hand.”
On January 26th, 2017, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists—in consultation with its Board of Sponsors that includes 15 Nobel Laureates—moved the Doomsday Clock from three minutes to Midnight to two and a half minutes to Midnight. The Board stated: “Over the course of 2016, the global security landscape darkened as the international community failed to come effectively to grips with humanity’s most pressing existential threats, nuclear weapons and climate change. The United States and Russia . . . remained at odds in a variety of theaters, from Syria to Ukraine to the borders of NATO; both countries continued wide-ranging modernizations of their nuclear forces, and serious arms control negotiations were nowhere to be seen.”
The investiture of Palm Beach State College President Ava L. Parker, J.D., was held March 2, culminating weeklong activities that corresponded with the opening of the fifth campus in Loxahatchee Groves and a new era in the college’s history.
Joseph Conrad’s novel, Lord Jim—also a film starring Peter O’Toole—portrays the power of negative emotions like guilt to destroy one’s life. We all are victims of guilt, but can we do anything about it?
We are all used to thinking of structures as physical or biological objects, like cars or trees. They are objects that stay much the same over time. We may define a structure in a very general way as a persisting system of elements. Yet, this definition is broad enough to include not just physical and biological objects that are visible but also invisible structures like personality structures such as “self-confidence.”
In our initial column introducing the basic ideas of Invisible Crisis: Toward an Interdisciplinary Scientific Method (publication by Universal Publishing, upub.net, in November or December), we focused on our limited understanding of human behavior resulting from our lack of integrating the knowledge from our many specialties. We then presented in our next column, corresponding to Chapter 1 of the book’s 10 chapters, a key result of our unique interdisciplinary approach: a vision of every single human being as standing on top of 14 billion years of evolution and having infinite potential for continuing development intellectually, emotionally, and in problem-solving ability.
Every single one of us is the product of 14 billion years of evolution. No blade of grass, no bird, no dog, no cat comes even close to having the incredible potentials of any one of us.
We do not hesitate for a second to call attention to these problems in a newsletter entitled “Our Wonderful World” because we are confident that they can be solved. Douthat draws a parallel between our situation today and what we experienced in the 1960s, with the war in Vietnam, a military draft, urban riots, a drug culture, and the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr., Jack Kennedy and Robert Kennedy.
So, you may be wondering, why there is an education article in Our Wonderful World? The answer is simple. For people to have the best quality of life and enjoy the wonderful world we live in, for the time we have, I can think of only a few pathways to achieve that intention.