Showing posts with label Big Mouths. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Big Mouths. Show all posts

July 6, 2019

Arrogance And A Messy Head

While sometimes children behave like "know-it-alls"...

Often an attempt to showcase what they've learned or to build their self-confidence. Sometimes, it's also to bully others.  

More unusual though is to find an adult that thinks and actually says they know it all. 

But sure enough, I ran into someone who told me (about technology):
"I know everything!"

And they said it with a straight face. 

Literally, they told me how they came up through the ranks and knew EVERYTHING with emphasis!

Moreover, they told me that if I didn't know something, I should go ahead and ask them because they would most definitely know it.

So I respect all people and certainly admire those who are knowledgable and talented in their fields. 

But something felt very wrong about an adult who feels that they have to go around bragging about the depth of their knowledge--and that their knowledge is apparently infinite (at least that's what they espoused). 

I wondered to myself--is the person arrogant and a big mouth or the opposite--lacking in self confidence and therefore needing to boast and show off to compensate for their inadequacies?

When they were talking, it seemed like their head was getting so big and full of themself that it would just explode!

Most adults with emotional intelligence realize how little they know, and the older they get the more they realize that they don't know in life. 

Especially, people of faith recognize that G-d is all-knowing and all-powerful, and we are but mere "flesh and blood" and truly just a speck of dust in the universe.

So truly smart people are humble and they look to learn from others, rather than preach and teach in a monologue of hubris.

Like many people that get too big for the britches, G-d usually brings them back down to Earth and their head to size.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 24, 2018

Herd Mentality

What do herds do?

First there are big mouths and groupthink.

Then there is chasing each others tails.

This could lead to literally going off a cliff. 

Typically, like wolves, they hunt viciously in packs.

When they are stalked, they run scared leaving the weakest to serve as prey. 

When hunted, they are separated and slaughtered. 

Sometimes they stampede and can run over anything in their path.

Occasionally, they even devour their own young to keep the herd fed. 

Herds serve a survival function in nature, but when the herd is dumb, as if often the case, they die off and are left extinct. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 5, 2017

Big Mouths Alert

So I took this photo in the Museum of Natural History. 

As you can see, this hippopotamus has quite a big mouth. 

He is also not alive and is behind a glass-enclosed case for viewing. 

To me this screams that those with big mouths often don't end up well. 

I remember a relative of mine used to bluntly call it, "being full of sh*t."

Whether these people are in politics, your neighborhood, bullies at work and school, or even those in the fake news media...they have become all to somewhat frequent.

Sure there are other animals with small mouths in the same situation, but the hippo truly is a decreasing and vulnerable species.

And like it's neighbor in the museum, the dinosaur--another one who has a big mouth--that ended up extinct, the prospects for talking big, but accomplishing little is sort of part of the character. 

The hippopotamus is mostly a herbivore--it has a big mouth and some big sharp teeth, but it mainly eats humble plants and doesn't pursue the hunt of the big game and eat lots of red meat. 

Listen, big mouths can still be highly dangerous--words are powerful and can do a lot of damage. 

But overall "talk is cheap," especially when people focus on words and not good deeds and who don't have the right intentions. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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June 27, 2017

The Meaning of Silence

Is silence a good thing or a bad thing--what does it really mean?

On the plus or neutral side:

Silence can mean modesty and humility--you withhold speaking out of turn or having a big mouth; you recognize that you don't know everything and what you do know is not intended to put down or shame others. 

Silence can means secrets and privacy--you don't say everything; you treat information properly based on need to know and propriety of sharing. 

Silence can mean good situational judgement--that you know prudently when to let others have their say, or when your opinion isn't really welcome, or when it's best to just stay below the radar. 

Silence can mean you simply don't know--and it's something you need to listen and learn more about rather than speak; it's why we're told that we have two ears and one mouth.

Silence can mean that maybe you don't care about something--why get fired up or "waste your breath" on it when it's just not your thing.

When can it be a negative:

There was a sign in the local school window that silence means (wrongful) acceptance; that is also something I learned in in the Talmud in yeshiva; if you see something wrong and don't say or do something, you are (partially) responsible.

Silence can mean fear--perhaps you don't accept something, but you're afraid to speak truth or morality to power; you sit silently cowering, when you should stand up tall and speak out. 

Silence may also mean shame--you've done something wrong or don't want others to know something that could make you look bad or put you in jeopardy. 

Silence can mean you are hiding something--it can be that you don't trust or aren't trustful; silence at a time when you need to answer or respond can result in suspicion about why you are "holding back," instead of being forthcoming and truthful.

When to talk and when to remain silent? 

Certainly, "you have the right to remain silent."

We need to use words with care and intent--to always seek to help and not to hurt. 

Words are so potent--the mouth is perhaps the strongest part of the human body, just like the pen is mightier than the sword. 

That's why I pray that G-d put the "right words" in my mouth--to be constructive, positive, effective and impactful--to do good as much as possible with words and with silence. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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March 12, 2017

Bull In A China Shop


For some reason everyone wants to face down the bull in the China Shop or on Wall Street. 

The bull is stubborn and when it gets angry, it charges and gores. 

So how heroic for the statue of little girl (below on International Women's Day) to be shown standing in front of him defiantly and not afraid. 

The truth probably is that we are all afraid in life. 

No one wants to get hurt or worse. 

The consequences of something really bad happening can be devastating loss--limb, body, mobility, property or even total person. 

And actually, the more we have in life, the more we have to (potentially) G-d forbid, lose. 

So when you have a spouse, children, a beautiful home, and a good job, that's when you get really, really afraid. 

Losing your precious loved ones and everything you've built with G-d's blessing and help can instantaneously be gone in the blink of an eye. 

Therefore, be careful before standing in front of a raging bull, you never know when you'll get walloped and bad. 

Bravery in the face of danger is noble and praiseworthy when doing true good and confronting evil, but just to be a big mouth or a know-it-all or to strut your stuff, you better forget about it--you've got a lot to lose and it doesn't take much for that bull to charge head on and do you a real big dirty! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal and here with attribution to AP)
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January 15, 2017

If This Then That (IFTTT), A Futurists Blessing

If This Then That (IFTTT) is a simple, but absolutely fundamental programming principle.

It is also the basis for futurist-thinking such as war-gaming and strategic planning.  For example, if North Korea put's a nuke on the launch pad with the targeting at the U.S., then we will do kaboom!

IFTTT is also an app and is used in algorithms such as with Twitter, so when Trump or other famous and powerful people say something on the global social media stage, Wall Street's high-speed, high-frequency trading desks are at the front of the line to respond to market-moving news.

So powerful is IFTTT, you could almost predict the election results from it (the outrageously biased media may want to open their tarnished rose-colored glasses and try it).  For example, if you take for granted, forget or neglect working class America, then the great "blue wall" tumbles. 

IFTTT also works in politics of all sorts. If you abandon friends and allies and embrace terrorist enemies, then the world order is turned on it's head and the Middle East and beyond burns and rages in turmoil. Similarly, if you are biased between people, races, and political parties, then you polarize the country and create divisiveness and hate and obstruct even the possibility of virtually any progress. 

So you really don't have to have a crystal ball to see the writing on the wall for the results of profoundly good moves and the display of stupidity galore. 

One final IFTTT before the major transition of power this week: if you talk big, but don't really deliver results (or you deliver lots of bad stuff), then you get seen for being all poetry and no prose, and your legacy goes bye bye. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 29, 2016

Temper Tantrums Don't Make Peace

The latest salvos of U.S. anger, frustration, and temper tantrums are not helpful to achieving peace in the world. 

We are not dealing with children and should not treat foreign countries and leaders "with disdain and disrespect" or with bias, hate, and underling anti-Semitism. 

Nor should we get on our soapbox high and mighty and "lecture" others, especially when we ourselves have been grossly deficient and derelict. 

Over the last 8 years:

We let 500,000 Syrians be massacred, including the very rebels that we were supposedly supporting, and allowed many to be killed with prohibited chemical weapons (violating our definitive "red line")!

We let Ukraine be attacked and Crimea be stolen!

We let Russian nuclear-capable weapons be stationed on the border of NATO.

We let millions of refugees stream across the Middle East and world homeless and helpless. 

We let the world's #1 sponsor of terrorism, Iran, become a licensed nuclear power, extend their Caliphate across Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen--while swarming and buzzing our ships and taking our sailors hostage and humiliating them. 

We let North Korea advance it's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

We let China build and militarize the South China Sea and threaten freedom of navigation of the seas, and let them steal our drone in International waters. 

We let our ambassador to Libya and his associates be murdered.

We let the President of the Philippines call our President a "son of a whore."

We let ISIS rampage and murder across the globe in countless terror attacks, while we called them "workplace violence" and traffic accidents.

We let divisiveness seep into and poison our own cities, communities, people, and even against law enforcement, and politicized everything stagnating our our country and making us fall further behind in the world from education to life expectancy. 

We abandoned those seeking democracy, freedom, and human rights from the Green Revolution in Iran to the Arab Spring across the Middle East. 

And the list goes shamefully on and on.

But what's possibly even worse is that while we failed the world over, we are arrogant and nasty to others betraying our friend and allies in one-sided resolutions that ignore the scrounge of terrorism, deadly attacks, Anti-Semitism as well as with horrible deals with Iran that threaten their very existence. 

While we continue to sit in America, on land forcibly and violently taken from the Native American Indians, having brutally enslaved for hundreds of years African Americans, abused women and treated them as lessor in role, voting, and dignity, interned Japanese Americans and twice dropped the Atom Bomb on civilian cities, what right do we have to lecture anyone?

Yes, we dole out billions to nations around the world, for what we want whether in terms of allies, voting blocks, military cooperation, intelligence, or because of religious convictions, but that does not give us the right to arrogantly and bulling tell others or try to force them how to live in their neighborhoods and with the threats facing their people. 

While we did nothing, we spoke a great deal trying in vain to force our will on others, and the failures that abound are a reflection of just that leadership from behind, hypocrisy, and hubris. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 21, 2016

The Pundits Know Sh*t

If you haven't seen any of the many videos flying around about everyone who said "Trump will never be president," then you should.

Presumably, these were people in the know--senior politicians and statesmen, experts galore including scientists and professors, news media, talk show hosts, comedians, and Hollywood stars.

Virtually none could even imagine him winning as they "promised" and "guaranteed" it and even swore they would leave the country otherwise.

But as we all now know, they were completely wrong and misguided. 

Similarly, in a book review today in the Wall Street Journal of "Public Intellectuals," the big mouth know-it-alls out there or what my friend's father used to call "intellectual idiots" failed to predict all the black swan events.

From the fall of the Soviet Union to 9/11, the Internet bubble and recession of 2001 to the mortgage meltdown and financial collapse of 2008, from the Arab Spring to Brexit...the pundits are all left looking like schmendricks!

Whether this is caused by personal biases, shortsightedness, herd mentality, or incompetence, the educated intellectuals just don't seem to be able to see around that next bend anymore than the rest of us. 

Moreover, because of their walled-off elite status, they are functioning and talking through loud speakers from their ivory towers rather than from the real man's world of everyday hardships and challenges. 

As I often tell one of my esteemed colleagues, it's not how often or how loud you say something, but how sincere it is. 

The pundits typically miss it (although they seem so smart when talking with 20-20 hindsight about what happened and why), and as contrarians already know, it typically pays to do the opposite of what the so-called experts tell you. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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November 18, 2016

Telling The Next Guy

This was one for the books today.

Obama tells Trump that he needs to stand up to Putin (i.e. don't wimp out)!

Uh, who's the guy who has been in office the last 8 years? 

An during those years, our standing and national security has suffered from disengagement and utter weakness at virtually every turn of the globe. 

- We let red lines be violated in Syria and watched our Ambassador murdered in Libya

- Russia expanded into Georgia, Ukraine, and Syria, and now it's looking to Cuba and Vietnam.

- China has been rapidly militarizing into the South China Sea and expanding it's economic influence in Africa.

- We made the "worst deal in history" in Iran that allows them to eventually go nuclear!

- North Korea continues to expand it's nuclear arsenal and ballistic missile technology. 

- The Philippines told the President to "go to h*ll" and threatens to break from the U.S. militarily. 

- U.S. backed off support for democracy in Egypt after the military coup that overthrew Morsi

- Venezuela expelled our top diplomat and 2 other embassy officials ratcheting up hostilities with the U.S. 

- Cyberattacks have plagued the U.S. and we haven't been able to defend ourselves. 

- ISIS has demonstrated success and our strategy has not made them less dangerous and lethal. 

- After years of mounting terrorism, our leaders still refuse to even say the words, "radical Islam."

I'm not sure why people are so tempted to give advice and preach to others, when they themselves have so many failings. 

I think it's certainly okay to humbly share our experiences and lessons learned if we have any. 

But perhaps when you don't have the best record on something, as they old saying goes, you should refrain from throwing large stones in your very fragile glass houses!

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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August 2, 2016

Stealing The U.S. Election

So I've never seen anything quite like this before.

The liberal media is completely trying to destroy Trump, and this is a true crisis of democracy.

They are jumping on him like a gang of bandits, ruthlessly punching and kicking him into the pavement, while reveling in the ascendancy of their absolutely do no wrong Queen of the 2nd Impeached President of The United States of America.

The saying that all publicity is good publicity, has now been proved totally false!

Sure, does Trump have a big mouth and say stupid and offensive things, absolutely.

Is it possible that the guy is flawed, but really doesn't mean it the way it comes out, as awful as it does?

Never-the-less, the power elite behind the Hillary machine have seized on these things to label him a fascist, racist, Nazi, demagogue, black soul, evil, and even today in the respected Wall Street Journal, a sociopath

(Hopefully the stupidity of the people saying these wild-a*s things is forgiven, so G-d forbid one day we shouldn't have a candidate who really is like that!)

On Sunday, in the New York Times Review Section, it is not uncommon to find 3 articles on a single page dumping on Trump and almost the entire section dedicated to his downfall. 

And of course, this treatment of one candidate, Trump, is not over-the-top at all, and completely fair and balanced thinking and coverage (sarcastic), as we wholly forgive Hillary for (alleged) lying, collusion, corruption, foundation money laundering voter rigging, and year after year of failed global policies (anyone out there been following that 80% of the people are dissatisfied with the direction of this magnificient nation). 

Add to that the murder-suicides of dozens of people associated with the Clinton's from Vince Foster in the Whitewater scandal to the killing of DNC staffer, Seth Rich, out of the blue just last month in DC. 

Now let me say right out that I am the first one to condemn Trump's outrageous and off-the-cuff statements about a disabled reporter, a POW Senator, and the the Muslim parents of a fallen soldier--yes, these are truly despicable and stupid things. 

But yet, when I watch the tapes and hear the guy speak, I think that very possibly he is just a huge, nutty-type of eccentric, like these very rich people, under the covers, tend to be. 

I think his mouth gets away from his brain, and yes while this is obviously not a good thing for an ostentatious Presidential candidate, why has the opposition been so successful at completely demonizing the guy (and don't just say that he did it to himself) and giving a bright shiny nickle to the other candidate?

Is saying stupid things (even very stupid and grossly offensive things) really the equivalent of being a Nazi and sociopath--and is he truly worse than someone involved in lying, collusion, corruption, and global leadership failures that literally can threaten our nation's security and take us down a path of true global disorder (how's that relationship with the powerful Russians, Chinese, Iranians, and North Korea as well as the state of unabated worldwide terrorism doing these days)?

The left, including many prominent media outlets, have jumped on the band-wagon to label the opposition and they have been unrelenting and ruthless at destroying only one of the candidates, Trump, while they continue to give Hillary more or less of a free pass--does anyone wonder about this? 

Rather than a fascist candidate, maybe what we really have is an an outrageous attempt at a fascist election system!

I wonder whether the people supporting this ones-sided narrative and single party election will come to regret their boundless political wisdom, hard and fast professional assessments, and vicious character assassinations, once we are well into the next term of President. 

What will the pundits and media say when the economic bubble tears, when major terrorism strikes big and bad, when global upheaval dangerously spreads, and all we get is more spin, deception, inaction, and leadership from behind--are you so sure that is better than a candidate with a big mouth, but also who can build big skyscrapers and skylines over a new horizon for this country? 

Will the pundits, media echo chamber, and the elites absolutely forcing Hillary to the top have a reckoning of thinking and conscience, with their air of puffery knocked out of them--will they have the presence of mind to question for a moment their choice of a candidate with a life-filled of scandal over a big-mouth, clumsy New York billionaire builder. 

Finally, when one thinks of insane and evil, aren't the activities that Hillary is accused of exactly those. 

Perhaps this is truly the crooked pot calling the big mouth kettle black, and the biggest election coup and voter fraud taking place right under your mightily socially engineered noses. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 26, 2015

Five Types Of Managers

Grumpy


Big Mouth


Showman


Inattentive


The Snake


(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

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December 7, 2014

Everyone Participates

So very infrequently do suggestion boxes actually work. 

In the office, I remember when the suggestion box was put out and the biggest suggestion put into the box was to bring paper towels back to the bathrooms after these had been replaced months before with hand dryers, so the toilets wouldn't get clogged up!

Most of the time suggestions boxes like meetings don't get the participation and input needed. 

Today, in the New York Times, Phil Gilbert says that in the meeting room, "You've got the extrovert, the introvert, the know-it-all and the ambitious steamroller. No matter what the mix, there's always someone who dominates the discussion, and others who defer to that person out of frustration--or worse, complacency."

Truthfully, I think Gilbert misses the point--most people don't speak up not out of frustration or complacency--but rather from fear...fear of sounding stupid, fear of people disagreeing with them, and fear of management retribution for saying the"wrong" thing.

In any case, his reflection on how some at IBM deal with this is helpful (although frankly I've heard this approach before and it was from a strategic planning class I believe, and not from IBM):

- Everyone writes their input on sticky notes.

- You go around the room where everyone contributes an idea and posts their note to the wall or board (and you keep doing this until ideas are exhausted). 

- The facilitator groups like ideas/sticky notes to start to form common theme and direction. 

- The group may go out and come back again for another round of ideas and input.

The point is everyone contributes to the discussion...no idea is a bad idea...and not one in the room is left to sit idly in the corner playing with their smartphone, daydreaming, or picking their noses. 

Through vetting and discussion, the best idea(s) become evident. 

I like how Gilbert ends his article emphasizing the importance of getting everyone's ideas out there..."Once you know something, you can't unknow it--you have to act."

Knowing what everyone really thinks is half the battle. 

The other half is executing on the really great ideas that people come up with (Gilbert doesn't address this). 

And again for that you need EVERYONE to contribute their talents...big mouths, naysayers, and do nothings begone! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 22, 2014

BIG Smile

This was a nice big smile on the base of a light pole. 

It's funny, aside from the smile, the mouth on this reminds me of something very smart my daughter, Rebecca told me the other day.


She said, "Don't let your tongue be bigger than your mouth."


In other words, don't be a big mouth, watch your words, speak carefully and thoughtfully. 


Some very good advice, probably for most of us out there. 


Mr. Light pole, I have a feeling you don't overdo it with this, and maybe that's why you're smiling so much. ;-)


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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January 28, 2014

The Movers and Shakers

For a long time, I've heard of "The movers and shakers" as the ones who get things done. 

But I think there is another and more accurate meaning to this phase.

And it is related to the old adage of "those who can do, and those who can't teach." 

Note, there is no disrespect intended to good, solid teachers here, as they have one of the most important jobs in society in educating and molding our children, but the point is that there are some that can only talk theory, but haven't actually done the job!

Similarly, in the organizations, movers and shakers are often not one and the same, but two different types of people.

We have those who are "the movers"--who actually get things done, who break logjams, who overcome bureaucracy, who solve problems, who make things better.

And then there are "the shakers," those who do more jumping up and down and waving to get attention for themselves, their egos, their resumes, and their bogus brands, but don't or can't actually deliver the goods--real results. 

The movers are the genuine, hardworking doers and carers of our organizations; the shakers are the Billie Big Mouth Bass showpeople. 

The movers work the problems everyday and make progress and it is wonderful to celebrate their hardwork and successes, but the shakers are the attention-grabbers, boasting more about what they do, instead of actually doing much of anything. 

Beware of those that talk a good game, but can't actually hit the ball--and the recognition and attention they are bathing in may actually just be a good cover like from a tanning salon and not from the real beach. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to RedHerring1up)
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