Philosophy for Business


Philosophy for Business
electronic journal

ISSN 2043-0736

Home/ Archive

Ethical Dilemmas
Kindle eBook

International Society
for Philosophers

Friends  &  sponsors

Philosophie & Wirtschaft

Launched on 2 November 2003, Philosophy for Business is an e-journal published by the International Society for Philosophers, looking at philosophical and ethical aspects of business practice.

We are aiming for a wide circulation to companies and corporations around the world, as well as academic philosophers.

In order to gain the widest possible readership, articles should be written in simple, non-technical language. The target length is 2500 words.

Some themes that we will be looking at:

   Globalization and monopoly
   Is business ethics possible?
   Philosophy of economics
   Practical ethics
   Idea of a code of conduct
   Freedom of speech
   Industrial democracy
   Whistle blowing
   Ecology and sustainability
   Education and health
   Business and the law
   Tax avoidance and evasion

Please send articles for Philosophy for Business to one of the Editors (see below) or to the List Manager Geoffrey Klempner at

If you would like to receive Philosophy for Business, or unsubscribe, please go to

Philosophy for Business is published by the International Society for Philosophers.

The journal is distributed by email via the University of Sheffield list server.

The views expressed in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect those of the Editors or List Manager. If you have any suggestions, comments or criticisms, or if you would like to be an Editor, please write to the List Manager at

Philosophy for Business is an open access journal, as defined by the Budapest Open Access Initiative.

In accordance with UK Law (April 2013) all content is archived by the British Library and is available within the reading rooms of all Legal Deposit Libraries.


Geoffrey Klempner


Marco Senatore

Peter S Borkowski

Dena Hurst

Sean Jasso

International Society for Philosophers
[back to archive]

P H I L O S O P H Y   F O R   B U S I N E S S           ISSN 2043-0736

Issue number 66
25th March 2011


I. 'The Way of Business. An Inquiry into Meaning and Superiority:
Prologue' by Tom Veblen

II. 'Descartes' Method revived by Edward de Bono, or how to improve
the practical efficiency of our minds' by Pencka Gancheva

III. 'Fear Mongering Feeds Insane Oil Prices Once Up-on A-Gain' by
Michael Levy

IV. Event: 'Wittgenstein (The Crooked Roads)' by William Lyons



Following on from his inspirational piece in the last issue of
Philosophy for Business, Tom Veblen, Convenor of the Superior
Business Firm Roundtable offers the Prologue to the 2011 edition of
his book, The Way of Business. The focus, as ever, is on developing
every aspect of our intellectual and emotional capacity to master the
art of business in a way that leads to the best results -- not just
according to some narrow, short-term economic measure but by to the
highest standards of what human beings can achieve in any endeavour.

Not long ago, Pencka Gancheva completed her Business Pathways course,
Ethical Dilemmas. One of the requirements of the course is to
produce two articles for Philosophy for Business. Miss Gancheva's
first article was a review of her course, published last April (Issue
59). In her second article, Miss Gancheva explores the benefits of
Edward de Bono's 'Lateral Thinking', finding insightful parallels
with Descartes' techniques for improving the human mind in his
Discourse on Method.

Michael Levy retired from the business world at 46 in order to
explore the fundamental questions of life in his own unique way.
Here, he offers a scathing critique of the speculation in the oil
market, urging government intervention in order to avoid 'mayhem and
destruction of wealth for all but the greedy few'.

An email from Jim Shields regarding a new work, 'Wittgtenstein (The
Crooked Paths)' by William Lyons, arrived too late to be included in
yesterday's issue of Philosophy Pathways, so I am posting it here.
The event, which involves live and filmed actors, takes place in
London at the Riverside Studios, 19th April - 7th May 2011.

Geoffrey Klempner



     When there is much desire to learn, there of necessity will
     be much arguing, much writing, much opinions;
     for opinion in good men is but knowledge in the making.
     -- Milton

In late 1993 a dozen accomplished, intellectually curious businessmen
came together to exchange views on the meaning of business and
business superiority.

Intent on sharpening their practice by broadening their horizons,
they founded The Superior Business Firm Roundtable and set sail to
learn from one another.

A work-in-progress, The Roundtable periodically summarizes the
results of its dialectic in a publication titled The Way of Business:
An Inquiry into Meaning and Superiority.

You hold in your hands its most recent (2011) edition.

 Terms of Reference

Business can be thought about in myriad ways.

 Mundanely... the buying and selling of commodities and services;
commerce and trade; a commercial or industrial establishment; a store
or factory; the commercial practices and policies of the person with
whom one is doing business; the functional skills required to advance
a business strategy such as managing, buying, converting, selling; and
so forth and so on.

 Economically... a market institution adding time, place, and
functional utility to a good or service.

 Historically... a purposeful social entity with a scheme and prospect
of its own, a company of like-minded individuals bringing human
aspiration, knowledge, and values to bear on the question of survival
and prosperity in a world of conflict and change.

 Philosophically... an act of human will, a socially tripartite thing
best characterized as a collaborative process, adversarial contest,
and moral drama all tied up in one bundle.

 Scientifically... a natural phenomenon best described using
mathematical equations, game theory, or system analysis.

 Biologically... a kind of living organism with a life of its own.

 Sociologically... an institution with a role to play in society.

 Architecturally, Mechanically...

 Or one can think about business in the ways its most enlightened
American business practitioners do:

 Comprehensively, Pragmatically, Aspirationally...

Business: a human endeavor that creates and manages wealth to advance
human well-being.

Ironically, there is truth in the saying that most everything said
about business is both true and false, for business is human
endeavor, exhibiting necessarily all things human: greed and fear,
selfishness and magnanimity, right and wrong, good and evil, and all
else that drives humans to do the things we do.

Little wonder that business firms frustrate investors and others
attempting to evaluate and predict their performance. Human,
paradoxical, opaque, enduring, evolving, expiring they defy
stereotypical assessments of their natures and conduct.

 Business in the American Context

The one obvious truth about business in America is the profound
influence it exerts over our lives and our nation.

The effects of this phenomenon are so profound, notable, and long
standing that many knowledgeable observers characterize America as a
'business civilization.'

Consider the contributions made to our nation's founding by the many
business practitioners involved, including Benjamin Franklin, George
Mason, Samuel Adams, Robert Morris, and George Washington. Building
on the lessons learned during the centuries of business-focused
American colonization they crafted a uniquely business-friendly
system of governance. Revolutionary, it positioned business in
society as a valued cultural actor. Evolutionary, it magnified that
thought into the modern age.

Then there are the contributions of the business practitioners who
took leadership roles in materializing the American economic system.
To name but a few of the more prominent: Andrew Carnegie, Aaron
Montgomery Ward, James J. Hill, Nellie McCormick, William Cargill,
and A.P. Giannini through the latter half of the 19th century; J.
Pierpont Morgan, John Rockefeller, Henry Ford, Thomas Edison,
Theodore Vail, and Andrew Melon into the early 20th century; Thomas
J. Watson, David Packard, Louis B. Mayer, Will Clayton, Ray Kroc, and
Sam Walton through the late industrial era.

The process continues. In today's world, American businesses large
and small are literally inventing their own futures as well as ours.
The largest and most studied ones are naturally the easiest to single
out: Wal-Mart and mass merchandizing; McDonald's and Kellogg and
prepared and processed foods; Boeing and Bombardier and air and rail
transport; CNN and Dow Jones and the news; Cargill, Incorporated and
Koch Industries in basic commodities; Charles Schwab and Citicorp and
consumer finance; Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Facebook and the novel
ways we now compute, write, entertain, and inform ourselves.

Little wonder it is popularly said: 'As business goes, so goes
America.' But there's more. American business -- self-governing,
collaborative, fixated on competence and achievement and adventure --
is 'going global,' fully expressing these most compelling elements of
our culture.

Undeniably, American business in the modern era is an endeavor of
significant social impact.

Who wouldn't want to think with greater clarity about this thing we
call 'business?'

 Setting an Agenda for Discussion

Persons who succeed at complex human endeavors, such as business,
exhibit a proclivity for action and achievement, great tolerance for
ambiguity and risk, great capacity for learning and personal growth,
and in the end great wisdom.

Aspiring, the business practitioner works diligently to master the
art: ever curious, puzzling out the wealth generating opportunities
unfolding around; ever artful, learning from his mistakes, honing
skills and increasing knowledge; ever self-disciplined, possessing
the wit and tenacity to outwait the vagaries of fortune; ever attuned
to an ever-changing reality, naturally prompted to revisit,
iteratively, the essential questions.

How best to achieve 'the better' in business (and life)?

   - What about the grand scheme of things?
   - What about the art of business?
   - What will it take to win?
   - What is the next best thing to do?
   - When best to do it?
   - And for how long?

'Doing business' and learning by doing, the aspiring business
practitioner becomes, sooner or later, enlightened on whether he has
what it takes to create or not, grow or not, conserve or not, get
better or not.

The idea in America is to get better, and do better.

 The Grand Scheme of Things

The 'grand scheme of things' for business is the culture and
civilization that defines and governs it.

The American culture is, as previously noted, exceptional. At its
core an amalgam of Scottish, English, and European Enlightenment
thought, it produces a steady stream of enlightened practitioners
(and firms) who share an exceptional ethic and proclivities:

     Pragmatic and experimental and evangelical, they possess an
     enormous zest for growth and change and adventure.
     Self-governing and fixated on competence and achievement,
     they strive to perfect their own doctrine and strategies.
     Forward-looking, and optimistic, they believe that hard
     work and a little luck will produce a better future.
As for that future, they think about it in terms of their nation,
endeavor, and world 'going global.'

Quintessential change agents, we Americans are out in that world as
entertainers, tourists, soldiers and sailors, scientists,
academicians, politicians, and business practitioners, doing our best
to modernize it.

Such a challenge...

 The Art of Business

American business practitioners are persons of practical bent. Their
overriding absorption is to 'do the thing (business)' here and now in
an effective and productive (profitable) manner.

Responsive to their own aspirations and conscience, and to their
customers, owners, and cohorts, they materialize business's social

     In the market by producing valued products and services,
     being profitable, providing workers satisfying work and
     their owners satisfactory financial returns;
     In the community by contributing to the common good,
     conducting their affairs with integrity, generating taxes,
     creating jobs, being good neighbors;
     In society by collaborating with fellow citizens to found
     and sustain the civic and cultural institutions of an
     enlightened civilization.
Intent on gaining superiority, they internalize and live the first
principles of business; their art recognizing and realizing the
possible, with integrity.
The Winning Business Scheme (and Firm)

The genius and meaning of American business are manifest in the
workings of its business firms' winning schemes.

Where do these schemes come from?

They arise in an individual practitioner's mind, prompted either by
socializing with peers in the marketplace or elsewhere or while
engaged in solitary pursuits-reading, listening, day-dreaming,
thinking, meditating.

There appear to be two footings on which winning schemes are built.

One is the exercise of reason grounded in knowledge, information, and
experience. The other is intuition prompted by idle curiosity, for
sometimes without warning a galvanizing idea pops out of nowhere and
before you know it a business is born or rejuvenated.

 Perfecting the Endeavor

Creating and sustaining a business firm-let alone a superior one-is a
formidable task, for all dimensions of human endeavor must be
comprehended and harmonized if one is to succeed. Four dimensions
stand out:

     the physical to define colleagues' responsibilities and
     accountabilities relative to the flow of work and the task
     at hand;
     the emotional to sustain their motivation;
     the intellectual to establish the manner in which decisions
     will be prepared for and taken;
     the spiritual to put the work in its largest and most
     meaningful context.
Any less demanding imagery than this fails to recognize the human
interactions and collaborations that determine the outcomes for a
business firm within the realms of its community, marketplace, and
natural environments.

Thus the practitioner proceeds, discovering, strategizing, and
administering to achieve technical, organizational, and cultural

 Pressing On

In America, the ideas of national wellbeing and private endeavor are
inextricably intertwined. Business, the quintessential private
endeavor, has become the defining characteristic of our culture and
society-we are a business civilization.

The wellbeing of our nation is often characterized by using large
aggregates such as gross national product and balance of payments.
These are, however, but indicators of the long chain of economic
events initiated and pursued by its business practitioners.

Growth, conservation, and creativity are the fundamental measures of
their accomplishments; discovery, strategy, and administration the
means by which they achieve them.

Following the Way of Business, the superior practitioner and firm
harmonize these means and ends to create and manage the wealth
essential to our national wellbeing.



       the grand scheme of things

       the art of business

       a winning business scheme

       to perfect the endeavor


The Superior Business Firm Roundtable presses on, persuaded that
enlightened business practitioners are the key to business
superiority and the advance of human wellbeing in the modern world.

Tom Veblen, Convener
The Superior Business Firm Roundtable

(c) Tom Veblen 2011





Everyone knows Rene Descartes, the great philosopher and founder of
the Rational thinking in XVII century. Then a few ages later, Edward
de Bono, defined as a contemporary thinker, looked at Descartes'
ideas and formulated his own 'techniques for lateral thinking',
making them available for the wider public: governments,
universities, schools, and corporations.

Lateral or non-linear, creative thinking is a gift for the world. The
idea of improving the way we think was examined by Rene Descartes in
his Discourse on Method:

     'The greatest minds, as they are capable of the highest
     excellences, are open likewise to the greatest aberrations;
     and those who travel very lowly may yet make far greater
     progress, provided they keep always to the straight road,
     than those who, while they run, forsake it.'

The basic concepts which Descartes used in applying his method were
clearness and distinctness of conception, good memory and thought,
all together leading to the perfection of the mind and the senses;
gaining knowledge little by little, applying it and certainly
approaching the highest level of which the mind is capable.

The term lateral thinking is already approved and included in
authoritative dictionaries like Oxford dictionary. It is defined as
'the solution of problems using indirect and creative approaches'.
Lateral thinking is an approach for creative thinking by means of a
step-by-step process, based on consciously used practical techniques.
De Bono thinks that intelligence is a potential while the thinking is
the skill that allows this potential to develop. In general, lateral
thinking involves perception and logic as well. He compares the
intelligence to a well focused camera, while the wisdom is the lenses
inside it. Lateral thinking is a dialogue of the soul and itself. The
focus onto the thinking makes the senses sharper and more alert, and
lateral thinking is one of the best ways to do this.

This special thinking is not a privilege of selected people, it is
for everyone. Naturally all people seek knowledge; their happiness
after find out what they have searched for is a proof of that. By
learning how to make creative decisions, so you could turn yourself
into a leader in a more complicated world. 

 What it is about or how life and business benefit from lateral

Rene Descartes gave a simple example in his Discourse: if we fail to
think things through then our 'knowledge' is like a house built on
insecure foundations. Reforming the way we think leads a safer,
improved design. It is the same in business these days, where
rational thoughts save efforts, resources, time, finances, etc.

David Tanner, a founder and a president of the DuPont creativity and
innovation centre says that the use of lateral thinking can lead to
amazing results. It could also be used to save a human life. Here is
a humorous story: two men were in the jungle in Africa, when suddenly
a leopard appeared in front of them. They both were frightened and one
of them took his shoes off. The other one asked: 'How is that going to
help you? We cannot be faster than this beast!'. And then the first
one responded: 'It is not necessary to run faster than the leopard,
it is fine if I am faster than you!'

 How does philosophy benefit from the lateral thinking?

Long time ago in one of my old textbooks there was a sentence by
Rousseau: 'Everyone is mad, but those who understand and realize
their madness are philosophers.' Many people have the idea that
philosophy is a cultural phenomenon, or a science. For others -- it
is just a way of life: a general approach to explore the world,
wisdom to change it, an intention to understand it. There are so many
questions in the field of philosophy whose answers depend on the
ability of the individual to think independently, rationally,

What is the benefit of philosophizing? Philosophers consider how to
make the world better, ideas about chaos or organization, freedom,
theology, ideologies, reflection, criticism, the idea of substance,
the human and after (Ubermensch) etc. There is no single, final
response to these questions, and that makes philosophy (and its tools
-- researching, observing, thinking, analyzing) a universal approach
for the mind. Lateral thinking is only one of the ways to broaden the
boundaries of our perceptions, sensitivity, intellect, life
understanding and much more on the way of making difficult decisions.

 Some practical techniques

 The Power of Perception

A survey in Harvard shows that 90% of the areas involving thinking
are based on perception rather than logic. Therefore, potentially 90%
of mistakes happen because of failures of perception not because of
logic, and the idea is to improve skills of perception in order to
promote successful thinking and problem solving.

Descartes again:

     'After this I inquired in general into what is essential I
     to the truth and certainty of a proposition; for since I
     had discovered one which I knew to be true, I thought that
     I must likewise be able to discover the ground of this
     certitude. And as I observed, I concluded that I might
     take, as a general rule, the principle, that all the things
     which we very clearly and distinctly conceive are true, only
     observing, however, that there is some difficulty in rightly
     determining the objects which we distinctly conceive.'
From a philosophical point of view, following Aristotle, there are
four reasons to explore the problem from all its sides and in depth:
the material reason, the point of the right shape, the action and the
final purpose. All four are to be put in motion with thinking tools,
as de Bono called them recently.

Next I will describe all the tools, i.e. the brain software, applied
to this technique.

 Tool 1: Consequences and sequels -- look ahead to predict the
consequences of a rule, action, plan, solution, etc.

 Tool 2: Plus, Minus, Interesting -- look at all sides of the problem.

 Tool 3: Find out, analyze, divide -- divide the big concept into
small ones that are easy to control.

 Tool 4: Check on all the factors -- see what is the impact of all of
them on the problem/solution.

 Tool 5: Immediate, mean time and final aims -- focus directly on what
we could do at this time.

 Tool 6: Alternatives, opportunities, choices -- we consciously try to
identify other plans.

 Tool 7: Other people's points of view -- step in their shoes and see
how they feel.

 Tool 8: Key values -- make sure our values are met and satisfied.

 Tool 9: First priorities -- identify and follow the priorities.

 Tool 10: Design/solution, results, actions -- direct attention
towards the way of thinking and actions we undertake.

In general the benefits from this technique are the following:
greater vision, a view outside the perspectives already set, deeper
evaluation of every situation. Somehow these benefits also have
ethical impact.

On the world scene: Another serious example I would like to focus on.
I am afraid the world is not ready enough to face the big issues and
apply these tools to them. What will happen if a leader on the
political scene intends to start a war? Ok, he will follow my
priorities, will check the factors, will try to predict the result.
But the things the politicians always skip when dealing with such a
situation are how the world would react. How would the other people
on the other side react? How would they feel losing their children,
parents, and friends?

We see people every day starving, because of lack of food, pure
water, diseases. Poverty and the terrorism are huge issues which
cannot be solved easily. And my simple question is whether all the
tools for lateral thinking were appropriately used when the result is
so discouraging.

 The Simplicity technique


     'Multitude of laws often only hampers justice, so that a state
     is best governed when with few laws, these are rigidly
     administered, instead of great number of percepts.'
De Bono:

     'Almost everything could be made more simple.'

More, better, faster -- we know all these systems and technologies
that make our lives easier and more productive. Sometimes, the
simplicity comes by itself, but most of the time, we need motivation
to make the things as simple as possible. It is the same as
Descartes' rules. Divide the difficulty into bits one can manage,
follow the steps in your mind, starting from the easiest and the
simplest thoughts, make sure all the time you have the information
you need: according to Descartes it is all about finding the
substance of the knowledge, i.e. the thinking process.

The Simplicity technique is a process that turns the complicated
things into simple and clear ones. 'Divide each of the difficulties
under examination into as many parts as possible and as might be
necessary for its adequate solution' and 'Conduct my thoughts in such
order that, by commencing with objects the simplest and easiest to
know, I might ascend by little and little and step by step to the
knowledge of the more complex', said Descartes. On the other hand, de
Bono formulated a 10-step algorithm to make the concept clearer and
easier to follow:

1. Make simplicity more valuable.

2. Be determined to look for simplicity.

3. Understand things well.

4. Develop the alternatives.

5. Add and eliminate the existing elements.

6. Be ready to start from the beginning.

7. Use conceptions.

8. Be ready to divide the big problem into small units.

9. Be ready to exchange other values for simplicity.

10. Be aware of who the simplicity is for.

Descartes also made the connection with Geometry. According to him,
the processes of simple and easy operations allowing us to reach
complex conclusions in geometry, is just one of the evidences that
all things are 'mutually connected in the same way.' This explains
why there would be nothing out of reach of our minds and thoughts,
because if we know the properties of nature, we can rely on certain

Every single thing must be an object of good understanding, be
separated into small particles so we see the whole in process, always
be prepared to start again, from the beginning, and keep things as
simple as needed for the purpose of the solution of the problem.

The doubt about God: I would like to offer a philosophical problem
here for example, where numbers and figures do not appear. I am a
human being with my own plans for my life. I understand my abilities
and try in many directions. Sometimes things work perfectly, other
times, not so well. I use philosophical conceptions to keep going and
not to give up. My doubt here is whether to try all my strengths or to
leave it to God? Does God's plan include satisfying mine? Do I have to
be sad if something does not work well, or should I be optimistic
because a nicer thing is about to happen?

In one of Albert Camus' works he developed the thesis that anything
could possibly be a reason for a good and a bad thing at the same
time. Like the stupid explanation that the Earth stays still forever
because it is held by bull's horns while the sun moves around it.
Yes, this fact has its pros and cons. What Descartes said was that
there would never be anything sufficient to remove his doubt,
whatever principles and rules guided his thinking, except that 'God
is or exists and because he is a perfect being and because all we
possess is derived from him'.

 Six Thinking Hats

This is a powerful technique that allows us to take important
decisions looking at the things from all points of view. Many people
think rationally and positively and they succeed, but in situations
of difficulty they do not explore the problems from the emotional,
intuitive, creative or negative points of view. Sometimes that is the
reason for lack of new ideas or plans. Actually, the technique is
quite simple; we set our mind to think in a different color. Each one
of the hats has a different meaning, i.e. different way of thinking:

 White hat -- we concentrate on the information available, see what is
missing and try to fill it in. Analyze the past for the purpose of the

 Red hat -- we look for a decision using our intuition, reactions and
emotions. We try to predict how the other people will react

 Black hat -- we look at the things pessimistically, keeping alert,
ready to defend. That is how we identify the weak sides of the plan,
project, etc.

 Yellow hat -- we think positively and explore the benefits, values
and opportunities for the solution.

 Green hat -- we think creatively in freedom, and develop plans how to
solve the problems.

 Blue hat -- we control the whole process.

There are many benefits from the technique Six Thinking Hats such as
follows: generating better ideas, improving teamwork, decreasing
conflicts. These are really useful when dealing with ethical
dilemmas, i.e. ethical benefits.

Descartes demonstrated how to use thinking so we can get such
knowledge that we are not able to get any other way. The human with
his reason gets information that cannot be compared to the one by the
senses. Thinking goes beyond the past, the future, providing knowledge
of the biggest and the smallest things. It is a part of the intellect
that always finds out the truth or the right solution. This is the
reason great philosophers like Schopenhauer and Kant appreciated the
power of the mind.

Descartes' third maxim was to change and adjust himself to nature and
his general circumstances, rather than changing the world order. In
his Discourse on Method, he revealed that there was nothing
absolutely within our power unless our thoughts. With the same
success if we consider all external goods as objects out of our
power, we would surely not regret about them, because we should have
used our thoughts and applied in practice the knowledge of what we
really possess. The technique Six Thinking Hats actually means to
allow our reason to work in cooperation with six different approaches
towards achieving progress in finding basically the positive
contribution to the whole creative process.

The body-soul problem, or how I tried to explain to myself this
problem using the Six thinking hats technique:

Human beings are thinking all the time. Freedom of their soul is what
they long for. They think of their lives like a period of development
before reaching the dreamt perfection.

Descartes said:

     'I had after this described the reasonable soul, and shown
     that it could by no means be reduced from the power of
     matter, as the other things of which I had spoken, but that
     it must be expressly created; and that it is not sufficient
     that it be lodged in the human body like a pilot in a ship,
     unless perhaps to move its members, but that it is necessary
     for it to be joined and united more closely to the body, in
     order to have sensations and appetites similar to ours, and
     thus constitute a real man.'
Human beings experiment with various dresses (including the six hats)
and see how they feel with them. Sometimes, the humans try on some of
the hats, and sometimes all of them, and then the body starts feeling
sad because of the great conflict within the soul, i.e. the desire for
freedom. The soul feels locked within the body.

Then it puts in motion lateral thinking. It begins to explore its
feelings within the power of each one of the hats. The body also
joints in the process:

- White hat is for the freedom.

- The red is for the feelings and fears of the soul.

- The black is when the soul is in a deep conflict with the body.

- Then the green hat, when they decide to think of something

- Then yellow, when they reach the ideal Ubermensch solution.

- And blue at last, when the conflict is over.

Finally, they both conclude the existence of the human is a good
idea, but if the superman (Ubermensch) exists that would be really


Traditional logical thinking is limited uses only 10% of a human's
brain. Lateral thinking is a tool for using the remaining 90%.
Everyone can think creatively, the only requirement is to apply
simple but effective techniques. Stated officially in Descartes'
Discourse on Method, cultivated for ages, and then brought to the
world of business, these are widely used in all aspects of human life
and lead to its improvement.

     'A human may live without air a few minutes; without water,
     about two weeks; without food, maybe two months; but without
     thinking -- all one's life.'
One more thing at last: Lateral thinking is freedom for the mind and
the soul!

(c) Pencka Gancheva 2011




Firstly, we all need to understand there is no shortage of oil.

There never has been a shortage of oil for the past 20 years. Yet,
every media outlet quotes the fear mongers' perspectives of what
might happen if oil production is curtailed by Middle East events.
The propaganda becomes 'the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but
the truth' as far as the media is concerned.

Recently, the evening news got a press release from an executive of a
leading oil company stating gas will be 5 Dollars a gallon in 2012.
His opinion has now been brainwashed into people's minds and is now
their reference point of what gas prices will become. This type of
'truth' is very rarely questioned by the public and people will talk
about gas going to 5 Dollars a gallon simply because they heard it on
the evening news on the TV.

OK, let's play the game the way the intellectual propaganda brigade
want it played out at the moment. Oil goes to 150 Dollars a barrel,
which in turn, stifles the weak economic world recovery, which in
turn, damps down demand of oil, which in turn, sends oil back to 33
Dollars a barrel,. This is the level it fell after the last oil
fiasco, when every fear mongering expert declared oil will go to 200
Dollars a barrel from the then price of 147 Dollars.

So what can be done to stop the propaganda madness and intellectually
fed greed?

A few months ago the Saudi oil minister declared that 70 Dollars a
barrel was a fair market price. Therefore, in time of Middle East
unrest, why not bring in government intervention to stop all oil
commodity market speculation and oil ETF trades in the stock market?
Let the price be fixed at 75 Dollars a barrel until all the unrest
settles down. Then resume trading with limits, between 70-80 Dollars
and only allow companies that are directly connected in the oil
industry to hedge their production and usage. The only reason
commodity mercantile exchanges were created was for merchants to
protect their products from future falls and rises.

A while ago, a philosopher said that if we plant a seed of thought
into a person's mind, that seed will grow into a be-lie-f and that
be-lie-f will become a person's truth.

As time has progressed the sophistication of intellectual propaganda
has grown in strength and stature. With media help, perspectives
become truth so that commodities can be traded to insane levels with
no regard to the mayhem they can create.

Food and energy need regulation on how and when they can be traded
and by whom. With 700 new ETF's coming on stream, leveraged financial
instruments are growing and with them increased volatility, mayhem and
destruction of wealth for all but the greedy few.

Nobody wins in the end, in the avaricious race for money, with no
social or ethical principles.

(c) Michael Levy 2011

Web site:



From: Jim Shields
Subject: Wittgenstein (The Crooked Roads)
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 2011 10:38

William Lyons, a good friend recently retired from the Philosophy
Department of Trinity College Dublin, has written a fabulous work on
Wittgenstein. If your plans take you to London between 19 April and 7
May take an evening and enjoy his insights into Wittgenstein.




by William Lyons

Difficult to know and impossible to forget, Wittgenstein
is remembered as the greatest philosopher of the
twentieth century. Marking sixty years since his death,
we present the world premiere of an unusual and
experimental production using live and filmed actors.
Fleet Productions -- Supported by the Austrian Cultural
Forum and the American Philosophical Association.
World Premiere directed by Nick Blackburn.


Crisp Road, Hammersmith, London W6.

19th April 7th May 2011 (Previews 19, 20 April)

Tues Sat. 7.30 p.m.

Prices 15 (10 concs.) Previews 10.

Book online or by telephone (020 8237 1111).

Discount for block bookings.