Losing to Win

The greatest test of courage on earth is to bear defeat without losing heart. -Robert Ingersoll

First, accept sadness. Realize that without losing, winning isn't so great. -Alyssa Milano

Losers are people who are afraid of losing. -Robert Kiyosaki

Sometimes by losing a battle you find a new way to win the war. -Donald Trump

You learn more from losing than winning. You learn how to keep going. -Morgan Wootten

Losing a game is heartbreaking. Losing your sense of excellence or worth is a tragedy. -Joe Paterno

You've got to get to the stage in life where going for it is more important than winning or losing. -Arthur Ashe

The joy of losing consists in this: Where there are no expectations, there is no disappointment. -Charles Krauthammer

Open Prison Systems

In Nordic countries like Sweden, which have far lower incarceration and crime rates, prison is about rehabilitation. ... "Our role is not to punish. The punishment is the prison sentence: They have been deprived of their freedom. The punishment is that they are with us," Nils Öberg, director-general of Sweden's prison and probation service.
While high-security prisons in the U.S. often involve caging and dehumanizing a prisoner, prisons in Nordic countries are designed to treat them as people with psychosocial needs that are to be carefully attended to. Prison workers fulfill a dual role of enforcer and social worker, balancing behavioral regulation with preparation for re-entry into society.

Even more remarkable than this is the use of "open prisons" in the region. Prisoners at open prisons stay in housing that often resembles college dorms, have access to accessories such as televisions and sound systems and are able to commute to a job and visit families while electronically monitored. Prisoners and staff eat together in the community spaces built throughout the prison. None are expected to wear uniforms.

... excerpted from an article at policy Mic. Read it here.

National Puzzle Day

Today is National Puzzle Day. With the advent of digital entertainment, the common puzzle may be falling by the wayside. Puzzle Day is your chance to go back to basics; do a jigsaw or solve a crossword.

When I was a teenager I did the daily Jumble in the NY Daily News. I love working on crossword puzzles. My mom loved to do them and my sister does too. Do you like to solve puzzles? What kind do you like to solve?

Images that make you do a Double Take

This image is of the Sun Cruise Resort of South Korea that was built to look like a yacht.
You can catch more double take images like this one at Brainjet.

National Hug Day

Hug Department: Always Open

A hug is a handshake from the heart.

Hugs are the universal medicine.

Hugs grease the wheels of the world.

You can't wrap love in a box, but you can wrap a person in a hug.

I have a present for you, but I need to borrow your arms for wrapping paper.

Arm ourselves for war? No! All the arms we need are for hugging.

A hug is worth a thousand words.

... all quotes are compliments of Author Unknown

Selma | ★★★★★★★★★★

I was a clueless teenager when Americans marched with Martin Luther King Jr. I knew of the injustices and the mistreatment but Oh My! To see this epic captured so masterfully on screen was breathtaking. It was heartbreaking and inspiring.

Doctor King (played beautifully by David Oyelowo) came across as a pragmatic prophet. A man operating with both principle and feelings. Concerned about changing the voting laws in America while showing so much compassion for the people who were protesting with him. I loved the way that so many heroic people were showcased.

My wife Ann (unlike clueless Bob) remembers following the events. A friend who viewed the movie with us told about how two nuns in her school marched in Selma. It was a beautiful moment to see so many ministers, priests and rabbis come to Selma to support such a cause. May we never forget Selma.

I absolutely loved the movie and, on a scale of ten, give it ★★★★★★★★★★

Tell Me About Your Blog

I have another blog, An Eye for Redemption, that celebrated it's 10th Blogoversary last month. For the first few years it was my only blog. It's focus has always been about faith and redemption. These days I try to post a devotional thought there a few times a week. You can read it here.

I, and perhaps others, would love to hear a bit about your blog(s) if you have one. Maybe, in the comments section, you can post a link to it, share when you started it, how frequently you post there and what you like to post about.  And who knows, maybe you and I will make a few friends?

Treat Veterans With Respect, Not Pity

The theologian Jonathan Edwards didn't consider pity an expression of "true virtue." Pity addresses the perceived suffering, not the whole individual. "Men may pity others under exquisite torment," Edwards wrote, "when yet they would have been grieved if they had seen their prosperity."

Pity sidesteps complexity in favor of narratives that we're comfortable with, reducing the nuances of a person's experience to a sound bite. Thus the response of a New York partygoer who—after a friend explained that the proudest moment of his deployment to Iraq came when his soldiers were fired on and decided not to fire back—replied, "That must make the nightmares even worse."

This insistence on treating veterans as objects of pity plays out in our national dialogue as well, whether it is Bill Maher saying on his April 4 HBO show, "Anytime you send anyone to war, they come back a little crazy," or a Washington Times article about PTSD claiming that, "Roughly 2.6 million veterans who serve in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD-type symptoms." That is roughly the total number of veterans who served, which suggests that the reporter thought there might be a 100% saturation rate of PTSD among veterans.
Pity places the focus on what's wrong with veterans. But for veterans looking at the society that sent them to war, it may not feel like they're the ones with the most serious problem.

Excerpted from a Wall Street Journal article (read it here) authored by Phil Klay, a US Marine Corps vet
who served from 2005 to 2009, including a tour of duty in Iraq from January 2007 to February 2008.
He is the author of "Redeployment," a short-story collection published by the Penguin Press.

Resolution Revelations

When Pope Francis met before Christmas with Vatican employees, mostly lay people with families, he asked them to do 10 things. The list sounded remarkably like suggestions for New Year’s resolutions:
  • “Take care of your spiritual life, your relationship with God, because this is the backbone of everything we do and everything we are.”
  • “Take care of your family life, giving your children and loved ones not just money, but most of all your time, attention and love.”
  • “Take care of your relationships with others, transforming your faith into life and your words into good works, especially on behalf of the needy.”
  • “Be careful how you speak, purify your tongue of offensive words, vulgarity and worldly decadence.”
  • “Heal wounds of the heart with the oil of forgiveness, forgiving those who have hurt us and medicating the wounds we have caused others.”
  • “Look after your work, doing it with enthusiasm, humility, competence, passion and with a spirit that knows how to thank the Lord.”
  • “Be careful of envy, lust, hatred and negative feelings that devour our interior peace and transform us into destroyed and destructive people.”
  • “Watch out for anger that can lead to vengeance; for laziness that leads to existential euthanasia; for pointing the finger at others, which leads to pride; and for complaining continually, which leads to desperation.”
  • “Take care of brothers and sisters who are weaker … the elderly, the sick, the hungry, the homeless and strangers, because we will be judged on this.”
[KC Bob considers this to be good advice for all people of faith.]

... copied in full from the Catholic News Service

2015 | full of things that have never been

And now we welcome the new year. Full of things that have never been. -Rainer Maria Rilke

Let our New Year's resolution be this: we will be there for one another as fellow members of humanity. -Goran Persson

Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right. -Oprah Winfrey

My New Year's resolution list usually starts with the desire to lose between ten and three thousand pounds. -Nia Vardalos

Resolution: To tolerate fools more gladly, provided this does not encourage them to take up more of my time. -J Agate

Every once in a while someone barks at me. My New Year's resolution is not to bark back. -Tucker Carlson

Resolution One: I will live for God. Resolution Two: If no one else does, I still will. -Jonathan Edwards