New perspectives on money

The May/June issue of Resurgence has arrived and it looks very interesting.

Its a special focus issue titled "The money delusion: In search of true wealth". It kicks off with an excellent editorial from Satish Kumar which introduces the topic.

Here are a few quotes to give you a flavour of the article:

"Let us be clear. Money is not wealth. It is a delusion to think that money is wealth. True wealth is good land, healthy animals, flourishing forests, clean water, honest work, abundant creativity and human imagination"

and

"For example, there is never a shortage of money for wars and weapons, but it is always in short supply for arts and education"

Its worth a read and can be found here

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Frightened by voluntary simplicity

An article in the New York Times here tells of a couple who are shedding their possessions prior to starting a new life as organic farmers. What I found interesting was that they have had some hostile reactions on the blog they are keeping to document the journey. I suspect that many people find the idea of others who are stepping outside the norm and “letting it all go by” to be threatening.

As a Subaru owner and former city escapee currently back in corporate life, the cover of this book appealed to me instantly. It was brought to my attention by this review at Cool Tools. It seems an increasing number of people are setting up alternative lives and documenting their efforts in blogs and books. No complaints from me as I enjoy this genre, as long as the accounts retain an authentic feeling. Some of my favourites include Urban Dreams, Rural Realities and the Nearings classic The Good Life. More on these another time.

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Groups with more women are more intelligent

Tom Malone on collective intelligence and the “genetic” structure of groups

The average intelligence of the people in the group and the maximum intelligence of the people in the group doesn’t predict group intelligence.

and

So how do you engineer groups that can problem-solve effectively? First of all, seed them with, basically, caring people. Group intelligence is correlated … with the average social sensitivity — the openness, and receptiveness, to others — of a group’s constituents. The emotional intelligence of group members, in other words, serves the cognitive intelligence of the group overall. And this means that — wait for it — groups with more women tend to be smarter than groups with more men.

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