Monthly Archives: October 2013

The Center of American Politics

center poll(Community Matters) New poll  –  13 things that define the new American Center.

  1. FILLED WITH PEOPLE WHO DO NOT CONSIDER THEMSELVES THE CENTER
  2. IS PRETTY WHITE. NOT AS WHITE AS THE FOLKS ALL THE WAY TO THE RIGHT, BUT STILL: PRETTY WHITE. AND THEY DON’T WANT TO HEAR ANY TALK OF “DIVERSITY.”
  3. DOESN’T MUCH LIKE HOW THINGS ARE GOING.
  4. TRUSTS DEMOCRATS (AND OPRAH) MORE THAN REPUBLICANS
  5. PLEASE DON’T TALK TO THE CENTER ABOUT GOD AND GUNS.
  6. BELIEVES THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD HELP ONLY THOSE WHO REALLY NEED HELP.
  7. PREFERS THAT THE GOVERNMENT LEAVE THE REST OF US ALONE.
  8. HAS HAD IT WITH THE REST OF THE WORLD.
  9. WANTS THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO SPEND LESS, GO EASY ON REGULATION
  10. IS PRETTY OKAY WITH RAISING TAXES ON THE RICH AND ON POLLUTERS.
  11. DRILL, KILL, AND STOP COMPLAINING: THE CENTER IS NOT SOFT.
  12. NEEDS A DRINK—PROBABLY A BEER. AND THEY RECYCLE!
  13. THE CENTER IS UP FOR GRABS. 

Esquire – The Benenson Strategy Group and Public Opinion Strategies conducted a nationwide survey from August 5 through 11, 2013, with 2,410 registered voters.  

Guess if you want something outside the lines of this, you gotta change the electoral map. About 71% of Americans are registered to vote. About 64% voted in 2012.  Only thing in this information that disturbs me is reaction against diversity. Too much work needs to be done to fix things still for us not to work on this.

 

Posting

(Community Matters) Wow, I haven’t intended to ignore this blog. I’ve just been blowing and going the last few weeks. Good things going on in Austin and in our world. Not so good things in Washington DC. And, I’ve tried to ignore the noise.

Loved having Shaun Holifield (our nephew) here for the two weekends of ACL. Steven’s been to West Coast (last week) and East Coast (this week). Epic Office hours at Capital Factory on Wednesday during which I met with 7 different companies; I think adding value with 3, 3 were good to meet and for 1 I, regrettably, just wan’t very helpful. Suzanne Deal Booth treated friends to a private showing of the new James Turrell Skyspace at UT. I hosted dinner after for 14 friends. Friday to Houston w/ mom & dad. Doctors are very optimistic, citing mom’s very good progress rolling back effects of Parkisons given life changing medications. Back in enough time to host dinner for 4 dear friends, Aimee Boone & Ed Cunningham and Amy & Kirk Rudy, with Steven.

Lots, lots, lots going on with EF, Marfa Public Radio and otherwise in Marfa. Life is good. Steven and I are due alone time soon.

Self Work

lumosity(Community Matters) It’s hell getting older – not really, it’s quite fun. But, it does take some work. Started pilates with Ann Arnoult yesterday – loved it. It’s been over a year since Liz Watson moved and I haven’t done pilates since. Plus, figuring out I should be exercising my brain as much as my core. I’ve been taking the Lumosity tests and playing their games the last week – four days participation so far. The tests are interesting, umm, better said humbling. My husband would say they reinforce his observations on the decline of my attention span, memory and flexibility. Come to think of it, don’t think Steven’s the only one who’d say this. I hear a chorus of amens. I’ve upgraded to the family plan and invited my husband, mom, niece and nephew to play too. Talk Less, Listen More, Others Opinions are Their Own – still reflecting on this as it pops up on my calendar every morning. Can’t say I’m doing well but most days it impacts my interactions at least a little bit. Language – I’m behind on restarting Rosetta Stone lessons. Wrestling with whether I’ll restart French or brush up on my Spanish. Steven’s addicted to his Spanish lessons. I last overheard him,  “Ella esta enojada porque el perro le está comiendo el zapato.”

Epic Office Hours

capital factory(Community Matters) Looking forward to participating for my first time as a mentor in Capital Factory’s Epic Office Hours – when entrepreneurs get 20 minutes to pitch their startup & hear feedback. 

A Gathering

(Community Matters) Once again Charles Santos produced a spectacular evening of dance & song and remembrance of the fight against HIV/AIDS and as a wake up call that it’s not over. Over 250 performers, 12 collaborating organizations and 5 dance companies collaborated on last night’s event  – about 1k guests in the house. This year’s was different from the 10 years performances in Austin (Austin Festival of Dance which raised $1mm for local organizations) , his Dancers Responding to AIDS events in NY and the 2011 Gathering – more a story book with lots of woven in narrative reminding those in the audience about the war in the 80s and 90s. Last night’s beneficiaries included AIDS Interfaith Nework, AIDS Arms, AIDS Services of Dallas, Resource Center of Dallas.

gathering

Shoutr

(Community Matters) sure I’m late to the parade but I find Shoutr’s ability to share files between devices without wifi, cellular or bluetooth fascinating – and absolutely a crisis management tool.

shoutr

Huge Blow to Share Economy

Brian Chesky(Community Matters) It’s a huge blow to the share economy – New York AG subpoenaing AirBnB for 225k New Yorkers’ user data – bed taxes and building restrictions. Feels like bed taxes should exempt these transactions. Don’t want to be so cynical to think competitors might be advocating. 

Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Texas?

Sheriff Joe Arpaio Abbott(Community Matters) Is the state’s leadership collectively our Sheriff Joe Arpaio? Random license checks in S. Texas counties looking for illegal immigrants. If they’re gonna be stopping all brown-skinned drivers, that’s a long line.  Attorney General Abbott should declare this illegal immediately. AAS: Border area checkpoints raise questions of intent

 

Today’s Philanthropic Landscape

philanthropic landscape(Community Matters) An excellent summary of 2012 philanthropy in America. Best presentation of Giving USA data I’ve seen yet plus much more. Thanks Joanna Linden for sending me the CCS report.

  • $316B total giving in 2012
  • 72% by individuals
  • list of top individual, corp and foundation donors
  • online NPO revenues grew 21%
  • online monthly giving grew 43%
  • # internet donations to charities increased by 20%
  • share of people who made a gift in response to an email appeal dropped by 20% [sic]
  • 20% of online fundraising takes place in Dec.

 

Wendy Davis for Governor

(Community Matters) Wendy Davis – I wouldn’t bet against her. There’s something in the air, kinda like when you smell rain even though forecasters say it ain’t gonna rain. Doesn’t mean it will but often surprises you and does. The corruption, the disregard for others, the meddling in Texan’s affairs, it gets old, it’s not Texan – just saying . . .

wendy davis

 

Unfortunately, I can’t play in politics given my role as Pres & CEO of Marfa Public Radio, but I spoke with Wendy a few weeks ago about her race and why she’s running. I like her. I appreciate all well-intentioned, smart and generous women & men who choose to serve.

Aus Chron: A Capital Idea

(Community Matters) How Josh Baer helps people ‘quit their jobs’ to join the bustling hive at Capital Factory.

Free Training in Empathy, Social Perception & EI

Chekhov(Community Matters) NYT: Want to Be More Empathetic? Try Reading Chekhov

a study published Thursday in the journal Science found that after reading literary fiction, as opposed to popular fiction or serious nonfiction, people performed better on tests measuring empathy, social perception and emotional intelligence — skills that come in especially handy when you are trying to read someone’s body language or gauge what they might be thinking.

Literary fiction vs popular fiction: “popular fiction readers made as many mistakes as people who read nothing.”

 “Maybe popular fiction is a way of dealing more with one’s own self, maybe, with one’s own wants, desires, needs.” In popular fiction, said Mr. Kidd, one of the researchers, “really the author is in control, and the reader has a more passive role.”

In literary fiction, like Dostoyevsky, “there is no single, overarching authorial voice,” he said. “Each character presents a different version of reality, and they aren’t necessarily reliable. You have to participate as a reader in this dialectic, which is really something you have to do in real life.”

Two take aways – the importance of exploratory, character-filled fiction and the difference from popular fiction which is more plot oriented (for good and bad depending on objective of writer and whomever selecting what to read).

btw, a fun, free emotional intelligence test. Reminded me I’d been wanting to sign up for Lumosity which I’ve done. Even had my first every morning (from now on) workout. Gonna try to enroll my mom too (good workout for Parkisons. She’s enjoying the Pilates workouts I’ve also prescribed).