To students studying Business, Economics, Religion, Political Science, and Philosophy:


Please consider — and research/define where necessary — the following items occurring in the United States today. 

The fiscal cliff.
The U.S. debt limit.
Federal spending vs. revenue.
Printing money and it’s potential impact on inflation.
Recent election results.
A global economy; global competition.
The place/role of money.
Race against the machine; also see this posting.
Matthew 6:19-34.


Then, please discuss/answer the following questions:

  1. What makes our debt risky? On a national level? On the money and banking level? On a personal level?
  2. What are your thoughts about the following items:
  3. What implications do you see in these items? Will they be impacting you and/or your future?
    • Are there political ramifications for this?
    • Are there spiritual ramifications for this?
  4. Could the U.S. be heading for trouble? If you say yes, what support do you have for this assertion? If you say no, what do you support your argument with?
  5. Do you think we are a divided nation? What support do you have for this perspective?
  6. What characteristics of leadership would you most like to see at this point in time?
  7. After reading Matthew 6:19-34:
    • If you, personally, lost everything you had, what would that do to you emotionally? Physically? Spiritually? That is, if our savings completely dried up, what would life be like for us as a society? What would that do to our hearts?  To our perspectives/worldviews/priorities? How we choose to spend our time? What would it do to our view of God?  To our view of ourselves?


Some other resources to consider:



fiscal cliff



From DSC:
First of all, I ran across this item:

250 years of Bayes Theorem -- a brilliant minister and mathematician; the man behind Bayes Theorem


Which reminded me of this item:

And they say God does not exist -- and I ask, then what about His fingerprints?

Which reminded me of some great feedback from Randall Pruim, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Statistics at Calvin College, who wasn’t impressed with the importance or mysteriousness of this particular sequence or the above video clip…but who also provided me with some papers, each with the words “The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics” in the title:

Anyway, I can’t say I understand all of this. But I believe God’s fingerprints are on many events, things, and changes that we experience — some of these things we see, but many are invisible.

May your Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter morning be especially meaningful this year for you and yours! Here’s to our Creator, Redeemer, and Friend!

Daniel Christian

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From DSC:
I’m interested in trying to take pulse checks on a variety of constantly moving bulls-eyes out there — one of which is new business models within the world of teaching and learning (in higher education, K-12, and the corporate world).
I have no idea whether the courses that this site/service offers are truly great or not. To me, it doesn’t matter right now. What matters is whether this model — or this type of business model — takes off. The costs of obtaining an education could be positively impacted here, as competition continues to heat up and the landscapes continue to morph.


The Great Courses -- online lectures from across the lands

Defining one’s performance
Performance is not hitting the bull’s-eye with every shot, that is a circus act.

Performance is not hitting the bull’s-eye with every shot. Performance is rather the consistent ability to produce results over prolonged periods of time and in a variety of assignments. A performance record must include mistakes. It must include failures. It must reveal a person’s limitations as well as his strengths.

The one person to distrust is the one who never makes a mistake, never commits a blunder, never fails in what he tries to do. Either he is a phony, or he stays with the safe, the tried, and the trivial. The better a person is, the more mistakes he will make — for the more new things he will try.

From DSC:
This is not just true in the corporate/business world, but it is also true for all of us who create and deliver educational content — we will make mistakes, we need to be able to experiment and try things. We need to be able to mess up in front of our students and be ok with that. We are all learners…and in my mind, experts are a dying breed; the world’s spinning too fast to be an expert in most things anymore.

The faculty I really love to work with try things — they don’t care if they make mistakes, as they (and I) consider that a given.  I don’t know everything about each tool, nor do I expect others to know even 25-50% of the features that any given tool offers (I list a range here due to the variety of learning curves and feature sets out there.)

Results That Make a Difference
What results have to be achieved to make a difference?

The decision about “What should my contribution be?” balances three elements. First comes the question: “What does the situation require?” Then comes the question: “How could I make the greatest contribution, with my strengths, my way of performing, my values, to what needs to be done?” Finally, there is the question: “What results have to be achieved to make a difference?” This then leads to the action conclusions: what to do, where to start, how to start, what goals and deadlines to set.

From DSC:
This reminds me of the work of Marcus Buckingham, in which he stresses the need to go with one’s strengths.

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Stanford and UC Berkeley Create Massively Collaborative Math – 8-8-10 —  [via blog]

Scholars at U.S. universities UC Berkeley and Stanford have created a free website, MathOverflow, that is transforming math research. By linking questions and answers from hands-on users, each small solution builds toward a larger understanding, accelerating research and proving mass collaboration can greatly expand human problem-solving abilities.

Less than a year old, Math-Overflow is growing quickly. On a typical day, it receives about 30 new questions and more than 30,000 page views from 2,500 different users worldwide. Questions and answers get votes, based on popularity. Contributors include leading researchers, and half its traffic is international. Some questions have already led to research papers naming both the asker and “answerer” as co-authors.

Source: Mercury News [San Jose, California]



Also see:

nLab -- an open lab book for math, physics

© 2022 | Daniel Christian