Review: The Vanishing of a Species? A Look at Modern Man’s Predicament by a Geologist (Hardcover)

5 Star, Capitalism (Good & Bad), Consciousness & Social IQ, Culture, Research, Economics, Education (General), Education (Universities), Environment (Problems), Future, History, Survival & Sustainment, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution
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5.0 out of 5 stars Posthumous Reflections of Extraordinary Value

November 30, 2009
Peter Gretener
QUOTES:

“The system has had it.”

“Environmental science–or engineering–is at best a misnomer and at worst a fraud.” This author, like the author of The Real Global Warming Disaster: Is the Obsession with “Climate Change” Turning Out to Be the Most Costly Scientific Blunder in History? anticipate ClimateGate and the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) being a totally dishonest organization.

Fragmentation of Knowledge
Fragmentation of Knowledge

“We need all the brainpower we can get.”

“Any human revolution must be preceded by an intellectual revitalization.”

“Education is an integrated concept. Thus a truly educated person has integrity.”

“The enemy in achieving a global solution is the fragmentation of knowledge. The interdisciplinary dialog is a step toward addressing this fragmentation.”

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Review: Ecological Intelligence–How Knowing the Hidden Impacts of What We Buy Can Change Everything (Hardcover)

5 Star, Best Practices in Management, Capitalism (Good & Bad), Change & Innovation, Complexity & Resilience, Consciousness & Social IQ, Culture, Research, Economics, Education (General), Environment (Solutions), Information Operations, Information Society, Intelligence (Collective & Quantum), Intelligence (Commercial), Intelligence (Public), Nature, Diet, Memetics, Design, Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Survival & Sustainment, True Cost & Toxicity, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution
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5.0 out of 5 stars From 4 to Five for Gifted Story and Amazon Price Cut

November 29, 2009
Daniel Goleman
I chose this book over Ecological Intelligence: Rediscovering Ourselves in Nature and seeing the author's note about this other book “by a physician, Jungian analyst, and poet” am certain I made the right choice.

The author's “big idea” is called “Radical Transparency,” what the rest of us have been calling “Open Books for decades. I like it, and in the context of his elegant story-telling, I buy in. This book also goes to a five because it is an Information Operations (IO) books, ably focused on data, information, and information-sharing as well as collective sense-making. He author anticipates most of us becoming “active agents” for change, armed with information as Thomas Jefferson understood so well.

CORE NUGGET: Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is not done for most things, but when done right, it is mainly data and it tracks impacts on human health, ecosystems, climate change, and resource draw-down, for every single component and every single process including transport, packaging, etcetera. Toward the end of the book when the author talks about how an LCA commons is emerging, and quotes Andy Ruben of normally ultra-evil Wal-Mart as saying that LCA innovation “is the largest strategic opportunity companies will see for the next fifty years,” I am seriously impressed.

Review: Understanding Knowledge as a Commons–From Theory to Practice

4 Star, Censorship & Denial of Access, Communications, Education (Universities), Information Society, Intelligence (Public)
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4.0 out of 5 stars Almost a Three–Ambitious Title, Narrow Focus

November 29, 2009
Charlotte Hess
An MIT publication from 2007, this is actually knowledge from the 2000-2004 timeframe, and it is annoying narrow knowledge written from legal-economic point of view. Well-intentioned, no doubt, this is not the “inter-disciplinary” work that it claims to be, and I demonstrate restraint in not scoring it as a three. Despite references to Yochai Benkler's The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom and Lawrence Lessig's The Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World, these folks are largely out of touch with Web 2.0 to Web 4.0, collective intelligence, wealth of networks, and tao of democracy concepts, authors, and works. This is not a substantive contribution to evolutionary anything (cultural evolution, evolutionary activism, conscious evolution). The index STINKS and there is no consolidated bibliography.

This is not a book that focuses on innovation as much as on structured processes and conventions.  I left it at four in part because this is a very good job on one part of the elephant (the anus or intellectual property of old part) and I really appreciated the six of the twelve contributions by Nancy Kranich, James Boyle, Peter Suber, Shubha Ghosh, Peter Levine, Charles M Schweik.

My fly-leaf notes (useful stuff from the book):

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Review: Not by Genes Alone: How Culture Transformed Human Evolution

5 Star, Change & Innovation, Civil Society, Communications, Complexity & Resilience, Consciousness & Social IQ, Culture, Research, Environment (Solutions), Future, History, Information Society, Intelligence (Public), Intelligence (Wealth of Networks), Nature, Diet, Memetics, Design
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5.0 out of 5 stars Boring, Original, Don't Know Enough to Give Less Than Five Stars
November 28, 2009
Peter J. Richerson and Robert Boyd
I found this book boring, and not nearly as breath-taking and inspiring as Robert Wright's Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny, which altered my perception of everything else, and is right up there with E. O. Wilson's Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge as one of my most respected readings.

Both Wright and these authors acknowledge Richard Dawkins and The Selfish Gene: 30th Anniversary Edition–with a new Introduction by the Author as being instrumental in getting the academy to think new thoughts.

However, and despite other's averaging a four, I feel such a sense of respect for what these two authors have done (with a superb bilbiography and a good index) that I cannot qualify this with less than five stars.

The two nuggets for me, with my interest in Epoch B leadership and self-organizing communities, came at the end:

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Review: Nonzero–The Logic of Human Destiny

7 Star Top 1%, Asymmetric, Cyber, Hacking, Odd War, Best Practices in Management, Change & Innovation, Civil Society, Communications, Complexity & Resilience, Consciousness & Social IQ, Cosmos & Destiny, Culture, Research, Economics, Education (General), Education (Universities), Environment (Solutions), Future, Games, Models, & Simulations, History, Information Operations, Information Society, Insurgency & Revolution, Intelligence (Collective & Quantum), Intelligence (Public), Intelligence (Wealth of Networks), Media, Nature, Diet, Memetics, Design, Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Politics, Religion & Politics of Religion, Science & Politics of Science, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution, Voices Lost (Indigenous, Gender, Poor, Marginalized)
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5.0 out of 5 stars 7 Stars–Nobel Prize (Of Old, Before Devalued) – Life Transformative Insights
November 28, 2009
Robert Wright

QUOTE: “Non-zero-sumness is a kind of potential–a potential for overall gain, or for overall loss, depending on how the game is played.”

This book is one of the most sophisticated, deep, documented, and influential I have ever read, right up there with Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge. Published in 2000, this book has NOT received the marketing promotion or the public attention it merits.

THIS BOOK HAS SUBSTANTIALLY ALTERED MY PERCEPTION OF EVERYTHING ELSE.

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Review: Agenda for a New Economy: From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth

5 Star, America (Founders, Current Situation), Banks, Fed, Money, & Concentrated Wealth, Capitalism (Good & Bad), Crime (Corporate), Democracy, Future, History, Intelligence (Public), Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Politics, Power (Pathologies & Utilization), Priorities, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Four Pumped to Five to Stave Off the Ideologues
November 27, 2009
David C. Korten
I would normally rate this book a four because of its lack of reference to Buckminster Fuller (see Critical Path; the Open Money movement; or the literature on wealth of networks, fortune at the bottom of the pyramid, and collective intelligence, but I make it a solid five for three reasons:

1. Anybody capable of writing The Great Turning (Volume 1 of 2) (EasyRead Large Edition): From Empire to Earth Community

[DO NOT BUY THE EASY READ EDITION, AMAZON IS SCREWING UP IN FAVOR OF EASY READ AND NOT LISTING NORMAL BOOK] has massive credibility with me.

Worth a Look: Books on Real Wealth Economy

Capitalism (Good & Bad), Economics, Environment (Problems), Environment (Solutions), Worth A Look
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Agenda for a New Economy: From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth

Today's economic crisis is the worst since the Great Depression. However, as David Korten shows, the steps being taken to address it do nothing to deal with the reality of a failed economic system. It's like treating cancer with a bandage. Korten identifies the deeper sources of the failure: Wall Street institutions that have perfected the art of creating “wealth” without producing anything of real value: phantom wealth. Our hope lies not with Wall Street, Korten argues, but with Main Street, which creates real wealth from real resources to meet real needs.

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