traditions   361

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Cummings, Buffett and organisational inertia
March 10, 2020 | Financial Times| by Michael Skapinker.

* Running an institution or department is far harder than it looks from the outside
* Warren Buffett spoke of the importance in business of the 'unseen force that we might call "the institutional imperative"’
advice  bias_for_improvement  change_management  civil_service  Communicating_&_Connecting  companywide  eels  fact-finding  first90days  inertia  institutional_knowledge  institutional_memory  internal_systems  legacy_tech  observations  obstacles  obstructionism  organizational_agility  organizational_change  primary_field_research  rage  resistance  self-reflection  traditions  Warren_Buffett 
23 days ago by jerryking
How Europe Celebrates Halloween
Halloween is tomorrow! Find out what spooky festivities go on across Europe during Halloween season.
halloween  holiday  traditions  and  Travel-Europe 
october 2019 by Adventure_Web
American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF) Folk Arts and Cultures in the Upper Midwest
Supports Scandinavian folk arts and cultural traditions in the Upper Midwest (defined as North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan). Fellowships for artists will:Deepen the skills of master artists and/or Foster relationships among masters and their apprentices.
Folk  Craft  Midwest  Scandanavia  grant  training  Traditions  alumni 
september 2019 by risdgrants
America Without Family, God, or Patriotism - The Atlantic
“The nuclear family, God, and national pride are a holy trinity of the American identity. What would happen if a generation gave up on all three?”



“One interpretation of this poll is that it’s mostly about the erosion of traditional Western faith. People under 30 in the U.S. account for more than one-third of this nation’s worshippers in only three major religions: Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism. This reflects both the increase in non-European immigration since the 1970s and the decline of larger Christian denominations in the latter half of the 20th century. It also reflects the sheer increase in atheism: Millennials are nearly three times more likely than Boomers to say they don’t believe in God—6 percent versus 16 percent. If you think that Judeo-Christian values are an irreplaceable keystone in the moral arc of Western society, these facts will disturb you; if you don’t, they won’t.

A second interpretation of this poll is that it’s mostly about politics. Youthful disinterest in patriotism, babies, and God might be a mere proxy for young people’s distaste for traditional conservatism. For decades, the Republican Party sat high on the three-legged stool of Reaganism, which called for “traditional” family values (combining religiosity with the primacy of the nuclear family), military might (with all its conspicuous patriotism), and limited government.

Millennials and Gen Zers have turned hard against all these values; arguably, their intermittently monogamous, free-spending Republican president has, too. Young voters are far to the left of not only today’s older Americans, but also past generations of younger Americans. Based on their votes since 2012, they have the lowest support for the GOP of any group in at least half a century. So it’s possible that Millennials are simply throwing babies out with the Republican bathwater.

But it looks like something bigger is going on. Millennials and Gen Z are not only unlikely to call themselves Protestants and patriots, but also less likely to call themselves Democrats or Republicans. They seem most comfortable with unaffiliation, even anti-affiliation. They are less likely than preceding generations to identify as “environmentalists,” less likely to be loyal to specific brands, and less likely to trust authorities, or companies, or institutions. Less than one-third of them say they have “a lot of confidence” in unions, or Silicon Valley, or the federal government, or the news, or the justice system. And don’t even get them started on the banks.

This blanket distrust of institutions of authority—especially those dominated by the upper class—is reasonable, even rational, considering the economic fortunes of these groups were pinched in the Great Recession and further squeezed in the Not-So-Great Recovery. Pundits may dismiss their anxiety and rage as the by-products of college-campus coddling, but it flows from a realistic appraisal of their economic impotency. Young people today commit crimes at historically low rates and have attended college at historically high rates. They have done everything right, sprinting at full speed while staying between the white lines, and their reward for historic conscientiousness is this: less ownership, more debt, and an age of existential catastrophe. The typical Millennial awakens many mornings to discover that some new pillar of the world order, or the literal world, has crumbled overnight. And while she is afforded little power to do anything about it, society has outfitted her with a digital megaphone to amplify her mordant frustrations. Why in the name of family, God, or country would such a person lust for ancient affiliations? As the kids say, #BurnItAllDown.

But this new American skepticism doesn’t only affect the relatively young, and it isn’t confined to the overeducated yet underemployed, either.”



“he older working-class men in the paper desperately want meaning in their lives, but they lack the social structures that have historically been the surest vehicles for meaning-making. They want to be fathers without nuclear families. They want spirituality without organized religion. They want psychic empowerment from work in an economy that has reduced their economic power. They want freedom from pain and misery at a time when the pharmaceutical solutions to those maladies are addictive and deadly. They want the same pride and esteem and belonging that people have always wanted.

The ends of Millennials and Gen Z are similarly traditional. The WSJ/NBC poll found that, for all their institutional skepticism, this group was more likely than Gen Xers to value “community involvement” and more likely than all older groups to prize “tolerance for others.” This is not the picture of a generation that has fallen into hopelessness, but rather a group that is focused on building solidarity with other victims of economic and social injustice. Younger generations have been the force behind equality movements such as Black Lives Matter, #MeToo, #AbolishICE, and Medicare for All, not only because they’re liberal, and not only because they have the technological savvy to organize online, but also because their experience in this economy makes them exquisitely sensitive to institutional abuses of power, and doubly eager to correct it. What Americans young and old are abandoning is not so much the promise of family, faith, and national pride as the trust that America’s existing institutions can be relied on to provide for them.

The authors of the paper on working-class men note that, even as their subjects have suffered a shock, and even as they’re nostalgic for the lives of their fathers and grandfathers—the stable wages, the dependable pensions—there is a thin silver lining in the freedom to move beyond failed traditions. Those old manufacturing jobs were routine drudgery, those old churches failed their congregants, and traditional marriages subjugated the female half of the arrangement. “These men are showing signs of moving beyond such strictures,” the authors write. “Many will likely falter. Yet they are laying claim to a measure of autonomy and generativity in these spheres that were less often available in prior generations. We must consider both the unmaking and remaking aspects of their stories.”

And there is the brutal truth: Many will likely falter. They already are. Rising anxiety, suicide, and deaths of despair speak to a profound national disorder. But eventually, this stage of history may be recalled as a purgatory, a holding station between two eras: one of ostensibly strong, and quietly vulnerable, traditions that ultimately failed us, and something else, between the unmaking and the remaking.”
derekthompson  us  culture  society  economics  generations  change  religion  patriotism  families  2019  suicide  middleage  purpose  meaning  community  anxiety  malaise  collapse  vulnerability  traditions  marriage  parenting  millennials  geny  genx  generationy  generationx  generationz  gender  work  labor  unemployment  hope  hopelessness  activism  skepticism  power  elitism  democrats  republicans  politics  education  highered  highereducation  ronaldreagan  reaganism  belief  diversity  voting  unions  siliconvalley  socialjustice  justice  impotency  underemployment  spirituality  capitalism  neoliberalism  genz  learning 
september 2019 by robertogreco
Currency of the Dead: Why Do We Leave Coins On Graves?
You can find evidence of leaving coins at a grave throughout history. It’s possible this is the precursor to leaving flowers at the grave. Pennies are cheaper than flowers by their very nature. A penny you own is still a part of you in spirit, and it shows anyone who visits the grave that the departed is still loved by someone.

There is also a tradition associated with good luck by leaving a penny at a grave. It appears Ben Franklin can take the credit. Well, his mourners getting credit would be more accurate. Franklin may not have approved of leaving pennies behind. He did say, “A penny saved is a penny earned.” Nevertheless, visitors to his grave toss pennies over the iron gate protecting his tombstone believing it will garner them good luck.

There’s also a deeper tradition of coins at the grave. It’s one many are likely unaware of.
graveyards  tradition  traditions 
june 2019 by timberwolfoz
Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Coins on Graves: Truth vs Urban Legend #cemetery #history #GraveHour | Tui Snider - author & speaker
The practice of leaving coins with the deceased dates back to the ancient Greeks, who believed the rivers Styx and Acheron separated the living from the dead. A ferry trip was required to cross these waters, otherwise the soul of the deceased would be forced to wander the river banks for 100 years.
graves  graveyards  tradition  traditions 
june 2019 by timberwolfoz
Man behind Preakness tradition eyes the finish line
"Mr. Jones says he takes pride in painting quickly and cleanly — and has never splattered any of the dignitaries who gather below. The job usually takes about 15 minutes, he says. When he finishes one side of the 5-foot-wide aluminum weather vane, he rotates it so the people in the winner's circle can observe, and applaud, his handiwork."
horseracing  maryland  pimlico  preakness-stakes  traditions 
may 2019 by jnchapel
Captaincy - Peggy Noonan's Blog - WSJ
Aug 4, 2014 |WSJ| Peggy Noonan

There are [underlying] reasons for [the existence of the weirdest] traditions and arrangements [--but you have to ask questions to uncover them]. Sometimes they are good and sometimes not, but they are reasons, explanations grounded in some sort of experience. I had a conversation about this a few years ago with a young senior at Harvard who on graduation would go to work for a great consulting firm that studies the internal systems of business clients to see if they can be bettered. He asked if I had any advice, which I did not. Then I popped out, with an amount of feeling that surprised me because I didn’t know I had been thinking about it, that he should probably approach clients with the knowledge that systems and ways of operating almost always exist for a reason [JCK: fact-finding]. Maybe the reason is antiquated or not applicable to current circumstances, but there are reasons for structures, and if you can tease them out they will help you better construct variations or new approaches. I can’t remember why but this opened up a nice conversation about how consultants walk into new jobs with a bias toward change—the recommendation of change proves their worth and justifies their fees—but one should be aware of that bias and replace it with a bias for improvement, which is different.
advice  biases  bias_for_improvement  bias_toward_change  fact-finding  hidebound  institutional_knowledge  institutional_memory  internal_systems  Jason_Isaacs  management_consulting  Peggy_Noonan  traditions 
april 2019 by jerryking

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