Biographical Log of Michael Furstner - Page 304

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Martinshof Story - Happiness - Awareness - Black Forest walks - Camino - Dolmen Tour - Travel

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Tuesday 1 - Thursday 10 July, 2014 (diary)

When Doing = Being Some weeks ago I had an interesting email exchange with Ton, a fellow Dutchman, now living with his Polish partner in Poland.
Ton, who has his own Business Consulting and Coaching company, tells me that his main aim is to convert his clients' approach from "Doing" into "Being".
This in a nutshell you might say is the very purpose of each individual life. We should aim to express ourselves in the world and this of course should extend to the work we do or the business we are engaged in.
The sharp down-turn in our sense of well-being (as shown in red on The Economist's graph here), surely (more often than not) is a reflection of our unhappiness with the work we have to do in order to financially support ourselves and our family.

Ton's work clearly aims to turn this negative experience around into a positive one (shown by the green dotted line) through changing the focus, style and attitude of a company's management and employees.

This philosophy is undoubtedly more naturally and easily expressed by the smaller family businesses.
My own parents' business (Martinshof) was a good example. During the couple of years I ran the business after my father's sudden death, I learned more about who he really was than during the 20 years I lived with him while growing up. Our employees too were allowed to fulfill their task in their own way, reflecting their individuality, which made for a happy company, and in fact felt like a happy "family".
I still get together with our former long term employees every time I visit Holland. This year will have our reunion in late August.

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Friday 11 - Sunday 20 July, 2014 (diary)

My carport The access road on our property as well as the carport against the back of my cabin have been sealed now, so no more dust in the dry season when we drive on it.

I downloaded an interesting book recently by John Carey : The Intellectuals and the Masses. It deals with the response of the English literary intelligentsia to the new phenomenon of mass culture between 1880 and 1939.
Prior to this period the world had been divided by a great gulf separating the readers from the non-readers.

But with the establishment of the English Education act of 1871 this changed dramatically : a huge literate reading public came into being which (as Publishers quickly found out) preferred to read material like Treasure Island and Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde, rather than novels by George Elliot or the "excessively literary" Bernard Shaw.

George Sand There were strong reactions by the artistic intelligentsia to this, one of which was the urgent need to distantiate themselves from these masses by creating art that only their former audience, the more affluent individuals would appreciate and could understand.

This (in my personal view) throws a totally new perspective on the early 20th century period of massive artistic "renewal" in all forms of art : literature, music, painting, architecture.

Art in general, by this point in time, had come to the end of the road they had been traveling on for centuries.
So it would be misleading to point to the above as the main reason for their change of tack.
But the need to differentiate (and distance) themselves from the masses must (I believe) have been a significant catalyst for many artists to forge ahead into new directions.

However there is amongst many artists of that period also a romantic appreciation for segments of these masses, such as the farmers and workers living on the land.
George Sand for example, in her novel The Haunted Pool admires the farmer tilling the land while she watches him, but at the same time laments what a pity it is that he is not able to fully appreciate the nature setting he lives in like she does.

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Monday 21 - Thursday 31 July, 2014 (diary)

Prime Minister Tony Abbott with Foreign Minister July Bishop : a world acclaimed winning combination Most Australians have disliked and/or underestimated these two politicians for many years, and not just from the left side of politics.
But (as you may have perceived from some of my Blog entries) I have been a strong favourite of Tony Abbott, ever since he emerged as a Minister in the Howard Government, more then 10 years ago.
Julie Bishop too caught my attention during her period as Opposition Foreign Ministry spokes person.
Frankly speaking it often requires quality to recognise quality!

In the face of perceived weakness both from the USA and Europe to stand up to Vladimir Putin, Australia has taken the lead showing a strong stand against him and rallying other countries to stand up and be counted.
Now the firm leadership of Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott (concerning the shot down Malaysian passenger airline) and the relentless efforts of Foreign Minister Julie Bishop are receiving high praise and accolades from leaders around the world, especially from Europe and the USA (from both sides of politics).

As a result of their present efforts, as well as their accumulated efforts during the past 9 months in International Trade negotiations (ably carried out by Trades Minister Andrew Rob) and the Abbott Government's decisive action against illegal immigrants traveling by boat, the esteem in which Australia is held amongst world leaders has risen to a level where it has never been before !
It reveals the quality of this present Government, when it is freed from the shackles of the self serving, incompetent jokers (Labour, Greens, etc.) who oppose and block every sensible national policy move in the Senate.

In stark contrast the Nations in Europe have largely lost respect from the outside world because of their weakness and abject failure to confront Putin in his Hitleresque land grabs of Russian speaking populated regions (the Crimea and Eastern Ukraine) Russia lost after the demise of the former Soviet Union.
What the former Russia could not accomplish with military power (I read in and agree with The Australian newspaper), Putin is achieving effortlessly with economic power : control over Europe!

Putin is the puppet master, controlling the European countries like puppets on a string.
Germany is dependant on Russian gas for much of its energy.   (The knee jerk reaction of Merkel, to appease the general public, shutting down all nuclear power stations in the country after the Japanese catastrophe, is coming home to roost!
France's economy is strongly supported by its manufacture and sales of military weapons to Russia.
England has flourishing financial dealings with Russia it does not want to risk.
and Italy too is enjoying rip-roaring sales of its wide range of luxury goods to the super rich oligarchs and Russian Mafia bosses (many of whom have purchased luxury palaces on the Riviera in France and Italy).
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