December 30, 2010

The 7 Habits and Confucianism

Recently I have been rereading The Seven Habits by Stephen Covey which I first read in junior high. When reading, I find that the Seven Habits are sometimes closely related to the wisdom taught by Confucianism. For example, Habit 6 is Synergize: "Synergize is the habit of creative cooperation. It is teamwork, open-mindedness, and the adventure of finding new solutions to old problems." Covey teaches that it is most important to find the difference in people's paradigms and respect this difference. This makes me think of the teaching by Confucius: "The superior man is affable, but not adulatory; the mean man is adulatory, but not affable (or I would rather, The gentlemen are in harmony but does not need to agree on the same things; the villains agree but are not in harmony; Junzi he er bu tong, xiaoren tong er bu he)."

At the same time, Covey says that Synergy is the essence of nature. Everything is in such harmony in nature; everything is so synergized. Laozi, the founder of Daoism, says, "Man takes his law from the Earth; the Earth takes its law from Heaven; Heaven takes its law from the Dao. The law of the Dao is its being what it is (or, The Dao takes its law from Nature)."

December 19, 2010

Liberty and freedom

Marginal Revolution: Google ngram: the word "liberty"

For the pointer I thank Kevin Edwards. The link here allows you to see the full graph. In contrast, here is "freedom."
But if you plot both "liberty" and "freedom", you'll see that, added together, the use of these words still declines.

December 13, 2010

The Legal State

Today I read on NYT that
But two other cases — United States v. Lopez in 1995 and United States v. Morrison in 2000 — limited Congress’s regulatory authority to “activities that substantially affect interstate commerce.”
When will I be able to see a case in China titled PRC v. Wang?

December 3, 2010

Things happen.

My Gmail account is close to the storage limit. What am I going to do?

Been using it for five years.

December 2, 2010

No ads Wikipedia?

I don't understand. Why can't Wikipedia post some ads on its pages to make up for their operational costs? If they integrate Google text ads it won't be a distraction for the readers while it may even provide some relevant commercial information to them. Since editing Wikipedia is made by volunteers, the revenue generated from these text ads should be more than sufficient to maintain its operation, given that Wikipedia is the fifth most visited website on the World Wide Web. It's not like because you are a non-profit organization then you cannot post any ads on your website; it's not like advertising is an unethical conduct - and if it is, then Wikipedia needs to remove that strikingly colorful photo of Jimmy Wales from its billions of pages.

Posting ads is good to Wikipedia (so that it does not need to go this far to beg for donations), good to its readers (so that they don't need to face Jimmy Wales every time they use Wikipedia and may also get some relevant information in the text ads), and good to the economy as a whole (after all most commercial activities will indeed increase the revenue of the whole society). Then what's been hindering Wikipedia?