Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Understanding Trump by Newt Gingrich



With all the vitriol going on around Donald Trump we must ask ourselves, do we really know him enough to react with a clear mind or are we just responding emotionally to the liberal information that is being put forth?

In short, are we allowing facts to determine our reaction or the slanted news vomited out by the so-called news media?

Some will say the author of this book is also a person not to be trusted to be fair. But really? Come on. Use your intellect and realize freedom of speech means listening to both sides. It is freedom of speech not freedom from speech that is guaranteed in the Constitution.

If I sound slanted it is just that I feel to be fair, we must use our right to listen to both sides before drawing a conclusion. Trump is not aware of the game rules, but he seems to be a fast learner.

Books about Trump need to be written and read. He is a compassionate and caring person who is also brilliant and strong. Gingrich presents a person who is striving to do the best he can with what he has been elected to. He has an agenda which be contained in four boxes. He wants to make government work. He has a box for health. He has a box for American competiveness. Box four is keeping America safe.

We need to step back and read and use our brains. We should not let the false news be our only research avenue. False in the sense of putting opinion in the straight news articles as if it is the truth.

Trump’s venture as president so far has been a whirlwind of activity. It is unfortunate that we have plenty of information about Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders and not enough about Trump. But here we have a chance to rectify that.

Trump was not born in Trump towers but in a 2,000-square foot stucco house in Queens. He is someone who spent five years in a military prep school not some exclusive private high school. He was not allowed a silver spoon existence. He is more of an entrepreneur using knowledge as a tool to get things done. “He makes certain he knows what he needs to know to be successful at the time he needs to know it,” reports Gingrich.

This is how we learn things—by doing them. “Learning occurs when someone wants to learn, not when someone wants to teach” according to Roger Schank, a former professor of computer and cognitive sciences at Yale University, Stanford University, and Northwestern University.

If you feel this is not so, read the book and come to your own conclusions. Learn to think for yourself.

Trump has proven to be a fast learner but a firm resister of being taught. A casual chat with him is the best way to impart instruction. He seems to be able to absorb information. He seems to test all that he absorbs as he integrates it and does something with it. He moves fast.

I would highly recommend this book for everyone. I would especially recommend it for those who are open minded enough to want to learn who we have in the White House and are brave enough to consider the Media is not telling us all.

It is 345 pages. It is published by Hachette Book and is $27.00 in the United States.




Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Four Tendencies by Gretchen Rubin



Everyone likes to be able to understand themselves and others. It just seems to be a need. The unexplored self is not worthy to be presented to the world.

There have been many attempts to understand just what makes a person different. Some have called it temperaments, others have tried to say it is life experiences.

We all have expectations. They boil down to external and internal. Examples would be the work deadline and New Year’s resolutions. How we meet these expectations can be seen in response to them.

It is hardwired into us from birth, if I understand the point Rubin is presenting here.

The types she presents are four. 

They are: Upholder, Obligator, Rebel, and Questioner.

 The Upholder tendency is to do the things that are right both inwardly and externally. They tend to love schedules both keeping and making them. They tend to follow through on plans.

The Obligator will tend to do anything you ask even if it will inconvenience him. The moto would be by serving others I am serving myself.

The Rebel will tend to resist expectations. They will do things on their own schedule or not at all.  They want it to be their own choice to act.

The questioner will tend to research before following through. If you can convince them that it is necessary, they will act.

Each tendency has strengths and weaknesses so there is no best tendency. And even if there were, since they are hardwired from birth, you couldn’t change them.

Tendencies are seen in all aspects of life. Childhood, teenager, adult, work, retirement, marriage.

Rubin gives in a nutshell what a person should remember if they want to influence other tendencies.

“Upholders want to know what should be done.

Questioners want justifications.

Obligators need accountability.

Rebels want freedom to do something their own way.”

In short, there is no one size fits all when it comes to tendencies.

A good example would be the college student who has a report to do. He has known it was a requirement of the class since the beginning of the year. The prof has said it is part of his grade.

The Upholder does the paper and has it ready before time. After all, he has scheduled out the time for collecting information and outlining the paper and completing it.

The Obligator will do the paper as required because he honors the requirement. He has met his inner need to be a good student.

The Questioner will research, and research try to find the most obscure facts to put in his paper before realizing he has not much time left to complete the assignment. Then he will do it.

The Rebel will procrastinate and set up his own schedule for when to do the paper. He may or may not meet the deadline.

There is also a discussion of what can be expected when the tendencies fall in love and get married, that is very helpful as no relationship is doomed.

I found this book to be very informative. It will be useful for the general understanding of people. I would recommend it.

This book is $24.00. It is published by Harmony Books.

Friday, September 22, 2017

The Success Intersection by Pat Williams



What does success look like? 

Williams, who is a vice president of The NBA’s Orlando Magic’s and a former jock, for fifty years tries to explain what it looks like.

When talent meets passion and they intersect, then the road to success opens. We become a dreamer We need talent married to passion to achieve success.

This book puts forth the idea that we all have talent. We need to find our passions and when our dreams are practical, that is finding a way to take the practical steps to turn dreams into reality, we find the backbone to achieve despite the dream busters around us.

It is not enough just to have a dream if we don’t put shoe leather to the scheme.

I have the feeling there are many grownups in the work force who are just passing time until they can acquire enough money to be able to retire. But a truly passionate person who is in tune with their real self aren’t like that.

Talent isn’t enough if you somehow feel you can’t do it.

To start the journey, one must be open to asking himself three questions such as what are your passions, what are you talented for or wired for, and what can you get paid for. No use having a passion and a talent if you can’t find a way to make it marketable.

That is what makes this different. Other books on this subject don’ insert the monetary aspect. In this I agree. What good is having something that no one wants?

You must ask, Williams points out a few questions to achieve your dreams. We all have dreams, but not all achieve them.

We must ask yourself the reason you want to achieve this dream. Why, in other words, are you passionate about it.

Secondly you ask yourself when do I want to achieve this dream? Put a time on it. You need to have a goal. And then you ask with that question just what are your specific steps that must be taken to achieve that dream. Or what are the defined steps that are both defined and measurable?

And fourthly, just what today must I do to reach that goal tomorrow? We need daily steps broken down to achieve the big goal.

I highly recommend this book. It is written in easy to understand segments with guidance questions in each. It will clarify for most what they need to do to achieve that success in whatever form it comes.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

This is What a Librarian Looks Like by Kyle Cassidy



This is a book that must be read by all. It has great pictures of individuals who are librarians. It covers the history as well as the individual essays of real people and their experiences using the library.

A library is more than just a depository for books.  There is so much more to the position of librarian. It is a job that needs to be done and an obligation. Many great and not so great people have moved through the system.

One librarian at the New York public library has said “I like my job because I get to make a positive impact in people’s lives every day!”

As for the inclusion of the internet into the library system Tawnya Shaw of the Henderson District Public Libraries has point out “Over half of all Americans still do not have internet access at home… Libraries offer these services, and many more, for free. Parents can take their children for free story time or access free databases for homework. Job seekers can receive one- on-one training and free resume help”

The book also carries thoughts from various writers about how the libraries have influenced their profession.

A library can offer a place to hang out for children while their parents are busy working. They are safer than street corners.

And the librarian is a collection of knowledge and will happily assess you in seeking knowledge. They are approachable and eager to enter your world.

Cassidy spend lots of time putting together this book and it shows. It is a very uplifting book.

A librarian from St. Helena Public Library in California has said “finding information isn’t like that old saying, ‘finding a needle in a haystack.’ It’s more like finding a needle in a stack of needles…that’s where librarian can help.”

Finding a book that offers a positive outlook is like finding a jewel beyond price.  I think everyone should make sure their library carries a copy of this book and that it is kept in circulation.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Finding Family by Richard Hill



In the days before the computer and the DNA testing the person seeking their birth parent was at a loss to finding their linage.

Some families kept the truth of adoption hushed up. It was so for Richard who was born in 1946 and until a physical before going away to college in 1964 had no idea he was adopted.  A slip by a doctor opened the door.

It wasn’t spoken of in the group he grew up in. His features were close to the people who raised him. He was never needing to know his past for the present circumstances.

But when he got married and had two children it became important.

He searched for records that were no longer there. He met many dead ends. It wasn’t easy. I guess the search for the truth of adoption isn’t an easy one. At least for Hill it wasn’t.

DNA, when he used it, was useful. It helped weed out the possibilities.

It leaves the question: is it worth it to seek an answer? If you don’t need it for medical proposes or genetic markers, is it worth it financially and psychologically? It cost Hill a lot of money to pursue. And by the time he started the search most of the records and the markers were slowly disappearing if not completely gone.   

The story is told layer by layer and only if you are interested in the subject of genealogy will you find it interesting. It is heavier than it should be which may be because Hill seems to have self-published this book, I suspect.

The push he gives at the finish to view his site--DNA-Testing-Advisor.com seems to be, I suspect, his purpose for writing this account.

This book is copyrighted in 2012. The website is still up. You can buy the book through that site.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Unknown Origin by Debra Levi Holtz


        

Most adoptees want to know who they are. The big question seems to be why was I given up? What was my birth mother like? Most adoptees do want to know and it has been easier lately to find out. There are steps to take to get copies of the birth certificate and the adoption papers.

Most people find their birth mother so that they can have a more accurate medical history and an idea of who they are

Some birth mothers don’t wish to be found.

It is heart breaking. But even harder is when a birth mother denies even having given birth.

Don’t say it can’t happen. It did for Debra Levi Holtz. And I would bet there are others out there.

She was fortunate to find a support group. And she has a supportive husband. But to not have a living birth mother who acknowledges your birth, that is hard.

Holtz is a reporter and writes a tale that keeps you reading on to see what happens next.

In her research, she finds her family of cousins and the classmates of her birth mother. They all agree the person who is the birth mother is a strange individual.

 They all had no idea of this individual having given birth, she had been so secretive, but they stand behind Holtz’s campaign to connect with the mother.

Intensive research and footwork and face to face contact went on.

Finally a point was reached where Holtz had to decide what to do with the facts. She had spent all this time verifying the truth. She had the documents and the photos. And still the birth mother refused to acknowledge the birth.

She decided to give up the attempt and send all the data to the birth mother.  It was finally acknowledged by Holtz that the photos and the research information no longer belonged to her.

Not all searches end up happy.

Monday, July 31, 2017

The Power of Off by Nancy Colier


This is a thought provoking  book about a problem that is very current.
Have you ever gone to a concert and in the middle of one of the movements someone's beeper went off?
Or gone out to eat and your date had to bring along her smartphone or ipad? And all during the date had to keep checking the device?
That was very disrespectful wasn't it?  How important did you feel?
 It seems we have become people attached by an invisible umbilical cord.
 Attention is how we show others that they matter. When we are paid attention to it also shows we matter.
 Face to face interaction takes time and energy, focus and presence. Theses are things lacking when we communicate only by text and voice messages, A real  relationship can not be established.
Nancy Colier is a psychotherapist who notices that when you add a device to the interaction you are putting up a barrier to revealing yourself. A protective field, so to speak.
   I call it a virtual border. It is hard to relate to someone when you can't see the body language.
  The advice is to turn off the device. Leave it for a couple of hours. Very little is going to go wrong if you are not in possession of the device.
  It all comes down to our use of technology seems to create and intensify our inability to commit.
  Also it tends to hurt our memory
. It used to be you used your brain to store facts. Now a person stores the information on the device. For example, you have a problem when someone asks you for your phone number and you have to consult your smartphone for it.
   It can be controlled and you can get your life back. Read this book and share what you learn with others.
   Face to face, not on your device.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Shattered by Jonathan Allen & Amie Parnes




Shattered is aptly named because this is the story of what turned out to be the Clinton run for president in 2016.

Trump is in. Hillary somehow missed the mark. What happened and why?

Critics saw her reluctance to use “we” --like Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump and so many other candidates did—as evidence that her campaign was all about her, the book says. She would tend to speak about “I’ and “you” but almost never “we”

Also, she never took the blame for what happened. The email problem was not because she disclosed classified information on a non-government server. Oh, no. It was a private server, she says.  For a smart woman, she must have known that any cyber-message becomes cyber-junk. Anyone can read it.

 And her opponent in Bernie Sanders drew her away from her message.

The major problem was that Hillary couldn’t flex. She felt the rules of what worked in the past would work today. She also had a temper that is unbecoming of a candidate.

Allen and Parnes write a chronological structured account of the campaign run by Hillary. It is a book for those who want a report of just how Hillary ran her race.

I felt satisfied. I think if you were to read this book you would be also.

This book was sent to me gratis from Blogging for Books to be reviewed.

The book is published by Crown and retails for $28.00.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Post Christian




   Every once in while the people of God need to read books like this to see what we need to be doing. 
   We need to know the spiritual needs of the present generation. We need to practice discipleship. We need to reach our world one person at a time for Jesus Christ.
   Post Christian is written by a nerd for the general public. It is not a handbook for the selected few. Everyone needs to read it. Piatt even quotes Austin Power’s father who is not in any way to be considered Christian. And Powers is definitely a nerd.
   As people in this Post Christian world we need to find that dream upon which we can hang our hopes and rest. We have to orientate ourselves to a way without the benefits of seeing the destination in the distance.
   Abraham in the book of Genesis did so and was rewarded.
   We need to show people how to make the leap to faith required, trusting that in doing so we will find God in the process, Piatt suggests.
   It is also pointed out what truth is not. In fact, Piatt records, truth is not propositional. It can’t be encapsulated in an argument or justified with force.
   Truth is seen in a life style.
   Just what is the way to reach the Post Christian world? This book in seventeen chapters explores that question. A person may have to leave themselves vulnerable. But that may be what the Post Christian world is looking for.
  It is published by Jericho Books and retails for $20.00

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Year Of No Clutter



 


   All of us accumulate stuff. As we live our lives there are things that we receive that seem to mean to us importance.  Our report cards, our first piece of writing, and so on.
  Our parents, especially our mothers, coo over our accomplishments and save them in boxes to pass on to us once we are adults.
   Some of us become what is politely called hoarders, unable to throw away past records of life steps.
   We may even collect our trophies in separate rooms and close off the doors so others don’t catch on we are just unable to organize.
    Schaub in this memoir points out it is generational. At least it was for her family. Her father taught her by example to hoard. It is something taught and then caught.
    Sometimes it makes no sense. You may collect cans or paper or books or food even.  Sometimes even the science projects of long time ago get in your collection.
    But it can be controlled. Schaub took a whole year to get the habit down of control. Her delightful journey she took  along with her husband and children is detailed in a humorous way in this book.
    She had a place called the Hell room where she hide the clutter. Every hoarder has a place of clutter no matter what the name.
    Hoarders will recognize the problem. Non-hoarders will smile and cut the hoarders some slack, with understanding.
    I recommend this book highly. All will recognize themselves as we all are hoarders to a certain extent. If not hoarders we do have clutter of different types.
   Read. Weep. Laugh.
   The book is published by Sourcebooks and retails for $15.99.
 

Friday, May 5, 2017

The Chamberlain Key by Timothy P. Smith



 
   The idea that the original manuscripts of the Bible had secret meaning behind the words used-- secrets that were hidden until now--has been with us a long time.
   When I saw this book in an advertisement in a respectable Theological magazine, I knew I had to get it and review it and set the record straight.
   This teaching that the words of the original languages hide some secret message is still being circulated today and being taught in some so called respectable theological seminaries. So it is an issue that must be answered. And having books such as this come out don’t help.
   It is being marketed as a nonfiction book. Smith is not a theologian as far as I know. It seems he got it in his mind that since he had six sons and a daughter and his father had six sons and a daughter and Leah, in the book of Genesis, the first book in the Hebrew Bible, had six sons and a daughter, there was a message hidden for him to discover in the Hebrew text.
   He claims to have discovered a key code using his first name which unlocks a message which has been hidden from us.  It is best explain by Smith himself at www.chamberlainkey.com.
   All I am going to say is this is poor Hermeneutics , the study of interpretation.  That is, the rules to proper understanding of the text. This story is not good scholarship.
   I cannot and won’t recommend it
   That said let me say I was sent this book gratis for the purpose of a review by blogging for books. Com. I was not required to give it a pass. I was only required to read it and post a review in my book blog.
    All views are my own and do not reflect on the publisher.