Raphie Frank :: business artivist

And I Haven’t Danced Since He Died…

little dancers 1
little dancers 1 by chrisseserville

a gift from Mariana to me in the form of a letter on the eve of her return to Croatia for just the second time in nine years…

I know I don’t have to tell you about consequences of war; I lost my cousin – who was like a brother to me – we grew up together and were of the same age. He was the one who taught me how to put eyeliner on and how to dance. And I haven’t danced since he died. His war lasted only 5 days.

He was found with 15 knife stabs in his body and 83 bullets.

The journalists who wrote about his death had to flee Croatia. His commander was found dead under strange circumstances. The young man who found my cousin and carried his body on his back to a ferry boat, on the bus, and then home — had to flee the country fearing for his life.

The five men who ambushed my cousin were Croatian paramilitary — my cousin was in the Croatian Military Police. Those who didn’t die in the war were found guilty of war crimes and sentenced. The military or the government (not sure which one) erected a monument for my cousin on the island on which he died. But his mother still keeps his room the same way as it was 14 years ago, and takes yellow Gerber daisies to his grave every day.

I am going to Croatia on June 11, the first time in 4 years, and second time in 9 years. Our house is 5 minutes away from the beach; there are no signs that forbid trespassing through the vineyards, olive gardens, or woods. Last time I went there, it was to mourn my father. I miss him so much, and that is enough said. In Croatia, there is my closest family (mother, sister, and brother) and relatives — many of them — I think the best point of reference I can give to describe a Dalmatian family is a Sicilian family; temperamental, impulsive, warm, loud, easily offended, nosy, generous, talkative, food and wine loving. They will suck up all the energy out of me, but I am just happy to be able to see them again, to open up my heart the best I can and let them know they are loved.

I will see my ‘old’ friends from college years — Damir — who saved my skin several times; Diana who got me in trouble many times with her lack of judgment and passion for adventure; Silar – who secretly loved me and wanted to marry me when I was already pregnant with my husband to be; Sebastian — who lead me onto a spiritual path and who is possibly the most lovable person on earth, and yet single; Ivo who made me laugh time after time doing private stand-up comedy gigs for me; Zeljka – my friend from 1st grade of grade school, together we dreamed of getting out of the province and doing something grand; Stipe — whom I held with my last power to prevent jumping off the 3rd floor and who was the only one who shared my passion for the grunge music; Ivan – my fellow poet – we used to stay up all night on two mechanical typewriters, making magic…

It will be a whirlwind; but of a good kind.

View Dalmatica’s Flickr Profile or visit her blog Dalmatica: Act Great.

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Photography, Storytelling | 8 Comments

Sam’s Stearman’s 7

brought to you by the 50fiftySHOULDBE Flickr group in cooperation with Boojummy

Sam’s Exotic Travels picks his top 7, oops, make that 8, pictures he believes worthy of 50 faves over on Flickr. By previous design, these pictures represent a mix of acknowledged and underappreciated Flickr stars.

Check out his picks of the pix folks, and if you’ve a think on it, drop a note to the photographers if you like their work or fave them if you are a Flickr member.

Sam calls himself an amateur. Take a look up above. That’s one of his “amateur” photos. Care to see more of his work? Visit his website at: Samsays.com. Oh… and PASS IT ON….


Sam’s 7 with commentary

A wonderful composition and story behind this photo and the series it is part of: only 26 favorites to date:

One more umbrella pic – this one a self portait shot in her bedroom window, very creative – this has 7 favorites:

This photo by one of my favorite mates from down under, has only 2 favorite votes – I really like the composition and subject:
(corrected link)

Niklens has some beautiful imagaes. I love this one, which has only been favored by 12:

Claude has so many pics, but this portrait must have escaped attention as it is stunning – currently at 21 favorites:

Wonderful candid portrait from India, with only 24 favorites:

This one from Mexico offers a different perspective, with great shadows. Only 14 favorites:

I know I have already picked 7, but how can I leave out this dark moody Iceland photo – it’s excellent – with 23 favorites

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Photography | Leave a comment

3 Catches For Plentyoffish: Why Any Idiot Can Make Millions?

photo by Marcus’ wife.

Wowza, now there’s a path with heart… PlentyofFish, a free dating site has become the 30th largest site in Canada. It’s a ONE PERSON company run by Marcus who has a WordPress blog, The Paradigm Shift: Adapt or Die

Marcus seems to think Any Idiot Can Make Millions, but there are three catches if you ask me…

1) If everybody did it, the supply would overwhelm demand and the cost per clicks offered would go down drastically. Darn that Adam Smith!

2) Where’s the rest of all the Google Adsense money going to? Uh… Google?

**News Flash** Kids. That is called CONCENTRATION OF WEALTH, because Google gets most of the money, and even as “Don’t Be Evil” as Google may be, there are going to be competitors who will gain traction by offering their clients a greater cut of the proceeds, bringing us to the #3 catch…

3) Marcus ain’t no idiot. He’s there first and if he’s even smarter he’ll use his eyeball base to start his own sponsored search program right there on PlentyofFish. He can keep more of the money and actually have a better chance to “change the world,” as he says he wants to.

To be fair Marcus notes that “competition may drive up prices and its no longer profitable for you to bid on those terms.” and goes on to say “If you have your own website affiliate networks are great. If don’t have many users (under 30,000 uniques/day) and they are all focused on your subject area a good rule of thumb is you can make $2.00 off affiliate ads for every dollar you make off adsense.”

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Business, Economics, Internet | 3 Comments

Paths With Heart

This question is one that only a very old man asks. Does this path have a heart? All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. They are paths going through the bush, or into the bush. In my own life I could say I have traversed long long paths, but I am not anywhere. Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn’t. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you.

– Carlos Castaneda

part of Boojummy & 50fiftySHOULDbe

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Philosophy, Photography | Leave a comment

What is Death By Smiley Face?

Jane” by Daryl Furr

Read New York Times article Death by Smiley Face: When Rivals Disdain Profit

from O’Reilly’s Radar

Business theorists have started to grasp the risks to established businesses of asymmetric competition. (By analogy to the concept of asymmetric warfare, sometimes companies are competing with rivals whose different business model transforms the nature of the conflict. For example, the competition between Netscape and Microsoft was symmetric because both companies employed the software distribution business model, but the competition between Google and Microsoft, or (more granularly), between Firefox and IE or Linux and Windows, is asymmetric.)

But the NY Times points out an even more disruptive trend in an article entitled Death by Smiley Face: When Rivals Disdain Profit: “There is another breed of rival lurking online for traditional media, and it is perhaps the most vexing yet: call it purpose-driven media, with a shout-out to Rick Warren, the author of “A Purpose-Driven Life,” for borrowing his catchphrase. These are new-media ventures that leave the competition scratching their heads because they don’t really aim to compete in the first place; their creators are merely taking advantage of the economics of the online medium to do something that they feel good about. more

related writings:
:: What is Business Artivism?
:: Steal This Business Concept!
:: The Evolving Principles of “Boojummy”
:: What the hell is “boojummy”?

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Business, Economics, Internet, Philosophy, Politics | 1 Comment

What is Prospect Theory?

cartoon via XKCD.com

text via Behaviouralfinance.net

Prospect theory has probably done more to bring psychology into the heart of economic analysis than any other approach. Many economists still reach for the expected utility theory paradigm when dealing with problems, however, prospect theory has gained much ground in recent years, and now certainly occupies second place on the research agenda for even some mainstream economists. Unlike much psychology, prospect theory has a solid mathematical basis — making it comfortable for economists to play with. However, unlike expected utility theory which concerns itself with how decisions under uncertainty should be made (a prescriptive approach), prospect theory concerns itself with how decisions are actually made (a descriptive approach).

Prospect theory was created by two psychologists, Kahneman and Tversky, who wanted to build a parsimonious theory to fit a number of violations of classical rationality that they (and others) had uncovered in empirical work. Prospect theory bears more than a passing resemblance to expected utility theory.” Montier (2002) p 20 READ MORE

text via Wikipedia

Some behaviors observed in economics, like the disposition effect (PDF) or the reversing of risk aversion/risk seeking in case of gains or losses (termed the reflection effect), can also be explained referring to the prospect theory.

An important implication of prospect theory is, that the way economic agents subjectively frame an outcome or transaction in their mind, affects the utility they expect or receive. This aspect has been widely used in behavioral economics and mental accounting. Framing and prospect theory has been applied to a diverse range of situations which appear inconsistent with standard economic rationality; the equity premium puzzle, the status quo bias, various gambling and betting puzzles, intertemporal consumption and the endowment effect.

Another possible implication for economics is that utility might be reference based, in contrast with additive utility functions underlying much of neo-classical economics. This means people consider not only the value they receive, but also the value received by others. This hypothesis is consistent with psychological research into happiness, which finds subjective measures of wellbeing are relatively stable over time, even in the face of large increases in the standard of living (Easterlin, 1974; Frank, 1997). READ MORE

RELATED WRITINGS (by Raphie Frank)
Synchronicities of the Happily Converging Road
The Mathematics of Opportunity
Introducing “Trickle Up Economics” (aka “The One Song”)


June 12, 2006 Posted by | Business, Economics | 1 Comment

What is The Gift Economy?

from Blogs.Salon.com

The Idea: The Gift Economy offers us a means to learn, to understand, to take charge, and to change our world. It is a natural economy, steeped in millions of years of pre-civilization human culture and the culture of all life on Earth. If enough of us embraced it, the modern ‘market’ economy, built on the faulty and inhuman foundations of inequality, scarcity, false quantification of value, and acquisition, could not survive. more

related writings:
:: What is Business Artivism?
:: Steal This Business Concept!
:: The Evolving Principles of “Boojummy”
:: What the hell is “boojummy”?

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Business, Economics, Politics | Leave a comment

What is a Social Entrepreneur?

from… PBS: What is a Social Entrepreneur?

A social entrepreneur identifies and solves social problems on a large scale. Just as business entrepreneurs create and transform whole industries, social entrepreneurs act as the change agents for society, seizing opportunities others miss in order to improve systems, invent and disseminate new approaches and advance sustainable solutions that create social value.

Unlike traditional business entrepreneurs, social entrepreneurs primarily seek to generate “social value” rather than profits. And unlike the majority of non-profit organizations, their work is targeted not only towards immediate, small-scale effects, but sweeping, long-term change. more

Business Artivism, as opposed to Social Entrepreneurialship, seeks to merge social value AND profits by tapping into heretofore underactualized artistic talent while also enabling those who create the work to profit from it. Read more.

related writings:
:: What is Business Artivism?
:: Steal This Business Concept!
:: The Evolving Principles of “Boojummy”
:: What the hell is “boojummy”?

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Business, Economics, Politics | 1 Comment

Fear Survey

try don’t hate me…” by Lida Martinez


Former Vassar schoolmate, talented artist, and the man who took over the reins from this author as Vassar College Ultimate Frisbee captain, Curtiss Calleo, sent along this Survey on Fear back in March…

When you were a child, what do you remember being most afraid of? How did you overcome your fear? Did you ever overcome it?
Stage fright. I overcame it, first by asserting my voice in college as an outspoken member of a couple club-level sports teams (Ultimate Frisbee and Ski) I became captain of, and then later on by forcing myself to act while living in Prague during the early 90’s. Not a very good actor, but I did manage to overcome that fear to a degree. Still, I am one of those odd types who craves to have one’s voice heard, but prefers to operate behind the scenes. Recently, forced by the fact that no one else is doing it, I am making my voice heard within the blogoshpere in a more overt front and center manner.

What are your biggest fears now? Tell us how they manifest themselves…
My own country’s blindness to it’s own flaws that threaten to destroy us and the world. Manifestation? Fight! I am writing my ass off and trying to create a bottom up sideways, grass roots internet-enabled capitalistic alternative that values “Democracy of Touch” on a par with “Democracy of Pocket”. Individual agency is where it all begins. Nothing changes because we don’t believe it can and do nothing. Self fulfilling prophecy.

Are you afraid of terrorism? Tell us when and where you are afraid, how, etc…
Yes. I live in NYC, ground zero for dirty bombs, biological attacks or worse. The current Administration has made me feel less safe and I want them the heck on outta here. I would also think two or three or four times before taking a trip to the Middle East these days.

Please write a brief reaction to these quotes:

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”
No, WE have many things to fear. Illegal detention, wiretapping, global warming, Jungian shadow projection of our worst flaws upon the other that allows us to always blame the other guy…

I, on the other hand? I only have fear to fear. And that’s the problem. A whole lot of I’s relying on WE to do the something’s they never do themselves and then wonder why nothing changes.

“There would be no one to frighten you if you refused to be afraid.”
There’d be many things to frighten you, you just wouldn’t be afraid, which might be kinda dumb. You might end up dead.

We NEED to be afraid sometimes if only to protect ourselves or the ones we love. When was the last time, for instance, that you, as a white guy, Curtiss, walked through East New York late at night by yourself? Hung out cattishly upon a hot stove? Walked past that guy with the gun pointed at you?

But to be afraid of bogeyman’s of our own making? Ones that we actually create by giving encouragement to those who would have us fear them? That’s a different story altogether.

“Anyone who trades liberty for security deserves neither liberty nor security”
Yes and No. That’s a broad statement. Suffice it to say that, as per the question above, sometimes it’s okay to trade the liberty to hang out in a burning building for the security of getting yo a$$ outta there. But again, as per the above question, to trade liberty and security for hegemonistically “framed” threats to our well-being cynically propagated by our own leaders to suppress dissent, yet ungrounded by any reasonable measure of emotional, spiritual or bodily rational risk/reward analysis? You tell me? It’s as silly as all those folks who won’t fly only to hop into a car to pick up a loaf of bread 2 blocks away.

You must trust and believe in people or life becomes impossible.”
Hmmm. I see a lot of alive people out there without either trust or belief. Seems to me that statement needs to be addressed on a case by case basis. That said, I believe that belief in people and life is the only route to a better world than we currently occupy and is the difference between man, animal and inanimate.

The ancients anthorpomorphized the universe and ascribed intention and will to it in order to empower themselves. Why? Because that is the route to the possibility of a better world in a universe of “good” and “bad” alike indifferent on a collective level to the indvidual spirit. Speaking only for myself, I prefer death to lack of trust and belief and believe myself not alone. Choose trust and belief over cynicim and despair and you have already changed the world if only because you have changed yourself. As far as that goes, it’s not that “life becomes impossible” without trust and belief but that a better life becomes impossible.

View Venezuelan Lida Martinez’ portraits and more on Flickr.

June 12, 2006 Posted by | Philosophy, Politics | Leave a comment


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