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John Beck - Saturday, March 11, 2017

Why do democracies get so little done?

I was writing a response to Mark Esposito, Ph.D.’s (https://www.linkedin.com/in/markesposito/) post about Michael Porter’s article on Politics (http://fortune.com/2017/03/09/why-politics-is-failing-america/), when I realized I’d gone 2000 characters over the limit. So here’s my comment (sorry I got long-winded)… I've always loved Porter's stuff on business (it is still state of the art when applied correctly); but after thirty years of watching .. More...

John Beck - Monday, March 06, 2017

Con Man Don: what behavioral science teaches us

For many Americans, it is next to impossible to make sense of Donald Trump’s success. Behavioral scientists have less trouble finding the right range of terms; from narcissist to Machiavellianist to psychopath to autocrat—all, in the candidate’s own lexicon, “the best words” to describe elements of something most of us know as a con man. In all elections, the techniques of the con man are present—every successful politician uses pers .. More...

John Beck - Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Attention President

Donald Trump is the first president of the Attention Economy. John Kennedy was arguably the first Knowledge Economy president, lambasting the ruling military-industrial complex during his campaign. Sometime during the last decade of the 19th century, the White House baton had passed from the Agricultural Economy to the Industrial. But for most of our lifetimes, Knowledge Economy champions have been in the White House. Consider the number of times over the last forty years that presidential  .. More...

John Beck - Thursday, November 17, 2016

Our Scapegoating Nation?

Donald Trump made a scapegoat of me and many of my friends. This is not the first time in American or world history that an electoral strategy of scapegoating minority groups worked. As a gay man, I’ve watched this method (sometimes used against me) roll-out in US elections for most of my life—making or promising to make some people illegitimate to garner the vote of a larger population. Nevertheless, I am not joining the riots … yet. I strongly believ .. More...

John Beck - Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Could a video game teach a university or executive course as well as a great instructor? Yes!

You may think you’ve heard and read a lot about computer games in classrooms and in corporate education. And you probably have. There are some excellent games out there. But almost all that have “proven” learning effectiveness are designed for younger students (under about 10 years old) teaching basics like math and grammar. For older students, there are simulations which are good for training specific skills and even a nice diversion as part of instructor-mediated  .. More...

John Beck - Sunday, October 18, 2015

Will teachers go the way of professions like scribes and milkmen?

The first rigorous evidence that videogames may supersede even the best professors. My article in Quartz out today. http://bit.ly/1W0BJt4 .. More...

John Beck - Monday, March 02, 2015

Really nice review of Good vs Good

Thanks, Andrea! Weekend Reads Good Vs Good-2 (http://avosani.com/weekend-reads-good-vs-good-2/) .. More...

John Beck - Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Intern Who Birthed The KAL007 Conspiracy Theories

Daily Beast writer, Tim Mak, picks up on youthful mistakes and does some serious investigation into the havoc I caused. Oh well… .. More...

John Beck - Thursday, July 17, 2014

Count to ten when a plane goes down…

Just a little under 31 years ago, I played a key role in a conspiracy theory that grew up around a passenger plane downed by a Russian missile. Trust me, I did not mean to be involved. On September 1, 1983, Korean Airlines flight 007, a Boeing 747 with 269 passengers, was shot down over the Sea of Japan. At about 6am that morning, I arrived at my summer job at the American Embassy in Tokyo where my task was usually to start up the computer which had been turned off over night. But on .. More...

John Beck - Friday, July 11, 2014

Astonished by happiness

Today a long-lost friend from high school “friended” me on Facebook. In response to her question about how I am doing, I wrote: “My life is not what I might have predicted it would be in high school. But I am astonished by how rich and happy it has become.” It was only after I wrote it that I began to consider what those words meant. I admit, I sometimes write sentences which sound good as a string of words, but on reflection are not really appropriate representa .. More...