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Common Purposes

What are the Common Purposes? I've dwelt on that question since first reading my alma mater's founding principle "for the purposes of instructing persons, who may choose to apply themselves, in the application of science to the common purposes of life". The question, more than any answer I may ever offer, has guided me through many personal and professional endeavors. And, if I have learned anything it is that I have derived my greatest joy when I, as part of a team, have made a lasting difference to improve the lives of others. Should the thoughts I share here and the ensuing discussion lead others to ask the same question, to seek their own answers and to experience the same joy as I, then I shall consider this effort of value.

Image: "The New Shoes" by Jane Bucci. This work is based on the touching photo snapped by Gerald Waller in 1946, in Austria. The little boy, who lived in an orphanage, had just been given new shoes by the American Red Cross.

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6 comments

Industries Serving Global Needs

Posted August 09, 2013 3:27 PM by MillMatt

A chicken is interested in the person who wants bacon and eggs for breakfast but the pig is committed. It's a light quip (for all but the pig!) but it makes a relevant statement about what underpins our actions and how often we can overlook the significance of the events we can trigger.

My intent is to start looking at the industries that exist because of the needs we have and the wants (or desires) that we are able to fulfill. In other words, we don't drive cars because they exist but cars exist because we need transportation and we, collectively, have found a way to harness the power in petroleum for a mechanical system that affords a more economical means to satisfy our needs. I'm being very brief here and know that I could comment on horses, wagons, watercraft and more but I'll let it suffice that you, dear readers, will allow me to build upon this premise, from the perspective I have chosen, without getting into the weeds (for now…).

What is that we need? What desires do we have the luxury of affording? We need food, shelter and clothing? And, Maslow tells us that we have a hierarchy of needs that veer into social psychological and spiritual realms. Way down the road, I may venture into some of Maslow's more subjective ideas but for now let's focus on objective matters where this blogs audience generally focuses its attention.

And, on we go to begin our discussion.....

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Power-User

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#1

Re: Industries Serving Global Needs

08/09/2013 11:46 PM

We? Us?...... I do not accept as a major part of 'this premise' that I (an individual) am, of some necessity, part of your 'we' or 'us'. I would prefer that politicians, scientists and bloggers leave those words to novelists and people with tape worms. I detest the idea that someone says I 'need' a whatever, that necessity, no matter how dire, is my decision. I suggest the writer couch the idea in his/her own first person. This is a very difficult rule by which I live. I fail often enough but continue to strive to take responsibility directly and not pass it out to the we, us, them, they or others. You have a commendable idea and direction. I will tune in later, thanks.

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: Industries Serving Global Needs

08/12/2013 5:00 AM

That so did not deserve to be off-topic. The undefined first, second and third person plural is an anathema and a constant source of irritation.

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#2

Re: Industries Serving Global Needs

08/10/2013 10:10 AM

We "need" food, water, oxygen, and shelter from the elements. Everything else is a "want".

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Power-User

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#3
In reply to #2

Re: Industries Serving Global Needs

08/10/2013 1:57 PM

You "want" to live? (a choice), you will "need" food, water, oxygen. I "want" to live, which dictates continuation of the choice of needing to eat, breath, etc. The "we" that you use,therefore, does not apply so aptly as you demand.

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Guru

Join Date: Jun 2010
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#5

Re: Industries Serving Global Needs

09/02/2013 5:19 PM

Interesting choice of shape for the graph...most people would choose a pie.

The pyramid somewhat insinuates the relatively fewer numbers of people able to achieve total satisfaction in life.

One would of course have to calculate the real world percentages in numbers of people with the different levels of achievement towards worldy nirvana based on both the areas shown in the two dimensional triangle as opposed to the cubic area of each layer if it were a true four sided pyramid.

Sub-grouping it by age groups would certainly scramble the lists of things a quite a bit with the very young and the very old needing similar things to survive in a contented state.

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: Industries Serving Global Needs

12/18/2013 3:07 AM

Is it a pyramid? Or is it a path to the future?

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