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* BFU Weekly Journal *
documenting creation of a
Visionaries Learning Center

Bastiat Free University offers internationally accessible and actionable student-directed learning to visionaries and entrepreneurs.
Your BFU resources are now available without cost.

Start Today
Rediscover the pleasures found in self directed learning.

BFUniv, BFU college, self-directed e-learning, Bastiat Free University

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Spring Pruning - blogging vacation

Time to sort my priorities; or as I tell my kids - I need to think about what I want to be when I grow up.

"The most practical, beautiful, workable philosophy won't work- if you won't." - Zig Ziglar

Or as I've said elsewhere:

We hear fables about the past, we develop dreams of the future, but the work needs to be done today.

I should be back blogging in a couple of weeks - poke that orange button to the right of the address to get my RSS feed and you will be one of the first to know. If you need to contact me use the contact link at the Bastiat Free University lens.

When next I write, I will hopefully have some fresh insights occasioned by prayer and contemplation.

May you find your best in life.



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Sunday, February 24, 2008

try liberty

"Away with the whims of governmental administrators, their socialized projects, their centralization, their tariffs, their government schools, their state religions, their free credit, their bank monopolies, their regulations, their restrictions, their equalization by taxation, and their pious moralizations!

And now that the legislators and do-gooders have so futilely inflicted so many systems upon society, may they finally end where they should have begun: May they reject all systems, and try liberty; for liberty is an acknowledgment of faith in God and His works."

Claude Frederic Bastiat


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Thursday, February 21, 2008

How To Ask For Money For A Good Cause

There are three links to follow here to paint the picture and show the choices available when seeking donations.

Of course you can also click on the title of this journal entry and find a general
how to ask for money page. Perhaps the following links are better served by the label who to ask for money for a good cause.

The first quite powerful argument is from a post in the Bastiat Society Blog (no affiliation with BFU). It shows a college seeking money without regard to the source.

I'm writing in response to Tom Martin's article about the University of Kentucky seeking state funding for a new high-tech home for the Gatton College of Business and Economics. I hope that the irony of this request is not lost on readers of Business Lexington.
more -->

The second link shows a state college, not normally socially responsible in a Bastiatian view, that has been emphasizing private support by those it has trained and those that support its mission.

Only three days into 2008, Cal State Fullerton starts the new year with a record-setting $30 million dollar gift to the College of Business and Economics. The gift from a grateful alumnus is the largest ever for Cal State Fullerton and ...

The third link is to good old BFU itself and our fundraising page; - so far a
very ineffective fundraiser. However, it does state our position on valuing the source of our finances - and our refusal to seek grants and state aid by complying with bureaucratic rules.

Bastiat Free University does not receive any of the tax payer funding and public grants that are available to other universities and colleges. Further, we do not wish to receive such school funding due to the strings that are invariably attached and the coercive manner in which such funds are normally raised. Rather,

I would be remiss not to mention a one page, general
college donations lens I have created called: How to use college donations to shape our future.

Read the links, consider the differences in approach, then expand your own conclusions to encompass all fundraising, and re-think your position again. If you consider all fundraising immoral, all donations to a cause indefensible, please remember benefits within free exchange do not have to be monetary.

Of all these links the one to the Bastiat Society Blog's post
A Business Education will reveal the most elegant arguments, and is the one you should not skip.


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Sunday, February 17, 2008

But what more oft

But what more oft, in nations grown corrupt, and by their vices brought to servitude, than to love bondage more than liberty - bondage with ease than strenuous liberty - and to despise, or envy, or suspect, whom God hath of his special favor raised as their deliverer? - John Milton


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Thursday, February 14, 2008

How To Create A College Degree Substitute

Do you want knowledge beyond a college degree but don't want to go to college?

"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete" - Buckminster Fuller

You do not need a college to learn, not even Bastiat Free University. This will not be an easy substitute, in fact you will work harder and learn more than I achieved at a state university.

It can be done faster, and it certainly will help you outperform most college graduates, in almost any discipline. But just because you will be better equipped and a more adaptable performer does not mean your substitute college degree will be accepted in mindless bureaucracies.

Happily mindless bureaucracies are dying along with the industrial age. What you are considering is preparing yourself for a more discerning individualistic age. We call those so equipped
The Netcohort.

Two Steps To Your College Degree Substitute
  • First you need to start your own blog. This will be the public record of your achievements and it needn't cost money, just time.
  • Second you need to decide on your course of study and find an exceptional mentor(s). You can go it alone - but a mentor can help keep you on track and add their valuable experience to your learning.
What Are The Benefits of A Substitute College Degree?

Self confidence, freedom, knowledge, adaptability, life long learning, and a host of other attributes you will acquire. What you sacrifice is a piece of paper that says so many years ago you complied with a bunch of silly regulations and you are now qualified to follow stupid orders without question.

What you gain is a website / blog that demonstrates your growth, within your field, with improved communications skills and a dazzling breadth of knowledge.

You can now start or grow your own company, work with compatriots at changing the world, or dedicate yourself to further learning.

Once you start your college degree substitute regime let us know. A bunch of folks who are dedicated to personal growth may get us to start re-issuing Bastiat Free University learning certificates or even unaccredited degrees.

After all, it will be easy to review your efforts; recognition of completion and a final assignment should be enough. Books, materials, mentor rewards, and review of your blog and learning documentation by BFU could cost less than a year in a traditional education institution, perhaps much less (use library books, etc.).

As indicated in a prior post, put a link to your student blog in your resume and your cover letter. This should impress everyone except the educational establishment, corporate bureaucrats, and state licensing bureaus. They want proof that you will easily comply with their wishes.

Or -- you can create a college degree substitute on your own.


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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Dr. Margarita Pereyda

Dr. Pereyda has been the SOS Medical Director since July, 2004.

Many BFU students are in circumstances similar to those Dr. Pereyda experienced as she was growing up.

Dr. Pereyda is originally from Arizona, where she lived in poverty in a community that did not encourage, nor expect, students to succeed.
However, a few special teachers encouraged Pereyda. The tenth of eleven children she became the only one of her siblings to graduate from high school.

Throughout college and graduate school, she had to work, take out loans, and apply for scholarships since her parents were unable to help her earn her M.D. A graduate of the University of Michigan School of Medicine with her MD, Dr. Pereyda then matriculated as a specialist in internal medicine at Stanford University. As an MD she oversaw residents working in area free clinics. She has recognized medical training that matches her determination.

For my objectivist friends this is a good place to make a point. You value the power of the individual and their ability to make selfish choices. Your reasoning is if we do what is best for ourselves and those we love, others will also benefit as we create and add value. Let me task you with considering a basic of your value system; in a free market an exchange will not occur unless both parties see a benefit for themselves.

Just as the founders of the United States changed John Locke's "life, liberty, and the pursuit of property" when they inserted it into the Declaration of Independence to an equally Lockeian "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," it would be well to recognize that not all benefits derived from a fair trade involve property. A great benefit within volunteering and charity is the sweet taste of giving. To those that have experienced it in large doses, non-coerced giving can be a tremendous pleasure that brings enormous satisfaction. And it helps others.

A bright and intelligent woman, Dr. Pereyda has become an excellent doctor. Working in The OC, an area largely given over to the pursuit of wealth, she has instead dedicated her considerable skills to helping others. The recipients of her kind ministries are not only society's hidden down-and-outers, but up-and-outers that slipped through the cracks after medical problems and layoffs. Struggling Internet entrepreneurs and former Fortune 500 executives that have had reversals sit next to injured migrant workers in the Share Our Selves waiting room.

Here are the main points:

  • As Dr. Pereyda has demonstrated -- with determination you can succeed; hard work, determination, and a set goal. To these she has chosen to add compassion.

  • Not all find their happiness in acquisition - perhaps service, support, and volunteering may help you achieve your own brand of personally fulfilling success. You need not limit pleasures to be derived from extensive charity.

  • As an individual you can make a difference. No matter where or when you start, it is your subsequent direction of travel that will be most important.

Dr. Margarita Pereyda is an inspiration on many levels; as an overcomer, a scholar, and a dedicated giver. What do you want to do with your life?


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Friday, February 01, 2008

Emotional Investment - Emotional Yield

I just talked to a fellow that had turned down an appointment to West Point. He decided to get married instead.

It reminded me in reverse of a fellow I knew that was always concerned about how his name was pronounced, he would interrupt classes and conversations if he heard Steve instead of Stephen. He would get red faced and adamant about someone knowing his name was NOT the short version.

The common thread between these two seemingly unrelated stories is the emotional attachment of the parties.

In the first, the man considered all the benefits of West Point; free high quality education, secure future, an "old boys club" that can't be beat, and to repeat - security!!! He traded all of that for financing his own education and an uncertain future. He also retained his freedom and got to marry the girl he loves.

In the second, Steve was defensive and always uncomfortable waiting for the need too defend a name someone else had given him. He had no gain from his defense, just a reputation as a prickly sort of person best avoided.

In the first we have an active decision to go the route with the most personal promise. As in all speculations, he could be wrong; but he made what to him was the best decision based on current information.

In the second we have a refusal to consider the costs of change, and a huge emotional investment in a single variable that returned a negative emotional yield. The thought would have been rejected immediately that he could easily change his name to any that suited him; and start concentrating on more important ideas. As John, or Bob, or David he would have little investment and be able to seek a positive return for his other emotional commitments.

What does this reveal for us about ourselves?

We need to look closely at what drives us emotionally, and at the returns we derive from our commitments. If a value or a relationship yields happiness and contentment perhaps it merits an increase as a percentage of our emotional portfolio.

If those factors that effect us emotionally have low or negative yield, be they jobs, national affiliation, attitudes, or commitments -- they need to be reviewed. We may find that changes are in order. Perhaps we have already made the best choices in major areas - but might it not be wise to develop the habit of questioning new values as they arise, and periodically the old values to see if they still hold?

It is not easy to question those things we are taught to accept without question. But it can create emotional stability and emotional wealth to make our emotional investments where they will procure the greatest positive emotional yield.


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