Thinking Citizen Blog — What is Your “Orion of the Ideal World”? How Do You Explain it to a 16 Year Old? How Do We Get There?

Thinking Citizen Blog — Saturday is Justice, Freedom, Law, and Values Day

Today’s Topic: What is Your “Orion of the Ideal World”? How Do You Explain it to a 16 Year Old? How Do We Get There?

Think of your “Orion of the Ideal World” as the macro ethical equivalent of an “Orion of the Ideal You” which you can think of as a Seven Word Ethical Vision of you. On Monday (math day) I will go into the history of the idea of the “Six Word Autobiography.” For now, I’m skipping the introduction and the first chapter and going straight into Chapter Two which applies to the polity (collective political life) the basic idea explained in the Introduction and Chapter One of assigning your one each of your most cherished values to each of the seven stars of the hour-glass shaped cluster at the heart of the Orion constellation. The order of the values should be prioritized thus: central star of central belt #1 (Alnilam) , to its right #2 (Mintaka), to its left #3 (Alnitak), on the upper right #4 (Betelgeuse), upper left #5 (Bellatrix), lower right #6 (Saiph), lower left #7 (Rigel). The order is important. Life is all about putting first things first. To do that the most important thing is what comes first. So what is it: freedom, justice, peace, prosperity, truth? Or something else? Please share your civic Orion, the Orion of Your Ideal World. Please, share your dream. Is there a better thing to talk about over your next family dinner? Over your next dinner with friends and roommates in the Adams House Dining Hall? Experts — please chime in. Correct, elaborate, elucidate.

THE CENTRAL BELT — Alnilam is Truth, Alnitak is Justice, Mintaka is Freedom

1. No truth, no real justice, no real freedom.

2. Pravda means truth in Russian and was the chief propaganda organ of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (originally Russia) from 1912 to 1996.

3. There are lots of falsehoods masquerading as truths.

NB: The first civic duty of schools is to give students the analytical tools, quantitative and non-quantitative, economic, legal, historical, psychological., rhetorical to see through the lies of charlatans of the left, right, and center. They are failing in this duty miserably. Anyone want to join me to fix this? We can start at Harvard. With the general education program which, honestly, is a fraud on a part with…I’ll stop there.

THE UPPER TWO STARS: Peace is Betelgeuse, Prosperity is Bellatrix

1. No peace, no freedom, no justice, no truth.

2. Scarcity brings war.

3. Think the Donner party, that is the cannibalism to which a group of snow-bound pioneers in the Sierra Nevada mountains in the winter of 1846–7 resorted, “Of the 87 members of the party, 48 survived the ordeal.”

NB: To quote the incomparable Bertolt Brecht: “First comes food, then comes morality.” (Erst kommt dass Fressen, dann kommt die Moral).

THE LOWER TWO STARS: Rights (Saiph), Duties (Rigel)

1. Rights: everyone wants their rights respected.

2. Duties: no one wants any duties.

3. What else is new?

NB: No rights, no duties. No duties, no rights. And here’s a question: does everyone who works have an equal right to the fruit of their own labor? Does this hold for both the most productive and the least? The rich and the poor? The able the disabled? Men and women? Black and white? An equal right to fill that empty spot in a school, a corporation, or say a university or better yet, the Supreme Court?


1. And do princples, perhaps more fundamental than precedent, apply to the process?

2. For others, check out the links below for background on Bakke and Grutter.

Regents of the University of California v. Bakke — Wikipedia

Grutter v. Bollinger — Wikipedia

For the last four years of posts organized by theme:

PDF with headlines — Google Drive

Two special attachments below:

#1 A graphic guide to justice (9 metaphors on one page).

#2 “39 Songs, Prayers, and Poems: the Keys to the Hearts of Seven Billion People” — Adams House Senior Common Room Presentation, 11/17/20


Please share the coolest thing you learned in the last week related to justice, freedom, the law or basic values. Or the coolest, most important thing you learned in your life related to justice, freedom, the law, or basic values. Or just some random justice-related fact that blew you away.

This is your chance to make some one’s day. Or to cement in your mind something that you might otherwise forget. Or to think more deeply about something dear to your heart.



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