Fandango’s Provocative Question #97

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

Here’s this week’s provocative question:

Is it more important to you to be able to help yourself, help your family, help your friends, help your society, or help the world?

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I think whatever we may feel emotionally, the first priority is to help oneself. When I will be able to look after myself, I can then extend a helping hand to my family and friends. The term of helping here would mean helping physically, emotionally, and financially.

As far as helping society and the world around us, that takes priority over ourselves and our family. The reason is that we don’t have to extend help for physical or emotional support to the society but rather help in form of doing things consciously to improve the living condition of all humanity.

We can be environmentally careful, avoid discrimination, and be law-abiding without putting a strain on ourselves. And this I feel is a duty for all human beings, all over the world.

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Fandango’s Provocative Question #96- Deep or wide?

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

The provocative question today is simply this…

Do you think it’s better to have a broad knowledge base or a deep knowledge base?

A person who has deep in-depth knowledge is a specialist. Beingspecialistaboutfield.

anyoneknowledgeaboutvarietysubjectsgeneralistconverseauthoritycertainextent.

We meet both types of people and we do need them both. A specialist is needed when the task at hand needs someone with deep knowledge and expertise. While a generalist is needed when there is a requirement to tackle more than one set of tasks.

personal preferenceI.

Knowledge should to be valued regardless of its breadth or depth. Both aspects are necessary for our survival.

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Fandango Provocative Question # 95

Fandango is the host of Fandango Provocative Question

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

There are estimates that there is nearly 25 billion connected Internet of Things (IoT) devices around the globe today.

Your smart watch, your smartphone, your ISP, your laptop, your car, your TV, your bank, your insurance companies, your home’s thermostat, maybe your refrigerator, your washer/dryer, and even your doctor, can all be collecting, storing, and sharing your personal information. So can Alexa, Siri, Apple Home, Google Hub, and your Nest or Ring doorbells.But what does this mean for your personal privacy when all of this data about who you are and almost everything you do is out there being stored and maybe being shared in cyberspace? Just how secure is all of this data about each and everyone of us that is routinely being collected and analyzed?

This leads to today’s provocative question, which is essentially about the trade-offs between privacy and security. There are those who argue that you can have security without privacy, but you can’t have privacy without security.

So the question is…

Which is more important to you, privacy or security? How much privacy are you willing to give up for security?

My response;

While I agree that privacy and security are both very important, especially nowadays, we are unfortunately living in a world where there has to be a compromise.

If we want the convenience of online shopping, we have to surrender a little of our privacy by giving our credit card information on the website. The important thing here is to be careful where and to whom we are giving this info. There are trusted websites where we feel secure and are less reluctant to divulge our financial information.

Then there is social media, where people not only share their personal information but opinions too. This can and has become a big risk. The information collected from Facebook has been used to influence people in the 2016 US elections.

I do online shopping and have used my cards on a few trusted sites. But on Facebook or for that matter, WordPress, I have not given my true name or details.

It is not much but I do try to protect my privacy and keep my information secure.

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Fandango Provocative Question # 94

Fandango is the host of Fandango Provocative Question

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

Those of us who live in the United States — and probably many others around the globe — are on pins and needles about the outcome of yesterday’s presidential election. I know that I have been unable to focus on much else, as I truly believe the future of America and the free world is at stake.

I wrote this post on Monday afternoon and have scheduled it to be published at 3 a.m. Pacific time on Wednesday morning. Thus, I don’t know what actually happened on Tuesday. By the time this post is published, the voting places will have been closed for hours, although it’s quite possible that we still won’t definitively know who won.

That said, we may have some inkling about the outcome. So my provocative question this week is simply this.

What do you think about what happened in the United States yesterday? 

Are you shocked or surprised at the outcome, if it’s evenknown as you read this?

Or are the results of the election what you expected?

And finally, are you happy or unhappy?

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My interest in the US election was more than most people in Pakistan, as I lived in Seattle for five years and saw what the circumstances were before the 2016 elections and how they changed afterward.

What happened on 3rd November;

People voted in record numbers and the vote is pretty much split 50/50.

Am I surprised at the results;

I was shocked that so many people support this idiot in the White House, despite the damage done to America by him. It has exposed the face of the American people that wasn’t visible before. Racism existed before but now it has come into the open. The feelings which were muted before are now vocal, loud, and clear.

Are the results as expected;

The polls led us to believe that Biden was way ahead of Trump but the results are very close and there is still no clear winner. We can now surmise that Biden will win the election, but the suspense is huge. In some places, the percentage of differences is less than 1%.

Am I happy with the results;

I am very disappointed! The zeal shown by voters was commendable but the split is glaringly obvious. Half the people in America have shown that the policies Trump has been selling them are acceptable to them. The genie of division and hate has come out of the bottle and is not willing to go back in. Even if Democrats win the presidency, the road ahead is very difficult.

I have included the following prompts;

YDWP;

Zeal

3TC;

Animals, Mute, Selling

FOWC;

Surmise

RDP;

Suspense

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Fandango’s Provocative Question #92

Fandango

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

Blogging anonymously This week’s provocative question is about anonymity and blogging.

So my provocative question this week is simply this:

Do you blog anonymously? Why or why not?

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I do blog under a pseudonym. It is not my real name and the reason to do so was that I wanted to keep my identity private. Blogging anonymously gives me that blanket of security where I don’t have to worry about people harassing me for my views.

All those who read my posts can hold me accountable for my words. I answer criticism about my writing, but my opinion and views are mine and I have a right to hold them.

Another good thing about anonymity is that it is liberating. You don’t worry that your family or friends will read it and will judge you. You can step out of the conventional boundaries and try new things. It took me a while to write about things that weren’t in my comfort zone, but I was able to do so because I was blogging anonymously.

Anonymity also protects the privacy of my family and that is very important to me.

I know a lot of bloggers on the WordPress community who are using their own name and sharing some family details here too. That is perfectly okay too as long as they are comfortable doing it. We all have to find our comfort level in the blogosphere and go accordingly.

The end shot; Do your own thing but stay safe!

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Fandango’s Provocative Question #91

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

This week’s provocative question is about honesty.How many times have you heard the expression “honesty is the best policy”? We are taught from a very young age to not lie. We are reminded that the key to trust is honesty. And yet, most people lie, whether it’s a “little white lie,” a lie to avoid hurting another person’s feelings, or a lie to avoid getting into trouble.

But if honesty is, indeed, the best policy and is critical to trust, why is it, then, that people lie? Is lying a “normal” part of the human condition?

To that end, this week’s provocative question is this:

Is it even possible to live a normal life and to not ever tell a lie?

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I suppose it is possible to live a completely honest life but it is quite likely that that person will have a lot of enemies and few friends.

There is a difference between telling a little white lie to save either yourself or a loved one some embarrassment or hurt and telling blatant lies to advance your cause.

When people lie to benefit from it either monetarily or politically, it is a very serious issue. And these people can never be called normal people.

Whereas if a person tells little fibs or white lies, without a thought of gain, it is often excusable. But having said that, some people are mostly honest in giving their opinions without wrapping them in cotton wool and they are the most honest kind of people around. People who know these “honest Abes” will seldom ask the rhetorical questions which can have only one answer.

My conclusion is that either one can be a normal, polite fibber with friends or a totally honest person who has very few staunch friends who value honesty above politeness. And we aren’t talking about pathological liars!

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Fandango Provocative Question # 90- Awards

Fandango is the host of Fandango Provocative Question

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

This week’s provocative question is about blog awards.

How do you feel about blog awards? Why do you feel that way?

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When I started to blog and was nominated for my very first award, I was really very happy about it. The whole drill of questions and answers and nominations seemed daunting to a new blogger like me but it also meant that my blog and writing were being noticed and I felt encouraged.

Then I was nominated for more awards, of different nature and names. Gradually the excitement wore a bit thin and the thought of spending so much time composing an award post started to become a burden.

But all this is a part of encouraging new bloggers. I love the idea that a person who has recently started their blog and have less than an hundred followers, should be nominated for an award and they, then would share some details about themselves so that other bloggers get to know them better.

I still get a few award nominations and try to respond as quickly as I can. Answering the questions is not difficult but nominations are. There are a lot of bloggers who have an award free blog, some don’t do award post because it takes up a lot of time. Others just don’t believe that any award given by another blogger carries any importance. So if I nominate 10 or 11 bloggers, maybe 2 or 3 would respond.

If there was a unified system of awards, with fewer nominations required, I think people would be more open to them. I know that I would be!

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Fandango’s Provocative Question #89

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

This week’s provocative question is about karma.KarmaKarma refers to both the actions and the consequences of the actions.

Some religions (e.g., Hinduism and Buddhism) define karma as the sum of a person’s actions in this (and previous) states of existence, and that such actions will be a key factor in deciding their fate in their current and future existences.

In Christianity, karma is more of a “what goes around comes around” concept. The Bible says, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” This is more of a “you get what you give” concept. Or as the Beatles sang, “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”

So my provocative question is this…

Do you believe in karma (or a similar “reap what you sow” notion)? Why or why not?

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Even if I didn’t believe in Karma initially, living for almost 59 years, I firmly believe in it now.

There are many incidents which I have witnessed which proved the saying, ” What goes around comes around ”

People are either rewarded for their good deeds by getting something good in the course of their lives or are punished by an equal degree of misfortune that they inflicted knowingly on others. Karma has its own rules and timeline. There is no instant retribution, usually. It happens in its own good time but it does happen.

In my life, I’ve seen people given a dose of their own medicine often.

Some argue that a person who has harmed thousands of people can only be punished once with their life and that is not adequate retribution. To my way of thinking, the concept of hell and heaven into play here. I hope that a person like Hitler suffers in the fires of hell for an eternity for all the death and misery he has dealt out to million of people.

Similarly, a person who has done well all their life and thousands benefited from their good deeds should be rewarded by an eternity in the blissful existence of heaven.

As far as this world is concerned, all that we do comes in equal proportion, back to us. So it’s prudent to be mindful of this reality.

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Fandango’s Provocative Question #88 – Control?

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

This week’s provocative question is about control — or lack thereof.

To what degree have you been able to control the course that your life has taken? Or is being in control of your life just an illusion?

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I think that there are two factors controlling our lives.

Our own actions and decisions;

Most of what happens to us is a result of what we do and how we do it.

• Like step off the pavement in oncoming traffic and you’ll likely be hit with a moving vehicle.

• Work hard in school and you get good grades.

• Eat too much junk food and you will end up overweight or with health problems.

• Make stupid choices about voting and end up with a president like Trump.

And so on and so forth……

External circumstances;

It’s the set of circumstances that bears a direct impact upon our lives.

• Where we are born.

• The set of genetic material we have inherited.

• The opportunities we are given in life.

• Those unique factors which are a result of the why, the when, and the how, all coming together to make our particular lives different from anyone else’s.

Both of these factors determine what happens and also what happens next.

So in short, some things are in our hands and others aren’t. There is no way we can control everything aspect of our lives. So we do what we can and hope for the best.

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Fandango Provocative Question # 86

Fandango is the host of Fandango Provocative Question

FPQWelcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question.

This past Sunday, in my Who, Won the Week post, I referenced a recent survey that pointed out that two-thirds of those who participated in the survey said the pandemic quarantine has made them a better person.Given that so many people have been bellyaching about having to be subjected to these stay-at-home orders due to the coronavirus and how inconvenient, burdensome, and aggravating it’s been for them over the past six months (and possibly for a while into the future), I was surprised at this survey result.

So, I am wondering how you, my fellow bloggers, would respond to such a question. So here goes.

Having been subjected to stay at home restrictions (to one degree or another) over the past six months, would you say that the quarantine has made you a better person? If so, in what ways? If not, why not?

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The short answer is;

I lost weight and got my type II diabetes under control.

The longer version goes like this;

I was in Seattle, the heart of pandemic when the lockdown was enforced. I am in that age and health bracket where getting Covid might mean serious problems. So my daughter asked me to not go anywhere, even with proper precautions! As I had a lot of time on my hands, I started to walk more.

I lost around 20 pounds and my daily level of blood glucose became better.

So for myself, it became a blessing. I am not the sort of person who needs to go out daily or meet with friends on a regular basis. So being in lockdown and told to stay away from close contact did not affect me in an adverse manner. I saved money as I didn’t go anywhere to shop. I also realized that I spend money needlessly on frivolous things.

I also observed that due to lockdown, there was way less pollution in the air and the sky looked bluer!

Did it make me a better person?

It made me healthier and more aware of the environment. I also have come to the conclusion that we can subsist on way fewer things than what we think.

There are blessings hidden in every difficulty!

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