What is the essence of strategy?

When it comes to training, continuity gets the best results.

The author of The Book of Five Rings, the great Japanese Samurai swordsman, Miyamoto Musashi, wrote, “The essence of strategy is to train day and night”.

Most of us don’t need to be trained at the level of the Samurai but in a competitive world we do need some edge. The best way to secure that ‘unfair advantage’ is daily training.

Ten Minutes A Day!
Even 10 minutes a day, every day, will put you on top. If you have a continuous training system that gives you the opportunity for daily training you have a guaranteed strategy for success.

The School of Thinking’s daily training system is a simple example of continuous training.

What Do a Billion Muslims Really Think?

Who Speaks for Islam?

Who Speaks for Islam? What a Billion Muslims Really Think

By John L. Esposito, Ph.D., and Dalia Mogahed

Based on the largest and most in-depth study of its kind, this book presents the remarkable findings of the Gallup Poll of the Muslim World, the first ever data-based analysis of the points of view of more than 90% of the global Muslim community, spanning nearly 40 countries.

John L. Esposito, one of the leading experts on the Muslim world, and Dalia Mogahed, Gallup’s executive director of Muslim studies, offer readers an evidence-based understanding of extremism, the role of women in Muslim societies, Islam, and democracy, and what more than a billion Muslims really think about the West.


Thanks for all the new friends who’ve joined me on Facebook. My very best wishes to you.

New friends are most welcome to come along and join me here.

I’m glad to be on Facebook now. I checked it out in 2008, along with Twitter and Second Life and aSW and Wikipedia, and have been exploring ways I can do something interesting.

I put School of Thinking on the www in 1995 when it became one of the first 10,000 sites and there are billions now. Now I think that there’s probably never been a better time to have some fun with Facebook. There are a number of my pet projects and interests that I’m planning to share with my friends in this exciting environment.

Peel The Orange!

One of the lessons in SOT’s Advanced Leadership Training (L-mhg1) is called PTO or Peel The Orange. For background on the thinking behind this article you can click to read this lesson here.



If it is to be believed, today’s man-bites-dog news headline shows the Prime Minister of Australia apologising to a military flight attendant for demanding that an order be carried out professionally. Apparently the RAAF crew member burst into tears at the reprimand.

I was a RAAF Reserve Officer for 5 years and the motto Per Ardua Ad Astra was always Latin for Through Adversity to the Stars. I was inspired by that motto. Stars not tears!

This may be a deeply more serious event than it appears to be on the surface. Just think! Could this event be a valid indication of the current level of competence of the Australian Defence Force? Let’s hope not. However, at a time when the US may ask Australia to send a competent military force to Afganistan there is the big question being asked in Canberra: can Australia do it?

When the Electors of Australia call upon the ADF we expect a world class response. As an Elector, I would have thought that the elected leader of Australia while on legitimate taxpayer-funded Commonwealth business and while in the care and security of one of the elite units of the ADF could reasonably expect orders to be carried out to the letter. And, our elected leader the PM, should be able to demand world class professional virtuosity of the ADF and should be able to reprimand without impunity. Peel the orange!

With ANZAC Day in our front of mind, where we celebrate the memory and reputation of the ADF, isn’t this a poignant state of affairs?

That the PM of Australia has to apologise to the defence force is not only embarrasing to the Australian electorate but may also be of deep security concern regarding the professional competence of our soldiers under their current leadership.

In the context of the current defence mission of Australia in the War in Afgahnistan there is the other big question: can Australia win?

For those interested in exploring this strategic issue here are some informed references:

– Cameron Stewart in The Australian (31/03)”Our Defenceless Force”:

”Military not ready for war as fighter jets, choppers and submarines unfit for frontline”

Defence Industry Daily: “ADF: An “Aren’t Deployable” Force?”

“Thousands more soldiers needed for Afghan war”, Maj-Gen Jim Molan, former Chief of Operations in Iraq.

Watch ‘Risky Business’ on Catalyst ABC TV

Along with TED, another great online resource for stylish and educational video clips is the website for one of my favourite TV shows.

It is Catalyst–an accessible and well-produced weekly science show on ABC. You can access many of their shows here.

… Click here for a recent program called Risky Business on behavioural economics.

The emerging science of ‘behavioural economics’ is now showing that hormones like testosterone and cortisol may be causing supposedly rational traders to make irrational decisions. Could ignoring human biology be a risky business? Jonica Newby ventured on to the trading floor.

… Click here for this video

HONDA develops robot ‘steered by human thought’

Honda Reseach Institute president Yasuhisa Arai (L) and Mitsuo Kawato, Japan’s ATR computational Neuroscience Laboratories director, stand next to a brain-machine interface, equipped with special headgear to measure slight electrical current and blood flow change occuring in the brain, at Japanese auto giant Honda’s headquarters in Tokyo.

Japan’s Honda said Tuesday it had developed a robot steered by human thought, thanks to a helmet-like device that measures a person’s brain activity and sends signals to the machine.

… Click to Physorg article …