Tags: The New York Times

Leave your high perch – and save your child’s life.

I know some couples who are household names in business and public service. They check all the boxes: virtuous without being virtue-signallers, hard-working without being owned by it, all while being powerful and household words.

Three of these couples in particular have kids who are in trouble: with substance abuse; mental disorders; or what I’ll call ‘chronic purposelessness.’

The parents are frantic, searching for the treatment or cure that will restore calm in their family and security in their kids.

One of them perches very high in a giant company. He oversees the people who oversee the people who run the company’s group benefits program. That is to say, the insurance company that manages many thousands of medical claims each year, including a rising number of mental health claims.

Read on…

Asymmetric Antisemitism

Just as Hamas hides within the general population of Gaza, so do Canada’s antisemites walk among us. And since October 7th both these groups have come out from under cover to show their lethal true colours.

I’m not talking about protesters here. Plenty of people of every belief think Israel is practising a form of apartheid against Palestinians, and that its Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wants no Arabs, none, in Israel where 1.5 million live now.

Nor am I talking about “soft” antisemites who may still say quietly to a friend: “I got Jewed out of that deal.”

No, I’m talking about people who don’t just dislike Jews, but who hate them. In fact, they want Jews wiped from the face of the earth simply because they’re Jews.

This venomous hatred is both ancient and volcanic. It is also changing fast.

Read on…

Precision Persuasion

Saying you recommend rather than like something makes people 32 per cent more likely to take your suggestion. Using the word whom in online dating profiles makes men 31% more likely to get a date. Adding more prepositions to a cover letter makes you 24% more likely to get the job. And saying is not rather than isn’t when describing a product makes people pay $3 more to get it.

Those words are from Jonah Berger whose new book is a revelation that could spark a revolution. Magic Words: What to say to get your way is not about AI, or at least not just that. It’s about our reaching an inflection point in understanding the science of language. Says Berger: “Technological advances in machine learning, computational linguistics and natural language processing, combined with the digitization of everything from cover letters to conversation, have revolutionised our ability to analyze language.”

It’s clear where this is going, the same place cancer medicine already is. You and I can have exactly the same tumor, but you’ll get a different treatment than me, based on your DNA, your genes, age and gender. Today, you and I get different marketing pitches based on where we live, what we earn and where we spend. But tomorrow, marketers will know if you’re a “who” person or a “whom” person, an “isn’t” woman, or an “is not” man. Think of it as linguistic chemo, and…

Run for your lives!

Or should that be… run for your life?



Subscribe to my Free Weekly Omnium-Gatherum Blog:

  • Every Saturday the Omnium-Gatherum blog is delivered straight to your InBox
  • Full archive
  • Posting comments and joining the community
  • First to hear about other Ramsay events and activities

Get posts directly to your inbox

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Sign Up for Updates!

Get news from Ramsay Inc. in your inbox.

Email Lists
Email Lists(Required)