Where We Live: Winning

The good and bad of America's winning obsession

D. Basu, Creative commons
Where We Live: Winning
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Where We Live: Winning

You can win the peace, win the future, win the game, win the lottery, or if you’re Charlie Sheen you can just be “A Winner.”

You’ve heard variations on the saying, “Winning isn’t everything…it’s the only thing.”  Motivational, to be sure – but when winning is the only goal, does that make most of us “losers?

Today, we’ll look at how the rhetoric of winning pervades our competition-obsessed society. Author Francesco Duina’s new book “Winning,”  takes a look at the social and psychological effects of success and asks whether winning should really be the ultimate goal.

Mark Fenske, co-author of the new book “The Winner’s Brain,” would argue “no”.  He’ll identify eight “win factors” that are proven to pave the road to success. 

So, what does it mean to be a “winner?” In sports, in business, in education, in life?  



Email from Barbara

Every year a non profit I am part of hosts a children's easter egg hunt on the South Fork of Long Island ( Hamptons). I blame it on the tiger mother syndrome. Some kids come equipped with bags the size of Buicks and the parents yell and scream at them to grab everything in sight before another kid can get it because this means they WON We always have to bring extra goodies for the nice kids who missed out due to these crazed families. I can only imagine what else goes on in the militant egg gatherer families and what's in store for the kids futures. Oh, and the "winning kids" almost always throw the real eggs on the ground. ~sigh~

Email From Dave

Appreciate the interesting show.

I just wanted to raise the idea that a feeling of winning or competition is actually the natural state of living in a world limited by scarcity. We may not hunt and gather anymore, with its attendant stresses, but short of a utopian dream of limitless plenty, we are still bound by the laws of entropy and scarcity.

Perhaps the more free, and self-reliant our society, more a reflection of reality, the more we will feel and identify the related, and normal, stress.

As our debt crisis shows, there is no free lunch.