Today’s Word: pertinacious (adjective) – Someone who is pertinacious (pur-tih-NAY-shus) is stubbornly resolute, holding firmly to an opinion or course of action. Example from Izaak Walton in The Compleat Angler: “He had never met a man of more pertinacious confidence and less abilities.”

Did You Know?: In the U.S., we don’t have a name for @. We just call it “the at symbol.” But other countries are more creative. For example, it’s known as “little mouse” in Chinese, “little snail” in Italian, “little duck” in Greek), “little worm” in Hungary, “sleeping cat” in Finland, “clinging monkey” in German, and – my favorite – “rolled pickled herring” in Czech.

Worth Quoting: “There’s a difference between a philosophy and a bumper sticker.” – Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz

Recommended Reading

Charity Detox: What Charity Would Look Like If We Cared About Results

By Robert D. Lupton

2015, 195 pages

If you are a fan of Mother Teresa or Ayn Rand (especially The Virtue of Selfishness) or have ever thought seriously about charity, you will likely appreciate this book. The author is some sort of Christian minister, which worried me going into it. But he admirably restrains himself from preaching in favor of discussing the primary problems with charity: the unintended consequences of creating financial dependency and the feeling of entitlement, both of which are likely to do more harm than good.

I have been writing a book on this subject (The Challenge of Charity) for about 12 years, comparing both the good and the harm my family’s charitable foundation has caused in Nicaragua compared to the good and the harm caused by a for-profit residential resort that my partners and I have been developing across the street.

Reading Lupton, I almost considered abandoning my efforts since he had identified the same problems and was making many of the same arguments. But in the end, I think my “solution” is a bit better than his. So I will finish my book and recommend it to you when it’s finished.