Rick Steves: The Courage of Conviction Podcast: Live At Hales Segment 1 of 3

rick_steves As host, writer and producer of the popular public television series Rick Steves' Europe, host of the public radio show, Travel with Rick Steves and best-selling author of 30 European travel books, Rick Steves has become one of America's most familiar brands. The name Rick Steves has become synonymous with trustworthy, thoughtful, down-to-earth advice. Yet from the beginning Rick Steves has mingled private conviction with his public image, from concerns for the poor and justice to his most recent stands for legalization of marijuana and opposition to the US war in Iraq. Rick seems to be a man who is unafraid to lose business through taking a stand on controversial issues, and in a day of spin, positioning and go-along-to-get-along, this seems unusual. Our subject is The Courage of Conviction and our guest is Rick Steves.

One Response to “Rick Steves: The Courage of Conviction Podcast: Live At Hales Segment 1 of 3

  1. publius says:

    Just a few comments from this fascinating discussion.

    In "The Good Woman of Sichuan" Bertolt Brecht asks "How can we be good when life is so expensive?" This also reveals Rick Steves view of economics. All morality comes down to money; if you have it, you can make moral decisions, and if not, you cannot. Someone forgot to tell a Galilean carpenter.

    Some thought provoking thoughts:

    Rick: "Money is your report card as an adult". "Americans are obsessed with making money, while Europeans have a better life working 1/4 less time." "I am a workaholic". "I can afford to take moral stands because I have more money than I can spend." “The poorest people in the world are the most satisfied.” "Deep down I wish I made less money". Hmmmm.

    Rick: "Corporations are bad, evil, profit maximizers." "I am one of the best capitalists in this room." Hmmmm.

    Rick said that he doesn't care if people don't want to support him because he wants to legalize pot since "they'll just have a worse time traveling if they don't buy my books". I was wondering where respecting the diversity of your neighbor even though he doesn't toke comes into play there? How about squaring going down the street yelling "Marijuana" in Edmonds with "let's have a rational dialogue about these issues and not a bumper sticker mentality"?

    I don't think pot is really going out on a limb for the NPR crowd. Methamphetamines or speaking in tongues might be interesting causes for those with real courage. Dick mentions a bold statement by Modigliani, who was willing to introduce himself as "Modigliani the Jew". Rick is willing to introduce himself as "Rick the pot smoker", but would he open with "Rick the Evangelical Christian" or is that simply going way too far? Interesting to see what we are willing to sacrifice our life for.

    Dan mentioned a sure sign of a bad business was one that had a “praying hands” on the desk and Betha said Christians have a "rancid reputation". If we had the conviction that prayer was the center of our lives and Jesus was our Lord and Savior, would we have the courage to put praying hands on our desk or a fish on our door if we knew that even our Christian brothers and sisters would think us rancid?

    Great food for thought. Thanks again for the interesting discussion!

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