Jeff A Person

 

Welcome, and thanks for visiting!

This page contains the following material about me, my interests, and the quest. 

  • Introduction to Me (the Person) 
  • Education Stuff
  • Career Stuff
  • A Quest to Understand Human Morality and Help Improve ‘The Situation’
  • Help Needed and Welcome!
  • Other Interests and Concerns
  • Some Favorite Moments
  • Some Things I Like Least
  • Other Favorite Stuff
  • Please Introduce Yourself (including how to contact me)
  • Some of My Favorite Movies
  • Some of My Favorite Books
  • Some of My Favorite Places
  • Some of My Favorite Thinkers and Doers
  • Some of the Things That Fill Me With Wonder

Regards, and Good Luck to All,

Jeff

Jeff Huggins
Los Gatos, California
July, 2007

 

Born in 1959. 

I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, not too far from the blue (sort of) Pacific.  

I have two great teenage boys!

My main interests are family, survival, happiness, and ‘the improvement of the human condition.’  To me, these are all related. 

My first favorite song was Puff The Magic Dragon.  When I was a bit older, my favorite song was Help!  Now I have lots of ‘favorite’ songs, spanning the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Joan Baez, Simon & Garfunkel, Janis Joplin, the Who, Count Basie, Willie Nelson, Rossini, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Peter, Paul & Mary, and others.      

I also love Shakespeare, travel, history, films, and other things.  Did I say I love music?   

First memory — I can barely remember watching JFK’s funeral.

One of my favorite movies is Man of La Mancha, with Peter O’Toole and Sophia Loren (MGM, 1972).  In it, Miguel de Cervantes (played by O’Toole) admits to being an idealist, a bad poet, and an honest man.  That struck me as a reasonably good description of the way I sometimes think of myself.  Of course, I can’t claim perfection in those areas—except perhaps to being a perfectly bad poet.

 

Education Stuff

Elementary school was the most fun, although the rest was fun too.  It all eventually led to a degree in chemical engineering from the University of California at Berkeley—Go Bears!—where I had the good fortune to give the commencement address to my fellow graduates, and to an MBA from Harvard Business School, where I graduated as a Baker Scholar. 

Much of what I’ve learned, I’ve learned since then.  

 

Career Stuff

After Berkeley, I was a chemical engineer in the oil/energy industry, with Chevron.  After business school, I became a management consultant with McKinsey & Company, went from there to marketing toys, and later was an exec at The Walt Disney Company.  After that, I worked in a small non-profit associated with the importance and roles of play

In recent years, I’ve been studying and writing about human morality, mainly from scientific and logical/philosophical standpoints.  (Please see below for more on this.)    

My view is that we’re all peoplenot careers, not consumers, not statistics, not plaintiffs, not vice presidents, not SAT scores, not ….      

 

A Quest to Understand Human Morality and
Help Improve ‘The Situation’         

I, for one, think we can ‘do better’ as humans—and still have fun in the process.

My goal is to help improve our understanding of human morality.  I’ve been exploring morality from scientific, logical, and philosophical standpoints and trying to bring together understanding from those standpoints into a grounded, holistic, science-informed understanding of morality.

I’m in favor of understanding human social-moral ‘universals’ and using that understanding to try to:

  • Help us find ways to get along better
  • Help improve life for all humans
  • Help improve life for all of Earth’s inhabitants
  • Help address our modern problems
  • Help achieve sustainability.

I’m also a bit of a cultural critic regarding certain aspects of modern American culture (using the term in its broad sense, i.e., not speaking solely or even primarily of the arts) that seem to detract from the goals just mentioned, especially when those cultural aspects are practiced to a degree that is blind to these goals and substantially undermines them. 

 

Help Needed and Welcome!

If you are interested in the causes mentioned above or below, please contact me.

In particular, and especially, if you are involved in the causes mentioned above, and if you think we might be able to cooperate in some way (even informally or loosely) to advance one of those causes, please contact me.  Sharing views, spreading the news, networking, generating energy and momentum, sharing moral support, and having coffee or other beverages—not to mention funding!—all help.   

You can reach me by sending an e-mail using the form on the ‘CONTACT AUTHOR’ page of this Web site, www.ObligationsOfReason.com.  If you send me your e-mail address or other contact information, I’ll try to respond as quickly as I can.        

 

Other Interests and Concerns

Global climate change.    Education.    Corporate ethics.          
International relations, peace, and nuclear non-proliferation.   
Political ethics and reform.    Human rights.    Health care.    Legal reform.   

 
Some Favorite Moments (Of Those That Can Be Mentioned)  

Birth of my sons
Playing basketball with my youngest son
Playing music with my oldest son
Doing just about anything with my sons
Being with family at my aunt’s ranch
Christmases at the ranch and Thanksgivings at Bass Lake   
Snorkeling
Going to the beach (any time!)
Building sand castles 
Seeing the sunrise after hiking to the top of Mount Fuji
Watching the first moon landing on TV (at age 10)   
Attending the SNACK concert at Kezar Stadium (at age 16)  
Visiting Pompeii
Being on the Matterhorn (Disney version) at night  
Traveling through Europe  
Eating in Europe
Some great vacations with some wonderful relatives    
Seeing Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr in various concerts
Seeing Bob Dylan several times   
Meeting Peter Yarrow!
Seeing Led Zeppelin at Kezar Stadium (at age 14)
Seeing the Rolling Stones at the Cow Palace (at age 16)
Seeing the Who at Winterland (at age 17)
Driving from coast to coast, several times
Living in New England
Being at The Cal-Stanford Big Game in 1982 to see ‘The Play’ 
Walking across the Golden Gate Bridge on its 50th anniversary in 1987
Experiencing the Boston Pops play the 1812 Overture on the Esplanade on 4th of July   
Going to the top of the World Trade Center, NYC, several times before 9/11 
Having coffee and chicory, and beignets, at Café Du Monde, New Orleans
Writing songs and poems
Building castles with my sons on a now-peaceful ‘D-Day’ beach in Normandy, France   
Visiting Jamestown, Plymouth, and Colonial Williamsburg      
Visiting Monticello

 

Some Things I Like Least

What people sometimes do to each other!
Saying ‘no’ sometimes to my sons, or disagreeing with them
Politicians saying one thing and then doing the opposite! 
When seemingly smart people persist in doing obviously dumb things
The thought of millions of people in the U.S. (or anywhere) without healthcare
Divorce
Trends in TV news
When great rock songs are used in advertisements.  It wasn’t supposed to be that way!      

 

Other Favorite Stuff 

I’ve listed some of my other ‘favorite’ things below, for those who are interested in one person’s opinion.   
       

Please Introduce Yourself

Please feel free to contact me by sending an e-mail using the ‘CONTACT AUTHOR’ page of this Web site, www.ObligationsOfReason.com.  If you send me your e-mail address or other contact information, I’ll try to respond as quickly as I can.    

As Bob Dylan sings—All I really wanna dooo, is baby be friends with you.

Regards, and Good Luck to All,

 

Jeff

Jeff Huggins
Los Gatos, California
July, 2007
www.ObligationsOfReason.com 

 

Some of My Favorite Movies (in no particular order)

Mary Poppins.     My Fair Lady.     The Sound of Music.     The Wizard of Oz.        
Camelot.     Man of La Mancha.     Monty Python and the Holy Grail.       
2001: A Space Odyssey.     1984.     Dr. Strangelove.     The Matrix.          
Festival!     Help!     No Direction Home.     The Lord of the Rings (trilogy).  
Hamlet (versions with Branagh, Gibson, Olivier, Burton, and Hawke as Hamlet)
The Godfather.     Unforgiven.     The Road to Perdition. 
The Birds.     The Fog (original).   
The Party.     A Fish Called Wanda.     Mars Attacks!     Sleeper. 
Apollo 13.     The Emperor’s Club.     Children of Men.     Babel.    
The Jungle Book.     The Lion King.     The Little Mermaid.   
   

Some of My Favorite Books (in no particular order)   

(Most of my favorite philosophy and science books are not listed here, but are listed in The Obligations Of Reason.)

The Odyssey, Homer
Le Morte d’Arthur, by Sir Thomas Malory
Hamlet, King Lear, and Macbeth, by William Shakespeare
Melbourne, by Lord David Cecil
1984, by George Orwell
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, by Robert Pirsig   
The Fifth Mountain, by Paulo Coelho
Tuesdays With Morrie, by Mitch Albom
Gift From The Sea, by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway   
On The Road, by Jack Kerouac
The Prophet, by Kahlil Gibran
The Road Less Traveled, by M. Scott Peck
First You Have To Row A Little Boat, by Richard Bode
Harry Potter books, by J. K. Rowling (though I haven’t read them all, yet)  
A History of Knowledge, by Charles Van Doren 
The Consolation Of Philosophy, by Boethius  
  

Some of My Favorite Places (in no particular order)  

San Francisco.    Paris.    London.    Rome.    Florence.
The Caribbean.    New England.   
The Loire region, France.    The Romantikstrasse, Germany.
Lake Tahoe.    Yosemite.    Japan.      
The Louvre, the Uffizi Gallery, and the British Museum.
The Stanza della Segnatura in the Vatican, Rome.        
   

Some of My Favorite Thinkers and Doers (in alphabetical order)

Maya Angelou
Susan B. Anthony 
Aristotle
Neil Armstrong, Ed (Buzz) Aldrin, and Michael Collins
Winston Churchill 
Cicero
Christopher Columbus
Copernicus
Bill Cosby
Jacques Cousteau
Marie Curie    
Charles Darwin
Bob Dylan
Albert Einstein
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Galileo
Mahatma Gandhi
Jane Goodall
Tenzin Gyatso (The Dalai Lama)
George Harrison
Homer
Thomas Jefferson
Carl Jung
Martin Luther King Jr.
John Lennon
Abraham Lincoln
Gregor Mendel
Michel de Montaigne
Sir Isaac Newton
Thomas Paine
Rosa Parks
Plato
Franklin Roosevelt 
William Shakespeare
Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin Shelley
Socrates
Leonardo da Vinci
George Washington

 

Some of the Things That Fill Me With Wonder  
(Other Than What Has Already Been Mentioned)

Hummingbirds
Giant Redwood Trees
Beehives
Dolphins
Elephants
Volcanoes
The Ocean
Leaping Blennies
Beavers and Beaver Dams
Spider Webs
Peacocks
Bears
Octopi
Pillbugs    
Chimpanzees, Bonobos, Gorillas, Orangutans, Baboons, Monkeys, etc. 
Earthquakes
Pompeii       
 
The fact that some people who lived over 2,000 years ago were much wiser in many important respects than many of our leaders today.