Monday, December 12, 2016

Perspective: At Last!!!

We Americans have indeed received a great Christmas Present. The gift is that our democratic form of government created by the brilliant Founders is working. The Country was headed for the cliff, and the polls showed that 70 % of the People knew it. However, for the first time in decades, the People followed the Founders’ plan as expressed in the Declaration; namely, that when any Government fails to protect the People’s inalienable rights, it is the right of the People to alter that Government. Tuesday, November 8, 2016 the People chose to alter that failed Government! We the People indeed took charge, and by by-passing both political parties, chose a leader who We the People thought could deal with the problems We, the working class, have had to deal  with.  Remarkably it did not require a revolution; it was done by simply employing the peaceful ballot box.

For four decades both Established Political Parties have exploited the working class to the point where 90 million of them are not even counted in the work force any more. 70,000 factories have been shut down, and the work was shipped overseas, and everyone knew it. Except, and this is key, no one in the Media or the Political Establishment claimed to know it. Much worse, they seemed not to give a damn. And then Donald Trump came along! He understood their plight and articulated their concerns in language they understood. Now, the People have spoken!

What is amazing is that Donald Trump did not set up a Third Party, as he might have. Instead he worked within the Republican Party. The People heard him, and they elected him State by State through the Primary until he became the Republican Candidate. Then during the Presidential election campaign, while the Media and both established Republican and Democrat Parties, tried everything possible to destroy him, the People ignored that, and State by State gave him the Electoral Votes to make him the Winner.

But Trump was not the only Winner. Trump’s coattails saved the Republican Senate. So that now, the Republican Party has been saved! Not that it deserved to be saved considering that the Party leaders repudiated Trump and did everything imaginable to defeat him, including reneging on the pledges by individuals to support the Party’s candidate.

Responding to the needs of the working class, Trump is choosing his Cabinet Members to focus on the very problems the working class knows about and the ones he identified in his campaign.

The Country is the true Winner, and all Americans should be thankful, especially in this Christmas Season!!


Merry Christmas to all!!



Monday, October 24, 2016

Perspective: The Time Has Come to Decide!

No more procrastination! You have to decide. We have two candidates running for the office of President. One was chosen by “we the people” as the Republican Party’s candidate; the other was forced upon us by the “Establishment” of the Democrat Party.  The candidate chosen by the people has been leading a “movement” that focuses on the issues the people care about; namely, preserving and creating viable jobs in the global and digital environment, protecting us from Radical Islamic Terrorists and identifying Supreme Court Justices who will uphold the Constitution. Both the Established Parties and the Media have ignored the “peoples’ plight for decades. Worse, the Media and both Established Parties are now doing everything they can to destroy the candidate chosen by the people.

The peoples’ candidate is new to politics and does not always speak the politically-correct language of the professional politicians.  However, the language employed spells out the problems and proposed solutions in unequivocally clear language that is fully understood by the working class. Moreover, the peoples’ candidate is a natural leader, an expert problem solver, an assembler of teams that have accomplished important goals on schedule and often below budget.

The other candidate has years of experience in government but seems unable to complete the tasks at hand, and never on time or on budget. More problematic is that, under this candidate’s direction, the Middle East has disintegrated which caused ISIS to rise. Further, the economy is anemic due to policies this professional supports. Worse this candidate believes the Constitution can be bent to relate to today’s issues without concern for adhering to historic principals.

The plans of the two candidates stand in stark contrast to one another. The peoples’ choice candidate’s plan would incentivize private industry to stay in the US and make further job- producing investments. This plan would unleash the job-creating private industry from the shackles of high and non-competitive taxes in a global economy and would radically reduce the rising number of unproductive regulations. In addition these actions will bring back the trillions of dollars the companies have left overseas to be applied as US investments that will increase the growth rate of the economy.

The other would tax the rich, i.e. the business owners, to make them less competitive in the global market. It calls for increased regulations, as well. This will incentivize private industry to leave the US, and move their investments overseas. This not only includes factories but company head quarters, as well. Many companies have already moved their head quarters to Ireland to escape US tax and regulations. What must be understood is that in a global economy, a company can survive anywhere. For example, even Wall Street does not have to be in New York City. It could work anywhere. Meanwhile, the trillions of dollars raised from the higher taxes will be distributed to society at large. This will require the regulatory bureaucracy to add government workers at the tax payer’s expense.

As mentioned at the beginning, the Main Stream Media are doing everything they can to destroy the peoples’ candidate. The record shows that 90 % of their newspaper, radio and TV news coverage is spent reporting on each and every picayune detail of the candidate’s life and business. Often they will discover an item that occurred decades ago and time its reporting to maximize its negative impact. Meanwhile, the Media spends less spends less than 10 percent of its time reporting the massive amounts of factual and damaging information uncovered by Wikileaks about the competitor’s activities that are certainly unethical and probably criminal.

So,  for whom should you cast your vote this coming November? You know!!

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Perspective: The Millennials

The Millennials, born between 1980 and 2000, are probably the best educated of any generation, and considering our nations leadership in digital technology, the quality and scope of our education institutions, the American created Smart Phone, Google, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and our nations energy independence, you would think that they would be excited about entering the adult world. You would be wrong!

According to the National Alliance of Mental Illness, the amount of anxiety and depression among the Millennials has sky rocketed in what many psychologists are calling a crisis of mental health. According to Psychology Today, “The average high school student today has the same level of anxiety as the average psychiatric patient of the 1950s”. It is claimed that students used to show up to the nurse for skinned knees, but now they show up for panic attacks. Further, this is placing a major financial burden on academia to staff and fund the needed health facilities.

Psychologists are reporting that the level of anxiety increases dramatically when they enter college, and certainly will be worse as they enter the job market. What seems to trigger the anxiety is high performance expectation in sports and grades and the stress of applying to a future university or for employment!

Exacerbating the stress is that a high percentage of this generation’s graduates  is either unemployed or under employed despite their skill and training. This is understandable because, even though that the Boomers are retiring at the rate of 10,000 per day, it is unlikely that many of the jobs they are leaving will be available for the Millennials because of globalization, robotization, as well as illegal immigrants and legal foreign graduates from US schools who are taking US jobs.

Making it even more stressful for the Millennials entering the work place is that the mentors of the past are no longer there. Today, the Millennial is expected to come to the job ready to start work. Simply stated because the Millennial knows more about the tools of the trade (digital devices) than the Owner, the business owner believes that providing a mentor is not required.

Historically, the beginning employee was considered to be an apprentice. While the apprentice was being taught how to use the tools of trade by the master, the apprentice was also being mentored by the master regarding how to work in and live in the workplace culture. The apprentice learned about the importance of interpersonal relationships, how society worked, how business worked, how to be a good neighbor, how to work side-by-side with other workers and many other items indigenous to the business culture. This juxtaposition of roles places the Millennial in a position of being his or her own mentor in this radically and rapidly changing time. What can be more stressful than that?

The literature addresses several causes of their anxiety and depression, but one that is rated highest is the Millennials lack of problem solving skills. Dr. Benjamin Spock’s  book “Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care” is blamed. According to an article by Reb Bradley, entitled “How Dr. Spock Destroyed America”, Spock “discouraged directive training and emphasized accommodating children’s feelings and catering to their preferences. No longer did children have to eat Brussels sprouts and suffer daily chores. Using Spock’s approach, parents began to feed self-indulgence, instead of instilling self-control”. Many of us will recall that parents were admonished to be careful not to destroy the child’s self-esteem.

Moreover, earlier generations were granted more freedom to experience life, such as playing outside from breakfast to dinner each summer, having jobs around the house or being paid for jobs in the neighborhood such as mowing grass, or shoveling snow. There were even farm or factory jobs for teenagers in those days. Further, those generations were not rewarded for every little achievement, so there was minimum stigma associated with failure. Learning to live with failure is an essential life skill. Unfortunately, the social media adds to the fear of failure because the individual is constantly being compared to others who may look better or may be achieving more.

The addition of texting to the cell phone in 1992 has permitted this generation to avoid verbal contact with their colleagues as well as family and friends. A book entitled “Reclaiming Conversation” describes this experiment: Millennials, their parents and grandparents were invited to a meeting. The grandparents and parents were seated on one side of the auditorium, the Millennials on the other. Immediately the grandparents and parents who did not know each other began chatting away, while the Millennials sat silently texting.

The parent and grandparent generations have not experienced the stress the Millennials face, and most of us have missed seeing the problems it is causing them. So, if the Millennials need help at any time, will they call on their elders? Probably not!
Nevertheless, we must stop complaining about the alleged societal causes of their stress, because we can’t change history. And we must not demand that they behave the way we would like!  They need mentors. We can be their mentors.

I have to confess that as much as I have been aware of and have been writing about the paradigm shift that the digital and global age is bringing to all our lives, I did not pick up on the stress that the Millennials are experiencing. The purpose of this blog is to have the older generations as well as the Millennials become aware of the issues so that both generations can be prepared to help.

One simple way is to have the parent and grandparent generations to become less intimated with the technology, and therefore communicate with the Millennials on their turf!  It is not that difficult to text, send e-mails, do Face time, and visit Face book and Instagram to keep up with your Millennial, to see how they are doing. We can do this!  Then the Millennials may feel freer to call upon us when they need help.

Doing this is not just important, it is essential if we are to help the Millennials work their way through this stressful time to become the nation’s leaders that we desperately need to preserve the American Dream!

For further information on how the Millennials can prepare for the new workplace, please refer to my blog of May, 2014 entitled: Perspective: The Millennials and Job Opportunities.

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Sunday, August 21, 2016

Perspective: The Sad Shape of the Political Parties and the Media

None of us alive has ever seen anything like this Presidential season! When have you ever seen the ordinary voters choose their candidate in the primary election? You haven’t! The party elite doe’s that! It even used to be done in “smoke filled” rooms. Then the “party-picked” candidate was placed on the ballot for the general election. This 2015-16 go around is radically different. 

On the Republican side, a non-politician named Donald Trump got his name on the Republican list along with 16 other outstanding Republican candidates. However, in State after State the Republican voters chose Trump over the other 16 highly qualified establishment candidates. Frustrated, and try as they might, the Republican establishment could not overcome the wishes of these ordinary voters, who in historic numbers, turned out to unequivocally make Trump their nominee.

On the Democrat side, an independent, not a Democrat, Bernie Sanders got on the short list of Democrat candidates. The Democrat voters, including the Millennials and first time voters, seized this opportunity to vote for a non-establishment candidate, and they did so in huge numbers. Unfortunately their wishes were thwarted by the Democrat party rules which awarded “Super Delegates” to the Party’s favored choice, Hillary Clinton. This made it virtually impossible for Bernie Sanders to become the Democrat voter’s choice. However, he still might have won had the Democrat party management not tilted the scales further. This year the Democrat party leader, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, and her colleagues, were caught red-handed when their e-mails were hacked showing how hard they worked to disparage and defeat Sanders. Wasserman-Schultz was fired for it.

What is the result? The ordinary voters of the Republican Party got the leader they wanted, namely, Donald Trump. By contrast, the ordinary voters of the Democrat party were told they would get the candidate the Party chose no matter how flawed, how big a failure or how lacking in integrity that candidate was already been known to be. That candidate is Hillary Clinton.

We have seen how despicable and un-American the behavior of the Democrat Party leadership behavior has been. But as bad as it has been, it pales in comparison to that of the behavior of the Republican Party Establishment. Instead of welcoming the ordinary voter’s choice of this new leader who ran as a Republican not an independent, and garnered historic numbers of voters to the party, they reneged on their publicly spoken vow to support the Republican Party’s nominee. Unimaginatively worse, they are now working actively and hand in hand with the Media to defeat their own Party’s candidate overwhelmingly chosen by the Party’s ordinary voters.

The corruptness of both established political parties has been exposed. And we have learned that both established parties have ignored the plight of the ordinary voters for decades. These ordinary voters make up the majority of the Middle Class and are largely high-school graduates whose jobs have been taken away by unfair trade agreements, robotization and illegal immigrants. The politically correct establishment Politicians and the Media rarely, if ever, talk to these people. They have been ignored by the political system until this year when outsider candidates appeared who understood their plight, spoke their language and weren’t afraid to call a spade a spade.  

What is historic and amazing is that these ordinary Republican voters overcame the Republican Party hierarchy to get their choice, and the ordinary Democrat voters came close to overcoming the Democrat Party hierarchy, as well.

Aiding this phenomenon is the new Media, namely Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Apple sold its billionth copy of the hand-held Smart Phone this year which makes the information available via these hand-held devices to nearly everyone of these ordinary voters. This genie will not be placed back in the bottle, and we are on a new path for the politics of our Democratic Republic. It is too bad that the Media and the Political Establishment still don’t get it, and are likely to be in for a shock, if the ordinary voters of both Parties remain adamant enough to come out and vote in unprecedented numbers, this will be the new norm!

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Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Perspective: The Invisible Immigrants

We are properly concerned about the visible immigrants who are in our country illegally and are often hired illegally, lowering wages, and often replacing American workers. However, there are laws on the books that are intended to prevent immigrants from coming here illegally, and there are laws on the books that prevent the hiring of undocumented immigrants. The main problem is that our politicians not only fail to enforce these laws, but worse they deliberately refuse to do so, even to the extent of providing safe refuge for these illegal persons in our sanctuary cities.

But there is the "Invisible Immigrant", namely the Robot,  that is even more insidious. Each digital device, kiosk, machine and robot is like an invisible immigrant that takes human jobs. You seem not to be able to see them, and yet they are ubiquitous, that is they are every where. And they are right in front of you. For example, consider the Automatic Teller Machine. If it were not hiding under its acronym ATM, you probably would have recognized that it replaced a Human Bank Teller. You can’t build walls high enough to keep them out.

Now, let’s look at the intelligence of the invisible immigrant! It ranges from being capable of managing ordinary tasks, such as taking your order at a restaurant, to checking you out at a store, but there are those who can drive cars. One of them is so smart that it won all the money on Jeopardy and defeated the world’s greatest Chess Player. What may be even more astounding is that Steven Hawking and Bill Gates predict that robots with artificial intelligence will be able to replicate themselves in the near future. So, even the jobs of constructing this creature are in jeopardy.

Moreover, the march to replace human labor is growing exponentially Experts have claimed that technology has already replaced millions of human laborers, and the forecast is that about 50% of existing jobs will be gone within the next two decades. In short, the invisible immigrant cannot wait to take your job.

Consider the invisible immigrant from the employer’s point of view:
v     The robot works 24/7 needs no health care, maternity leave, vacation, lunch or coffee break, never goes on strike, needs no separate toilet facility and makes far fewer mistakes.
v     The cost of the robot and the cost to maintain it is less than the total cost of human labor, even at today’s minimum wage.

Now, consider what the government does:
v     Proposes to increase the cost of human labor by:
    • Raising the minimum wage to $12-15per hour
    • Mandating that health care be borne by employers
    • Mandating overtime pay for salaried employees
    • Mandating maternity leave and family needs
    • Requiring separate toilet and bath facilities for transgender employees
v     Permits the owner to have a fast tax write-off for the installed Robot

Do we now understand why the rich (the business owner) gets richer and the poor (the job looser) gets poorer? Is it any wonder that the working public is so furious? They live every day with these issues. But they have retained the old fashioned American quality of Common Sense. What they know is that they see the human worker is being displaced by the foreign worker as factories are being moved overseas, the illegal immigrant is taking their jobs at home, and most, exasperating of all,  the invisible immigrant is taking jobs with government support. All of this occurs without the politicians or the media or anyone noticing or caring. Common sense also informs the Middle Class that robots eat no hamburgers and pay no and no taxes, ergo a complete collapse of America as we have known and loved it. Any wonder why all the polls show that the respondents believe the country is going in the wrong direction.
Just as we have laws and regulations to control the rate of illegal human immigrants, we need laws and regulations to control the rate of integration of invisible immigrants. Here are some basic ideas:
  1. Change the laws that permit the fast tax write-off for the robot
  2. Reduce and/or eliminate regulations that raise the cost of human labor
  3. Tax machines to raise the employers’ cost, rather than reduce it with subsidies
  4. Write new laws under OSHA to assure that machines are not installed to replace humans surreptitiously

With these NEW WALLS in place and the laws properly enforced, then the human workers’ wages and benefits will rise as the demand for their services increases, and the Middle Class can rise again. It all depends, however, on whether we learn how to adopt the new robots into the workplace and into society at large without destroying everything.