THE ENTERPRISE—MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN—AND HOW TO DO THAT
THE ENTERPRISE—MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN—AND HOW TO DO THAT
HERE IS A NEW TREASURE: FRIEND AND CO-AUTHOR DAVE LUKAS NEW PODCAST
I hope you read it and like it. (Please rate if and give it 5 stars if you do…that’s how these things gain traction and readership!) It’s off to a great start. My interview is already recorded; it’s coming up in a few weeks.
THINK YOU KNOW AMERICA AND ITS HISTORY? TAKE THIS TEST:
America—1776-2016—How Well Do You Know It? (You’ll be surprised.)
1) Who were the Founding Fathers?
2) What was the Revolutionary War fought about? And when?
3) What documents led to the USA being formed?
4) What are the three branches of the US Federal Government?
5) What are the two Houses of Congress, and how many members are in each, from where?
6) Who fought in the Civil War, about what, and when? Who was president then & who won?
7) Who fought in WW-II about what, when, and who won?
8) What was the Cold War? Who was fighting it, over what and who won?
9) Who are: Vladimir Lenin, Josef Stalin, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Saddam Hussein, Moammar Gadhafi, Bashar el-Assad & Hafez el-Assad?
10) Who were the last three presidents? Who is the current Vice President? Who is the Speaker of the House, and who preceded him?
11) Who are JFK, RFK and MLK? What do they have in common?
12) What is the Electoral College and what does it do?
Answers: 1) George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, James Madison, James Monroe & Benjamin Franklin. 2) America’s freedom from England, 1775-1783 3) The Declaration of Independence (1776) and the Constitution (1788) 4) Legislative (Congress: makes laws), Executive (President: executes laws), and Judicial (Supreme Court: decides if legal per the Constitution) 5) The House-435 members proportional to population of states, Senate-100 members 2/state 6) North (states) vs. South (Confederate), rights & slavery, 1861-1865, Abe Lincoln, North won, slavery was abolished 7) Great Britain/USA vs. Germany & then Japan (desperation, mostly-Russia flipped/both sides), Democracy vs. Nazism (Fascism) Dictatorship, GB, Euro/US, NA won. 1940’s (A-bomb Hiroshima, Japan) 8) USA vs. USSR, Democracy/Capitalism vs. Communism, USA. 9) All dictators: Communist, Fascist, or Muslim. 10) Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama; Joe Biden; Paul Ryan preceded by John Boehner (Speaker of the house is third in presidential succession.) 11) John F. Kennedy, his brother Robert F. Kennedy and Rev. Martin Luther King—all three highly regarded American leaders. All three were assassinated. King was most highly revered black leader. 12) It elects the president. 538 “electors” chosen on votes cast/wins by state. (The number of electors equals the number of members in a state’s Congressional delegation (House Reps., + 2 Senators/state). Electors cast votes that elect the president. Majority: 270 electoral votes, wins. Lack of a majority is decided by a vote of the House of Representatives)
TIME FOR A REVOLUTION—US FEDERAL GOVERNMENT NEEDS MASSIVE CHANGE—WHICH CANDIDATE WILL BRING THAT? (DONALD J. TRUMP!)
There is a daunting list of changes needed. I finally quit after listing many of them. There’s more, but even a strong change effort by a new president will only be effective it he also has Congress on his side.
WHAT IS ON THE LONG LIST FOR THE NEXT PRESIDENT?
I prepared this list to share with my Representatives in Congress, so feel free to use it if you like it and agree with it.
SHOCKING EXAMPLE: RIGHT DIAGNOSIS, WRONG PERSON (OBAMA, NOT TRUMP)
Quit believing all the crap pushed out about Donald Trump by the mainstream media and Horrible Hillary’s campaign buddies—it is so radically biased it’s unbelievable. Obama’s former campaign guy, David Plouffe was being interviewed on one of the liberal mainstream channels. Plouffe took a shot at defining a psychopath—and defended his diagnosis. “Well, you know, listen, the grandiose notion of self-worth, pathological lying, lack of empathy and remorse.” Since I joined the interview midway, I wondered why he would accurately (but harshly) describe his former boss—Barack Obama. Wrong; I should have known. He was accusing Donald Trump of being a psychopath. Even the left wing interviewer, Chuck Todd, called him out on it: “Wait a minute. Wait a minute," host Chuck Todd interrupted. "Do you really think diagnosing people on air — I assume you don't have a degree in psychology. Is that fair? I mean, we’re jumping to conclusions here, I think this is what gets voters a little frustrated with this campaign.” Thank you, Chuck.
WANT FOUR MORE YEARS OF THE STATUS QUO? I THINK NOT! PLEASE READ THE ATTACHMENT …
HERE’S THE PROBLEM—ELECTORAL MAP AS OF NOW! HILLARY IS WINNING.
Forget national polls. They mean little, except directionally. What matters is the state by state tally. You can see all the polls at http://www.realclearpolitics.com but this one is particularly troubling.
HOW THE CLINTON’S MANAGE TO DO ILLEGAL THINGS—AND AVOID THE BLAME FOR IT?
Unable to confirm, but seems logical. Can anyone confirm or refute this? Does anyone doubt that they talked about Hillary’s case and avoiding an indictment?
Well, let's see. Our AG Loretta Lynch was headed to Aspen, Co from Washington DC for a speaking engagement, a distance of around 1500 miles in almost a direct line East to West. The Government plane she was flying in was more than likely a G5 with a range of 6500 miles. Question is why she would go to Phoenix first which is 600 miles South of Aspen then go North to Aspen from Phoenix. She did not need to stop in Phoenix for fuel because if she had flown direct, fuel would not be necessary. In fact, do the math, the G5 has the range to make that round trip without refueling?
Why was Bill waiting for Lynch's plane to land in Phoenix when she was going to Aspen? That meeting was planned to put the Clinton Fix on and some guy who worked at the FBO in Phoenix, called his friend who was an Anchor at the local ABC Station (that is a shocker) and then he verified the meeting with a second independent source at the airport. Ms Lynch said "They talked for half an hour about grand kids and golf". Loretta does not have any grand kids and doesn’t play golf.
A COMPENDIUM OF HILLARY’S LIES AND MISSTATEMENTS FROM FACTCHECK.COM—READ THE MASSIVE LIST! SHARE IT WITH OTHERS.
IS THIS THE TRUTH (?) ABOUT THE KHANS BEING HIRED TO “BAIT” TRUMP (WHICH LED TO HIS FOOLISH, ILL-ADVISED REPLY)—TRAGIC “USE” OF A BEREAVED FAMILY?
This would be typical of a Clinton “dirty tricks” campaign. Take a family who is bitter about a tragic loss of their son and “use them” for campaign fodder. (Really nasty if true. Even the liberal front organization SNOPES does not refute this.) BUT I can’t confirm it’s accuracy. Once something is posted on the Internet, it spreads like wildfire, but tracking it to the source is tough.
The worst part is that Trump “fell for the bait," and responded the wrong way! Shame on him for not having someone (his family, for sure!) to “advise him” how to handle such things. He could have turned it around and lamented that he had NO sacrifice to match the Khans. But isn’t it sad that the Clinton campaign would stoop to use their misery as parents as a convention/campaign ploy?
(NOTE: I have been unable to verify this information. Can someone else find it?) See TruthorFiction post below.
So, the Dems had to pay actors to fill up seats at their convention (did they?) and now we learn they paid Khan??
– Khan was paid $25,000 by the Clinton campaign to speak at the DNC
– The speech was not written by Mr. Khan, but by two campaign staffers.
– The copy of the US Constitution that Mr. Khan held up was bought only two HOURS before his speech by a female staffer, to be used solely as a prop and Khan returned the book after speaking.
– 5 Gold Star families turned down the opportunity to speak before Khan was contacted by the Clinton campaign.
– All five families were paid $5,000 and signed a non disclosure.
– Khan’s immigration law firm is in debt $1.7M and owes back taxes of upward $850,000 plus penalties.
– CNN paid Khan over $100,000 to tell his “story” and repeated interviews across networks. (unverified)
– Khan was given a bonus of $175k by the DNC for his effort in the media. (see report below)
– The IRS has since put Khan’s tax file on a “hold” status.
Is this guy going to claim this bribe money on his taxes?? And doesn't this disgrace the memory of his son?? Talk about soulless…
From TruthorFiction.com: Summary of eRumor:
Hackers have secured a document that the Clinton Foundation paid $375,000 to Khizr Khan’s law firm, presumably in exchange for the Khan family’s support of Hillary Clinton
There’s no way to verify the authenticity of the document that has been held up as proof that the Clinton Foundation deposited $375,000 into a Khizr Khan law firm account. The rumor can be traced back to Get Off the BS, a blog site that regularly publishes articles that are critical of the Clintons and of left-wing causes in general. The site reported that the Anonymous hacker group had obtained a private document from Khizr Khan’s law firm that proved he was paid $375,000 for supporting Hillary Clinton and for speaking at the Democratic National Convention
ENOUGH FOR ONE EDITION? NOT QUITE: THIS ONE WILL BLOW YOUR MIND…AND IT’S LONG, BUT WORTH THE TIME TO READ:
REMEMBER THE SOLUTION: VOTE FOR TRUMP (hold your nose if you must, but he’s so much better for America than HORRIBLE HILLARY CLINTON!)
I HAVE A PROPOSAL THAT WILL NEVER BE ADOPTED:
PASS A BI-PARTISAN LAW RESTRICTING PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES FROM USING HAIR COLORING AND MAKEUP.
LET US SEE WHAT THEY REALLY LOOK LIKE.
TRUMP IS 70, CLINTON IS 68. DO YOU REALLY THINK THEY ARE STILL BLONDE AND UNWRINKLED? NAH...
HOW MANY PEOPLE WANT HER FOR OUR NEXT PRESIDENT! REALLY?
OR HIM? (IT REALLY IS HIS HAIR!)
PLEASE USE NEW EMAIL ADDRESS: firstname.lastname@example.org
See my prior commentary at http://www.brennerbrief.com/author/johnmariotti/ and my current ones at http://thedailyjournalist.com/?s=John+Mariotti&x=0&y=0 and my REGULAR commentary at
Thomas wrote: “Reacting to Donald Trump’s speech Monday to the Detroit Economic Club, Hillary Clinton said her Republican opponent tried to “make his old, tired ideas sound new.” As opposed to her old, tired ideas of higher taxes on the wealthy with government as redistribution.” Thomas goes on to quote extensively from an important speech made to the New York Economic Club:
GUESS WHO SAID THIS: “… the most direct and significant kind of federal action aiding economic growth is to make possible an increase in private consumption and investment demand — to cut the fetters which hold back private spending.” Increasing federal spending, as Clinton has proposed, would, said the economic club speaker, soon demoralize both the government and our economy. If government is to retain the confidence of the people, it must not spend more than can be justified on grounds of national need … The federal government, he said, “siphons out of the private economy too large a share of personal and business purchasing power; (and) reduces the financial incentives for personal effort, investment and risk-taking. In short, to increase demand and lift the economy, the federal government’s most useful role is not to rush into a program of excessive increases in public expenditures, but to expand the incentives and opportunities for private expenditures.”There are more of these “old, tired ideas”: “Corporate tax rates must also be cut to increase incentives and the availability of investment capital. ... For all these reasons, next year’s tax bill should reduce personal as well as corporate income taxes for those in the lower brackets, who are certain to spend their additional take-home pay, and for those in the middle and upper brackets, who can thereby be encouraged to undertake additional efforts and enabled to invest more capital.” “If you haven’t guessed, the quotes you have just read are from a speech President John F. Kennedy delivered to the New York Economic Club on Dec. 14, 1962.”
"If Trump sticks to policies and not his personality, he could close the gap in opinion polls. Liberal policies have failed. Economic growth is the answer, but you never hear Clinton talk about it. She promotes class envy instead of prosperity and opportunity for all. Clinton is the anti-JFK candidate. Hers are the failed policies not only of the past, but the present. If she is elected president, they will continue to fail into the future.
THE “WHAT NOW?” IS THE MOST COMMON REMARK OR QUESTION I HEAR NOW THAT CONVENTIONS ARE OVER
This edition is a little late, so I’ll try to catch up. I was waiting until the two conventions were over to see what the walkaways were. A couple of big ones come to mind:
The GOP convention stars were the Trump family. Don, Jr. was terrific; Eric and Ivanka were predictably good, mature and had solid messages. Even the youngest of the ones at the podium—Tiffany, at age 22—acquitted herself very well. The liberal media made a “ tempest in a teapot” about two minute lines in Melania’s excellent and personable speech. Biden and Obama have done far worse, but the Dems and Mainstream Liberal Media (MLM) simply ignore Democrat transgressions. Really MLM, is that all you could find to criticize? She speaks more languages, better than nearly all American citizens and made this speech in what was not her “native language.” Try that sometime.
Mike Pence was surprisingly strong, yet down to earth. Donald went on too long, but then he always does. The supporting cast was surprising because there were fewer “wow” celebrities than expected, and the GOP didn’t notice that everyone stopped watching listening and even left the convention hall. Shut things down after the lead speaker is done. Giving favors of a spot on the convention agenda is no favor is the audience is gone. One of the best visuals was Reince Preibus and Baron Trump hitting beach balls off the stage and back into the crowd. Rudy was strident but right on. Newt was his usual acerbic and intelligent self. Both will be assets if Trump will stop talking and listen to them. Trump has a history of hiring strong people—that will be tested in the next 4 months …and afterward should he win.
I CONFESS—I BARELY WATCHED THE DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION
I knew what they were going to say, the distortions and self-serving statements in support of a failed president and a horribly flawed candidate. Tim Kaine is as good as any other career pol for her VP spot. There were dozens like him she might have chosen. He’s better than Hillary, although the faint odor of corruption wafts by when his background is considered. The Dems had the blue chip speakers: Michelle Obama is always good. (Don’t be surprised if she’s a candidate someday. She’s really young and has a lot of zeal.) Biden is a good campaign speaker who never lets the facts get in the way of what he wants to say or claim as true. He fits the party mold perfectly, since Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have only a distant involvement with the truth. (Both are serial liars.)
It’s pretty easy to predict the Dem’s pitches: give freebies to the dependent classes (minorities, especially) to continue buying their votes. Protect the downtrodden and newly disadvantaged (LGBT…etc.). Shore up giveaways to the young who seem to be so naive that they don’t understand there is “ ever a free lunch”—someone has to pay for it—and sooner or later, it will be them. Here’s is an article citing the “Prevaricator-in-Chief” and his incredible statement: There has never been a man or a woman more qualified than Hillary Clinton to serve as president of the United States of America.” REALLY? REALLY?
MOVING TO THE DEMS POLICY AND PLATFORM CONTENT
A single phrase sums it up. More of the same as Obama’s socialist plans for as long as Americans will stand it and pay for it (taxes, debt, interest, slow or no growth in the economy, declining standard of living, etc., etc.) Now the Bernie Sanders (unruly, outspoken) forces have pushed Hillary and the party even further left, liberal and socialist. Don’t believe the “progressive” crap. That’s just a nice name for liberal socialism. You can read the details everywhere, but nothing is really much different than the past 7-1/2 years of Obama
-malaise. Right after the Dems convention ended, the most recent Quarter of GDP growth was reported—an impressive 1.2%—wow. DO YOU WANT MORE OF THAT?
HERE’S A LINE I WILL REPEAT AD INFINITUM: A vote for anyone other than Trump is a vote for Hillary and another 4-8 years of decline, divisiveness and misery.
IS THIS THE PERSON YOU WANT TO BE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA?
IF YOUR ANSWER IS NO, THEN VOTE FOR TRUMP BECAUSE THAT IS THE ONLY WAY TO STOP HER!
EITHER CLINTON CAMPAIGN, OR THE MAINSTREAM LIBERAL MEDIA (MLM,) INVENTS THEIR VERSION OF WHAT TRUMP SAID, INVENTS WHAT (THEY CLAIM) HE “MEANT”
And then crucifies him for their own inventions. A wise person once warned me: Do NOT assume people’s intentions. You simply cannot know with certainty what they intended or meant—even when using their own words. Lawyers do this all the time in depositions, when they ask questions prefaced by “would you say that….” and then fill in what they want you to say, so it will be in the record. The only wise answer to that question is “NO, I didn’t.” Then don’t elaborate. That’s exactly what they are trying to get you to do—say something they can use against you. If the next question is “what would you say?” “NOTHING."
AFRAID OF WHAT TRUMP WILL DO? DON’T BELIEVE THE MLM—LISTEN CAREFULLY TO HIS ACTUAL WORDS AND THE CONTEXT (sarcasm).
An example of what the MLM has become in recent years was a throwaway comment Trump made when he said: “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” … “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
If you want to read some of the MLM frenzy, here are a few links:
AMERICA IS IN TROUBLE—TRUMP’S SO-CALLED “NEGATIVE OR DARK” SPEECH WAS MOSTLY RIGHT
When Donald Trump goes on for over an hour, a lot of the valuable content is lost amidst a blizzard of words. That’s why I disassembled the text of Trump’s speech and made a list of what he said needed to be done/he intended to do. (Yes, I know, he never says how he will do them exactly. That’s what every presidential candidate does! Obama got elected in 2008 in a blizzard of moderate promises that were never what he intended or did.)
Points in Trump’s Acceptance Speech—What he wants to accomplish:
(NOTE: Phrases are as close to verbatim as possible, and still read correctly.)
DO YOU AGREE WITH THOSE GOALS? MOST OF THEM AT LEAST? I DO! AMERICA NEEDS A REVOLUTION!
Government has grown too big, too powerful, too expensive, too oppressive and too self-centered. It no longer serves the people it was intended to serve—Americans.
THE UNBELIEVABLE OHIO SENATORIAL RACE
The race between Rob Portman, the incumbent and challenger Ted Strickland, the failed one-term governor is essentially a dead heat. Why? One can only guess the Strickland’s gubernatorial flaws and losing campaign against John Kasich was so well publicized that he has an edge in name recognition. Portman is the prototype for a good senator: Experience in the House as a Rep. as the U. S. Trade Representative (top ranking international trade position), The US Budget Director, and now an experienced and widely respected Senator. in Portman’s 5+ years as a Senator, half of which was with the Harry Reid gridlock on the Senate, Rob has still originated or co-sponsored dozens of bills which were actually passed and signed into law. Who knew that? Certainly not very many Ohioans, if they prefer the inept and incompetent Strickland. (Strickland’s backing is almost all from outside OH, left-leaning Democratic money—no surprise.)
The equation is simple: ROB PORTMAN=GOOD, TED STRICKLAND=BAD….end of story.
FROM CONGRESSMAN STEVE STIVERS
Earlier this year, we reached a dubious milestone in American history -- our national debt topped $19 trillion dollars. That means to pay it off today, each and every taxpayer would be on the hook for more than $161,000. We need a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution to restrict the federal government from spending more than it takes in. It will rein in out-of-control spending in Washington and force government to live within its means, just like Ohio families do.
IS THIS WHO YOU WANT IN THE WHITE HOUSE? —PART I
CLINTON: CARELESS AND CORRUPT—CANDIDATE STILL FAVORED BY MANY OF AMERICA’S MISGUIDED OR MISINFORMED (OR TOTALLY UNIFORMED/IGNORANT)
This came from a friend who is a former FBI agent. His explanation is the most plausible I’ve heard for my Director Comey did what he did.
“… you and I both know that Lynch would have declined to prosecute HRC based upon the exact same reasons that Comey stated on Tuesday. The difference would have been, she would not have outlined everything that HRC did in a 15 minute gut spilling statement like Comey did on Tuesday.
Not only was the announcement of the FBI's recommendation unprecedented, so was the detailed presentation of everything HRC did. I believe that he did that so that the American public would be able to compare what she did to what she told the American public she did -- prior to pulling the lever in November. Trump was provided with a great deal of campaign fodder and I am sure he will make good use of it.
If Comey had recommended prosecution, he could not have laid the case open like he did because it would have poisoned any jury prior to trial. He would have simply said in a very short statement, "We have submitted the case to the DOJ for prosecution." Lynch would never have given us all the information that he did. She would have simply said "We are not going to prosecute because the facts do not warrant prosecution," and it would have taken years for the public to get all the facts of the case through FOIA requests, etc. In fact, the information would have been redacted so much that we probably would never have known.
I suspect HRC is furious that Comey let all the cats out of the bag. I also believe that if the Bureau had been able to determine that her account was hacked - especially by our enemies - that there would have been a different outcome. Basically, it was no discovered harm, no criminal foul. If she were still employed, the State Department would have been forced to take disciplinary action.”
Comey also tipped off the House members in his followup questioning that the FBI had never questioned Hillary about whether she lied (about her emails, etc.I during the Benghazi investigation testimony to Congress. That was under to and that would be perjury. When asked why they hadn’t questioner her on that, Comey calmly told them that Congress had not referred that testimony to the FBI for investigation. You better believe they did ASAP—the very next day.
IS THIS WHO YOU WANT IN THE WHITE HOUSE? —PART II
FROM THE WEEK.COM 6/24/2016
I could never vote for the dangerous demagogue Donald Trump, said Peter Wehner, but let’s face it: Hillary Clinton is “an ethical disaster.” It’s not just the email scandal, though we now know that “virtually everything Clinton has said about her private email server was a lie.” Liberal law professor Jonathan Turley has dug up a new damning story: Laureate International Universities, a for-profit school, paid Bill Clinton an obscene $16.5 million from 2010 to 2014 to be its “honorary chancellor”—a time when Hillary’s State Department funneled $55 million in grants to groups linked to Laureate’s CEO, who also is a donor to the Clinton Foundation. That’s what you call a circle of corruption.
In another embarrassing report, ABC News revealed last week that then–Secretary Clinton’s top aide appointed Rajiv Fernando, a Chicago high-speed securities trader, to a top-secret intelligence advisory board on nuclear security in 2011, even though he had no background in the field. Why? He was a major donor to the Clinton Foundation and Clinton campaigns. Dating back to Arkansas, “the Clintons have habitually used their political power to inappropriately enrich themselves,” and “to get around the rules that others are expected to live by.”
THINK YOU KNOW ABOUT AMERICA? I DID—BUT I HAD TO CHECK MYSELF ON A FEW OF THESE—ESPECIALLY DATES
This simple test is one that most American youth should know, but couldn’t pass. Neither could most American voters.
I wonder how many High School teachers could pass it—including those who teach American History?
America—1776-2016—How Well Do You Know It?
(NO GOOGLE USAGE!)
1) Who were the Founding Fathers?
2) What was the Revolutionary War fought about? And when?
3) What two documents were essential in the USA creation?
4) What are the three branches of the US Federal Government?
5) What are the two Houses of Congress, and how many members are in each, from where?
6) Who fought in the Civil War, about what, and when? Who was president then & who “won" that war?
7) Who fought in WW-II about what, when, and who “won?"
8) What was the Cold War? Who was fighting it, over what? Who “won?” When was that?
9) Who are: Vladimir Lenin, Josef Stalin, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Saddam Hussein, Moammar Gadhafi, Bashar el-Assad & Hafez el-Assad?
10) Who were the last three Presidents? Who is the current Vice President? Who is the Speaker of the House now, and who preceded him?
11) Who are JFK, RFK and MLK? What do they have in common?
12) What is the Electoral College and what does it do?
1) George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, James Madison, James Monroe & Benjamin Franklin.
2) America’s freedom from England, 1775-1783
3) The Declaration of Independence (1776) and the Constitution (1788)
4) Legislative (Congress: makes laws), Executive (President: executes laws), and Judicial (Supreme Court: decides if legal per the Constitution)
5) The House-435 members proportional to population of states, Senate-100 members 2/state
6) North (states) vs. South (Confederate), rights & slavery, 1861-1865, Abe Lincoln, North won, slavery was abolished
7) Great Britain/USA vs. Germany & then Japan (desperation, mostly-Russia flipped/both sides), Democracy vs. Nazism (Fascism) Dictatorship, GB, Euro/US, NA won. 1940’s (A-bomb Hiroshima, Japan)
8) Mostly USA vs. USSR, Democracy/Capitalism vs. Communism, USA, 1970 & 1980’s
9) All dictators of varying kinds: Communist, Fascist, or Radical Islamic.
10) Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama; Joe Biden; Paul Ryan preceded by John Boehner, preceded by Nancy Pelosi (Speaker of the house is third in line of presidential succession.)
11) John Kennedy, his brother Robert Kennedy and Rev. Martin Luther King—all three were highly regarded American leaders. All three were assassinated. King was most highly revered black leader.
12) It elects the president. 538 “electors” chosen on votes cast and who wins by state. The number of electors equals the number of members in a state’s Congressional delegation (House Reps., + 2 Senators). Electors cast their votes to elect the president. 270 electoral votes wins.
A FEW FINAL TIDBITS ON HOW YOUR WORLD IS CHANGING
$1.2 billion was loaded onto Starbucks cards and its mobile app during the 1Q of 2016. That’s more than a lot of mid-size financial institutions’ deposits.
Instagram now reaches 500 million people each month and users share 95 million photos EACH DAY! 80% of Instagram users live outside the USA.
Facebook is now the favorite of the over 40 crowd. The younger folks have moved on to Instagram and Snapchat. Twitter is still broadly popular.
GETTING OUT THE VOTE IS CRITICAL TO KEEPING HILLARY CLINTON OUT OF THE WHITE HOUSE
Democrats have perfected the ability to get out the vote of the uninformed, often (nearly) illiterate, and easily-influenced welfare minorities. They have also managed to sell many of the naive American youth on the fact that Socialism (presented under the guise of “progressive-ism”) is a viable system of government (Bernie Sanders pitch). Because they have been raised without the real world influences of “competing,” “winning/losing” and being responsible for themselves and their actions—they think government should “take care of them.” That’s a perfect lead-in to Obama’s “Nanny-state” form of welfare state. Government knows best, and it will take care of those who are unable or unwilling to take care of themselves. Hillary’s plan is to keep it going and growing.
LAST: THE SORE LOSERS HURTING AMERICA
I’m disappointed in OH Governor John Kasich. I expected better of him than to stand on “his principles” even if it means handing the White House to Hillary Clinton. I thought he was more of a pragmatic realist than that. (I’m disgusted with the Bush family too…but not surprised…after Jeb’s failure.)
It’s very simple. Whether you are a fan or Trump’s or not, any vote that is not for Donald Trump is in essence a vote FOR “Crooked” Hillary Clinton.
DO NOT LET THE MAINSTREAM LIBERAL MEDIA’S DISTORTION OF TRUMP MISLEAD YOU.
In virtually every imaginable situation, I’m willing to trust what a President Trump will do over what a President Hillary Clinton would do. Think about it. He may be unpredictable. She is predictable—she’s an untrustworthy liar! She will continue Barack Obama’s destruction of the United States of America—by loading the Supreme Court with activist liberal justices.
IN CASE YOU WONDERED HOW I FEEL ABOUT IT ALL…
THE ENTERPRISE—THINGS THAT MAKE ME GO “WHY?” & A BONUS FEATURE
FIRST A BELATED HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY TO ALL
NEXT, THERE ARE PLENTY OF PEOPLE WRITING ABOUT FBI DIRECTOR COMEY’S INCREDIBLE DECISION NOT TO PURSUE A HILLARY CLINTON INDICTMENT
There are only a few things I can think of to say. One requires only three letters—WTF? I suspect you know what these letters stand for. After Comey’s build up litany own Hillary’s flagrantly irresponsible actions, few people comprehend his conclusion not to indict her. The one word from the movie The Princess Bride comes to mind: “Inconceivable!” At least the American voting public should now know—beyond any doubt—the character, veracity and UN-trustworthiness of this woman. To those who still support her, I can only feel bad for them. They are as misguided as Hillary is crooked and unprincipled. Not far behind is the president who sang her praises after hearing (he knew already) about her transgressions. He, too, is culpable, as is Hillary’s husband, former president “Slick Willy” Clinton and his acolyte Loretta Lynch. OK, I’ve gone on too long. Take time to go “hurl” and come back for new content.
HOW DOES OBAMA GET AWAY WITH IT?
From Richard Benedetto’s fine piece in the WSJ, )5/20/2016: “…he is a deft manipulator of the media, probably more skillful than any president either” Since the media is 75-90% left leaning liberals, they happily let Obama manipulate them. “He heads a savvy public-relations machine that markets him like a Hollywood celebrity a role he obligingly and successfully plays.” The Obama years have been economic stagnation, and a decline in the standard of living of the very constituents who voted him into office twice. Welfare rolls have grown and more giveaway programs exist than every before. Income redistribution in the name of phony ”fairness,” is one of Barack Obama’s core competencies. “…Obama is the beneficiary of news-media managers and reporters who mostly like his style and agree with his policies, …
CAN TRUMP WIN? YES, HE CAN. THERE ARE MANY REASONS WHY.
These quotes are from Philadelphia Daily News columnist Christine Flowers:
I vowed I would never vote for Donald Trump. I have written at last count, seven columns explaining why he repulses me… And yet, of course, the rest of this column will be devoted to why, barring a deus ex machina named Paul Ryan, I will be voting for him in November. The reason I am turning hypocrite of the highest order at an epidermal level, is to keep myself from becoming a hypocrite at the deepest level of consciousness. I cannot put Hillary Clinton in a position to shape the Supreme Court. … What I cannot do, as I realized this week, is live in world where women who have just been told that they can terminate their pregnancies much more easily than they can acquire a tattoo. …What has changed is my determination not to vote for Trump. That’s because it is not enough not to vote for Clinton….Currently, the only thing standing between Clinton and the court is Trump.”
I cannot put it any more intensely than this fine woman writer has stated it.
HERE ARE TWO SCENARIOS IN WHICH TRUMP MIGHT EKE OUT A WIN—BUT IT WON’T BE EASY—BECAUSE THE OBAMA ELECTION “MACHINE" WILL BE BACKING HILLARY
SCANDALS TO THE RIGHT OF HER, SCANDALS TO HER LEFT, AND SHE’S CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE AGAIN
The Benghazi scandal alone was enough proof of Hillary’s ineptitude and disdain of the lofty position she held—and human lives that depended on it, Now comes the avalanche of FBI findings on her emails showing a similar disdain for the rules of her office and for the security of the nation. Indictment or not, Hillary is obviously guilty on all counts—in both scandals. We have not yet seen an investigation into the Clinton Foundation, a massive “pay for privileges/influence” entity and a money laundering tool that makes RICO attorneys drool. And these is only a small partial list of her lies and transgressions. She is truly a reprehensible human being, and I can only hope that the American voters are willing to swallow hard at Trump’s flaws and vote for him, to avoid making a worse choice by far.
(FYI—Hillary’s reference to putting Bill in charge of the economy ignores the fact that his apparent second term success was an illusion created by the dot-com boom & then bust. The tax revenues that created a Clintonian surplus were as much of an illusion as the dot-com profits on which they were based. Nearly all of these tax returns were restated and reversed in the years following Clinton’s departure, causing grave harm to the US economy.)
FOR ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF HOW THE CLINTON’S ILLICIT DEALINGS INFECT MORE AND MORE PLACES—READ THIS:
BONUS FEATURE: THIS LEAD-IN PREPARES YOU FOR A SUMMARY (WITH LOTS OF EXCERPTS) OF A NEW “BOOKLET”
WHY IS THE WORLD SO DANGEROUS? BY HERB MEYER,
SO WHO IS HERB MEYER ANYWAY?
I met Herb several years back and listened to him speak a few times on what he saw happening in America and the world. He was sobering, sometimes scary but always impressive. Herb is widely recognized in government circles as the first high-level US government official to predict the fall of the Soviet Union and the Berlin Wall. That was in 1983 when Herb was Vice Chairman of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council under President Ronald Reagan. He was awarded the US National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, the Intelligence Community’s highest honor. You can find Herb’s prior works on amazon.com.
This is his latest thinking….just for readers of THE ENTERPRISE, but this is just a “sampler,” because it rest of it is contained in its entirety his new booklet, WHY IS THE WORLD SO DANGEROUS, which is for sale either on-line or from his company at: http://www.stormkingpress.com (Where volume discounts are available.)
Rather than “just pick quotes” out of Herb’s booklet, I’ll explain the essence of his message, and punctuate it with considerable excerpts quoting his words. (Herb wrote the original version of this as a Top Secret Memorandum to the Director of Central Intelligence, in 1983.) He feels the world is so dangerous is that changes in our culture have made the USA into a different country, and Americans into a different people. Yes, Iran & N. Korea’s nukes, ISIS and terrorism, and Russia and China’s expansions are descriptions of dangers we face, but not the explanations.
Herb describes the situation in those days:
“From the end of World War II all the way to 1980, the free world strategy had been to play defense.”… "Pres. Reagan believed that wasn’t good enough”. … “Simply put we threw the switch from playing defense to playing offense.” …We begin waging an economic war against the Russians.”… “…the CIA through a monkey wrench into the KGB efforts to steal western technology.”… We began a massive military buildup of the US Armed Forces.”… “Pres. Reagan and the Pope launched a moral offensive against the very idea of communism.”… “… talking openly about the evils of Communism and faith in God and an enormous impact on ordinary people.” …”
It was neither easy nor free of risks:
“There were a few seriously threatening US-Soviet military crises that even now are too secret to talk about—confrontations that pushed us toward what are known in those days as DEFCON ONE, which is as close to pressing the nuclear button as you ever want to come. It was against this background that I wrote Why is the World so Dangerous…. I wrote that we needed to be optimistic… I predicted that if the current trend continued we could win the Cold War. We did.
Then things started to change:
"What happened next wasn’t so terrific after decades of waging war American voters were exhausted politically emotionally and above all, financially. We wanted to stop spending so much money on defense and to start spending our so-called peace dividend on issues that mattered more to us such as education,healthcare, and the environment.” … In 1992 we elected as our president a man who had no experience in the global arena and not much interest in dealing with international issues. In effect we turned our back on the world.”… But the world didn’t turn its back on us.” All through the 1990s the level of global violence rose as al Qaeda gathered strength and launched attacks.”… Our holiday from history ended catastrophically on 9/11.”
Fast forward to today and resume Herb’s narrative:
“… after more than a dozen years of combat and thousands of casualties the terrorist threat is greater than it was on 9/11. And the other problems we’re facing back in 2001 haven’t gone away in fact they’ve grown worse.”… “Outlining what’s wrong is easy;… “…the problems we’re facing are obvious. The hard part is explaining why so many things are going wrong for us.”
At this point Herb inserts a metaphorical story to help readers understand better and then he explains what’s gone wrong— and why
“… if you’re looking for what college professors would call the “root cause” of the queasy feeling we all have that something has gone very wrong—that our future and our children’s future may be bleak—look in the mirror, Reader we’ve done this to ourselves.” …” There are tens of millions of us—probably including you—who work hard and play by the rules that have guided our Judeo-Christian civilization for centuries.” “… over the last few decades there’ve been a steady rise in the number of Americans who aren't like this. Instead of working hard, they avoid work and find ways of gaming the system to keep themselves going. They don’t play by the rules”… “…they think these rules are silly so they shouldn’t be bound by them.” “They feel they have a right to good fortune and Instead of being grateful for what they’ve got, they’re angry because someone else has more.” …”They don’t love the United States. They actually believe our country is responsible for most of the world’s problems, and so they’re embarrassed to be Americans.”
By now I think you get the drift of Herb’s diagnosis of what’s gone wrong, and is getting worse in the USA. He cites lifestyle statistics to support his conclusions.
“Marriage has become an alternate lifestyle.” “… fifty percent of American adults aren’t married.” “…40% of births are to unwed mothers.” “ … just over 43% of American children are growing up in homes without fathers.” “Every month 25 million Americans over the age of 12—that’s 9% of our population—use an illegal drug.” “Even working has become an alternative lifestyle. The total percentage of Americans who work is at a 37 year low of 62 percent, and today there are 93 million of us who don’t hold steady jobs.” …”Fewer and fewer of us are supporting more and more of us and the widespread attitude among those who aren’t working for those of us who work isn’t gratitude. It’s a sullen outrage…”
By now, I hope you really want to get Herb’s booklet and read it all. It’s not costly…$5 for paper and $3 for an ebook, and if you want to buy more than 25 to share with others, he’ll offer a 50% discount.
I want to share some of his conclusions but not all of them, because you need to read his words to get the full weight of his thoughts. We’ve gone from a culture that values “hard thinking”—(facing problems squarely to deal with them) to one that tolerates and even celebrates “soft thinking”—(emotions/feelings matter more than intellect, and blaming someone else is common.) Thus we have elected too many incompetent leaders whose policies make no sense, and are incompatible with a free market, competitive society. This kind of soft-thinking has also infected policies, both domestic and foreign, and cost the US the respect of the world.
Herb emphasizes the lessons of the past. You cannot win by playing defense. The only way to win is to play offense. And the only country in the world, big enough, and strong enough to make the world a safer place by playing offense is the USA. We must regain the world’s lost respect—and its admiration. America used to be the world’s role model. Working class and middle class Americans didn’t resent those who were successful—they admired them and aspired to be like them. Now we struggle with class warfare, worsened by soft thinking and misguided leaders in our schools, especially college campuses, which become breeding grounds for discontent.
Herb closes with this a question—and answer. “Why is the world so dangerous? Because the United States has gone from being its undisputed leader to just another big country.” The picture seems bleak, but "the Cold War taught us, Americans never give up." We’ve done it before and we’ll do it again. But we need strong, competent hard-thinking leaders. It won’t be easy, but nothing good is ever easy.
THAT’S IT…NOW IF ONLY I COULD MAGICALLY PUT HERB’S THOUGHTS INTO THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF MILLIONS OF AMERICANS—AND ESPECIALLY YOUNG AMERICANS—COMING OUT OF THE MUDDLED COLLEGE CAMPUSES WITH THEIR SOFT-THINKING LIBERAL FACULTY.
MAYBE YOU CAN HELP—FIRST, PASS ALONG THIS EDITION OF THE ENTERPRISE TO A WIDER AUDIENCE THAN USUAL—THEN BUY COPIES OF HERB’S BOOKLET AND PUT IT INTO THE HANDS OF OTHERS WHO WOULD APPRECIATE ITS MESSAGE. https://www.amazon.com/Why-World-Dangerous-Herb-Meyer-ebook/dp/B01FL1XJGO/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1467845800&sr=1-1&keywords=why+is+the+world+so+dangerous#navbar
It’s ironic that I choose to close with the words of an old US ally, Sir Winston Churchill, but they are as appropriate as ever. “Never, never, never give up.” America has been in tough times before, and America can be great again.
PS: If this sounds more like the message you’d hear from Donald Trump than from Hillary Clinton, that is no coincidence.
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THE ENTERPRISE—WHAT NEXT PART II—INSIGHTS FROM OTHERS
SEE MY LATEST ON-LINE POSTS AT THEDAILYJOURNALIST.COM, AND SPECIFICALLY AT THIS LINK: http://thedailyjournalist.com/?s=John+Mariotti&x=0&y=0
TheDailyJournalist.com was founded by an Ohio State grad, Jaime Ortega a few short years ago. He has an extensive network of contributors, and I decided to add some of my writing to his site. Go see it (not just my pieces, but you are welcome to read them too), but the broad range of topics, writers, and material. In an era when things are evolving at breakout speed, when global reach is both easy and mandatory, and when perspectives from multiple generations matter so much, these sites will become increasingly valuable resources.
FOR THOSE WHO CARE ABOUT WHAT CONSUMERS ARE THINKING AND DOING, HERE’S THE LINK FOR YOU http://www.consumersnapshot.com
My friends and colleagues at Big Insight/Prosper Group still produce some of the most accurate and insightful material available. Their network of about 8000 consumers surveyed every month gives them an accuracy (very low margin of error—like 1%) that is seldom seen in surveys that make headlines—with 4-5% margin of error. Check it out and click on some other links on the site. You will be impressed. If you want to speak with them about becoming a “subscriber,” and get the ability to sort, slice, dissect and analyze the data they gather, and most of all have them put what you want into one of their “Insight Centers” on a regular basis, let me know and I’ll connect you to the right person(s). This is as close as you can come to actually predicting the future. http://www.consumersnapshot.com
DO YOU HAVE ENOUGH THINGS TO WORRY ABOUT?
The prospect of Hillary Clinton in the White House is surpassed only by the threat of the ultimate kind of attack—not a cyberattack, which is very, very bad—but an attack with an EMP (Electro Magnetic Pulse) device, which literally destroys (permanently) all unprotected electronics of any kind in the area of the attack. These were discovered as a by-product of nuclear testing (which creates big EMPs) and they also can occur as a result of extreme sunspot activity—of which there is about a 10% chance of occurring in the next decade. Nothing electrical or electronic will work at all: the Power Grid, the Internet, GPS systems, ATMs, and satellites, and every form of communications, and electronics in cars, computers, homes, businesses, utilities—all of it—is wiped out by a powerful EMP. Even toilets and drinking water probably won’t work because the water companies pumps would be useless.
It’s not easy to mount such an attack. It takes a lot of power, but no more than a rather smallish nuke, detonated at altitude, over an important city. Nor is it wise to attack with these if you want to occupy the attacked areas, since an EMP totally and permanently cripples all electronics in the target area, rendering it all useless—and the occupants desperate. The saddest thing is that the US Congress has known for several years that for an investment of between $2-5 billion, the critical parts of the Power Grid and other systems in the USA can be “hardened.” That means surrounded by a Faraday Cage (a technical name for a specially designed metal mesh box). The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy calls it a “real and present danger.”
WHY ISN’T ANYTHING BEING DONE TO PROTECT OUR COUNTRY FROM EMPs?
Because we are worried about which gender uses which bathroom? Because our leaders are more concerned about Middle Eastern refugees than about 325 million Americans? I don’t know. Someone has their head up their … well a “very dark place.” To give some credit, the Obama administration has taken a few baby steps to protect some agin satellites and high voltage transformers—but nothing else except commission more studies about what to do. Duh? This is one where you can write, call or email your Congressional Representatives and Senators and push them for bi-partisan action. Do it now.
DUMBING DOWN OF AMERICAN EDUCATION AND EDUCATORS
The State Board of Education in OH—my home state—recently lowered scores needed to meet state standards on two high-school math tests. Why? Because they were “too tough,” particularly for poor, disadvantaged students. I didn’t know being poor meant the human brain didn’t work right. Perhaps its more about motivation than education? In recent years, major big name colleges were guilty of “grade inflation,” giving students higher grades to avoid the ire of parents and donors because some people didn’t get all A’s and B’s. The best one yet was when a group of students at Oberlin College (here in OH again) want to have all grades below C eliminated, so they can spend less time studying and more time demonstrating about social issues.
LIBERAL CONTROL OF ACADEMIA AND THE MEDIA IS “OUT OF CONTROL”
After decades of increasingly liberal faculty and administrators in schools at all levels, the insanity is growing. Poor performing teachers are protected by lax tenure rules and aggressive teacher’s unions. Meanwhile, teacher in inner cities are in danger of personal injuries or worse from students that they are prevented from disciplining—or sending off the detention—at the local jail. WSJ wrier Jason Riley was recently “Disinvited” from a campus speaking event. Read about this in his own words. He closes this article with these words: “We’ve reached the point where conservatives must have their campus speakers pre approved by left-wing pressure groups. If progressives aren’t already in control of academia, they’re pretty close.”
THE BRILLIANT THOMAS SOWELL ALSO WEIGHS IN “Young graduates need to experience the world off campus”
I encourage you to read these .pdf files that are the words of brilliant (and coincidentally, black men) commenting on how far off base our academic institutions and leadership has gone. Depending on the report you read, 75 to 90% of the people in academia are “liberal,” and many of them are “far left leaning” because they are protected by their tenure and their institutions. They are poisoning the minds of students across America with a terribly slanted perspective of what’s right and wrong in our society, our social systems, our government and our private sector. One of Sowell’s comments in the article posted below was, “Two themes seem to dominate commencement speeches. One is shameless self-advertising by people in government, or in related organizations supported by the taxpayers or donors, saying how nobler it is to be in “public service” than working in business or other “selfish” activities. In other words, the message is that it is morally superior to be in organizations consuming output produced by others than to be in organizations which produce that output. … The second theme….is to flatter the graduates that they are now equipped to go out into the world as “leaders” who can prescribe how other people should live.” Read the whole OpEd piece for more, equally incisive comments.
GEORGE WILL CITES FORMER INDIANA GOV, AND NOW PURDUE PRESIDENT, MITCH DANIELS—WHO GETS IT RIGHT!
Will is such a skilled writer that I won’t do more than introduce his OpEd piece and tell you that it is so right; that Mitch Daniels gets it so right, it is a must read, and must share.
HOW DID ALL THE LIBERALS GET INTO ACADEMIA AND MEDIA?
I clearly recall an answer to this question when I posed it to someone knowledgeable about where college graduates go to work. The message was this. The graduates finishing in the top half of classes predominantly are hired by the private sector: businesses, who can and do pay higher salaries for the best and the brightest. In these jobs, wealth is created, global innovations are created, and the free enterprise based economic development of the USA was created and is sustained in spite of forces trying to tear it down. Graduates ranking in the lower half of the classes head to places where they get paid far less (because of their lower academic ranking) but in which they can have a disproportionate amount of power and influence compared to their intellectual prowess (at least as demonstrated by their college class rank.)
Do some brilliant people from the top half go into academia and media? Sure they do I just cited a couple of them. Do some of the lower ranking graduates make their way into business jobs? Of course. Exceptions exist to every rule or trend. BUT…think about President Barack Obama’s example. He became a community organizer and a part time adjunct law professor. Did he sacrifice a cushy, big bucks legal job? Maybe? Or maybe he wasn’t up for the competition in the big leagues of the legal profession, so he defaulted to where his voice would have disproportionate influence with a less educated segment of society. Is tenure one of the remnants of bygone centuries that has morphed from a tool to protect the brilliant from meddlers, to a tool to protect the mediocre from discovery and rejection You decide.
Stay tuned for an exciting next edition. I received an early copy of a booklet—20 very impressive pages—from friend Herb Meyer, the former Vice Chairman of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council under President Ronald Reagan. Meyer was the first highly ranked government official to foresee and predict the fall of the Berlin Wall. His book let is entitled: Why is the World So Dangerous? Next edition I’ll tease you with excerpts and tell you where you can get copies to read and share.
PLEASE USE NEW EMAIL ADDRESS: firstname.lastname@example.org
See my prior commentary at http://www.brennerbrief.com/author/johnmariotti/ and my latest commentary at
THE ENTERPRISE—WHAT COMES NEXT? PART I
Record 94,708,000 Americans Not in Labor Force; Participation Rate Drops in May by Susan Jones | published on June 3, 2016
A record 94,708,000 Americans were not in the labor force in May — 664,000 more than in April — and the labor force participation rate dropped two-tenths of a point to 62.6 percent, near its 38-year low, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday. When President Obama took office in January 2009, 80,529,000 Americans were not participating in the labor force; since then, 14,179,000 Americans have left the workforce — some of them retiring and some just quitting because they can’t find work. “By almost every economic measure, America is better off than when I came here at the beginning of my presidency,” President Obama told the people of Elkhart, Indiana three days ago. “We cut unemployment in half, years before a lot of economists thought we would.” The unemployment rate in May dropped to 4.7 percent, BLS reported, less than half of its Obama-era high of 10 percent in October 2009.
So, here's a great piece of trivia that puts the pitfalls of decision-making into perspective. Soccer goalkeepers trying to block a penalty kick can't wait until the ball is kicked to figure out how to block it; he or she will simply not have enough time to respond. The keeper has to make a decision on what part of the net to protect before the ball is kicked. You'd think that in this sort of set up the odds are 50/50; but they are not. Over 80% of penalty kicks score according to research at Ben-Guriono University in Israel. They reason for this is very counter intuitive but it tells us a lot about how decisions are made, especially in fast moving situations. According to the Ben-Guriono research, it turns out that the best way to stop a penalty kick is to just stay in the center of the net. But that's rarely what keepers do. When asked why they instead pick a side to jump to, in order to block the kick, keepers said that they felt much worse about goals that scored when they stayed in the center and didn't take action than those that scored when they did take action, by jumping to one side or the other. In other words the bias towards action rather than inaction was more compelling than the actual results! The same thing happens in most organizations; we take action even when the action is unnecessary.
The reality is that good decision-making is a simple matter of sticking to some very basic guidelines, while everyone else wants to take a shortcut and just take action—any action. In my experience, the vast majority of decisions are actually non-decisions; they appear in the guise of a problem that has to be solved when the apparent problem actually has nothing to do the root cause of the issue at hand. For example, deciding how to streamline a process that shouldn't even exist to begin with. It’s like spending time and money to tune your car's engine so that it gets an extra five miles to the gallon when you only use it to drive two miles a day. This sort of decision overload leads to too much time in meetings, misallocation of resources, investment in outdated systems and processes, and ultimately a dysfunctional culture that feeds off of the need to overanalyze everything, no matter how insignificant. The reason for this poor organizational pathology is that people like to take action because it makes them feel as though they are creating value. Your role, as a leader, is to make sure that you and your organization don't get sucked into the black hole of decision-making just because it feels like progress.
The good news is that you can develop great decision-making skills just by asking three simple questions whenever you find yourself in a situation where a decision has to be made.
Question #1—Why are we making this decision?
The first and most important question to ask when making any decision is "Why are we doing this?" To use the keeper analogy, do we really have to move to block the shot? That sounds so incredibly simplistic that it is the easiest step to avoid. That's also why it's the hardest question to ask; everyone assumes the "why" is obvious, making it frustrating to even consider answering Why. Yet, this is one of the core techniques of the Six Sigma methodology, which suggests asking "why: at least five times in order to identify the root cause of an issue. Many decisions are masked in layers of complexity that need to pealed away in order to address the actual problem or opportunity. Yet, our instinct is to take action and solve the problem at hand. In these cases, like the goalkeeper, we are moving back and forth from side to side to create an illusion of action that makes us feel productive when it actually does nothing for the organization's effectiveness and bottom line. Learning to ask Why so that you can simply move beyond these time sinks may be one of the most critical skills you can develop and impart to your colleagues.
Question #2—When do we need to make this decision by?
The second temptation is always to go from Why to How. The problem is that How is almost always dependent on When. One of my favorite examples is the scene in Apollo 13 when the brilliant engineers at NASA have to figure out how to build a makeshift CO2 scrubber using duct tape, users manuals, and whatever else was available onboard the ill-fated orbiter and lunar lander. Given unlimited time they could easily have built many versions, tested each one, and refined the design to work perfectly. But they had minutes not hours to decide. Even in that scenario you can imagine at least one engineer saying, "But if we could just get a few more minutes this would be perfect! Can someone just ask the astronauts to hold their breath?"Whether you like it or not, the time you have to decide will determine the degree to which you can be creative about gathering and analyzing the variables involved in the decision. Often, just standing your ground is the best action to take, even thought it may feel like you're not in motion.
By the time you finally get to this question you know that the decision has both merit and a time constraint. The issue now is how to go about making the best decision possible. Great leaders make sure their team knows what the parameters of the decision are and keeps the team within those boundaries, while reassuring them that time and resources will rarely be adequate to anticipate all the repercussion of most decisions. The key isn’t predicting the future, but surviving it.
The Prescription: Do yourself a favor and try these three steps for the next two weeks. While I can’t guarantee the outcomes of your decision, I can assure you that not only will your ability to make decisions improve significantly, but you'll also become a much more effective leader in the process. Game on!
THE ANSWER TO ALL THOSE WHO HAVE ASKED, OR WONDERED…
I plan to vote for anyone who opposes Hillary Clinton (which probably means Donald Trump), as long as that person is alive and has a pulse.
While Hillary may know plenty about how a president is supposed to operate and govern, there is much more to the decision than that.
Hillary is a proven liar, an un-indicted, multi-offense criminal a two-faced, incompetent leader, and a truly reprehensible person, who will stoop to anything to achieve her goals and further her ambitions.
That record simply “ disqualifies” her from being president in my book. If we had know what Barack Obama really was—if he hadn’t completely hidden everything about his background (and his wife’s, and if he had been prohibited from lying about everything he would do during his campaign)—he would never have become president.
It is entirely possible that the most important legacy Obama left was to show us that an unqualified impostor—a fabricated candidate—who appealed to the downtrodden, the naive and the socialists in America can actually get elected and serve as America’s president. The retrospective will chronicle the immense damage he has done to America, and for Hillary to follow him and his path, will simply further cripple the USA. This is one time, I am glad I’m old—and that reduces the time I will have to see my country, under Hillary, in terminal decline.
Those who question Donald Trump should pause to consider that their objections arise because this time, we know “too much” about the candidate’s past—and yet we know little or nothing about how he will lead American in the (remote) chance that he is elected. We only know the actions and rash statements he made during his candidacy thus far. Whether those are his true, and final positions remains to be seen.
I predict that should Trump actually be elected, the mantle of power and responsibility weighs do heavily on the person, that it changes them. It moderates their extremes. It rules their ambitions to accomplish their stated goal. For Obama it was “To fundamentally change the United States.” (We didn’t realize he meant for the worse.) Trump’s goal, “To make America great again,” holds so much more promise.
And that’s where I stand as of May 5, 2016. When circumstances change, my views (and Donald’s) may change.
IF YOU DON’T WANT TO BE DEPRESSED, YOU MAY WANT TO SKIP THIS: THE SCARY FACT ABOUT PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS (FOR REPUBLICANS)
As Donald Trump becomes the assumptive nominee for Republicans in 2106, reality strikes—and reality “bites” too.
For Trump to have a chance at winning, he must do something few other candidates have done…turn the Electoral College map upside down. Read on….
Why the outcome of the 2016 election is already crystal clear by Paul Waldman
in The Week.com
The general election between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump promises to be one of the weirdest, nastiest, and most fascinating cultural/political events of any of our lifetimes. So bear with me for a little while as I suck all the life out of it and explain why it's actually going to be pretty simple. The likely outcome, while not completely preordained, is already clear to see.
That's because of the strange and rather undemocratic feature of our presidential voting system known as the Electoral College. While an essay in favor of eliminating it will have to wait for another day, the key fact about the college is that it makes the race matter only in those states where both sides have some chance of winning, what we usually call the "battleground" states. There aren't very many of them, and even before the general election begins — i.e., even before Republicans nominate Donald Trump, perhaps the most unpopular major party nominee in history — the Democratic nominee has a serious advantage.
Let's take the last four elections, two won by Barack Obama and two won by George W. Bush, as our starting point. There were 17 states (plus D.C.) that Democrats won in all four of those elections: California, Oregon, and Washington in the West; Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan in the Midwest; and everything in the Northeast from Maryland on up, with the exception of New Hampshire. Just those states give the Democrats 242 of the 270 electoral votes they need to take the White House.
The Republicans, on the other hand, won 22 states in all four of those elections, covering parts of the Deep South, the Midwest, and the Mountain West, plus Alaska. But those states only add up to 180 electoral votes.
While there are a few states in those two groups where things might become competitive — Republicans will contest Wisconsin, and Democrats think they have a chance in Arizona, for instance — the truth is that even in this unusual election year, none of them are likely to flip. Donald Trump could strangle a puppy on live television and he would still win Idaho and Mississippi; Hillary Clinton could make Martin Shkreli her running mate and she'd still win California and Massachusetts. But if any of those states do change, it's likely to be in Clinton's direction, given Trump's unpopularity.
That Democratic advantage, 242-180 at the outset, may be the single most important pair of numbers to understand in determining the ultimate outcome of the race. What it means is that Donald Trump will have to not just do well in swing states, he'll have to sweep almost all of them in order to win.
Here's a revealing comparison. In 2004, George W. Bush beat John Kerry by 2.5 percentage points nationwide — close, but compared to the 2000 election, a relatively easy victory. In doing so, he took the swing states of Florida, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina, Iowa, Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico. The only true swing state Kerry won was New Hampshire. Yet Bush won the Electoral College by a margin of only 35 electoral votes, 286-251.
Contrast that with 2012, when Barack Obama beat Mitt Romney by 4 percentage points — a little more comfortable than Bush's 2004 win, but not hugely different. On the state level, Obama bested Bush's 2004 results only by taking New Hampshire. Yet Obama's margin in the Electoral College was enormous: 332-206, or 126 votes.
If Hillary Clinton starts with those 242 electoral votes, she only needs 28 more to win. As it happens, Florida has 29 electoral votes, so she could win there, lose every other swing state, and still win. Or she could take Virginia (13 EVs) and North Carolina (15 EVs) and lose all the others. Or she could take Ohio (18), New Hampshire (4), and Iowa (6) and lose all the others. Or...well, you get the idea. There are a whole variety of ways Clinton could win, while Trump has to run the table.
That isn't to say that the national result doesn't matter; it's only been in the rarest of circumstances (like 2000) that the total vote and the electoral vote pointed in opposite directions. But by now few people are saying that Donald Trump has such fantastic appeal to working class white men that he can steal states in the Midwest, or tap some heretofore unnoticed vein of votes. And you can forget about the momentary disgruntlement from supporters of Bernie Sanders playing a major role; in November, Clinton will retain the votes of nearly all Democrats. Barack Obama got the votes of 92 percent of Democrats in 2012, and she'll be in the same neighborhood.
Will Donald Trump do as well among Republicans? He might, as they realize that the alternative is Clinton, so they might as well go with their party's nominee even if he wasn't their first choice. But Trump only needs to bleed a couple of points in his party for the election to fall well out of his reach.Looking at the election this way can make the daily back-and-forth of the campaign seem unimportant. But that's true only if you think that the final outcome is all that matters. It isn’t; the campaign is an opportunity for us to discuss all kinds of issues and get to know ourselves as a country better, even if we don't always like what we see.
This election will by turns be fascinating, outrageous, appalling, disgusting, disheartening, and perhaps even inspiring. But when it's all over, the chances that anyone will be saying the words "President Trump" are pretty low.
IF YOU ARE NOW REALLY SAD OR DEPRESSED, HERE’S A SERIES OF STATEMENTS THAT MIGHT HELP YOU PICK YOURSELF UP AND GO ON.
THIS LIST REMINDS EVERYONE THAT ONLY YOU CAN CHOOSE HOW YOU FEEL
50 Happiness Quotes to
Change the Way You Think
WRITTEN by ANGEL CHERNOFF
“People are just as happy as they make up their minds Toto be.” ―Abraham Lincoln
It usually isn’t what you have, where you are, or what you’ve
been through that makes you happy or unhappy, it’s how you
think about it all. It starts on the inside. You control your
thoughts. The only person who can hurt your happiness in
the long run is YOU.
Here are 50 thought-provoking quotes about happiness
that will help you think on the bright side.
1 It only takes one person to make you happy and change
your life: YOU.
2 Your life will improve only when you take small chances,
and the first and most difficult chance you can take is to
be honest with yourself.
3 Stop focusing on how stressed you are and remember how
blessed you are. It could be so much worse.
4 It is not what happens to you, but how you respond to what
happens to you. Count your blessings while others are
adding up their troubles.
5 Look for something positive about this moment. Even if
you have to look a little harder than usual, it still exists.
6 When you smile about the life you live, you end up living a
life worth smiling about.
7 Remember, social comparison is the thief of
happiness. You could spend a lifetime worrying about
what others have, but it wouldn’t get you anything.
8 Happiness comes more easily when you feel good about
yourself without feeling the need for anyone else’s
9 Be nice to people on your way up because you might meet
them again on your way back down.
10 Set an example. Treat everyone with kindness and
respect, even those who are rude to you – not because
they are nice, but because you are.
11 Kindness is not to be mistaken for weakness, nor
forgiveness for acceptance. It’s about knowing
resentment of any kind is not on the path to happiness.
12 Give as much as you can, but don’t allow yourself to be
used. Listen to others closely, but don’t lose your own
13 Say what you need to say. Speak your truth. There is
no greater sadness than holding on to the words you
never had the courage to speak.
14 You can’t change how people treat you or what they
say about you. All you can do is change how you react
and who you choose to be around.
15 Negative company will never give you a positive
life. Examine what you tolerate in the long-term.
16 What you allow is what will continue. It’s always better
to spend more time alone than allow negative people
and their opinions to derail you from your destiny.
17 When other people treat you poorly, walk away, smile
and keep being YOU. Don’t ever let someone else’s
bitterness change the person you are.
18 Your value doesn’t decrease based on someone’s
inability to see your worth. It’s their loss, not yours.
19 One of the most freeing things we learn in life is that we
don’t have to like everyone, everyone doesn’t have to
like us, and that’s OK.
20 When someone says, “You’ve changed,” it’s not always
a bad thing. Sometimes it just means you stopped
living your life their way.
21 Never be ashamed of how you feel. You have the right
to feel any emotion that comes to you, and to follow a
path that makes you happy.
22 The unhappiest people in this world are the people who
care the most about what everyone else thinks.
23 You can’t base your idea of success and happiness on
other people’s opinions and expectations.
24 Happiness and success is all about spending your life
in your own way. Be yourself. No one can ever tell you
you’re doing it wrong.
25 It’s always better to be at the bottom of the ladder you
want to climb than the top of the one you don’t.
26 Work to create a life that feels right to YOU, not one
that looks right to everyone else.
27 No amount of money will make you happy if you aren’t
happy with yourself.
28 Maybe the thing you’re scared of is exactly what you
should do. Sometimes life is about risking it all for a
dream no one can see but you.
29 You can’t always wait for the perfect
moment. Sometimes you must dare to do it because
life is too short to regret and wonder what could have
30 The most reliable way to predict the future is to create
31 Nothing’s more fun than doing what people say you
32 Almost anything is possible if you’ve got enough time
and enough nerve.
33 Great challenges make life interesting; overcoming
them makes life meaningful. It’s how you deal with
failure that determines your happiness and success.
34 Let your mistakes be your motivation, not your
excuses. Decide right now that negative experiences
from your past won’t predict your future.
35 What is coming is better than what is gone. Don’t give
up hope. Good things often happen when you least
36 If you take another step, and another, you will be
surprised to know how far you can go from the point
you thought was the end.
37 Nothing is more beautiful and powerful than a smile that
has struggled through the tears.
38 Any fool can be happy when times are good. It takes a
strong soul with real heart to develop smiles out of
situations that make us weep.
39 No matter how long it takes, it will get better. Tough
situations build strong people in the end.
40 As we grow older and wiser, we begin to realize what
we need and what we need to leave
behind. Sometimes walking away is a step forward.
41 At the end of the day, you can either focus on what’s
tearing you apart, or what’s holding you together.
42 One of the most rewarding moments in life is when you
finally find the courage to let go of what you can’t
43 Whatever you do, don’t get stuck on the one thing that
ruins your day. Smile and be grateful. Life is too short
to waste on negativity.
44 The less you expect, the more pleasant life gets.
45 Patience can be bitter, but the seeds you plant now will
bear sweet fruit.
46 Live simply. Love generously. Speak
truthfully. Breathe deeply. Do your best. Leave
everything else to the powers above you.
47 Do not dwell so much on creating your perfect life that
you forget to live.
48 The trick is to enjoy your life today. Don’t wish it away
by waiting for better days ahead.
49 Pay attention to the little things, because when you
really miss “the good old days,” you miss the little things
the most, like just laughing with someone special.
50 Go for long walks. Indulge in great conversations. Pay
attention to the moment. Count your blessings. Let go
for a little while and just be and breathe.
THERE IS STILL A SEMI-ROBUST US ECONOMY TO CONSIDER…ALTHOUGH IT IS NOT SO HOT EITHER.
Watch out for a Stock Market correction before the Nov. elections.
Wage growth is anemic. Jobs have been up, but are showing signs of plateauing. Even thought the ISM index is in positive territory (50+), productivity growth has slowed, stopped and gone negative for two months. That means unless this trend reverses—and fast—total economic growth is likely to also slow, maybe stop or even turn negative. Growth in the US GDP has only been 1.5-2% for as Obama has been in office. Growth has been stifled by rampant uncertainty—“what will they do next to hinder businesses?” Regulations have made government—which creates ZERO WEALTH, the dominant force in the economy, and government keeps crowding out private capital investment with unreal-low interest rates. (NOTE: If Hillary is elected, she plans to raise taxes, and especially increase the capital gains tax. Every time it goes up investment and growth goes down—and vice versa.)
The impact of Obamacare is now beginning to show. United Health Care, the nations largest, has opted out. Others will follow. Why? Too many older, sicker participants, and too few, younger, healthier ones to subsidize them. The waste and fraud in Medicare and Medicaid are now at least 10% of what is spent ($60B out of $600B) and that is just based on what we know about. (NOTE: To show the stupidity of the government bureaucrats, when they find this waste and fraud, guess what they do about it—nothing. Just like the new VA leader was enabled to fire VA employees who were perpetuating the fraudulent lack of care and waste of money. Guess how many got fired, and how many of those were in the top tier? None!
When there are no consequences, and nothing different changes, then none of the outcomes/results change.
In what private business do you see this behavior: There is a new need for funding. But the budgets are already made and all the revenue is used up (not spent—just allocated). What do you do? Obviously, you go after the least critical, most discretionary spending AND slash it—to fund the new needs. Not in our government. There is never a thought given to cutting spending in one place to use the money elsewhere for a greater need. Just spend more and borrow more, and run a larger deficit. It’s not “real money” if nobody ever intends to repay it. And who can imagine how much a TRILLION DOLLARS is, anyway?
FROM THE NEWS JUST LATELY:
ARE THERE ANY BRIGHT SPOTS? ONLY A FEW:
WHAT TO DO???
THAT TAKES LEADERSHIP, WISDOM, EXPERIENCE, SKILLS AND TALENT.
NOWHERE DOES THE NAME OBAMA OR HILLARY COME TO MY LIPS.
DOES DONALD TRUMP? WHO KNOWS? MAYBE! (ESPECIALLY IF HE SURROUNDS HIMSELF WITH ENOUGH TALENT—AND THEN LISTENS TO THEM?)
BUSINESS BOOKS HAVE BEEN A RICH SOURCE OF MANAGEMENT AND LEADERSHIP IDEAS SINCE “IN SEARCH OF EXCELLENCE” BY Tom Peters and Bob Waterman came out 35 years ago.
BUSINESS BOOKS ARE STILL USEFUL…BUT THEIR RICHNESS OF IDEAS IS WANING…SO READERS—PROCEED WITH CAUTION
THIS WAS PART OF A REPLY TO A CORRESPONDENT WHO IS ALWAYS ASKING ME FOR THINGS TO READ/STUDY
NOTE: I have found very few books in the past decade that cover anything really very new or different—just different approaches—but since all of those are context/situation sensitive, how can anyone generalize on what will work in “your” context or situation? (HINT: They can’t.)
The two most profound books on the list were written over half a century ago: Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged and Peter Drucker’s The Practice of Management. Many of these books were written 15-30 years ago, and much of the successive business book “crop" was derived from these “timeless" books.
The speed and reach of the Internet and global communications/technology might alter how things or done, or make things possible that were not possible just a few years ago. The basic laws of science and the universe are pretty much the same as they were decades ago. So it is in business, with human nature, and life. The core principles of what it takes to be successful in business change very little. How to do what it takes changes a lot, and society, governments, technology, etc. change constantly. What is easier than How—but both are essential. Strategies that cannot be implemented (executed) are useless. Strategies, which are implemented superbly, but do not “win” (e.g., get the business satisfy/delight the customer, etc.) are worse than useless.
The largest failing of today’s managers, executive and leaders is a lack of integrity, discipline, accountability, and basic common sense. The same goes for leaders of countries—and we have a prime example occupying the White House right now. The books are not all “Business” because many important things in business have little to do with what the business/job is. They have to do with the character, skills and understanding of the people who aspire to “run things.”
Here’s the last list. After you read and digest all of these, there will be very few business situations you cannot manage. It does, however, take application of original thought and hard work too. There are only two steps to solving any problem: 1) Understand and define the problem, 2) Solve the problem. (Not in the reverse order.) Let me know how you do after you’ve read these. Perhaps by then my memoirs (The Legacy—A Life-time of Learning) will be done and you can buy it to read.
Top 25 Books for Leaders/Managers (in no specific order)
The Goal, Eli Goldratt
Note: Does not include books on specialties such as manufacturing, marketing, supply chain, human resources, accounting IT, etc.
John L. Mariotti, April 2016
YES—THERE IS HOPE. HOW TO TURN AMERICA AROUND IS NOT AS SIMPLY AS TRUMP’S STUMP SPEECHES SOUNDED, BUT THERE ARE BITS OF WISDOM IN THEM
Negotiate better, harder, smarter, and for America First.
Insist on others paying their share for America’s protection, support, etc.
Resist (but not just with tariffs or walls) illegal trade actions and illegal immigration behaviors
Quit investing in Nation Building abroad and INVEST IN AMERICA—
Modernize America’s military—fewer big, slow weapons, more fast, nimble, smart weapons—and more soldiers and fewer Pentagon desk jockeys
Slam the door in probably suspect immigrants and keep the ones who are valuable here after college.
BUT FIRST— Blow away the past 10 years worth of regulations that stifle and burden competitive businesses.
Just wipe them off the books. Replace the few that were really necessary, later. Reverse Obama’s executive orders.
Get the economy growing at about 4%, to create jobs. Rebuild American infrastructure and military—and update it’s nuclear arsenal and defensive systems.
THEN: Eliminate about 1/3 of the Cabinet level secretaries and their departments. Farm out the necessary part of other departments and cut total staff by…say…25%
Close the unneeded US military bases—and don’t let pork-barrel politics in Congress stop it AGAIN!
The jobs that left are never coming back. Those were yesteryear’s jobs. Target industries and locales where jobs can be created. Recruit, train, and relocate people to fill those jobs—and take work back from Asia and Latin America.
FINALLY: QUIT LEGISLATING ABOUT WHO GOES TO WHAT BATHROOM…GO WHERE YOU LOOK LIKE YOU BELONG.
(Maybe LGBT should stand for Let’s Go to Bathrooms Together.)
START LEGISLATING ABOUT HOW TO REBUILD AMERICAN MIGHT, GROWTH, FREEDOM, JOBS AND INDUSTRIES.
OK…I’m done for today.
More later when my blood pressure medicine wears off.
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See my prior commentary at http://www.brennerbrief.com/author/johnmariotti/ and my latest commentary at
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.
Time is like a river. You cannot touch the water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again. Franklin Graham was speaking at the First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida in January, 2015, when he said America will not come back.He wrote:"The American dream ended on November 6th, 2012 in Ohio. The second term of Barack Obama has been the final nail in the coffin for the legacy of the white Christian males who discovered, explored, pioneered, settled and developed the greatest republic in the history of mankind.A coalition of blacks, Latinos, feminists, gays, government workers, union members, environmental extremists, the media, Hollywood, uninformed young people, the "forever needy," the chronically unemployed, illegal aliens and other "fellow travelers" have ended Norman Rockwell’s America. You will never again out-vote these people. It will take individual acts of defiance and massive displays of civil disobedience to get back the rights we have allowed them to take away. It will take zealots, not moderates and shy, not reach-across-the-aisle RINOs to right this ship and restore our beloved country to its former status.People like me are completely politically irrelevant, and I will probably never again be able to legally comment on or concern myself with the aforementioned coalition which has surrendered our culture, our heritage and our traditions without a shot being fired.The cocker spaniel is off the front porch, the pit bull is in the back yard. The American Constitution has been replaced with Saul Alinsky's "Rules for Radicals" and the likes of Chicago shyster David Axelrod along with international socialist George Soros have been pulling the strings on their beige puppet have brought us Act 2 of the New World Order.The curtain will come down but the damage has been done, the story has been told. Those who come after us will once again have to risk their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor to bring back the Republic that this generation has timidly frittered away due to white guilt and political correctness.”’
FROM POLITICO: Four years after asserting executive privilege to block Congress from obtaining documents relating to a controversial federal gun trafficking investigation, President Barack Obama relented Friday, turning over to lawmakers thousands of pages of records that led to unusual House votes holding Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt in 2012.In January, a federal district court judge rejected Obama's executive privilege claim over records detailing the Justice Department and White House's response to Operation Fast and Furious, a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigation that may have allowed as many as 2,000 firearms to pass into the hands of Mexican drug cartels.In her ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson did not turn down Obama's privilege assertion on the merits. Instead, she said authorized public disclosures about the operation in a Justice Department inspector general report essentially mooted the administration's drive to keep the records secret.Both sides had until midnight Friday to file an appeal. Instead, the Obama administration turned over a set of documents to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee."In light of the passage of time and other considerations, such as the Department's interest in moving past this litigation and building upon our cooperative working relationship with the Committee and other Congressional committees, the Department has decided that it is not in the Executive Branch's interest to continue litigating this issue at this time," Justice Deparment legislative liaison Peter Kadzik wrote in a letter Friday to House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah).
THE ENTERPRISE—AVOIDING THE OBVIOUS, BUT FINDING THE TRUTH
WAITED FOR WISCONSIN RESULTS TO SEND THIS ONE…
No surprises. Cruz campaign Trumped Trump’s non-campaign. Trump scored about the same percentage of voters he did in NH and other places. His base is solid but not growing. He alienates as many people as he inspires. Trump’s motivation is questioned by this article from The Week. I encourage everyone to read and share it. He entered figuring to make a splash and then popped up on top. Now his ego won’t let him back down, even though he has clearly lost some of his early fire and enthusiasm. This is typical for a “performer.” When the audience cheers, they’re energized. When they don’t, they pout.
Cruz is winning by default, but cannot win enough, fast enough. I stand by what I say below. We need a candidate who can defeat the Democratic candidate (Hillary, probably and help hold onto the Senate. GOP must defend 24 Senate seats, Dems only must defend 10 incumbent seats. There is a real chance to lose control of the Senate, which would be a disaster, too.
THE PRIMARY ELECTIONS WILL COME DOWN TO THE WIRE
On the Democratic side, the party is clear—it is waiting to crown Hillary—unless a lot of voters—a big lot—say otherwise. This is very unlikely. The Dems use an old political tool—super delegates—to tilt the playing field in the direction the party leaders choose. Unless, or until Barack Obama and his “In-Justice Department” get off their partisan butts and listen to the huge number of violations (one legal, some criminal, many technical) the FBI is digging up and actually indicts the Democratize front runner nothing much will happen. Sanders is raising enough $$ to stay in it, but he really can’t win it either… (Joe Biden is standing patiently by, wishing he had gotten into the race, in the hope that he’ll be called in as the last minute substitute candidate to continue Obama’s ill-begotten legacy.)
On the Republican side, the circular firing squad that was the primaries is now down to two candidates leading, neither of which is ideal (or worse), and a really good candidate trailing in third place because he won’t say outrageous, foolish, incendiary or stupid things, just to get the vote of angry primary voters or right wing zealots. Who knows how Trump will govern IF he can actually get 1237 delegates, and the convention must recognize him as the winner.
This is a lot like what he says when pressed in interviews. He doesn’t even know. He’ll figure it out then…or later. Trump clearly has not done all of his homework, (and the obnoxious Chris Matthews trapped him—as he is prone to do). Meanwhile, the “holier than thou” Ted Cruz continues to resemble the “Gru” (From the movie Despicable Me), who will never, ever, ever compromise—no matter how worthy the cause nor how great the need. If the term “cutting off your nose to spite your face,” Cruz seems willing to trim his prominent proboscis to stay “pure and unsullied by real world pragmatism.”
I don’t care if he is the favorite of a lot of “loyal” Republicans, (some of whom I count as friends (and whose opinion I respect—usually). I still think Ted Cruz is a phony, a snake, a pretender, and a loser in the general election—IF he ever gets that far. Cruz (a freshman senator) is no more prepared to run the country than Obama was, or than Trump is. He may be a “better person” than Obama, but that’s a subjective opinion. Will I vote for him (or for that matter, for Donald Trump) if he’s the nominee. Sure I will. I’ll swallow hard and grit my teeth, but I will do anything legally possible to stop the reprehensible Hillary Clinton from becoming America’s first (and worst) woman president.
On Principle, who is the best candidate to represent the party?
The theory behind elections is to find the person who best represents the tenor, the positions, the wishes and hopes, and the overall political ideology—positive and negative—of the electorate.
Study the chart below and ask yourself:
IF this poll accurately portrays how Republicans feel about the three remaining candidates, and
IF this poll accurately portrays the likely outcome of the general election…
(I realize this is a poll and those are both BIG IFs)—then how could anyone choose a Republican candidate other than John Kasich?
Polls are not absolute, and positives and negatives are not absolute either. BUT…this is a very stark comparison, and one which the delegates to the Republican convention need to consider seriously, IF NO single candidate gains enough delegates to earn the nomination, until are no longer bound by primary votes.
Delegate choices, based on primaries and caucuses, are actually no more or less than a series of organized polls conducted in voting booths (mostly), and in which the objective or subjective (perceived) ability to lead and govern is often poorly considered. All polls are popularity contests; and so are elections.
HOWEVER, No one can govern, until they can first be elected.
I DECIDED TO REPRINT THESE PORTIONS OF THE NEWSPAPER ENDORSEMENT, SINCE THEY ARE NOT MY OPINIONS
But they are well thought out and considered conclusions, even so. [My emphasis is added.]
MILWAUKEE JOURNAL ENDORSEMENT FOR JOHN KASICH
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s editorial board, which noted that it usually doesn’t endorse, highlighted the Ohio governor’s response to last week’s terrorist attack in Brussels. “Kasich had a smart, pragmatic answer. He is, in fact, the only thoughtful candidate with a fundamental belief in long-standing democratic principles who remains standing in the GOP primary field,” the board wrote.
The former congressman and businessman offers Republicans a platform of conservative ideas centered on fiscal responsibility while he offers independents the promise that he will surround himself with expert advisers from various perspectives as he makes informed, independent decisions.
What impresses us most about Kasich is his independence. Unlike Gov. Scott Walker in Wisconsin and most other Republican governors, Kasich decided to take the additional Medicaid funding that came as part of the Affordable Care Act. The decision meant an infusion of $13 billion for Ohio, which was irresistible for a politician focused on fiscal discipline even in the face of Republican opposition in the Ohio legislature and criticism from conservatives nationally.
Most important, Kasich appears to be the only Republican left in the race who actually could govern if he does win. Trump is Trump — vacuous, unqualified and dangerously ignorant of foreign affairs. Cruz is brilliant but unable to escape the twin straitjackets of ideology and ambition. The author of the futile 16-day government shutdown in 2013 over Obamacare, he also conducted a 21-hour filibuster designed to do one thing: burnish the image of Ted Cruz with tea party conservatives. A team player, he is not.
Republicans and independents who value leadership, dignity, pragmatism and experience should vote for John Kasich next Tuesday.
IT IS IRONIC HOW MANY PARALLELS THERE ARE BETWEEN POLITICS AND BUSINESS
Leaders are essential. Managers are necessary. In that order. Followers are critical, and weak leaders can’t energize them; poor managers waste their efforts.
Candidates are like Brands…and must be marketed. Marketing is often deceptive, either intentionally (or accidentally.)
Gaining consensus is very difficult, often impossible, but decisions still must be made. (By someone)
MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS FALL APART BECAUSE THE PARTIES WON’T COMPROMISE TO MAKE A “GOOD DEAL” INSTEAD OF "THE PERFECT DEAL”
The problems in business and politics are so similar because both involve people, their egos, their goals (usually power, influence and money) and their implacable desire to win at all costs. Once you understand (and accept those facts) understanding behavior—in business and in politics becomes so much easier.
AS I GATHER MY WITS (AND MY BELONGINGS) ABOUT ME TO HEAD BACK TO GRAY, RAINY OHIO…I WONDER
Is the economy really OK? There has been a small upward blip in workforce participation. That could be a good sign. Growth still stinks. Nothing will fix that short of a change of administration—-and the right people in charge of the new one. Businesses are still hesitant to spend. Too many uncertainties remain. Whoever wins the election will name the next 1-3 Supreme Court Justices. That fact alone can totally change the character, the outlook and the future of America. That is a BIGGIE. If there is a landslide win (for Democrats), it could shift the power in the Senate too. Then what do businesses have to look forward to? More regulation, taxes, wealth redistribution, minimum wage hikes, punitive rulings from every agency of the government—unfettered by the Constitution? Probably.
Would you invest much of your money with those uncertainties on the horizon?
ROGUE STATES AND TERRORISTS ABOUND, AND ARE GROWING WORSE AMID THE BEFUDDLED OBAMA BEHAVIORS.
Instability in foreign markets grows far worse when unexpected, unprecedented and frightening actions happen around the globe. Who wants to invest much, putting money at risk, in that kind of environment? Not very many companies, I can tell you that. Many companies will spend what they must to support/sustain their business, but bet on growth? No thanks. Bank the money, wherever the taxes are lowest, and wait to see what happens.
UNEMPLOYMENT PICTURE IMPROVING BUT WAGES & GROWTH ARE STILL LAGGING…
All around Europe except for France, and in the US, unemployment statistics say things are getting better. GDP growth doesn’t. Durable goods are down again by 2.8%, but that number is volatile—a few dozen Boeing airplanes that do (or don’t) get sold can yo-yo it up and down. Productivity is weak and has declined almost everywhere. Bellwethers like Caterpillar are seriously down. Note to liberal economists: Dumping money into economies seems to help the stock markets (the rich) more than it does the job markets (the poor). Why? Re-read the prior piece about uncertainty and risk.China is still struggling to hits its artificially inflated growth goals (6+%)—and no one knows if the numbers are accurate or just a fictional portrayal of how this huge country is doing. There are two China’s in the mix—one along the coastal areas, growing and thriving, and another inland, languishing and declining. Americans are largely unaware of anything like this, until or unless something or somebody “big” raises the issue.
SURPRISE—THE AGE OLD MIXTURE OF DRUGS LIKE XANAX/VALIUM WITH OPIODS CAN KILL YOU
After years of prescribing both to patients, research and results are showing that about 1/3 of deaths due to opiod overdoses (percocet/vicodin/hydrocodone/oxycontin) are likely due to taking them in combination with benzodiazepines like Valium or Xanax. WOW! Throw in the use of alcohol at the same time and you have a lethal cocktail, that often has gone undetected as the actual cause of death. BE VERY CAREFUL MIXING DRUBS LIKE THESE.
AMERICAN CYBERSECURITY STILL STINKS
Why? Because Americans are lazy, lax, apathetic, etc. until they get in trouble. Companies are better, because they have IT pros, but the explosion of personal devices—cell phones, tablets, etc. some with minimal security in use, increases the risk exponentially. Worst of all. Americans, especially the government, don’t counterattack suspected hackers—at least not that we know about. Why? Hackers are hard to identify and locate and clear proof of guilt is hard to get. So we sit by, fat, dumb and relatively happy, while enemies steal our data, invade our privacy and pick our (intellectual) pockets millions of times each year. I guess it will take a Cyber 911 to wake up America. That is SCARY.
SO WHAT ARE THE BIG ISSUES BEING CONTESTED?
TRANSGENDER BATHROOMS: Which one to use. Birth or current gender? REALLY? With all the big bad stuff that’s going on… just use the one based on the sex you “look like”—if that is even visibly obvious.
ABORTION RIGHTS: Who should be punished? The Doctors—if what they do is illegal—the erstwhile mothers-to-be, and dead fetuses already suffer their punishment.
AMERICANS are so cavalier about promiscuity and creating life and so willing the terminate life as if it was a bad meal from a restaurant to be thrown in the trash.
Can you spell MORAL DECAY? Ignorance?
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