‘Have We Learned Nothing?”

From Politico Magazine, 3/25/2020:

“Have We Learned Nothing?”

You would expect that there is “pork” as it’s called in the $2 Trillion stimulus package and this article from the Magazine surfaces some of that…more money that could go to families, hospitals, first responders, medical equipment, protective equipment, etc. 

https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/03/25/coronavirus-economy-stimulus-house-democrats-148512

….. and it is not just democrats!

I suspect those fools see $35 million for the Kennedy Center, for example, as beer money.  It may not be the Kennedy Center, but that kind of stuff — it is in there.  Maybe they would be good enough to publish a line item list!  Oh, wait, they couldn’t do that as “it would not be in the best interest of national security!”

***** S&E *****

Republican Presidential Survey: A Response:

I just received a “Republican Presidential Task Force Strategy Survey”.  I completed it and attached the note below to it!  I placed this on the blog’s “Success” Page as I believe we need a leader with these kinds of skills. 

My Note:

I completed this survey so you know where I stand on the listed issues.

I don’t vote for party.  I vote for leaders, regardless of party affiliation, but not for radicals.

I find it amazing that there is no question here where survey respondents can opt “yes” to reducing the size I government.

Trump is no leader.  Leaders chose talent to work for them.  They listen to their chosen experts in their respective field. They sponsor participative environments. They have vision; the best have some measure of humility. Here’s a list of significant leadership characteristics:

Honesty and integrity*ConfidenceInspire Others
Commitment and PassionGood CommunicatorDecision Making Capabilities
AccountabilityDelegation and EmpowermentCreativity and Innovation
Empathy*ResilienceEmotional Intelligence
HumilityTransparencyVision and Purpose
JudgementBalanceTeam Builder
Strategic Thinker

I’ve placed an asterisk by the characteristics Trump demonstrates. There are just two, and there are probably those who would argue with that.  He’s no leader!  At best he is divisive. 

You need to find and sponsor a new candidate for president.

And why would you survey the American People.  Any fool can identify the top key issues, as examples: Education, Infrastructure, National Debt, Size and Power of Government, availability and affordability of Healthcare, Economy, Crime, Immigration, Climate change.  Many corporate and business executives and managers handle much more than that list for their business in a year!  We have a president and 535 elected officials that can’t seem to manage a few of these.

Don’t send me anymore surveys!

***** S&E *****

Log Entry No. 318: Friends and Duct Tape

They were (and are today) best of friends. This entry takes us back to them at, ages 12 and 15. We’ll call them then, 12 and 15. They grew up on the same dead end street., three houses apart. At the dead end, acres of woods. A creek ran through the long back yards. Behind the creek at the end of the yards, woods and a hill that was perfect for sledding and tubing in the winter.

They occasionally smoked. 12 kept the stash in his second floor bedroom, in the heating duct work which had a removable vent in the floor. There was a small ledge available in the duct work, just under the vent, to keep the stash.

They head to 12’s house to do a little. 12 removes the floor heating vent to access the stash on the ledge, and to his dismay, the stash falls down into the duct system, straight to the basement. This is an emergency calling for drastic actions.

12 and 15 head to the basement. They find it has a suspended ceiling. Kids don’t notice ceilings much but this is a special situation. The remove the ceiling tiles, one by one, searching for where the duct work from 12’s room meets the basement duct. It was trial and error. But, not to be discouraged, they find the union. Taking advantage of 12’s dad’s handy work shop, with both parents at work, they start cutting sample holes in he duct work hoping to locate the fallen stash. It required a few sample cuts but not to be denied, they located the bag. It took several cuts, opening up a significant enough hole (think of star shape cuts that form a number of flaps) to recover the bag. They made the duct repair with what else but duct tape. It required feet of duct tape. The repair was ugly. They reinstalled the ceiling tiles. Who would ever know !

Months later: It is heating season. Cold! Furnaces are running. 12’s parents were sitting in the living room. 12’s mom, and not the first time, complains to 12’s dad that there is a draft in the room. He says something about sweaters. After sufficient prodding, on the weekend, he goes to the basement. Of course, nothing is easy. This won’t be either as the duct work, which 12’s dad suspects is at the cause, is covered with the suspended ceiling tile. Hours later he finds the patch work quilt of tape on the duct work. The patch has now collapsed, hanging freely, as the adhesive on the tape has dried out from the heat, the adhesive now a white power, a gaping hole the result, The hot air that is escaping is significant.

How could this happen? The parents suspect 12. He is confronted. And as all kids learn early on, denial is the key to making great escapes. This time being no different. The “rents” stopped short of fingerprints and prosecution, knowing it was hopeless.

***** S&E *****

Success Despite the Corporation

All organizations are political in one way or another. If groups of people are involved, there will be some measure of political behavior. This entry is about the success of an individual and the political stupidity of the corporation.

Tom worked his way up “the ladder”– professional, manager, director, vice president. His first vice president job was for a global corporation, in Troy Michigan, about 80,000 employees in 120+ countries. He was responsible for the corporation’s Expatriate Program, Global Policy and Practice, and managing the Region Human Resources Directors in Europe, Central and South America, and Asia Pacific.

Six months into the job Tom released the local Chinese guy who resided in Shanghai China and held the position of Human Resources Director of China. At the time that position managed / lead the HR function in several China plants, 1000’s of people. The guy was in his late 40’s and retired on the job. After multiple trips to Asia to interview replacements, Tom hired Sony for the Director’s position. She held degrees in Biology and Secondary Education, had years of experience in education and in H.R. with two USA-based global corporations with operations in China.

Tom supervised Sony and other global directors from the Troy office. Sony came up to speed quickly. The Asia Pacific region grew and Tom moved to Shanghai to fill the the new VP of HR for the Asia Pacific position. At the time the company had 19 manufacturing plants in 11 countries and about 10,000 employees. Sony’s position, Director, H.R., China, then reported to Tom.

Two years later Tom recommended Sony for an expatriate position in Michigan, the corporation agreeing with the plan for Sony to return to China, after the completion of the expatriate assignment, and replace Tom as VP of the Asia Pacific Region. While an expatriate the corporation paid for Sony’s Masters in Business Administration in a USA university. After three years, Tom retired and the corporation repatriated Sony to China to a dead end H.R. support position, despite the investment in Sony’s expatriate assignment, fully paying for her master’s degree, a successful USA assignment, and 10 years of experience with USA based global corporations. Why did this happen? Politics at work.

Sony left the corporation one year later and landed a job as HR VP  for the Asia Pacific Region for a very large, global USA based corporation. The same position she was by-passed for in the previous corporation. She was very successful, eventually retired, and yet does career coaching.

A great story of success despite the odds !!!

***** S&E *****

Making Informed Decisions

For those out there interested in the promises of free Health Care, Free College/University educations, Medicare for all, and paid off student debt, and other government provided “freebies”, please look past the hype.  

Do you know where the revenue will come from for that “free stuff”?  The likely sources: increased citizen’s taxes or, the country borrows more money to pay for the “freebies” (do you know the USA’s debt is more than 23 trillion). 

And, consider you can’t tax the wealthy enough to pay for all the “freebies”.   If you tax the corporations, they’ll either pass it on to customers, find other means to reduce the increased taxes, or change to more tax friendly scenarios. 

The aforementioned is not meant as a political statement, just a reality check! Please educate yourself prior to making decisions.

(At right) $20+ Trillion with the Statue of Liberty in the center. USA debt, 2017. Now $23 Trillion. https://www.usdebtclock.org/

***** S&E *****

Some Advice on Cover Letters

Again, from one of my favorite mags, some to-the-point advice on getting the attention of the people who make hiring decisions.

https://www.fastcompany.com/90457413/the-only-4-sentences-you-need-for-a-cover-letter-that-gets-noticed?utm_campaign=eem524%3A524%3As00%3A20200130_fc&utm_medium=Compass&utm_source=newsletter

Our friend from the ever disrespectful “South Park”. Please don’t read anything into the use of the character above. There is just nothing there!

And if you are curious as to , “Do I apply on line or by mail”, here is an opinion from Forbes and Liz Ryan, Founder and CEO, Human Workplace; Author, “Reinvention Roadmap”, that might help you answer that question.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/lizryan/2017/03/12/ten-reasons-online-job-applications-are-a-waste-of-time/#186c578e6e26

If you go the ground mail route, make sure the application or resume and cover go to a specific person, by name. The hiring manager / supervisor is always better than Human Resources. You can find out who he or she is with a little creative research. And better yet, get it hand delivered to the hiring manager inside the company.

***** S&E *****

If Their Lips are Moving….

Well, if you did not not watch the “State of the Union” on Feb 4th, the NY Times fact check article (link below) hit the highlights and the absolute “stretching of he truth” by the president and both parties.  I remember someone describing teenage behavior as if “their lips are moving they’re lying”.  Politicians!  For those who did see it the divisiveness was palpable. Of course that is not new… but last evening defined “seeing is believing”.  I don’t credit any of them for having any stones.  But to put it on display for the world to see as they did last evening makes them all dolts in my book.

You just have to ask yourself what the hell are we paying those people for. Certainly not what we saw at the state of the union .. can’t imagine what the world thinks. And we are paying dearly! In 2019, Congressional pay — $174,000 per year, their pension is at an 80-percent rate, equates to a lifelong pension benefit of $139,200. The Speaker of the House, annual salary $223,500. I could not find a summary of their total compensation package (staff, office, travel, entertainment/business meertings, etc.) … many hundreds of thousands, each!

The third in line ! Can you imagine? That is a leadership statement, has nothing to do with political party, or sex. I always thought Condoleezza Rice, for one, would have made and excellent leader in any role to include president!

According to “allsides.com” the NY Times has a “lean-left” media bias rating (chart below) which is one notch left of center.

  I’ll be pushing up daisies in 5 to 10 according to the actuaries… it is the generations to come that I think about.

I did scan through other fact check sources… it appears most are not so different in their report. Here’s the Time’s:

https://www.nytimes.com/live/2020/fact-check-state-of-the-union-02-04?te=1&nl=morning-briefing&emc=edit_NN_p_20200205&section=topNews&campaign_id=9&instance_id=15748&segment_id=20989&user_id=cc9f1f55d90dd76e755f21894322fe69&regi_id=104669913tion=topNews

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**** S&E ****