Beto O’Rourke Says He Will Take Our Guns: Yeah, he’s smoking crack

I already know what its like to go to heaven, I was in heaven Thursday night while the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were playing the Carolina Panthers on one television and I was watching the loser Democrats on another TV. Then to fulfill my needs I was reading the latest Star Wars book, The Black Spire Outpost while I answered professional emails on two different computers. It doesn’t get any better than that. I was as happy as I ever get for about three hours until the Bucs finally won late in the early morning hours. However, something did get my dander up, it was the pot smoking skateboarder Beto O’Rourke who said during the Democrat debates that he was going to confiscate all AR-15s and I’ll have to say, it pissed me off considerably.

I’ve heard it before, that making declarations of violence against government officials who come to our homes to confiscate our guns is considered radical, and even criminal. Well, no its not. The law that I acknowledge is that we have a right to own guns not just for our own protection, but to maintain the stability of government. My position is that we can’t completely trust government, ever, certainly not with our lives. So when I hear a politician even assume that they will ever get that kind of power, to send police door to door to collect our firearms, it makes me just a little angry. And I don’t consider it controversial to say that I’m not going to comply. Any government that supports the legalization of drugs, and the confiscation of privately-owned guns is a government that needs to be overthrown and reorganized. And that’s all there is to it.

I want and expect a good and stable law enforcement to do the work of maintaining peace. But have no illusions, even under the best of circumstances, there are always dirty cops and corrupt government officials, we will never be able to trust some altruistic government to lead us into some utopian future. The way to have a good future is to keep government looking over their shoulders at their bosses, the people who elect them into power. If they abuse that power, we must have some kind of recourse to take that power away from them, such as the Second Amendment.

Another thing that wasn’t talked about much on such an active Thursday night with so many exciting things going on was that the Department of Justice had rejected the former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s appeal to avoid facing prosecution for his role in the Russian conspiracy against President Trump. We talk about the FBI being the top law enforcement agency in the world, and that may be true. But we also have seen that it can be very much a corrupt organization whether or not the problem was only at the top, or if it was the regular agents who work in our neighborhoods. Most of them are probably good people, but there will always be some bad cops out there and we never want to be defenseless when they go rogue.

I’ll go further than that, I have too many experiences with police who were very bad to ever trust them completely, even if the president I put in office with my vote is all about the thin blue line. I’m not anti-cop, but I tend to be weary of people who dedicate their lives to having authority over others and at best I think they need to fear the people behind the doors they might be tasked to break down. I’ve never been arrested, but I’ve been in a lot of trouble on many occasions and I’ve seen the way authority treats people when they think the story is one sided. For my roles, I’ve always been unquestionably the good guy so I’ve never had violence with police. But if they manhandled me the way I’ve seen them do people I’ve been near, I can’t say that things would go well for them. I don’t give anybody the authority to treat me roughly, or to force me into some mode of “submission.” If that ever were to happen, I would anticipate a major conflict, let’s just say that. I know more about how much corruption there is in our local police departments to understand mathematically that the situation only gets worse with more power as they get up to the federal level. And to that I would say we are all kidding ourselves if we don’t think there are major issues.

Yet having police is better than anarchy and radical chaos. I’d rather have a police force that has the good guys in it doing the hard work of maintaining that thin blue line. I would tell that stupid politician Beto O’Rourke that the only thing that keeps police in check from letting the power go to their heads is an armed public, that its critical to keeping the balance of power in check. For instance, my community doesn’t even have its own police force. The county sheriff handles everything, we don’t need that extra tax burden. But I also live in an affluent community where people generally don’t commit crimes against each other, and most homes have some form of gun. Nobody shoots each other. People wave to each other when they cut their grass. Life is good. Gun violence is indicative of personal values and behavior, and low-lifes who deal drugs and are too lazy to work tend to be the ones committing violence, and with them comes gun violence and police who like to use that chaos to overreact with antagonism of their own.

I don’t consider it radical to warn authorities that I’m not going to put up with politicians like Beto O’Rourke or the gun grabbing Democrats. They will never have a right to confiscate our guns. The guns are a right for a reason, because we know from history that we cannot trust authorities under any conditions. If left unchecked with power there will always be a certain percentage of law enforcement who will go bad and become part of the criminal element, like Andrew McCabe and James Comey. Comey was in charge of the entire FBI and we know now, that he was a very dangerous person drunk with power, so much so that he thought he was one of the good guys.

Guns are the best way to sort out justice from those who would be tempted to abuse power and those who might become victims of it. Nobody ever wants to shoot someone trying to break into their home, whether it be a criminal element or a law enforcement officer using their power for malicious reasons against the American property owner. Its not controversial to stick up for yourself or to maintain the means to keep power in check, when our election system fails, and bad people use that power to abuse us all for their own entertainment. Owning the guns and letting them know what will happen if they abuse their power is the nicest way to keep things from getting out of hand and is the key to social civility. However, if they cross over beyond that civility, we will unfortunately have to answer that challenge, and violence must be the consequence. I wouldn’t like it, but you must draw the line somewhere, and for me, grabbing guns by any government is simply too far.

Rich Hoffman
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Should People of Value Express their Political Opinions: What good is freedom if we don’t live to support it?

Everyone must come to these things in their own way, but the question continues to be asked among people in the community who are “valuable,” whether or not they should get involved in politics beyond the occasional donation or remain in obscurity. My answer to that must be defined by the understanding of social value. It’s not politically correct to make such a judgement, but that is also why as a society we have trouble, because under political correctness, value is a loose term defined by government efforts, not reality. People of value are those who move mankind forward. It might be the owner of your local Taco Bell or the industrialist who is running five or six manufacturing plants. The workers who are employed by those establishments can come and go as they’d like, so their impact to that future growth, for which all economic measures are leveraged against is minimal. Meanwhile, it is the risktakers and investors in our society who have more value over those who don’t do such things. So the question is, should such people, such as President Trump who could be living a good life in his retirement years watching the world go by, should they get involved and letting it be known that their business is ran by a liberal or a conservative—or should they show themselves as middle of the road political supporters?

Well for the political left, they have already answered that question. They are not shy about their political beliefs. And for establishments like Chick-Fil-A, they lean toward the religious conservative side and we’ve seen how the political left has treated them—bullying them at every opportunity. Most people who invest in businesses don’t want the extra headache of a teacher’s union protest outside a place they’ve poured a huge amount of their time into at great risk to give jobs to people, so they are shy about such conflict, which unfortunately is the way the political left has established things will be. They are not peace lovers, they are bullies, pure and simple.

I can’t say that I’ve ever been shy about my political affiliation, but for a time while I was contemplating a career as a film director and movie writer, I didn’t run down the street screaming about it. I have always been able to get along with people of all types and never had a problem with people of color, the opposite sex or people from entirely different political beliefs. Even though I have very firm beliefs; I never have felt that my roots were so insecure that I had to yell and scream at people who didn’t think the way I did. So in spite of the Hollywood bias against people with my political affiliation, I found myself at one of those dinners in Glendale, California with around nine people all of whom were at a minimum, millionaires and were looking for ways to make more money, which is why I was at that table.

I remember it vividly; I was at a very nice restaurant at the Americana shopping complex eating at a big round table overlooking a courtyard set in the middle of the complex on a Friday night in early summer. It was literally a seat at the table of some big-time movers and shakers in Hollywood, producer types and money people. I was brought in because of my firewhip demonstrations that I had done at a film festival representing my membership in the World Stunt Association and because I had a hot script that had won some awards there were buyers for it. The talk was to change that script a bit from an anti-progressive horror adventure film to something more mainstream and less violent. This was before the days of Kill Bill, so producers were concerned that would hurt the potential box office. But essentially the people at that table didn’t care about the script or my bullwhip skills, they wanted to know if I would play along with the rest of the industry or would a be a pain in the ass. And that question was asked of me point blank, I was expected to talk down about George W. Bush who was president at the time. I of course didn’t, even though he wasn’t my favorite guy, he was the best that Republicans had at that time. And I thought about the consequences. I had literally worked 20 years to get to that point and the offer was on the table.

After that project I wasn’t invited to do any more, it really does come down to peer pressure and who you know in that business, unless you put up the money for your own movie. I had decided that I’d rather be honest about my opinions than to have a show business career making a lot of money, but not having the freedom to express myself. And that should not have been a decision I had to make. Long time readers here probably will notice that I took a year off after all that to travel the world and do many things with my wife that I had long planned. Then thereafter, I started this blog and became politically active because if I had to choose, I was at least going to be free to have my own opinion about things.

Growing up I loved the Disney version of Zorro and I watched every episode countless times. But I had always promised myself that I could never be like Don Diego and pretend to be foppish. I’d want to be Zorro all hours of the day seven days of the week. When I created the Cliffhanger character in my book The Symposium of Justice which was one of the projects that had landed me at that table in Glendale, California I wanted to answer my opinion about the Don Diego complex. So pushed in reality I had to pick my Cliffhanger character which was unyielding to the pressures of society as opposed to Zorro who played hero at night, but rich fop during the day so that he could have the approval of his peers and not lose his land to corruption.

Yet all conservatives are expected to be like Don Diego. Even if they do give to a political campaign of their choosing, if it isn’t the liberal candidate there will be consequences, and the political left is quite adamant about that. However, I wasn’t about to write about something and not live it in my real life, so that is the paradox we all face these days and that is my opinion on it. You can’t make peace with the political left. And if you go against them, they will come after you. But my experience is that they aren’t that powerful. They don’t have much in their bag of tricks. When pressed, they come up short most of the time, so why be afraid of them. People of value shouldn’t. I understand making decisions to avoid that conflict. But if you run from it, then you empower them even greater in the future, because they know their pressure worked. And we can’t have that. Everyone must make their own decisions about things, but one of the greatest things we have in life is our opinions and the freedom to have them. To squander that away is a crime in and of itself, not worth the money you might make otherwise. And that is the grim reality when such a choice is made, and it’s never easy.

Rich Hoffman

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Beto O’Rourk’s Gun Buyback Tyranny: Walmart should be ashamed of themselves

The skateboard riding marijuana supporting Beto O’Rourke advocated for increased criminal conduct recently when he announced his desire to promote a federal buyback program for guns. That would be after all the result of any buyback program advocated by the federal government to seize control of 300 million guns in America. Criminals looking for quick cash to support their drug habits and other scandalous enterprises would simply break into homes and steal all they could get their hands on so they could turn in the guns no questions asked, as other liberalized countries around the world have done. Only those places weren’t America and the love for their guns not nearly as intense. For Beto and all the other gun grabbers running for president, gun confiscation is the name of the game, even if it unleashes a criminal element that we all consider undesirable. They don’t care about any of that so long as they get what they want, more centralized authority and more public demand for daddy government to protect everyone with them leading the charge as Democrats.

Did you hear that I am suing the San Francisco Board of Supervisors for branding the NRA a “domestic terrorist organization.” I’m not personally suing, but through my proud membership, and those of another 5 million Americans, we are. And we should. Something that is constitutional and protected by the Bill of Rights, such as gun ownership for the purpose of changing a corrupt government if needed is not a terrorist organization, and it is all the signs of a government getting out of control that would even try to establish that NRA members are “domestic terrorists.” The opposite is true, and anybody trying to do such a thing to good people have trouble coming. Big trouble. For most of those 300 million guns, nobody gets killed and good conduct is expected among the owners. It is those who are suffering under failed Democrat policies, such as the poor people of South Chicago, who use guns in a bad way. It is not a proper reflection of a gun culture as America is.

Shame on Walmart for caving into these sorry excuses for human beings, the gun grabbers who don’t take cause and effect into their considerations, such as the presentation of a gun buyback program. I’m not generally one who calls for boycotts, but I would think we should all use other options for our shopping experience. Walmart should have stood behind the concept of Americanism, which requires guns to keep it going, instead of taking a stand against it. The idea of how to regulate the intentions of the wicked and corrupt in a free society is to expand government and hope that the police can come within 10 minutes to a crime is simply preposterous. Ownership of the gun is the same concept of Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” that states that self-interest will drive the economy, not government regulation. To have free flowing commerce, people must be able to defend property rights at the point of resolution, not some court date set a year after, or a police force that is always boarding on corruption because of the amount of power we give them.

Do you ever look at a highway at 2 AM and wonder where all those people are going? So many people independently thinking about going somewhere and without talking to all the rest of the highway travelers are out at all hours of the night doing whatever they do. Most are going on trips, or going to work, or just going out for a drive. Some are up to no good, but all are independently contributing to commerce and the invisible hand of Adam Smith’s economy. The world of people like Beto O’Rourke or any Democrat for that matter would be that those people would stay home under a curfew and live within the parameters of their rules and tight regulations. Sure, they’ll let you smoke pot so that you are too drugged to see what they are doing to you, but what they want to do is regulate everything, starting with guns. Once they convince people to give up their guns, they intend to attack that free commerce using the ever-present safety need to drive society toward less and less freedom. Once they convince people that guns are dangerous, they can then convince them that capitalism is dangerous. That it is dangerous to travel at night un-supervised, and that we must elect more of “them” to keep us all safe.

I would argue that it was liberal talking points that spawned the drugged mass shooters into action and provoked them to kill. The utterances of Beto O’Rourke and Elizabeth Warren certainly had an impact on the mind of the Dayton shooter recently who made his choices knowing it would spawn gun control debate. Conner Betts was a gun control advocate and under the influence of drugs and liberalized thinking when he used a .223 100 round drum magazine to conduct his “domestic terrorism.” It’s never NRA members doing these things, it’s the drug addicts and those otherwise victimized by liberalized thinking who do. Then once the act is done, those same people look to legislators and say, “see, something must be done.” That’s like some loser farting in a room then complaining that people shouldn’t smell up such a tight space with body gas.

So then we are supposed to just accept that these same people are trying to spread more violence with gun buybacks by encouraging more criminals to hit the streets and rob our houses so they can get their hands on free government cash. Then defenseless, we will all turn to more government for safety and protection. The cycle is endless, and intentional, and is as anti-American as anything ever proposed on the North American continent. We don’t care what Australia, or New Zealand have done, we don’t care about Switzerland, Sweden, or China. American’s want their freedom and they need their guns to have it. Calling the NRA a terrorist organization and to encourage government buybacks are the aggressive tactics of “domestic violence,” and it’s time we call it that.

I would encourage you dear reader to join the NRA if you have not already. Sure, 5 million members is a lot, but it should be more like 20 million. It costs a lot of money to fight these thugs in court and we need to be doing more of it. For every San Francisco Board of Supervisors there are countless others wanting to do the same thing and I propose that “we” the NRA go after them all before they strike at us, because if left alone, they will. The enemy is agenda driven and they want communism like what China has in the United States and to get there, they must have people stoned on drugs and unarmed. They must kill the young before they ever get their first Red Ryder BB gun, so that they can’t grow up to defend the American Constitution. It has always been a war and the guilty are always the gun grabbers who help cause the incidents of violence that sometimes occur, then use them to try to turn public sentiment into gun confiscation. And if a gun buyback creates more crime, that’s just fine with them. Because it’s not your safety and security that they want, it’s your guns so that you’ll have no way to protect yourself from them. And that is the name of the game.

Rich Hoffman

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Dancing to the Songs of the Universe: The girl in the white hat and her fiddle

I am always touched, no matter where in the world it is, when I see one of these street performers giving everything they have for a chance at getting noticed. Many of them are extremely talented and if only Hollywood or the record industry would just discover them, life would be great! But that’s not often how it happens and scenes like this one with the young girl performing in an open European market street are common, especially in Europe. Yet I really love watching this girl perform. That video was actually from over a year ago, but every time I see it I am enchanted with her raw ambition and lust for life. I could listen to her play music all day long and never tire.

It’s not a secret that I love children. It’s also no secret that I am not a big fan of teenagers and young twenty somethings. Out of all the ages of human development I have always hated those stages of people’s lives, the sexual age. With children, like the girl in the video playing wonderful music for tips, ambition and dreams are still alive. With teenagers and young adults many of the dreams of childhood surrender themselves to the impulse of nature to simply find a mate and to reproduce. With children their minds are coming alive and their individual ambitions are ignited. But once puberty kicks in nature is taking over and it is the liberal reminder that individuals serve nature, not the mind over nature itself. While kids have their minds growing, they are at the best that humans can ever hope to achieve. The sad story is that once they surrender that growth to nature, then it is seldom that they ever recover and they grow into adults that are constantly yearning to return to their youth, for the rest of their miserable lives.

Then occasionally you see a girl like this street performer will show up with her little hat and a fiddle and throw her dreams to the wind and hope that the shared experience will lead to good fortune. But in the honesty of most children there is just the lust to experience life in some profound way and share that expression with great ambition and talent, which is obvious in her performance. This girl reminds me of a young lady I saw who was about ten years older perform on the streets of Canterbury several years ago. My thoughts on seeing her was that she should be on America’s Got Talent, or some other high-level broadcast. But if every such person would be so discovered we couldn’t hold them back from filling a country of their very own, which is in a lot of ways why America was born. Every village around the world from India to the Congo have similar young people bursting with talent until they start giving birth to kids of their own and their dreams of ambition are lost to the pressures of reality. Sometimes, which I am always encouraging young people to hang on to, they get into their upper years with that ambition still attached, or they resurrect them. But often the case is that such ambitions are lost once the yielding to nature occurs, then such people are forever changed, and they never return.

I love seeing that these people are out there and I do cheer on that this bright young girl might hold her talents close even if Hollywood or some other entertainment market doesn’t give her a job, that she continues to perform like this for the raw ambition of protesting against nature and instead remain as humans were designed, playing their brand of music against the backdrop of the universe and whatever songs spring forth.

I am also a person who doesn’t like dancing, I don’t do it. The reason is that the music is reminiscent to me of nature and most music worth dancing to is of the low intellect pubescent variety. The music is made by people in their young adult phase and the goal is to get people into the mating rituals, the low thinking of sexual frustrations and hunger. It has often made me weary to go to dance halls, night clubs and those types of environments and watch bright young people surrender away their guarded bodies to the mosh pit of a mob that grinds against them in sexual ways in full view of the public as primitives would in a village orgy. We are not talking about the songs of the universe in this case, but the lower standards of the human desire to breed then die like some springtime flower that has done its duty, flowered, then bake away in the summer sun until its just a wrinkled up mound of vegetation dead by the first freeze of autumn. That is where that kind of dancing takes everyone, and its very sad for me to see, if I must admit as much.

But the music this girl is playing to, and dancing is of another kind. Its not intended to be sexualized, or even provocative, but is an affirmation of a musical score that was provided to her life for which she put her own spin on with her fiddle. That to me is the essence of what human life is and why it could have so much potential if only people would behold it and interact with it honestly. While most of these street performers in the world are hoping to get noticed, or to earn enough tips for the day to pay their way through that day of life, it is the last vestiges of childhood dreams that I see. These people are resisting to get that life crushing job, that boss that just doesn’t get it, for a chance to hang on to the dreams of childhood just a little bit longer before rent payments and healthcare dominate their thoughts, while their childhood lives and the freedom of thought that came with them are still there.

Here is this girl, defiant against the changes coming to her life playing music to the songs of the universe and all the hopes and dreams that come from an independent mind squaring off against reality itself. And the crowd gathering knows what they see. They have long surrendered to those pressures but they give the girl a tip because in some small way, that is one of their last acts of rebellion against the forces that are ruining their own lives in the vast wasteland of their existence, to give that girl a small tip of support and hope for her sake that the world might notice. And for the range of that little song the girl in her bright white hat and her sandals playing in the streets of a big city her declaration that she is independent and free, and not just putting her life in conjunction with human ambition in changing nature to a musical score of thought—but she is in command of it.

We might be thinking that once the music stops the bite of nature will come after her, and rip her to shreds like what happens to most people. But as she bows at the conclusion and people clap, we suppose that the grim reaper is just around the corner. However, I think that so long as she has that fiddle in her closet, or under her bed, no matter how many kids she has, or how many loved ones she knows who lose their life to the ailments of nature, that she will be alright. She may never taste fame or fortune, but so long as she can play music like that, she will always be a free person and will be among the most wealthy among us in the history of the human race.

Rich Hoffman

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The 25/25 Rule: Get better, don’t yield to weaknesses

A lot of the methods of business have been on my mind lately due to the work I’m putting into a new book I’m working on called the Gunfighter’s Guide to Business. In it there is a chapter on the International Journal of Production Research’s 25/25 rule and it is just another example of how the private sector is always trying to improve themselves so that they can make more money and stay relevant longer in a business environment. Yet government at any level never does and it shows in what their final products are. We joke about how inefficient government is, and people do desire jobs in the government sectors because performance standards are not part of the vocabulary, but it doesn’t take an accountant to realize that for every hour worked in a to heavy government environment that it is costing the taxpayer a tremendous amount of money because something like the 25/25 rule is not being utilized, and its very disingenuous to everyone forced to contribute to the madness through the tyranny of the IRS.

The 25/25 rule essentially states that you take the 25% of your business portfolio and not focus on it so that you can give attention to all your top customers. The effort was created to attempt to give more focus on organizational support for the best of your customers and requires a judgement call. The rule also assumes that there is always another 25% of your company portfolio that can be improved with cutting out non-value-added tasks. Can you imagine a school board meeting where such a conversation would take place? The teacher’s union which really runs all public schools would be up in arms and protesting in seconds, since the goal of any employee run management is to be as inefficient as possible so that the bar of expectations cannot be lowered, just ever inflated so that the “collective” is not pressured too much in any task. That is problem number one.

Yet even in relation to the private sector I think the 25/25 rule doesn’t go nearly far enough and is a very disrespectful way to treat customers if they don’t happen to be in that upper tier of a company’s portfolio. It’s not their fault that you as a business have focus problems and need to find ways to internally prioritize effort. While I do agree that there is always 25% of an organization that could almost always be eliminated in unnecessary process flow and streamlined operations, I also think that the task of every organization is that they need to get 25% better on their portfolios, not to ignore 25% of their current load so they can focus on their best and most important customers. A top-level organization is always doing that and getting better so that they can show off their capacity to handle pressure for future state growth opportunities.

What I find happening in organizations using the 25/25 rule is that its giving bad management another tier of excuses to use until they are forced to look in the mirror and admit what a bunch of losers they are. The intent of the 25% portfolio reduction is to manage overbooked businesses with a steadier workflow, with the notion that its better late than never getting it at all. To me this is reprehensible thinking and is the nature of that particular chapter in my book. The difference between the East and the West is that winning matters and some of the parameters of western thinking that determine victory is speed and accuracy—the drive thru window with everything in the bag that you ordered—the first time through. We want it fast and we want it accurate. This whole 25/25 rule had me thinking of the bullwhip competitions that I’ve been in over the years where you are supposed to be 7’ from the five targets in the Speed and Accuracy competitions. You are timed how quickly you can use a 6’ bullwhip to crack out the ten targets. For every miss, there is a 5 second penalty. Learning to do that competitive event is a good way to step beyond the 25/25 rule and instead to focus on improving yourself by 25% not passing along your inability to some down the line customer.

We see it all the time, we’re picking up some food at a drive thru, the restaurant is obviously understaffed for the level of business they have and lines are wrapped around the building with everyone waiting on their food. Additionally, the people who don’t want to wait in that long line go inside to order at the counter, hoping to step around the mess. But standard practice in every fast food restaurant is to use that 25/25 rule to deal with such carnage, and the first thing that goes is worrying about the dining room because it is the drive thru windows that have the timers on them and is how they are measured as a successful business. Such a place could be said to have a capacity problem and the managers will blame their high call-off rates and blame the weak condition of their employees as the reason for their victimized status.

I would argue that the capacity constraints are not in the machinery, since most fast food restaurants are built to do the business, its in the high turnover and generally unreliable nature of the employees they hire that causes all the problems. I find the fault in the managers who have such a bad staff that calls off too much, or the kind of people they hired to begin with, in not determining at the interview that their employees might turn in to unreliable employees, and that the management culture allowed the employees to call off often without consequences which is why restaurants sometimes are slammed and unprepared to deal with their customer bases. Hiring the right kind of people through the interview process then developing those people through proper management practices is the key to successful staffing which then solves the capacity challenges that are not related to the equipment itself.

The 25/25 rule tends to give bad management the excuse to hide behind this measurement system and give them a victimized status to explain away their failure. “My employees called off, so I couldn’t successfully handle the customer demands.” Yet it was the reason all their employees called off that the management system didn’t deal with, which is why there is a problem in the first place. The company should focus instead on having a 25% increase in hiring efficiency where their new employees have better attendance. Or the drive thru window workers get 25% faster than the less experienced newbs. Or that you can run the whole operation with 25% less people. Those should be the targets and people who do things like that bullwhip competition that I mentioned understand that process because it simply wouldn’t be permissible to complain that the competition was too hard and that they didn’t have the speed and accuracy to compete. That is the nature of my new book, is to change the thinking about these kinds of things from a victimized status to a proactive one. If you want to do something, don’t blame the conditions. Get better, and acquire the skills needed for success.

Of course, the obvious hatred for President Trump by protectors of the status quo, the government employees who have been sucking off the system hiding behind a lack of standards reviews, or the government labor unions who have their own rules, such as a 99/99 rule. Unions are only willing to give 1% toward performance review, or a process improvement. They aren’t willing to sign up for any performance expectations because they don’t want the bar set where their lazy employees have to live up to. While that makes for a nice job for them where they get paid whether or not they actually do anything, the benefit to the end use customer is us, in that they cost too much money. At least with President Trump a part of our government is starting to think more like the private sector, and that’s the way it should always have been.

Rich Hoffman
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The 25/25 Rule: Using Bullwhips to understand Overcapacity problems

I have enough for my book to include this small sample from the upcoming Gunfighter’s Guide to Business.  There is still a lot of editing to conduct and it will likely be a 2020 project at this point, but thought my audience here would enjoy it, since so many people have been asking how it is coming along.  So enjoy this short sample:

The 25/25 Rule

There are many rules of practice that businesses use to manage their capacity, such as Warren Buffett’s 25/5 rule, or the International Journal of Production Research’s 25/25 rule. With Buffett, he states that out of the top 25 things that you want to do in life, you should only focus on the top five, until you’ve completed them. And with the 25/25 rule the goal is to reduce focus on the bottom 25% of your workload and to squeeze improvements in process out of another 25%. Thinking like a gunfighter however, these measurements in business are only new ways to present targets to hit and have their own sets of problems that unless looked at correctly, are useless. As I have spoke about, there are many weapons that gunfighters can use to do their business, guns are just one of them. Another is the bullwhip which I find has many direct correlations that apply to conceptual business matrixes such at the 25/25 rule.

As I have said about the bullwhip and in fast draw shooting in general, the primary objective is to do the most work with the most power in the shortest and most accurate time span possible. With bullwhips, to get the maximum impact out of the end of the weapon with the minimum effort it requires the handler to project that effort toward a target at a proper moment where the crack will occur in space and time. It is really quite an effort in physics to be able to crack out the flame on a candle with a bullwhip which among those who can call themselves experts, is a common act. When hitting targets with a bullwhip the effort looks effortless when done correctly as most of the action happens within a second’s time of measure. But there are many small steps within that second that must occur correctly to make such a thing happen, especially under the burden of timed pressure. Yet even just cracking out a flame on a candle with all the time to do it in the world takes a very timed approach to inflict the minimal effort to get the maximum results of cracking the whip so near the candle that the sonic boom created blows out the flame.

When companies utilize the 25/25 rule essentially what they are saying is that they are over capacity due to their sales departments over booking the facility and that they are picking the bottom end of their 25% of business portfolio to ignore so that they can focus on their top percent of valuable customers. The problem with this approach is that it allows bad management to hide behind a method of measurement and to use the analysis to disguise bad approaches to solving the problem. In the Cowboy Fast Draw competitions and Wild West Arts work that is like saying that the weapon handler needs more time to do a good job. But as we know in gun fights, the fastest and most accurate were the ones who won the duels. There were no rules for taking time to deal with the incompetence of the duelists. If the gunfighters were incompetent, they were killed. And the same holds true in business.

The aim of the Western Arts isn’t just to enjoy the historical nature of traditional weapons used in war within American culture but is to represent the necessities of living within a western society. The needs of American business is one of those requirements, and not connecting those proper metaphors to the function of business can lead to detriment, which for too many companies is a common occurrence. Such as the case with the 25/25 rule the way it has been proposed to help companies with their problems of overcapacity. The solution to those problems are experienced in western competition where speed and accuracy are measured. There are many very good shooters in the world and very good bullwhip artists who have trouble with the fast draw competitions of Western Arts. They look great when performing for audiences until the pressure of time is added, then things get tough and people start reacting poorly under duress, which is the point.

Most consultants in the United States and Europe are following similar methods of reducing push systems and instead incorporating pull, where one element of a supply chain does not ship until the downstream source is needed. The 25/25 rule is an element of this thinking and it essentially dances around the true villain which is incompetence. If a manager either upstream or downstream just can’t handle the pressure and has a hard time recruiting and retaining good employees, they will obviously have trouble doing the required job. The 25/25 rule gives them some cover to then focus only on their valuable customers and letting the less valuable fall off the portfolio. This might look great for the internal measures of a production environment, but it doesn’t equal the task of the sales department that is trying to book work and help a company profile with new business. The incompetent managers within an organization might be angry toward sales for bringing in more work than they feel comfortable handling. And that is the core of the problem. Many of the Lean consultants do have good ideas but they try to use peer pressure to level load a facilities production output instead of focusing on making the individual contributors better.

I have seen many really good bullwhip artists struggle with the speed and accuracy competitions that are in the Western Arts events, because the rhythm and pressure of a timed competition throws off everything and they would argue that if the rules were not so rigorous, if only they had more time, they could do better. Well, who couldn’t? The point of timed pressure is to sort out the good from the bad and in business that is certainly the case. Thinking like a gunfighter, anything less than fast and accurate would mean death, and it does to businesses also.

It is up to the weapon handler, such as in the case of the bullwhip artist to get better and to acclimate themselves to the conditions of the battlefield. If doing a speed and accuracy competition with bullwhips between 15 to 12 seconds is the parameters needed to win, then that is up to the bullwhip artists to get better to compete in those parameters. In the case of businesses where sales provide jobs and the various program managers within the organization determine that the scope of work fits within the company portfolio it is not up to the weaknesses of production to decide that they can’t live up to the expectations. They must get better to meet the needs, not hide behind some bounty hunter rules created to make their business thrive while the businesses that hire them suffer under their own incompetence. Rather than try to force the industry to deal with the artificial constraints created by bad management, companies should strive to get 25% better to meet those market needs and to create value for their customers. What if a town sheriff stated to the population looking to them for protection that to be a good representative of the law that the criminals needed to be 25% slower in their threats and actions of aggression so that the sheriff could handle the danger? Instead, it is up to the sheriff to get faster, and to be better. And if more bandits come to town, and are smarter and faster yet, it is up to the law to get better to keep the peace. So, it is with any business. The customer needs what they need, it is up to the company to give it to them, or to figure out how to without going out of business in the practice. And that only happens when you force everyone to get better, not playing to the weaknesses of the workforce managed poorly by the incompetent.

Rich Hoffman

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Republicans and Democrats will Never Work Together: Above and Below the line thinking

I learned a long time ago when dealing with the Lakota school system, the government school in my home district, that most everything related to government functioned below the line, which is a saying in the private sector especially popular among business consultants. In the private sector such definitions are used to convey troublesome cultures that are unprofitable. Above the line, positive affirmations are often the key to solving financial problems in private sector companies, but in government such things never happen, and the expectation is that they never will. I was told by so many labor union employees within the Lakota government schools system that private sector metrics could not be applied to things like schools, and government in general. That was of course before Republicans elected a businessman like Donald Trump to the White House, which has changed things significantly in how government operates. Trump fires people and is constantly moving people around to find the best fit, which should always have been happening in government. But until recently, it wasn’t even a consideration, which is of course why government tends to operate poorly, too expensively, and always below the line.

When I talk so poorly about Democrats its not political in the way that has become fashionable, it’s by conjecture of the evidence. If I were hired to fix a company I would have to first overcome the issues with the below the line thinkers that are always a part of every organization and use some means to correct that situation, either by terminating them, or changing their mindset to above the line thinking. We have the same problems in families, you can’t have a bunch of positive people who want to make a happy family and mix them with a bunch of below the line negative types who want to be victims at everything just so they can use failure as a shield for their own laziness. So of course we will have such people in our political system that we must vote for in the ballot box. Of those, Democrats certainly represent below the line thinking and the big government approach to everything where Republicans are above the line. President Trump is an excellent example of an above the line thinker, his business background lends itself naturally to that type of person. His popular television show was about teaching young project managers how to think above the line and not be victims, and to be successful. Then of course that is what he has been doing as President and the results to the economy are obvious, just as any company would experience when led by such a person. But Democrats are all about below the line thinking and in the scheme of things, the two just can’t co-exist without one destroying the other.

Examples of above the line thinking would be the ability to make choices, to be personally accountable, to always seek solutions, to take action. Examples of below the line thinking are to blame others, wait for others, to see failure, to see problems as obstacles. No company works well when it is filled with below the line people and it would be the consultant’s task to change that below the line culture into an above the line culture, and there are all kinds of tricks to get there. But the essence of the need is that for success to happen, switching people from below the line thinkers to above the line is not an option. We can’t live with below the line thinkers and expect to ever have success at anything. And that is the lesson for us as a nation politically.

The same holds true in everything we do whether it is trying to hold together a marriage, to build a family, running a business, or running a government. If a government is filled with a lot of below the line people, then there is no chance at success. And in my experience when trying to figure out why a multimillion dollar budget wasn’t enough for the teacher’s union, I learned quickly that there was no way to solve the problem so long as below the line people were the ones doing all the negotiating over budget allocation. You can’t solve problems with below the line people because they use problems to hide their aversion to solutions, because solutions take away excuses which leave those types of people vulnerable in ways, they aren’t comfortable with. And when such people are in control, money is wasted, resources destroyed, and nobody is ever responsible. Thus, problems rule the day.

Its not a matter of people having different opinions about things. It’s a matter of whether or not people want to solve problems or not. Those who don’t will never be able to negotiate better conditions because they need the below the line thinking to hide behind. No amount of negotiation will ever solve anything with such people, as they will constantly try to undo anything that is ever solved. And that is the state of the entire Democrat party, its all about victimhood, its all about excuses, and ultimately hopelessness. When we talk about Republicans and Democrats getting along as they once did, well I don’t know that they ever did. Thinking or John F. Kennedy when he pointed to the moon and proclaimed that we would go there, as a Democrat he was a very above the line thinker in that fashion. And he was also murdered because whether the killing was a lone communist sympathizing gunman or a government conspiracy from the deep state that wanted him out of the White House, a solution based presidency was not wanted. So he was killed.

When it comes to this topic, we can’t just let below the line thinkers rule us from their negative standpoints, and still retain our above the line values. Those things never go together and they never will. Democrats will never play well with Republicans and that is a political reality we must face. So it is not wrong to demonize Democrats for not wanting to be part of any solutions. In any company where the below the line thinkers are standing in the way of solutions, they must be removed. Its not an option. So neither is it when those same types are in the way in politics. There is no such thing as a fair world where all people get to have an equal seat at the table. There is only winning and losing, we are either doing one thing or the other. But both things can’t happen at the same time. We must make a choice. Will it be Republicans above the line or Democrats below the line in what runs a government and everything that spawns off it.

I would say that it is our modern task to figure this out and to apply such concepts to our elected offices. We should expect above the line thinking from our politicians and our government, just as we would from a well run company. If we want to have good Thanksgiving dinners with our families, we should encourage above the line thinking among all the participants. But if some of the grown up children are still mad at their parents for their own lack of success in life and are trying to blame the college they went to, the attention they received from mother, or even who among the siblings had the bigger bed growing up, then there will probably be a lot of backstabbing at family gatherings and Thanksgiving will be miserable. Everyone is either working to solve things in their life or they are using problems as shields to maintain their below the line status. And so long as government schools, judicial buildings, IRS collections, and everything under the umbrella of government is below the line, and supported by Democrats wanting more and more of it, then there will never be solutions to inflated budgets and poor performance. The solutions to those types of things is in changing behavior, not the politics of the individuals. What people call themselves are not nearly as important as to whether or not they are below the line or above the line in their essential thinking.

Rich Hoffman

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