Who Cares About Michael Bloomberg’s Billion Dollars: It won’t help him win 1 percentage point

There seems to be a lot of concern about Michael Bloomberg’s commitment to spending a billion dollars to defeat President Trump in the next election. Some of that money was constantly seen during the NFL playoffs trying to prop up the New York socialist with favorable light. Then the Sunday political shows were deeply concerned because as many of them said, it was Bloomberg money that converted the House from a Republican majority to a Democrat majority for which many current problems have spawned forward. So for clarity here, let’s put some sanity into the equation, no, Bloomberg did not cost Republicans the House, it was the Never Trumper Republicans who retired leaving Democrats to fill those voids since many in those districts were still moderates at the time. A few years later with such a great economy being what it is, those demographics have changed for the better. And considering Michael Bloomberg’s billion dollars, you can polish up a turd to look like some nice piece of gold, but its still crap. People see what’s going on. I would say that Bloomberg at this point could spend 2, or 3 billion dollars but he would be unable to move numbers against Trump one percentage point and for him and the rest of the Democrats, that has to be very frustrating and they are fixing to learn some very hard lessons in 2020.

Democrats still haven’t learned their lessons, and Bloomberg is the same guy who thought that big government had a right to regulate the size of a soft drink that we could all have. They just don’t understand what I have been saying about the great psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmiahalyi’s important work on “Flow” that came out of the University of Chicago. It really pains me to see the state of modern day academia allowing themselves to be a propaganda arm of socialist politics because I personally enjoy the great works of very profound thinkers from academia quite a lot, people such as Mihaly Csikszentmiahalyi who see emerging trends in human consciousness well before pop culture and politics recognize them. Trump isn’t just a person, but it’s a global trend. You can see it in Brexit, we can see it in Iran, Hong Kong, even in the Star Wars movies for which Disney’s pop culture is draped off of. When people roll their eyes when I’m talking about the new Rise of the Resistance ride at Disney World even that is built of the same stuff from Mihaly Csikszentmiahalyi’s concepts about psychological Flow. We live in a world where personal decisions crave to be freer not more restricted. People want less rules and much more creativity about their private lives, not more restriction.

Democrats and their commitment to socialism whether it is openly stated or just supported in policy by a different name is all about less options, not more. They are all about less creativity personally in all our lives, not more. Their definitions of freedom are constructed in old 60s communist propaganda uttered in Beatles songs, not in the realities of our day with the freedom that smart phones give us and the infinite shopping options of Amazon.com. We live in an age where commercial space travel is becoming a reality, and here is Michael Bloomberg suggesting that we need more rules on soft drinks, and the Democrats want to do for health care what they have done to public education, turn it into a dirty uncared for bathroom at a public park managed by government for the utilization of government, without private enterprise there to keep quality on the up and up. Even in the realm of health care we are looking at cures for cancer and the complete biological restructuring of a body in a few years to cure illnesses, where standard doctor’s visits won’t even be a thing, it will likely happen by computer and from the comfort of our homes.

That is the trend that President Trump represents in the world, freedom and personal choice. That is what the Republican Party as a whole now represents and there is nothing that the Democrats can do to repair that image. No amount of money can change that message now that Democrats are committed to that branding. And that will be the lesson of all the Bloomberg money he is spending and plans to. His message and the one in general for the Democrat Party is one that people are rejecting at every level of their lives. No matter how many times they hear from Bloomberg during the playoffs and world series, audiences will tune him out while they go to the kitchen to get more nachos, and it certainly won’t change how they vote. In many ways that is why nothing they have thrown at Trump has stopped support of him up to this point, because its not the man himself that people are voting for, but it’s the idea behind him, that personal freedom and wealth can be increased. Only now, after three years in office, people are seeing bigger paychecks and more jobs, and that will ultimately decide the election, no matter how much money is spent.

The lesson here is that messaging does not control behavior, it simply reflects it. That is why President Trump was able to be elected even though Hillary Clinton outspent him by quite a large amount. It was the message President Trump provided that resonated with voters, and specifically the right kind of voters. He didn’t need to cheat with the illegal California immigration vote either, he was able to get those votes outside the measurements of standard polling and to overcome celebrity endorsements for Hillary, the Deep State manipulations at the Department of Justice and a lot of money from the consultant class working against him at every turn. In the end it didn’t matter because Trump promised to give people “Flow” back to their lives, or to a larger degree than they had ever experienced before. He did it with a great economy that provides opportunities for people who want them. He has done it through deregulation giving more people more creative options for business than in worrying so much about compliance—which soaks up intellectual bandwidth to an even higher degree than high taxes. Personal freedom and more options are what this next election are all about, not paid for messaging. When the rubber hits the road, freedom and personal options are what give traction to political forces, and really, nothing else. To understand all the reasons, I simply must refer the curious reader to the great work of Mihaly Csikszentmiahalyi.

The arrogance of Michael Bloomberg, Nancy Pelosi, even to the degree that Joe Biden refuses to understand just how out of step he truly is in the world with his constant rantings about controlling the amount of ammunition guns can hold, as if that was an important issue to anybody except the most crazy socialists and gun grabbing communists cheering for Iran to beat Trump in some way to hurt the president during an election year, is that they insist on a mode of political theater that the public has long ago rejected, and has been trending in that direction for decades now. Instead of looking at the true science of the moment they are instead insisting that reality is not what it is, and that people are so stupid that their thoughts can be purchased. They can’t be. People will vote for those who give them more freedom, and more resources, and Trump is the only one with a track record showing anything close to that need. Money can’t buy freedom, and that is the lesson Bloomberg will learn very soon, and all those who still have not received the memo because they refuse to take hold of it. A billion dollars or more isn’t close to enough to change minds, because those minds are already made up—and nothing will change that at this point.

Rich Hoffman

Keith Kinnunen and Liberals: There are a lot more mentally depraved people in the world which requires us all to be armed to defend ourselves from

Not that it’s a surprise, but we now know that the shooter of the West Freeway Church of Christ in White Settlement, Texas was Keith Kinnunen—a loser who had managed his life poorly who targeted that church because they had given him food instead of money. This instance reminds me of many of my personal run-ins with homeless people. Once at the Kenwood Mall a homeless person was on the side of the highway exit looking for food, but what he really wanted was money. My wife and I went to the food court and bought him a bag of Arby’s for which he immediately threw to the ground. I’ve tried to help people like that since, but often with the same result. It doesn’t surprise me when people who find they can’t live in the world due to their lack of mental development (which is almost 100% of the time their own fault) or because they have drug addictions, that this loser Keith Kinnunen was upset that the church only gave him food instead of money, and sought to take his rage out on them due to his own radical ideas of self-indulgence.
When Kinnunen pulled out a 12-gauge shotgun to kill parishioners at that church, he managed to kill a few people before Jack Wilson pulled out his own gun and shot the assailant dead in seconds, as concealed carry holders are supposed to do. Its always sad to see anybody lose their life, but this case had a happy ending, a lot more people were able to return home to their families due to a good guy with a gun shooting a bad guy with a gun. The problem with the case is that liberals put their own two cents into this case by suggesting that instead of focusing on the success of Wilson’s actions that we should be looking at eliminating the need for gun violence in the first place, which is an astonishing statement considering that it is the liberal view of the world that caused the conditions.

Kinnunen was a troubled person his entire 44-year life, as a guy who had been married two times with ex-wives available to tell plenty of stories of his crazed anger and drug abuse, the guy was so irresponsible that he was just another homeless person. Many have pointed out that he wasn’t mentally healthy which is obvious. The burning question in this case and all of them for that matter is what the cause of mental illness is, which I often say the entire Democrat party could be guilty of. Trying to decide what is mental illness and what isn’t is where liberals have a hard time because their entire lives could be said to function out of some mental depravity not that unlike the killer in this Texas church case. They support drug abuse, do not believe in family structure and have a sense of entitlement which suggests that the world owes them something. They are not much different at face value than Kinnunen getting angry with the church because they gave him food instead of money.

This is entirely why most all liberals are opposed to open carrying of firearms because they see themselves in killers like Kinnunen. They want to believe that they are mentally healthy people, but when the facts come out on the kind of people who perform these mass killings in nearly every case, its not just a case of mental illness, but are the products of liberalism in our society—drug abuse, lack of personal responsibility for actions, and a sense of entitlement. Whether that entitlement comes in the form of federal workers demanding higher taxes to cover their inflated pensions, or whether its some loser like this Kinnunen guy who expects people to feel sorry for his bad decisions in life and to give him money for drugs so he can forget about his problems—that he himself created. Liberals sympathize with these killers because they see themselves in the mirrors of their existence—and they certainly wouldn’t want to have an armed society that could protect themselves from liberal incursions, which are frequent if left unchecked.

There are tens of thousands of liberals who are not much healthier than Keith Kinnunen functioning right now in our schools, our BMVs, even at the post office. The only reason they have not become homeless people running around food kitchens looking for free money is because we overpay them to be government leeches. Most of them are about one paycheck away from becoming assassins like Keith Kinnunen. Not that they would go out and shoot someone tomorrow, but they think about it. Believe me they do. It took Keith Kinnunen 44 years to get to that point, so its not like people become killers that fast, but the thought is in their heads and they want desperately to hide it from the rest of us. That is why they are against an armed society. Its not what they fear in people like Jack Wilson, its in a loss of a safety net to catch them if they should fail in life like Kinnunen did. Because they have more in common with the killer than they do a church going do-gooder.

Without question we could have put a suit and tie on Keith Kinnunen and stuck him on MSNBC and called him a political pundit and if he talked about global warming instead of cash from church food giveaways, we’d accept his positions as rational. But its all extremism and rooted in beliefs that need others to fill them for sustenance. Kinnunen was self-righteously religious and likely took Bible verses rooted in socialist sentiment too far and believed that people owed him a living, whereas the global warming crowd requires others to believe in a complete fiction to validate their point of view. Both ideas are rooted in collectivism requiring many sane minds to drop away their logic to accept the premise of lunacy.

We accept logically that liberals can use the IRS to steal our money for their own government theft, and that the power of government can be used to overthrow elections such as the impeachment case against Trump, but that there is some invisible line that separates the actions of Keith Kinnunen from demanding money at a church instead of food, and when a shootout breaks out over the issue liberals want to prosecute the gun owners. When in truth it was a failure of liberalized society that allowed a guy like Keith Kinnunen to live outside of jail, on and off the streets as a drug addict and a violent person to more than one spouse. We all knew Kinnunen was dangerous, but our society failed to recognize that threat because honestly, he was too close in behavior to most Democrats. So, he continued in paralysis until he eventually pulled out a gun to kill people of his own sense of entitlement. His insanity is really the responsibility of a society that did not set him right at an early age and allowed him to become a menace as a grown adult. That is why our future will require more people to carry guns in more places, because this guy isn’t the end by far. There are many just like him ready to snap and they are listening to the liberal dog whistles to fetch them on society as a menace. And it is then that we must defend ourselves.

Rich Hoffman

Richard Jewell, the Movie Review: To understand what’s happening now everyone should watch this great film by Clint Eastwood

The movie, Richard Jewell is certainly one of those that every Trump supporter should see, and those considering becoming one. No wonder it has not done well at the box office, the last time I saw such an antagonistic hatred of a movie was the Atlas Shrugged films for many of the same reasons. Critics hated the movie, it essentially comes down to institutionalism against individual rights when movies take the side of individuals, the college trained movie critics become synonymous with anger at those who challenge their understanding of the world, which was forged in such places as Harvard, Yale, Oxford and Princeton, or some of their copy cats teaching those who didn’t do so well on their ACT tests. When people want to know why the media and our government rally to each other’s needs so often, and so quickly, well, they were all taught in the same places to march to whims of the institutions while those who didn’t enjoy the experience become everybody else. But the best products of our modern education systems, our unionized government schools or our best colleges essentially become guys like the featured FBI agent played by Jon Hamm’s Tom Shaw or the newspaper reporter hot to get any story and generally bored with life, Olivia Wilde’s Kathy Scruggs. And it was those two who were playing around with each other sexually who came up with the whole story against Richard Jewell, because they needed somebody to be the face of terrorism, even if the guy was completely innocent.

There is a Kathy Scruggs in every newsroom from all sides of the sexes. There are guy versions, but this one played by Olivia Wilde was fantastic, and very close to many of the people I have known in the media. 89-year-old Clint Eastwood, who directed this picture with the experience of a man who has been around and seen everything is likely the only person who could have directed Olivia Wilde with such realism. She reminded me of a not so disgusting scum bag as Eastwood showed in his Dirty Harry film Sudden Impact, the bar whore who was the central figure behind the rapes of the two leading girls. For these characters wreaking other people’s lives is a kind of game that they love playing. It fills a void in their lives that they work very hard to hide from other people and they are dangerous. But make no mistake about it, there is a Kathy Scruggs in every newsroom to some extent or another. She is not an exceptionally evil person, she is as common as a raindrop in the world of the media, and it takes a director like Clint Eastwood to pull that kind of performance out of an actress who might otherwise not feel comfortable going to such a dark place.

We all know the story, but as I was watching this movie, I was thinking that this is exactly what has been happening to the Trump administration. Kathy Scruggs might as well have been Lisa Page in the middle of the FBI investigation against President Trump. Sexual manipulation is not a new thing for women to play against horny, stupid men, and Peter Strzok was no exception. Not all people are as flamboyant about their behavior as Scruggs was, they hide their actions better. But these kinds of things are happening all the time at every level of our society, and if you get in the way of their actions, another Richard Jewell is born. We only know of Richard Jewell because the profile of the case was a big one. There are Richard Jewell types losing their jobs every day, or being denied promotions for all the same reasons. What Trump captured of the FBI and the media in Richard Jewell was an examination into the kinds of people who are really part of these classes of people, and it wasn’t pretty.

What happened to Richard Jewell, with the attempted entrapments by the FBI was exactly what happened to Roger Stone in the early morning raid of his home at 5 AM with the CNN reporter tipped off and waiting to capture the images of an arrested Trump confidant to splash on the television at the earliest moment. Or what about pinning down Michael Flynn without a lawyer while attempting to get him to give false testimony by pretending to be his friend in the early days of the White House transition? You can’t lie to an FBI agent, it’s against the law—but they sure can lie to you, or control the evidence in such a way to make you look bad if it makes them look good in the process. This movie Richard Jewell showed how those things happen in a very legally valid way. We should all question ourselves in why we have given the government so much power over us. Well, I’d say it’s because there’s a bit of Richard Jewell in all of us, a do gooder who just wants to live a good life and we don’t want to think that people are so dishonest as Tom Shaw or Kathy Scruggs.

The problem with institutionalists like the villains in the movie Richard Jewell is that the villains see value for themselves in supporting the institutions at all cost, even at the price of humanity. And to the rest of us, we can’t even comprehend such evil, yet we face it every day. Occasionally we get fighters who know the system better than the bad guys like the attorney in the film played by Sam Rockwell, Watson Bryant. President Trump comes to mind as a person who has made so much money in life and seen every trick in the book that he can sidestep the institutionalists easily. But those not so experienced around Trump were not so difficult to pluck into the trash bins of trouble. One little misstatement at that level and you are going to jail, while gang members, thugs, and illegal aliens roam our streets unimpeded. If you lie to an FBI agent when they set up the deceit themselves to trap you in it, and you are going to jail to show their power. It’s a bad, nasty game that many fear almost more than death, and it’s sad that we have allowed it to take such a hold of all our lives.

The problem though isn’t that we are stupid, its that we have been short to admit to ourselves that people are as bad as Kathy Scruggs and Tom Shaw. We find it astonishing that they would take it for granted that we’d just naturally believe them and that we’d put up with their evil ways because we all want to believe in the good in people. But some people just don’t have it in them. They adhere so well to the institutions because as people they are broken likely from birth, and there is nothing to hold them together but the rigid rules for which they control. Whether it’s the FBI or the media, the rules are built to serve the institutions and when they need some diversion, they can always pick on the latest Richard Jewell—the good guy who is so well intentioned that he can’t see the evil that is at work right in front of his face. Yet we all see it, and its not just in the Jewell case, but it’s happening right now to our president by that same FBI. Only that story is a much bigger one that many just aren’t ready to admit has been happening. But to see it for all its possibilities, everyone should see Richard Jewell. Its one of those types of movies for our times.

Rich Hoffman

A $1000 Check to Saugus High School: The social decay that leads to school shootings nobody is talking about

After a recent shooting at Saugus High School in California where the 16-year-old birthday boy Nathaniel Berhow shot at five students early in the morning killing two before shooting himself in the head, a local woman donated $1000 toward the school which I found perplexing. The donation was an obvious act of rebellion from the woman toward the trend toward violence among young people who are using guns to inflict harm in the pressure cooker that is public education. The woman obviously wanted it to be known that she stands by her support of the school and would go to extreme acts to show her solidarity with the students. But as we know who have been fighting the trends of public education for a long time that $1000 check was next to useless, as the teacher’s union would quickly consume it. For the overall problem, it was a simple gesture no different than a rain drop in the ocean, but it obviously made the woman feel good to write the check, and it gave the news a nice feel good story about community unity and public education support in the face of grave danger.

I’ll say it again, teacher’s need to carry guns so they can put down attackers like this depressed kid quickly when they make a move to attack. This school shooting didn’t last long, and the targets were obviously selected for a reason. The news outlets won’t say it, but I will, high school is all about peer pressure and what kind of person is formed from that pressure. The social circles that are formed can be quite intense, relationships are complicated among human beings and foundations of betrayal can be quite ominous. And to any 16-year old, a girl who likes this guy and not you, or a girl who is with this friend and not you can be tragic, and even very melodramatic, especially if the adults in their lives aren’t providing the proper level of wisdom to navigate the crises. And ultimately, that’s what we find in this shooting case at Saugus High School.

We need guns because our society is making these types of people who are dangerous. I’m sure people thought of Nathaniel Berhow as a nice kid who would never do such a thing, but in moments of anguish, people do a lot of dumb things without really meaning to. I would say we are a culture of guns which has derived from our cultural need for them. As America evolved to allow individuals to reach the limits of their abilities, there are always parasites who are seeking to claim jump success, and guns are needed to protect the property of the ambitious, so that they will keep trying to try at success. Its our system of civilization and these public education institutions are running against that tide. The woman who gave the $1000 check is likely a nice person, but her belief system is faulty as to what that check represents. I know a few people like her, wealthy people who want to throw money at something like these tragedies because it makes them feel good to do it, like they are helping. But what is always ignored is why the kid thought his 16-year-old birthday was so dire that his only option was to lash out at fellow students before killing himself in the process. There was so much life to live, why cut it short so soon?

That’s where our social system fails. The public education institution has eroded away at the parental role in the lives of these kids then everyone wonders why parents can’t help when things get so bad. The premise, the cause and corrective action that needs to be acknowledged is that the public education system can’t do the job. The teacher’s unions who work in these schools are radical, and lazy. The politicians who set the agenda for what is taught are corrupt and stupid. And while the parents are trusting that system to teach their kids saving them the burden, they are living reckless lives having affairs, getting divorced and indulging in too much lackluster leadership under the roof of their own homes. That is why kids like this Nathaniel Berhow shoot themselves on their birthdays, and desire to go out in a blaze of glory to hurt the people who have hurt them. Hurt of course is a perceptual exchange. What one person considers hurtful, others may not. That’s why adult mentorship is so important to help with biological perception changes that mind steer the teenage mind in the wrong direction.

Removing guns from our society simply ignores the root cause of these greater social problems. It buys time for the society that has helped create this mess to continue believing in the failed system just a bit longer so long as the public focuses on those $1000 checks and not the real problem in public education. Public schools don’t work. They are weak attempts at social engineering that fail often and with these kinds of catastrophic results. And from the media, and the political class, there is no leadership to change what we are seeing openly and with frequent occurrence. Its only a matter of time before another school shooting happens near all of us. Its not the guns that are the problem, it’s the desire to use them to solve these kinds of problems that are. ABC News owned by the Disney Company especially are bad on this topic. Their belief, which is the same as most progressives in this modern age is to take away the temptation, that having so many guns makes these events easier. But Nathaniel Berhow had an unregistered gun. What would ABC like to see, the uninventing of guns? Even if all the gun manufactures in the world were put out of business, any machine shop around could build the parts. The black market will always have guns, so any law created won’t change that fact. Chicago still has more shootings than anyplace in the United States. Guns are illegal there and populations are regulated with liberalism. Yet gun violence is as common as rain in a storm.

Any method of resolution will fail if it does not deal with the true problem of psychological trouble that spawns out of collective education services and the pressures that go with them. The failure in public education is deep and is in need of a complete overhaul and really if you get to the example of the woman who wrote that check and the media that gravitated to it as if it were made of gold and spoke of the good hearts that rose up to meet this tragedy with acts of kindness, the real evil was in writing the check and supporting that school in the first place. In supporting a failed institution that is leaving people so desperate and lost that they cannot solve simple problems as teenagers, and in allowing the parents to reside guilt free of responsibility for raising their children, further danger is assured. When the news tells us that they do not know why a shooter like Nathaniel Bernhow did what he did, what they really mean is that they can’t admit their role in it, and therefor can’t talk about it. Its not so simple as leaving behind a note, or in having some other form of confession. The real villain is in the construction of the minds who can’t deal with the trouble and how public education makes those conditions worse, not better. And that is what we should all be talking about.

Rich Hoffman

The Tyranny of Safety: Fortune favors the bold and reckless as the foundation of innovation

With all the election coverage that really was needed recently, I didn’t have time to work through some of the concepts that I care about a great deal, which are being flushed out in my new book, The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business, so for the next couple of these I promised myself to make some time. When I write about things here, usually its due to my understanding of a needed change agency impasse. If a concept isn’t introduced that is key to a greater thought, then any potential audience might miss it. So you need to start early on these things, especially if the concept is truly revolutionary and contrary to contemporary thought. One of those things is the false nature that safety is what everyone is looking for, and that compliance to that culture is the only way to function. Quite the opposite, even in business where safety is always being leveraged against, fortune favors the bold and unsafe in ways that are keys to any successful culture. And those who are timid usually attempt to create rules of safety to preserve themselves for that inevitability. Safety is not a state we should all yearn for, its rather the shield that the timid use to hide their own aversion to the rules of the universe.

I’m speaking from experience; I have never done anything in my life that might be considered “safe.” Rather, I have lived an extremely reckless life and always when I start to get too comfortable, I always end up doing something on the deep end of crazy to keep myself honest. And that was not to sabotage psychologically some level of success, but rather an understanding of how the true pulse of the universe really works. I have been talking about words that are normally associated with me such as “respectable.” Well, another is Teflon, many have wondered over the years why I have not ended up in jail to rot away in solitary confinement instead of being something of a respectable character, no matter what sort of path of destruction has ended up running in my wake. The reason that such controversy and reckless abandon has not stuck to me is not due to some magical Teflon help, but rather in the nature of life itself, where fortune favors the bold, and the observers in life who do preserve safety over treasure tend to always cheer on those willing to do what they are not.

It was easy for me to make this observation because I never wanted to be a normal human being, rather I endeavored to be a stunt man or daredevil. That was in fact my very first inkling for a career that went back beyond kindergarten. As a kid I would jump out of any tree, ride a bike through any obstacle and my heroes that I most looked up to were not people associated with my very nice and structured family, they were daredevils like Eval Knieval and escape artists like Harry Houdini. As a child I noticed very early, even when going to the circus that people who did things like stick their head into a lion’s mouth or walked on a tight rope without nets or harnesses below them were the ones that people clapped for. Part of them wanted to see a human being spit in the face of danger. Its not that they rooted for the big crash, or the death by a crazed animal, its that they wanted to see someone overcome the natural fears we all have so that innovation of some kind could come from the result.

This is another reason that a concept like communism and socialism are so reprehensible. They may be attractive to the type of people who fill an audience. People watching dangerous things do want the safety of observation. Yet when a society penalizes a tight rope walker with helmets and support ropes, the magic of the challenge is diminished tremendously. That’s why communist and socialist countries don’t tend to produce the kind of people who jump motorcycles over fountains in Las Vegas or to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel. A society that is full of an audience but no show to watch becomes stagnant and boring, and eventually fails as a culture. However, when people are free to think and push the limits of their culture, we find that it flourishes in ways that cause great growth, and this is certainly the case in businesses of all kinds.

People are much more forgiving of a tight rope walker who almost falls and has to catch themselves from hitting the ground with an imperfect show because the attempt itself is what they really want to see. They will forgive Sea World for the occasional Orca attack that kills the whale trainers because the point of the show was to demonstrate mastery over the primal instincts of a wild animal. Without the show, the antics of a whale eating, mating and just swimming around are pretty boring. The audiences of life want to see somebody risking something, because they are too timid to do such things in life. But they do love to see other people doing it.

Whether in the court room, the board room, or even at the stock exchange, fortune favors the bold and playfully reckless. Owners of businesses who can’t afford to lose everything they have worked so hard for truly appreciate those like Harry Houdini who will throw chains upon themselves and be submerged underwater with the lid locked shut and only two minutes to hold their breath to attempt to escape before a massive bomb goes off on stage while the audience watches in horror. In all the books there are on business, and specifically program management they instruct their readers to mitigate risk and to run from it into the audience where everyone else is sitting. But talk to any finance person over lunch as they talk about how they want you to mitigate risk and protect the money they are lending you, they’ll also be the first ones to sit in the first row of a show where a daredevil will challenge death itself to lighten up the content of their boring day. They say they want a safe world, but they are the first to indicate they know daredevils are what make them money. Playing it safe in the back row doesn’t get any endeavor there, somewhere along the line of any investment a daredevil is needed to sign on the dotted line and take the plunge to perform under pressure or else.

Most of the rules of society are built for the timid, so not to hurt their feelings that they are not one of those daredevil types in an attempt to make the world appear more equal. The more we have explored socialism in our own culture, the more willing we have been to put safety helmets on our children as they ride their bicycles and listen to every warning label an insurance company gives us so that they won’t have to pay a costly payout when some kid breaks their arm falling off the roof of their house. But making children overly safe, we have also killed in them the daring percentage who will make it into adulthood fearless of the real performances the human race wants to see, and we end up with a bunch of people sitting in the audience waiting for a good show, but no Harry Houdini strapped in chains upside down in a vault of water. We want to see someone overcome such things and in all things that we consider successful and respectable, we have some nature of a daredevil there to show us that something can be done. This trait is useful in asking a member of the opposite sex out for a date, which for many people is very difficult, or in landing a big business deal against all odds where a lot of time, money, and people’s jobs are at great risk. People want to know that you are so confident in your craft that you will walk the tight rope without fearing falling because you are so good. They want to know that you aren’t afraid, because they are and they like knowing that you don’t wear a helmet because you don’t fear crashing. Those who cleave to safety are those sitting in the audience waiting to see that somebody can overcome death and worse to achieve something. And once they see it for themselves, they can then possibly not be ruled by fear, but can rather live more freely than otherwise would have been possible and to get more out of life than was previously thought.

Rich Hoffman

Vote for O’Connor and Hahn to Lakota School Board: It isn’t about being nice, its about being effective

The value to a person like me of the Lakota school system is in how little they take from the community to offer their free baby-sitting service. I think we are in a time where the college myth is no longer relevant, that we understand the cost of a liberalized education is very detrimental to young minds. But a lot of parents could care less, they just need somewhere to park their kids for the day while they do whatever they do. And if there are sports programs, they can play the lottery with their children by hoping that they may get a scholarship to a college and save them some money. That’s my opinion of the public education system which might be bleak to many, but its my observation that, that is the essence of it, so in my view, it needs to cost the least possible. The real figures that make up a good community are the businesses that create the desire to move into an area. The school that happens to be there benefits from the quality of people who are drawn to the businesses of a region. It’s a really broken system that measures all the wrong values, so while we all figure out the future of public education, we need a bridge from here to there that has smart people managing the resources so we don’t end up with the kind of mess that we have had at Lakota during the last decade.

At the recent VOA Miami University Meet the Candidate night which took place on October 22nd, 2019 I attended to provide coverage for those who couldn’t be there, and video of the event is provided here. I see this work as a kind of public service. Feel free to watch the videos and make your decisions on the candidates. For me the unquestionable choice for school board in this upcoming election is James Hahn and Lynda O’Connor. Lynda has been around for a while and knows how to manage the board and keep Lakota in a win column so that they don’t scare off potential investors into real estate as a deal breaker. I don’t think Lakota is a lure, not in the way public school used to be. Other factors certainly are a greater part of the decision-making process. And that’s where James Hahn comes into play. He’s a business guy and would provide Lynda and the current board member Todd Parnell with that critical third vote to keep the district running well with the massive amount of money that we do give them.

Much of the talk from that debate night was what to do with the massive $100 million surplus that Lakota is operating under. I filmed many of the questions and answers but was out of the room away from the camera when Ray Murray proclaimed that it would take Lakota 37 years to spend all that money, which was astonishing. I’m sure somebody in the room filmed that comment. But the gist of the night was that Ray and Julie Shaffer were nice people who just didn’t have a clue how to operate in this tightly controlled Lakota district where business owners have actually stood up for themselves against the extortion tactics that public schools often use to get more money in their pockets so they can throw it at the teacher’s union. Looming in the room around that event were many of them from Liberty Township and West Chester. Sure, everyone shakes hands at the end of those things and gets along, professionally. But the resentment of the game is a clear dividing line and since much has been said over the last decade about the negative ways Lakota has interacted with that part of the community, it is clear that the skills needed are well beyond Ray and Julie.

What’s different now as opposed to even a few years ago is that “just pay more money for the kids” isn’t enough any more for public schools, and at Lakota that is especially true. There are lots of psychological problems that make people do what they do, and as I often refer to strong supporters of government schools as rapid animals with their minds soaked into delusion as to what the school can actually do for their children, what everything eventually comes down to is money. Lakota has plenty of money that they are taking in. The question is, what happens to it? Without a pro-business school board who knows how to read a balance sheet, that $100 million surplus will be wasted on everything and the board will come back to the community asking for more money in a few short years.

Nobody wanted to talk about a school levy, obviously I was there for everyone to see, and many members of the old No Lakota Levy campaign were in the audience also very visible. Without question that changed the course of the dialogue a lot from pro levy discussions which of course the teachers and administrators always want to hear and centered on more fiscal responsibility which seemed like an oblivious concept to Ray. I am still astonished about some of the things he said during the debate. He may be a nice guy that is very likable but being likable isn’t a qualification unless the job is a Wal-Mart greeter. When we are talking about budgets ranging in the millions and millions of dollars, many times you want someone managing it who doesn’t give a rat’s ass about being liked. Quite the opposite.

Lynda O’Connor has come a long way in her years on the school board. I’ve always liked her but, in the beginning, I thought of her as another idealist who was pro education and would work the Republican ranks because of the regional consequences. But she has certainly proven to me that she is sincerely conservative. She also has a lot of hope in what can be done with public education and so long as we have that as the means of educating kids, she is the right kind of person for a job like the school board. James Hahn is new to all this, and that is great too. So long as he can learn from Lynda, his business experience will be a big help in keeping the business community close and part of solutions. The other two, experienced board members and part of what was the problem originally would be a disastrous pick.

Let’s face it, without opposition Lakota would not have that $100 million surplus. It wasn’t some miracle trick in accounting. Lakota has a good treasurer, much better than who was there before her. And I think the new superintendent is a good one. I’m sure he’d like more freedom to promote the brand of Lakota as more the center of the community than what it is. I don’t think its bad at all to be part of that anger. I see it as healthy. Nobody wants to read one more boring newspaper article about these topics from boring, fossilized reporters. They enjoy my work for sure, and I think giving it to them with an animated zeal is good for the decision-making process. Public school is a boring topic for those who have their kids all grown up and have moved away. They certainly don’t want their taxes to go up. They just want to enjoy their community, their jobs and a nice place to shop and go out to dinner on a Friday night. They don’t want to hear that Lakota has blown their $100 million surplus and is asking for more money because the school board mismanaged it. To avoid that fate, vote for O’Connor and Hahn. And make sure Lakota knows you are watching them. Because the moment you don’t, that money and much more will be spent, and we’ll have another levy. You can bet on that.

Rich Hoffman

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Trump’s Illustrious Base: Why the President’s pull in Syria is a great thing

Several of the weekend commentators on Fox News seemed spent after a few days of President Trump’s efforts where they were astounded at some of the things he had been saying. Even Republicans were showing their frustrations as Trump was pulling troops out of Syria to let Turkey and the Kurds fight it out and allow the region to do what it needed to. America is the number one energy producer in the world, the global oriented despots can no longer justify such troop movements to “protect” oil in other lands. We have our own thank you, so why else would we send troops all over the world to stabilize other countries? Trump managed to piss off everyone, yet his approval numbers don’t seem to be moving no matter what anybody tries to do to him, which is mystifying all the dirty tricks that politics knows to play. So, both sides grudgingly admitted that Trump was playing to his base as if that diminished the efforts, and it is there that our present topic is concerned.

When I talk about our education system, and I mean the global education system, the teacher in the front of the room preaching about things from the vantage point of a democracy, where the many rule, it is quite clear to me that it has been wrong for the human race. It doesn’t work, and when the adults of our lives try the same tactics, they used in grade school to push people into doing things, it becomes embarrassingly clear that it was always the wrong method of igniting young minds to life. The headlines on Monday morning regarding Syria were that several Republicans were breaking with the president over troop withdrawal and that this was dangerous in the middle of an impeachment hearing that was set to doom the president with an official congressional witch hunt to remove him from power. President Trump seemed completely unfazed, even angry and this left a mystified reaction to his critics on both sides of the political theater.

We are taught in our grade schools that if you want to go further, then you can only get there by bringing other people along. That you can’t accomplish much as an individual, that the key to all power, prestige and truth can only come by holding the hands of other people. So, in that regard, the perception of power is therefor in how many friends you have, how many people you can get to agree with you, and even the validity of a thought is based squarely on how many people join your alliance. The value is in people and their buy-in to your concept. However, that is not how it is in actuality. For many people not skilled in leadership, they have no choice but to make alliances with the masses. They may not be the strongest, so they make peace with people who might beat them up. They may not be the smartest, so they must find a way to acquire information they are not capable of obtaining. Yet true innovation and leadership do not come from such places, and our education system should strive to make more people self-reliant in their thoughts and actions to build more leaders for which the world is starving.

Trump like all great people of instinct listens to people and measures their reaction to things, but he is able to make decisions as a self-reliant human being. The trouble with the Beltway culture is that everything was built as a “go further together” type of endeavor, so very few people do anything on their own, including using the restroom. “I have to go to the bathroom; would you like to come too?” That is the kind of world that our education system has created, and it is short of what reality requires. Trump is that type of individual who does not need validation for his opinions. He doesn’t need a bunch of generals to tell him whether or not we can get out of Syria. He can make that decision based on his observances. He doesn’t need the threat of impeachment to control him into the warm arms of his political party for support, because he knows he can beat both fronts. So why yield? They need him more than he needs them.

Our education system, and thus everything that comes after, our adult lives, our business conduct, our politics, philosophy, everything is built on the childlike state of needing the approval of our peers because as young people that is the only measure we have to learn from. However, a good confident person quickly learns that society can only go so far. The true innovators must go into the scary depths alone, because groups and their opinions are slow, and the weakest link then decides how far into the dark you can travel. The greatest treasures in life come from individual experiences and the leadership that comes after. The masses are always willing to follow the brave soul who goes into the scary places, so that they don’t have to match that level of insecurity. And that is the way the world works. Its not to take the strong and make them as weak as the weakest links, its to encourage more people to become stronger and more independent, and for those who never develop such a level, to learn to be a good steward as a follower, which most are happy to live with.

Those assumptions are why the Beltway types just can’t admit to themselves what President Trump’s base really is, they refuse to see it, even though it is right in front of them. That base is very powerful, and most politicians would dream to have it. The Democrats certainly don’t have it and they want it desperately. So, all they can do is criticize it. And older Republicans who have bought into that liberalized education system of everything must be done together is reluctant to accept the premise that the reason for the folly was so that the weak could feel part of the process. And when I say weak, it’s not so much a criticism as much as it is a reality. Some people are lazy, and not naturally intelligent. They lack the drive to become the most they have the potential to be, and that’s fine. They can be the followers, because the world needs them too. But they don’t have a right to cripple our existence so they can feel equal to the most ambitious, such as President Trump obviously is. Their hatred of him is not because of anything he did, but it’s because he has made it clear that he doesn’t need them and that is a very insecure position for them to be in. And they aren’t happy about it. But there is a base of American opinion out there who would support someone like a Donald Trump regardless of whether or not he was a Republican or a Democrat, but because he is a free person who can stand on his own reckoning. And that’s who we want in the Executive Branch. Not the politics as usual antics of poor education philosophies and group think. But the lone, solitary thinker who can act without the influence of institutionalized contributors. And for that reason alone, he will win again in 2020, and neither side of the political spectrum will understand why.

Rich Hoffman

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