Frenzy

Tired of the Trump-Russia stories yet? Well, they are only just beginning. Which is strange because much of the information coming out now could have come out a year ago, if anyone had bothered trying to dig. But the “liberal media” didn’t at the time and has only really started to get going.

If you’re tired of today’s press, you’re far from alone. The problem, however, isn’t bias but a severe case of “shiny object syndrome” where nothing is investigated unless it appears popular.

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Stands For Nuthin’

Is the nation on the wrong track or the right track? Do you think that the political parties stand for something more than opposition to each other?

If you answered these questions with the most negative possible answer, you’re far from alone. Rasmussen has been polling the right/wrong track question for many years, and it’s headed back to the low 20% “right track”, net about -40, that it was at a year ago. The brief bump from Trump has worn off.

Even worse, a Washington Post / ABC poll shows that about 2/3 Americans think that the two major parties don’t actually stand for anything other than opposition to each other.

This is the reason why People’s Economics is necessary. It’s time to reboot everything – not just the people, but the fight that drives them.

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Female Lead

The 13th Doctor has been announced, and she is going to be a new era for the internationally popular show. Jodie Whittaker is making history as the first woman to play the Doctor after 53 years. We will see her in action as the Time Lord this Christmas.

There is no more important news in the universe to us Whovians. But this comes in the middle of a year which has seen Wonder Woman become the hit movie of the year and more yet to come. Is this the year of the female lead in an action adventure show?

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People’s Economics, the Fundraiser

If you ask any entrepreneur or innovator what is the most important resource to get a new project off the ground, they’ll probably tell you it’s getting the right people. Making something new and making a good buck off of it requires talent, the skills which pay the bills. Have the right team in place and the money will follow.

This is a big part of what is meant by People’s Economics, or the economy of people. What often limits us in a technology driven world is the techne, the skills necessary to make something happen.

That’s where People’s Economics is today. Help prove the point by donating to a GoFundMe project dedicated to getting the book People’s Economics written by the end of the summer!

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Tea & Coffee

Picture yourself in England at the start of Queen Victoria’s reign.  If you have some skills as a part of the growing middle class, things look better every day.  That life comes in part from unskilled workers driven into the growing (and filthy) cities who are more productive than ever before.  The great symbol of the improving standard of living greets you in the morning as a cup of this once luxury beverage, tea.  It comes from China, traded under the barrel of the guns of the Royal Navy through the new colony of Hong Kong.  The latest in technology, the Clipper Ship, brings it to you with great speed and makes it possible to run this enterprise at a distance.   The sun never sets on the British Empire, and tea is both its greatest commodity and emblem of success.

Today, in the waning daze of the American Empire that isn’t an empire, things could hardly be different even as they are the same.  Coffee is the beverage of choice for 54% in the US.   It has always been the workingman’s drink, but it is moving more yupscale – even though 35% of us still drink it black (as it is meant to be, damnit).  It is shipped from tropical, underdeveloped nations in unromantic cargo containers as the second most traded commodity in the world by value ($15B per year), behind only oil.  The nations that produce it are rapidly urbanizing into filthy cities.  The trade is managed over the internet by a cadre of traders and speculators.

History doesn’t repeat, but it rhymes like a street poet hitting a beat.

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Character

A busy day demands a summer re-run.  News is coming soon.  In the meantime, enjoy this post from 2010, unedited.  Yes, I did say this back then without even meaning to predict any particular person.

Stories that stay with us are often built around strong characters.  Consider for a moment any story that you have enjoyed, either in book form or on film or from an exchange among friends – what is it that you remember the most?  Odds are it will be the Harry Potter or Gatsby or someone’s strange uncle as much as the meanderings of the plot itself.  They are the star of the show, the person we either relate to or want to be like or at least would like to know.  Set them up, and the situation of the plot often moves forward through the force of their will.

Less obvious is fact that this also guides the non-fiction world.  Entertainers carefully craft their public persona, as do politicians and even nooze commentators.  Understanding how to do this can make a blog much more compelling.

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Cottonwood Witnesses

The cottonwoods are tall and scraggly, leaning over each other as shaking hands in friendship. This is their world, a place where they can stand undisturbed by little more than a few hikers and the buzz of motorboats. Their size alone gives them an authority that allows them to speak silently, telling stories about their world that reach back over the centuries. This is Pike Island, an small speck in the Mississippi that has been allowed to go back to the way it was two centuries ago when Europeans first arrived.

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