Welcome to whatever is on my mind!

Some people use the term "nonsense" but I prefer to use the phrase "uncommonly sensed" because it's more reflective of creative types.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

5 Reasons Why Trump Will Never Make America Great

 Many individuals have embraced Trump as an outsider who has the potential to save the American political system from itself. I view him as just another symptom of a broken system. There are numerous reasons why I don’t think he can “make America great again.” Here are five of them.

1. Lack of tact and diplomacy
There are a number of skills that I think are essential for The President of the United States, and two of these near the top of the list are diplomacy and tact. We don’t need to get into wars or have trade talks stalled because our leader said whatever he felt like saying or felt that another world leader was beneath him.

2. Arrogance
The best politicians understand that they’re public servants, and the most effective leaders don’t put themselves first. Trump’s tendency toward arrogance is on the opposite end of the spectrum. Of all the things we’ve seen from Trump, acting out of service for the common good is not one of them.

3. He doesn’t represent what’s best about America
The President of the United States needs to represent the interests and the people of the country as a whole. Donald Trump has already made glib statements about different segments of the American population that indicate he feels some people are more equal than others. Differential treatment of people based on race or ethnicity is not something to be proud of, and it’s something that America has been working to eliminate.

4. He’s part of the problem
Most of what isn’t working in politics is the result of special interest groups putting their needs above society as a whole. Trump is just another variation on this theme: his special interests are the business sector and his ego.

5. Only the American people can make America great
We need to stop electing our officials based on what benefits us personally or financially at the expense of others, and start behaving as if all individuals really are created equal and that every living person has value.
I'm done talking about politics for now. If you want to read more on the subject, I highly recommend this well-written piece by Kareem Abdul Jabbar in The Washington Post.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Why I'm Not Voting For Trump

I don’t usually voice political opinions for two reasons:

1. As a writer, I know that there are always at least three sides to every story and there are as many interpretations of current events as there are people. Most of us tend to vote for the individual we think will make life better for us personally. And since I’m not you, I have no idea how to tell you to vote.
2. I don’t believe either political party has the answer - they only have alliances (often of the corporate and unsavory kind).

However, today I’m going to break my rule of avoiding politics, and while I won’t say who I’ll be voting for I’ll explain why I don’t think that Donald Trump is the answer to what’s ailing America right now.

My first reason:
The idea that someone who’s successfully run a business can fix the problems we’re having with government is a fallacy.
I’m not sure where this idea originated, and I’ve heard it for years. There seems to be a prevalent idea that someone who’s been successful in business must also have the best sort of expertise to run the government effectively. This logic is not new, but I don’t know if anyone has ever taken a look at the underlying assumptions. I'll address three of these underlying assumptions in this post, but there are more.

1. Success is a stable track record that will generalize into a new field
People who are successful in business aren’t always successful. In fact, most of these individuals have also failed a number of times. The smart ones protect themselves so that when the business goes under they don’t go personally bankrupt - which is what Trump has managed to do each time one of his enterprises collapsed. Governments, however, don’t have the same sort of luxury, unless the officials take risks and the taxpayers foot the bill when those risks don’t pay off (sort of like Congress has been doing for years …).

2. Government is just another form of a business
While some of the components are similar, business and government have different goals. The purpose of a business is to make money. The purpose of government, on the other hand, is embedded within the name: it’s to govern. There are no investors to repay or stock prices to maintain. Ideally, citizens should be taxed only enough to run the necessary programs and services and ensure that those programs continue.

3. A CEO knows how to get things done in any situation
Because these two institutions have different goals, the rules made within businesses are very different from laws made by governments. In a business all employees are not considered equal, and your value is determined by how much the organization stands to gain financially from your job performance. In other words, equality is not guaranteed in a business setting.
I don’t want to spend an inordinate amount of time on this point, but a government is not simply another form of business: it’s public service and in a democracy it’s built on the concept of being “by the people, for the people.” It’s not a profit center.

Enough seriousness for one day.
I’ll leave you with something to make you laugh: