Mr. Grumpy Pants

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Cody Bear

In a world filled with tragedy and sacrifice, with Islamic terror attacks in San Bernardino, Orlando, Istanbul, Bangladesh and now Nice, I am angry. Like many of you, I feel helpless. I try not to be judgmental. I’m trying to be more retrospective.

I hear every day, of the misery of innocents in Syria, Iraq and beyond, the suffering of so many, by religious persecution and genocide. How do I, should I, shut out the pain and suffering of others, so I might carry on with daily life?

Granted, I am a bit of a news junkie, in particular since 9/11. That day I was informed of the attack, I thought it was a joke. Now I stay informed.

Many who are close to me would advise me to be more laid back, less grumpy, let the planes fly over my house without mooning the passengers. I’m going to try to be more laid back. I may even consider cancelling the order for a 12 ft. sign telling a certain airline to “Get the f*** off my plain.”

Unfortunately, I remain a skeptic. For example, I find “Mr. Grumpy Pants” has a reason to remain in character with the decision by Mr. Comey, Director of the FBI to exonerate Hillary Clinton of any purposeful wrong doing in her use of a personal server for email as SOS. He just basically said she and all those associated with her are idiots, but that’s not a crime! Could we be faced with four, even eight more years of Obama!!??

"if you've got a business, you didn't build that"

“if you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that”

Have I grown increasing cynical? Probably. Do I feel less empowered? No. I make my own decisions and draw my own conclusions. Simply put, DC is corrupt and the only remedy is term limits.

I wrote Eyes Wide Open  a few years ago. It was a personal soul searching Q&A. I keep going back to it to find better answers, and disturbingly there are few if any, that I have discovered, only more consternation. I ended my missive by citing my best friend and companion over the past 13 years. Cody, my 13 yr. old chocolate lab passed away recently. I miss him terribly.

Cody epitomized everything that I believe should be right in this world. His life, was a respite fom everything that is wrong with this world. Cody gave me his unconditional love. I gave him mine. We need more relationships like ours. Did I mention I picked up his poop?

 

 

 

Live the American Dream? #WakeUpAmerica

carlin

#WakeUpAmerica

Like many entrepreneurs, I have faced many challenges. They’re called opportunities. I’ve met most, failed many, but I’ve persevered. The American Dream is about opportunity. It’s not a given. You have to face your challenges, because you can live the American Dream.

Many Americans no longer believe in the American Dream. There is a hashtag, #WakeUpAmerica trending on Twitter. I hope it resonates with more Americans. To realize your dreams, you have to wake up to those dreams. You have to live them. You have to have hope, passion, trust in others, work smart, and never give up.

From Forbes, The American Dream? are quotes from many well-respected leaders of the free world. Pick a liberal, a conservative, a libertarian or an independent, and they will say what you want to hear. In large part, Americans are supposed to believe what they say.

Take Nancy Pelosi for instance. She says, “The American Dream is the hope for a better future with equal opportunity for all to participate in the prosperity and success of our great nation.” Sounds good! You would think her basic beliefs are aligned with most Americans. In reality, that’s not the case.

An Obama quote is absent from The American Dream Forbes article. I Googled “Barack Obama on the American Dream.” From a 2012 NPR interview he said, “I think the history of the United States, the reason we became an economic superpower is because, not always perfectly, not always consistently, but better than any other country on Earth, we were able to give opportunity to everybody,” he said. “That’s what the American dream was all about.”  Obama says, “Preserving that dream requires a balancing act between self-interest and community. Success is not an entitlement in his book. But neither is it a reward for individual effort alone.” Obama said it to get reelected but his words fell on the deaf ears of many small business owners, a.k.a., taxpayers.

My support for Obama died when he said:

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me because they want to give something back. If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there.  It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something – there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.

Bullshit! He’s talking about the celebrity elite, not the guy that is building a successful business from nothing. He’s right! They didn’t build America, small businesses built America!

In 2012, we again, elected a president who is so self-absorbed with issues like a bad Iran deal, Islamaphobiaclimate change, Obamacare, and gun control.As for gun control, I believe we are entering a new era of lone wolf terrorist attacks on innocent civilians. Americans will absolutely recoil from any future gun control legislation.

Many American’s disagree with the president on almost every major issue, like Russia’s new conquest, Syria.  This president has gone so far as to put those who have taken all the risks, at risk of losing everything we’ve built, like life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. American exceptionalism is driven by individual effort multiplied by millions of Americans and it won’t take a backseat to entitlement. So sorry Mr. President, you didn’t build that, and you can’t take that away, either. #WakeUpAmerica

Gay Rights, The Affordable Care Act and This Bald Eagle

11390065_1620299788225300_8909913669019005123_nThis latest meme (left) from Obama supporters is special… I say congrats to the classless Obama supporters.

Gay rights? It was happening state by state to its logical conclusion anyway. Meh… No need for the heavy hand of the SCOTUS. Personally. I’m going to miss the parades.

Those applauding our SCOTUS and the POTUS, obviously don’t run a small business or care about what’s really going down.

There are more families today in poverty than when Obama took office 7 years ago (5.5 Million more). This despite more jobs. Obviously more jobs means LOWER paying jobs.

The federal debt owed to the public has more than DOUBLED under Obama, rising by 103 percent. Nothing to gloat about.

You can high-five the employment numbers all you want, but the costs are high. I fear, for my children’s future, which is Greece. There are more people insured under Obamacare, but the cost is high. Most are subsidized or on Medicaid and the costs are unsustainable. Who gets hurt, small business and the middle class.

A case in point… we have 42 employees. We pay 100% of our employees health and dental benefits. Since the ACA was enacted, despite submitting to higher deductibles every year, our premiums have risen over 30%, 12 1/2 percent this year alone. Consider the competition is going from five major carriers to three, the future is not bright for small business healthcare cost. Just the facts.

I’d say this bald eagle is more a symbol of an endangered species, small business, rather than a symbol of America’s greatness. High fives all around to the Obama supporters!

Why I hit the Lottery…

Lottery-winner_parking_spots_at_the_Atlantic_Lottery_Corporation_(2009)I’ve hit the lottery (see below), but not for the reasons to which our President and his heir apparent, Hillary Clinton espouses. I’m a small business owner. I started a business 27 years ago and we’re still here. According to the president, it must be dumb luck!

The president thinks hard working people who make a lot of money have won the lottery. Obama says, “If we can’t ask for society’s lottery winners for that modest contribution, then really this conversation is all for show,” he told the Catholic-Evangelical Leadership Summit.

This latest on successful businesses, coupled with Obama’s well worn rhetoric, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.” referring to private businesses being dependent of big government is daunting to hard working small business owners, to say the least.

Why I hit the Lottery…

I want to get up in the morning.

I have a spouse and family whom I love and they love me.

Through hard work and healthy living we are well and we want for nothing.

I am a Christian, There is a God. I have my faith.

I’m living free, in the greatest country in the world, the United States of America.

I find great joy in giving generously, to charities and other great causes.

I’m proud of my accomplishments. Like most small business owners, I create and grow good paying jobs.

I believe in the human spirit and American exceptionalism. Despite many setbacks over time, there have been more wins.

I believe most people are inherently good.

Job creators, entrepreneurs, and business owners who are successful should not be demeaned by our President. He implicitly associates success with the cause for income inequality and racism.

In a Forbes article as a point of reference, it says small, entrepreneurial firms account for two-thirds of the job creation in the economy. Venture-backed firms contribute 11% of U.S. private sector jobs and 21% of GDP, and high-tech firms are a mainstay of U.S. exports.

As a taxpayer, I’d be much more receptive to Obama’s argument if there wasn’t so much wasteful spending, abuse of power, and inequity in big government. Pick your department. Start with the Department of Veterans Affairs.

To Reboot the Economy – Technology Is Where the Jobs Are.

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Hate to break the news, but there are more people with cell phones in the world than with toothbrushes.

Still today in many classrooms, the main instructional technology is literally a piece of yellowish limestone rock scraped across a larger black slate…this too, time must erase.

Unfortunately, our educational progress has stalled reflected in stagnating wages and fewer jobs. The median worker is not keeping up with cutting-edge technologies.  Below are some good options for those with the desire and aptitude to learn something new and earn a good living.

toothless

Even this guy owns a smart phone!

Free community college, unless substantially retooled for the 21st century will fail both students and employers alike.

According to IDC (International Data Corp) – Between Now and 2020…  there will be 44X the growth in information BUT… only 1.4X growth in IT professionals. Nationwide, the economy is adding about 138,000 jobs in computing each year, while the nation’s colleges produce approximately 40,000 computer science graduates, according to Code.org, a group trying to expand computer science education in schools. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a national 20 percent employment uptick for web developers by 2022, a demand largely driven by the growing popularity of mobile devices and e-commerce.

Web and application software developers using the latest development tools, such as learning code in HTML5 are in high demand in almost every industry.  Schools focused on teaching software development either online for as little as $25 per month or brick and mortar in most major metropolitan areas can provide effective and practical education at very reasonable rates.

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PC ——————————–Tablet————– Cell Phone

A combination of graphic design and programming skills are in high demand.  The industry calls them UX developers who have skills for building websites, applications for mobile devices where the need for the best utilization and presentation within the screen display using development techniques such as Responsive Design, is at a premium.

treehouse online education

The Treehouse is an online school that we can personally recommend as we have FTEs who have taken courses in their free time. The Treehouse is designed to teach you developer skills at your own pace.  For as little as $25 per month you can learn online.  Their claim is you can Learn from over 1000 videos created by our expert teachers on web design, coding, business, and much more. Their   library is continually refreshed with the latest on web technology so you’ll never fall behind.  You can practice what you’ve learned through quizzes and interactive Code Challenges. This style of practicing will allow you to retain information you’ve learned so you can apply it to your own future projects.

the iron yardAnother example of a way to learn is to find a school focused on web design and software development, schools like the The Iron Yard.  While tuition is $12,000 for a 12 week program, full-time employment would quickly payoff as salaries would start in the $50K range.  They have financing options and scholarships available.

Islamic terrorism, gun control, and Barack Obama – three enemies of freedom

624579-2016-obama-039-s-americaThis a Obama’s America.  In wake of the recent terror attacks in France, the policies of tolerance of Islamic radicalism by the Obama Administration, we see terrorism metastasize with ISIS, and a resurgence of lone wolf terror attacks.

Dan from Squirrel Hill's Blog

Here’s an example of political correctness gone way too far.

In the recent Islamic terrorist attack in France where 12 people were shot and killed by Islamic terrorists with with AK-47s, the police who were sent to stop them were unable to do so, because they were unarmed.

France’s extensive gun control laws did not stop the bad guys from getting guns. But the country’s extreme anti-gun mentality did prevent the police – the police of all people – from having guns.

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Have We Been Grubered? How Does Medicaid Expansion Affect All of Us?

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/9b2/29931098/files/2014/12/img_1184-0.jpg I’m not in the medical profession. I’m a CEO of a software company with 40 FTEs concerned about big government and taxes.

A recent article in the NYTs As Medicaid Rolls Swell, Cuts in Payments to Doctors Threaten Access to Care

I’m also concerned about everyone’s welfare, including the uninsured. So pardon my naïveté.

Here’s my take. Hospitals were caring for the uninsured for free. Now they get something, but less each year, but it’s still more than nothing. The argument being with the ACA now they have to contend with more patients who can’t afford healthcare and the end result being it ends up costing hospitals more than nothing because of the increase in the number of people seeking care. Which is a good thing for the uninsured, right?

Unless the ACA a.k.a., Obamacare, a.k.a. Big Government, pulls a sleight of hand, reducing the Medicaid reimbursable to the extent large hospitals will only survive in a single payer system and smaller hospitals and practitioners are the losers forced to join larger institutions if they want to survive. What’s obvious is many talented practitioners get screwed.

On the other hand, I guess what I am suggesting is, it’s not apparent to me or most people, whether the ACA is helping people or hurting people. Certainly I oppose a big government takeover of our healthcare system.

What’s not apparent to me is how we take care of the uninsured/or recently indoctrinated Medicaid patients and still provide the best healthcare system in the world.

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