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Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

IS THE GOP REALLY ON ITS DEATHBED?

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 28, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Or is the main stream media up to its old tricks?

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

To paraphrase Mark Twain, “The reports of the death of the GOP are greatly exaggerated.” To listen to the main stream media, they would have us believe the Republican Party is in disarray and on its deathbed, that the Democrats have already sewn up the Congressional midterm elections for 2018 thereby enabling them to finally impeach President Trump. All I can say is “Bwahahahaha!” This is designed to create nothing more than political intrique so they can maximize viewer/readership and sell advertising. In other words, none of it is based on fact, just money.

The press conveniently overlooks the fact the states are predominantly run by the GOP with 34 Governors, 34 State Senates, and 31 State Houses. According to the latest survey of “State Fiscal Rankings” (July 11, 2017) conducted by the Mercatus Center of George Mason University, the Top 10 States in the Best Fiscal Condition includes (in order) Florida, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Idaho, and Montana. With the exception of Montana, all of these states have Republican Governors, State Senates and Houses (Montana has just a Democratic Governor). The bottom of the list is predominantly run by Democrats, including New York (#39), California (#43), Massachusetts (#48), Illinois (#49), and New Jersey (#50); in other words, the states most resistant to the policies of our Republican President.

The press also contends Mr. Trump’s popularity is sagging. Let us not forget, this is based on the same polls that predicted a run-away victory for Hillary Clinton in 2016 and are controlled by Democrats; a convenient coincidence perhaps? Again, this is designed to make money by creating political intrigue.

If anyone should be concerned about popularity, it should be the main stream media. In an Associated Press report of April 17, 2016, they claimed, “just 6 percent of people say they have a lot of confidence in the media, putting the news industry about equal to Congress and well below the public’s view of other institutions.” In other words, Mr. Trump’s popularity is head and shoulders above the media’s.

Despite efforts by the Democrats, Mr. Trump accomplished quite a bit in his first year, including: The tax-reform bill, Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation to the Supreme Court, roll-back of bureaucratic regulations, tougher controls on illegal immigration, declaring Jerusalem the capital of Israel, pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, bolstering the military and law enforcement, etc. The result has been a revitalized respect for the United States foreign policy, and a resurrected economy brought back from the dead.

Who have the Democrats got to run in the next presidential election? Hillary? Uncle Joe? Governor Moonbeam? Andrew Cuomo? Nancy Pelosi? Chuck Schumer? Hardly. The Democrats have to break the stranglehold of the Progressive movement and demonstrate they represent the interests of the heartland, not the uber-Left. Aside from their distaste for Donald Trump, the country is at a loss as to their platform other than to revert back to the days of Barack Obama (which cost them the Congress and the White House). The Democrats have to overcome the stigma of a party which is faceless and meaningless.

So, the next time you hear the GOP is coughing up blood, the truth is it is the Democrats who are desperate and on the brink of extinction.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

LAST TIME:  THE AMERICAN CULTURAL REVOLUTION OF 2017  – It wasn’t Trump, it was our changing values.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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Posted in Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

THE AMERICAN CULTURAL REVOLUTION OF 2017

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 27, 2017

BRYCE ON SOCIETY

– It wasn’t Trump, it was our changing values.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

As 2017 comes to an end, the country still finds itself in the grips of political polarization, perhaps more so than under President Barack Obama. However, is this truly caused by politics, or is it cultural in nature? I tend to believe it is the latter and not the former. Allow me to explain…

Comparisons of today to the ideological differences leading up to the Civil War are uncanny. The rhetoric was highly visceral for several years prior to the start of the war. The founding fathers realized a confrontation over slavery was inevitable even when the Declaration of Independence was signed. Wrangling over the issue went on for years, until the South finally broke away from the Union. This conflict was ultimately cultural in nature; whereas the North saw slavery along the lines of the immortal declaration, “All men are created equal,” the South perceived it as an issue pertaining to property. The two perspectives were simply incompatible and could not be peacefully resolved.

Today, we suffer from two distinctly different interpretations of America, a liberal or “progressive” perspective touted by the Democrats, and a more conservative version as expressed by the Republicans. So how did we find our way here, and is President Donald Trump truly to blame?

Prior to Trump, the Democrats held both the Congress and the Presidency. During this time, they pressed a social agenda highlighted by the iconic Obamacare which was implemented without any thought of Republican input. Had health care been implemented properly, such as through the development of a feasibility study, both sides would have supplied input and we might have had something we all would have been proud of. Of course, this never happened as the administration jammed it through Congress, thereby creating a split between legislators and the executive branch. More importantly, this split ultimately cost Democrats control over both chambers of the Congress.

The president, unable to overcome differences with the Republicans, implemented a series of executive orders aimed at forging a new social doctrine. These were only temporary as a succeeding president could easily undo them, as Mr. Trump has demonstrated.

So many liberal programs were enacted by Mr. Obama, the thinking and morality of the country began to change. To demonstrate, this past May, the Gallup organization reported on the changes in attitudes in their annual report on morality stating, “Americans continue to express an increasingly liberal outlook on what is morally acceptable, as their views on 10 of 19 moral issues that Gallup measures are the most left-leaning or permissive they have been to date.” This is significant as it demonstrates the country’s conflicting values.

This change in the American personality, along with a lethargic economy, did not sit well with middle class Americans, nor did the perception the Capitol is being run by professional politicians and the press. Consequently, Donald Trump was swept into office in 2016, much to the surprise of Democrats and the media. From this perspective, just as Jimmy Carter begat Ronald Reagan as president in 1980, Barack Obama begat Donald Trump.

The fact an outsider such as Mr. Trump was elected president, someone perceived as the political opposite of an insider like Hillary Clinton, was unbearable to the Democratic psyche. Consequently, the Democrats portrayed him as evil and incompetent, and pledged to “resist” the new President. Whereas most presidents are afforded a grace period at the start of their term, this was not the case with Mr. Trump. The Democrats held up approval of cabinet and judicial appointments, fought passage of tax reform and repeal of Obamacare, and tried to embarrass the president at every opportunity, even going so far as to call for his impeachment and describing him as “mentally unfit.” They implemented a full-court press whereby if he said “black,” they would say “white” and vice versa. Recognizing this, the Republicans excluded the Democrats from major legislation, just as the Democrats did to the Republicans during the passage of Obamacare. This action should not be construed as justifiable, as much as it demonstrates the intense distrust between the two sides.

In the private sector, liberals became organized and launched several marches and protests in defiance of Mr. Trump, many suggesting violence, as was evidenced by the rise of Antifa, a group of self-proclaimed anarchists and communists. During this time, free-speech under the 1st Amendment came under fire, with the left trying to squelch a person’s right for discussing opposing views, particularly on college campuses.

The news media appears to have embraced the dogma of the left and attacks Mr. Trump unmercifully, right or wrong, over the slightest action or decision. Their message is clear, “The president is wrong,” a theme trumpeted over-and-over again on a daily basis. Not surprising, he is not afforded credit for anything positive he has done.

On the other hand, Donald Trump appears to be undeterred by his critics, both Democratic and the press, and takes pleasure in challenging them. By doing so, he has assumed an unanticipated offensive posture in dealing with them, something he is openly lauded for by his supporters. This is in sharp contrast to previous Republican presidents who assumed a defensive posture. His defiance further enrages the liberals who, in turn, contends the administration is corrupt and insists on investigations which, to date, have produced nothing of substance.

What we have witnessed thus far, is not so much political as it is a cultural revolution. During the Obama years, the left made several in-roads in line with their ideology. Now that the right is in charge, they are undoing much of Mr. Obama’s policies and implementing new programs in line with the ideology of the right. To many, this is seen as a “righting of the ship.” Regardless, the country has two distinctly different and incompatible interpretations of the American dream, and the days of finding moderate solutions are long gone.

The difference between the two are numerous and include everything from the size and control of government, the rights of the individual, adherence to the Constitution, different interpretations of right and wrong, to socioeconomic policies (e.g., Socialism vs. Capitalism). They simply possess two separate and incompatible agendas, and this will continue until one side or the other is broken, which implies a vicious political campaign in 2018. The Democrats are cognizant of the fact their future is in doubt should they lose in the mid-term elections. This explains why they desperately resist Mr. Trump and the Republicans.

A strong “anti” reaction is commonplace whenever a new system is introduced. Even Machiavelli in 1513 observed (in “The Prince”), “It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than the creation of a new system. For the initiator has the enmity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institution and merely lukewarm defenders in those who would gain by the new ones.”

Should President Trump be successful in his initiatives during his first term, he will easily be elected to a second. However, by doing so, it spells the end of the liberal agenda as we know it today and the Democrats will need to redefine their policies and priorities or face extinction. There are some Democratic congressmen who already recognize this and are awaiting for the grip of the liberal left, which controls the party, to loosen.

As long as we have two distinctly separate and incompatible interpretations of America, we will either continue to suffer from gridlock in our Capitol or experience violent confrontations. It is inevitable. However, the silent majority of Americans will not accept revolution and prefer leaving the basic tenets of the country alone and seek prosperity through opportunity and work. They want to return to what they perceive as “normalcy” in the country.

True, 2017 will be remembered as the first year of the Trump administration, but it should be more aptly defined as the beginning of the cultural revolution in the United States.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

LAST TIME:  2017 YEAR-END WRAP-UP  – Sounds like an innocent question, but do we have a consensus understanding?

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Politics, Social Issues, Society | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

AMERICAN RENAISSANCE

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 12, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– It is no longer business as usual.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

There is something in the wind. America is changing, not just a little, but a lot. No, it is not the political intrigue of Washington featuring numerous investigations. Nor is it the recent spat of sexual harassment charges, or Russia for that matter. These are all manufactured distractions by the Main Stream Media (MSM). A new way of thinking about government is starting to permeate society, and frankly it is long overdue, and it is making the Washington establishment nervous.

During 2017, we witnessed the rise of the American economy. The Labor Department reported unemployment is down to 4.1%; the Department of Agriculture reported the number of people on food stamps is beginning to decline; the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported the Gross Domestic Product grew throughout the year and looks to accelerate presuming the tax cuts pass; and the stock market is hitting record highs. The President has also issued numerous orders to cut bureaucratic red tape, thereby freeing up business to prosper and grow. Yet, most Americans are unaware of this as it goes unreported by the MSM.

In terms of immigration, the Department of Homeland Security reported dramatic reductions in illegal immigrants in 2017, and the southern wall is in the offing. Again, the MSM overlooks such changes. The President also signed Pro-Law Enforcement and Anti-Crime Executive Orders. In addition, he is very supportive of rebuilding the military. His no-nonsense approach to trade and statesmanship has been noticed by both our friends and enemies abroad.

Despite all of this, I have friends, both Republican and Democrat, who are offended by the president’s tweets, speeches, and duels with the MSM. I normally ask, “Why does this offend you?” They claim his conduct is unpresidential and not in accordance with political correctness. To which I counter, “You mean, it is not business as usual?” Yes. “Good, because business as usual has led us into the mess we were in.”

Donald Trump was elected president not because he was a noted politician, but for being a hard-nosed businessman who is able to get things done. His super Type-A personality is despised by the Washington establishment, on both sides of the aisle. As is typical of someone with his stature in business, he uses some friendly bullying and humor to get his way, most of which is misunderstood by the media and his opponents. It is this type of defiant personality middle America finds appealing, and resented by politically correct politicians and the press. However, with the 2018 midterms on the horizon, and the clamor from the American public to get the economy working and to safeguard the country, the Republican side of the house is slowly waking up to the fact it is a new day in Washington, not “business as usual,” and they better get aboard the Trump train or pack their bags for home.

This means an “American Renaissance” is in the offing, a reawakening of basic American principles, such as smaller government, individual liberty, respect for family values, and an acknowledgement that the American Dream is based on capitalism. Of course, this does not sit well with the Left who represents the polar opposite of such values and, as such, is fighting President Trump every step of the way. However, the Renaissance concept has already taken hold and is gaining traction. Should the economy continue to accelerate, and the president can deliver on his promises, there will be no stopping the renaissance.

At the time of this writing, the proposed Tax Reform plan hasn’t yet fully passed the Congress. If it makes it to the President’s desk for his signature, this will be a significant catalyst to power the American economy even further, raising the GDP, encouraging business, and putting more money into the pockets of the people. A stimulated economy will then begin the process of paying off the national debt and shrinking the deficit.

As an old systems man, I am acutely aware of the effects of change. The more dramatic the change, the more people tend to resist it. The problem though is Americans have grown accustomed to “business as usual” in the nation’s Capitol for so long, our government and country is denigrating in the process. The changes engineered by Mr. Trump were inevitable as the country no longer accepts the status quo of the Washington establishment which has floundered and produced nothing of substance, other than the enlargement of the government.

Perhaps Mr. Trump’s biggest legacy from his term of office will be the realization it is time to think and act differently in government. This is something past presidents simply do not comprehend, nor his political opponents or the press. However, I’m betting by the time Mr. Trump’s tenure is over, he will make the changes implemented by Ronald Reagan seem minuscule.

What is necessary is to recognize these are extraordinary times we live in, and the status quo simply won’t cut it any longer. “American Renaissance” is the mantra we need to embrace to make America great again.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  WHY DO OPPOSITES ATTRACT? – Good question and something that has puzzled us from time immemorial.

LAST TIME:  FLY FISHING IN WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA  – Beware of hatchery fed trout.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

Posted in Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

WHAT IS THE AMERICAN DREAM?

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 6, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Is it still “the land of freedom and opportunity”?

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

For many years, the American Dream was characterized as “the land of freedom and opportunity,” where a person could move about untethered and not be beholden to anyone, particularly the government. People were free to try their hand at anything if they were so inclined, thereby encouraging an entrepreneurial spirit. They also realized they had a say in how government was run, unlike several other countries, thereby encouraging citizenship and patriotism. The general belief was that if you worked hard, you could enjoy the fruits of your labor. I personally know this was the case with my grandfather who immigrated to America following World War I. It was his desire to have a better life and work environment than what he was leaving behind in Great Britain. To him, America was big, opportunities were plentiful, and the sky seemed the limit. After finding work in this country, he moved and settled his family, blended into the community, and never looked back. It was an arduous process to go through, but he was proud to become an American citizen, something millions of other immigrants were proud to do. They were all willing to work hard and sacrifice in order to realize the “Dream.”

I still believe this to be the American Dream but I fear it is changing. People now come to this country not necessarily for the principles it represents but more for the benefits they can receive, such as health care, education, and other perks such as food stamps and cash, thereby becoming the “land of entitlements” as opposed to opportunity. Such perks are putting a stressful burden on state governments, particularly those in the Southwest whose hospitals and schools are buckling under the strain. The general belief now seems to be that you will prosper regardless if you work or not.

Aside from illegal immigrants, a class of people has emerged in this country who have found it easier to live on government subsidies as opposed to working. So much so, it has become addictive and, consequently, apathy grows. In essence, they have become wards of the state. This has become glaringly obvious with Native Americans who are dependent on federal subsidies as coordinated by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, under the U.S. Department of the Interior. Despite the millions of dollars given to them by the government, they have the lowest life expectancy and the highest poverty level, and where only one in four people have a job. All of this because they sincerely believe the government owes them something.

Helping those in need has changed from a charitable donation to what is perceived as a “right.” It is a harsh reality that as more people embrace the notion of entitlements, fewer people become available to pay for it. Keep in mind, only 51% of the populace pays income taxes today. When this percentage dips below 50%, the money will inevitably run out.

Not surprising, we now live in an era of two distinctly different interpretations of the American Dream, both of which are incompatible. Somehow, I am reminded of John Kennedy’s famous quote at his 1960 inauguration, “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.”

First published: September 12, 2012

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  FLY FISHING IN WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA – Beware of hatchery fed trout.

LAST TIME:  UNDERSTANDING THE NFL’s PROBLEMS  – It goes well beyond disrespect for patriotism.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

HOW SHOULD WE INTERPRET HISTORY?

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 14, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– And what will they think of us in the 23rd century?

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

To most Americans, it is unsettling to watch historical statues toppled and the names of our forefathers besmirched. We used to hold these people in reverential awe, such as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, and Andrew Jackson. We certainly knew they weren’t perfect, but their accomplishments in the birth of our nation greatly overshadowed their flaws. Even the southern soldiers during the Civil War were held in high regard afterwards by both sides for the bloody lesson the country had to learn the hard way. Time eventually healed the nation.

Those leading the drive to denigrate our history claim we should be ashamed of our past, that it should have all been handled differently in order to be politically correct by today’s standards. Unfortunately, history doesn’t work this way. Decisions were considered carefully at the time, often debated, but had to be made in a timely manner without consideration for the social mores of the 21st century.

In 1835, Andrew Jackson ordered the removal of the Cherokee Tribe to west of the Mississippi River. At the time, America was still in its infancy but beginning to grow. Settlers were often attacked and harassed by the Cherokee. So much so, Jackson ordered the removal of the tribes so peace and prosperity could take hold. Jackson was criticized for the decision, both then and now, but he did so with the intent of protecting the young country. Could it have been handled differently? Maybe, but this was the course taken by Jackson at the time.

American history has many other examples, such as President James K. Polk’s handling of the Mexican–American War in the 1840’s, or President Harry S. Truman’s decision in 1945 to drop the Atomic Bomb. Whether or not you agreed with their decisions, they had to make them and they considered each problem from many angles, not necessarily what future generations would think.

Those advocating condemnation of our history suggest the formulation of a consensus by the people BEFORE making a decision. This is decision making by democracy, which is fine if you have got the time, but ineffective if you do not. Many times we do not have the luxury to go to the people; a decision has to be made quickly.

In 1980, Boston University professor Howard Zinn published his book, “A People’s History of the United States,” which offered an opposing view of American history. In it, Zinn portrayed American history through the eyes of common people, such as the native American tribes, African slaves, and the Mexicans of the Southwest. Zinn was an admitted socialist and believed such depictions would paint a sympathetic picture of minorities, and a condemnation of American history. Zinn’s book contends America’s riches are due to theft, and as such, America is obligated to redistribute its wealth to the Third World nations. He also contends America needs to redistribute the wealth among its citizens to end income inequality. Since its publication, the book has been used in other university and high school history programs, thereby influencing young people, which leads us to today’s defamation of American history.

So, who are we to judge the past? The ethics of today are certainly not those of yesteryear. Back then, decisions were based on the current rules of morality and political expediency. For slave owners like Washington, Jefferson, and Jackson, the Civil War was yet to be fought and owning slaves was considered acceptable, including Virginia and Tennessee at the time. Were these men evil? Not by the standards of their day. This may not make it right for the 21st century, but it was a reality of the 18th and 19th centuries. Do we sweep it under the carpet or do we recognize our forefathers were less than perfect by today’s standards and applaud their other decisions, like launching a republic where freedom flourishes?

History is written to describe our checkered past, not its purity. This enables us to learn from it. Historians and the public have the luxury of second guessing the figures from the past, but often have trouble understanding the morality and political mood of the time. It is easier to say something was good or bad years after it occurred when the ramifications are fully known, but people at the time didn’t always have such a luxury. This is not to provide a rationale for evil, a la Hitler or Stalin, but to note the people of the past did the best they could based on the information of the time and political climate. Despite their character flaws, as we all possess, we tend to overlook the achievements our forefathers made, such as creating a country that is the inspiration and leader of the free world.

If you are waiting for an official apology from a descendant for some character flaw of our founding fathers, do not expect it anytime soon. After all, they were not responsible for the actions or decisions of their predecessors.

Actually, the problem is more insidious in intent than most people realize. The defamation of the past is designed to make us feel ashamed of our heritage, that it should be torn down and started over. I disagree. As far as I’m concerned, what’s done is done. Learn from it. Adapt, overcome, and evolve. Hopefully we’ll make better decisions than our predecessors. Regardless of how politically correct we try to be, people in the 23rd century will likely call us “boneheads.”

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  REBUILDING LOYALTY – The best thing to do is not to lose it in the first place.

LAST TIME:  PRODUCING NEWSLETTERS: BEWARE OF THE BIRDCAGE  – Writing newsletters that will be read as opposed to discarded.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in History, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

WHAT DOES A CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION MEAN?

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 8, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– A Trump card for the President.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Since his inauguration, President Trump has been faced with a push back from Congressional Democrats, but now he is also faced with obstinate Republicans as well. This resistance is ultimately based on the Washington establishment who deeply resent this outsider taking control of their town. Naturally, this has slowed Mr. Trump’s legislative agenda including, among other things, health insurance, immigration, tax reform, and passing a budget. Fortunately, there is one Trump card he can play which they are terrified of, namely a Constitutional Convention. Let me explain…

Years ago, Milton Eisenhower pointed out the President of the United States has the power to call for a Constitutional Convention whereby our governing rules can be reexamined and amended accordingly. This would take important decisions out of the hands of the Congress and put them in a specially appointed delegation with members from each state. Such a Congress has not been held since 1787 (over 200 years). Think about it, this would be an opportunity to revise our electoral process, implement term limits, rethink the role of lobbyists, and determine performance evaluations for our officials, among other things.

Changing the U.S. Constitution can be a rather tricky proposition. To amend it under normal circumstances requires a proposal to be deliberated and approved by at least two thirds of both chambers of Congress, a procedure familiar to most Americans. Assuming acceptance, it is sent to the various state legislatures where a minimum of 75% must approve of it for passage. However, Article V of the Constitution has a provision whereby a Constitutional Convention (aka, Article V Convention, or Amendments Convention) can be called by at least two-thirds of the states (34) whereby amendments can be drafted by a separate body of delegates, not the Congress, before being sent to the state legislatures for ratification (again, at least 75%). The scope of the convention must be very specific in terms of what it proposes to address.

Every time such a convention has been proposed in the past, the Congress straightens up and finally tackles the problem in question, fearing their authority will be usurped. The last time such a convention was proposed was to implement a balanced budget amendment in the 1980s. Fearing such a convention, Congress passed the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act in 1985, which required the federal budget be balanced by 1991. However, the Supreme Court overturned the act in 1986. Nonetheless, the Congress responded to the threat of the convention. There have been other examples over the years as well.

Selection of state delegates to the convention vary from state to state, but most are nominated by the governor and elected by the state legislature.

We now live in a time where the approval rating of Congress is at an all time low, and the American public has genuine concerns about such things as curbing the influence of lobbyists, redefining the term limits and benefits of the Congress, campaign reform, to mention but a few. Taking such important matters out of the direct hands of the Congress, who the public no longer trusts, would go a long way to overcome the partisan politics in the capitol and breakup the professional politicians of the Washington establishment.

The question becomes, who would push for such a convention? Since the Congress represents the status quo, they lack the political chutzpah to push for such a proposal. In fact, it needs to come from the states themselves, but because of the disparity between them, this too is highly unlikely.

This thereby represents a golden opportunity for President Trump, the ultimate political outsider. Should he call such a convention, it will likely be wildly embraced by the American people as a whole, not just one party, as they realize some significant changes have to be enacted in the manner by which our government operates. It’s more than just the right thing to do; it’s bold, it’s imaginative, and it makes the person look very presidential. Let us not forget, George Washington presided over the last Constitutional Convention.

Understand this, the president serves in no official capacity in enacting constitutional amendments, but the president could force such a convention simply by creating a firestorm of public demand. Frankly, it’s a no lose proposition for Mr. Trump as the public would embrace it.

For more information, here is Article V of the Constitution:

“The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.”

Next time you hear of the Congress pushing back Mr. Trump’s agenda, particularly Congressmen and Senators from his own party, do not be surprised if you hear the expression “Constitutional Convention” mentioned, coupled with “term limits,” “lobbyist reform,” and “campaign reform.” It will be interesting to see how fast the Congress reacts. They will either get on-board or try to have the President impeached. However, they have no way of stopping a Constitutional Convention once it has started.

First published: November 11, 2011

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  GETTING NASTY – Do nice guys always finish last? Well, ah…

LAST TIME:  YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE COMMON SENSE  – How about some simple lessons instead?

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE COMMON SENSE

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 7, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– How about some simple lessons instead?

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This will be quick. I have always been fascinated by the inclination of politicians to attempt to legislate everything. By passing laws, they hope to change our perspective on what is considered right and wrong in the areas of conducting business, the environment, morality, energy, defense, and our general outlook on society. True, you can establish a vast number of laws, rules and regulations to influence our perspectives, but you cannot legislate how people should think.

By introducing an inordinate number of laws, you are causing government to expand, for no other reason than to enforce what is legislated. And the more people we have working for government, the more likely we see Parkinson’s Law take effect, “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion,” thereby creating a bureaucracy to impede progress.

Most politicians are attorneys who possess a better understanding of jurisprudence than they do about business. They do not truly understand how to make a buck, let alone saving one. They honestly believe people can be controlled with more legislation than with common sense. Again, this leads to stifling bureaucracy.

The fact remains, you cannot legislate common sense. Lessons and examples of morality can be more effective for teaching fundamentals. In other words, instead of investing in bloated government, we should be more concerned with teaching morality and recognizing the positive contributions of others, such as a law enforcement officer or first responder who saves a life, our brave military, or just the common citizen helping another in need. Naturally, this would lead to smaller government and teach the lessons of personal initiative and responsibility, as opposed to becoming wards of the state.

Instead of C-SPAN covering our politicians, how about another network recognizing common sense and courtesy instead? Oh yea, that’s right, the media would never buy it.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  WHAT DOES A CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION MEAN? – A Trump card for the President.

LAST TIME:  CONGRESSIONAL TERM LIMITS  – It’s long overdue.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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CONGRESSIONAL TERM LIMITS

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 6, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– It’s long overdue.

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As much as we are accustomed today to presidents serving two consecutive terms, this was not always so. In fact, prior to FDR only ten of the first 31 presidents were elected to second terms, that’s just 33%. In the 1800’s there were eight single term presidents between Jackson and Lincoln, and seven single term presidents between Grant and Teddy Roosevelt. Then along came FDR in the midst of the calamity of the Great Depression and World War II who was elected to an unprecedented four terms thereby ushering in the concept of the career politician. This of course was negated by the 22nd Amendment which now permits only two consecutive presidential terms. Since it was enacted, five out of eleven presidents were elected to consecutive terms (45%).

Our founding fathers had no concept of career politicians. It was expected you would serve a reasonable time in Congress before returning home and allowing someone else to take a turn. Although the presidency was Washington’s to keep as long as he wanted it, he unofficially established two terms as the maximum length of office for a president. He too saw the need for not allowing the government to stagnate and allow others to bring in fresh perspectives in the running of the country.

Today, politicians serving a single or double term are the exception as opposed to the rule. Consider for example, the late Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia who served for over 50 years; Senator Ted Kennedy served almost 47 years; Senator Harry Reid of Nevada served 30 years in the Senate, and finally; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has also served 30 years.

The concept of career politicians does not sit well with Americans anymore, particularly conservatives who believe such politics leads to cronyism and corruption, something they can no longer tolerate and represents the impetus to remove incumbents. Beyond this, there is a movement underfoot to enact term limits for members of Congress. After all, if it’s good enough for the president, it should be good enough for congressmen, right?

There are several proposals being bandied about, but my favorite is the one geared towards a maximum of twelve years in office, whereby:

A. Two, Six-year Senate terms
B. Six, Two-year House terms
C. One, Six-year Senate term and three, Two-Year House terms.

Further, a Congressman should collect a salary only while in office and receive no pay when he/she is out of office.

Opponents to term limits claim it sets up a “Lame Duck” scenario, but this could be argued over the presidential term limits as well.

Bottom-line: the country is tired of “business as usual” and realizes career politicians lie at the crux of the problem. The message is clear: It is time to clean house.

First published: October 14, 2010

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE COMMON SENSE – How about some simple lessons instead?

LAST TIME:  THE JOY OF SHAVING  – The burden of grooming one’s face repetitively.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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IS THERE REALLY A CASE FOR PRES. TRUMP’S IMPEACHMENT?

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 19, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– The short answer, No.

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The short answer, No. The long answer requires an explanation. First, the president can be impeached for committing “high crimes and misdemeanors.” In the case of Richard Nixon in 1974, charges were being prepared for obstruction of justice, but Nixon resigned before he could be impeached. On the other hand, Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998 for perjury and obstruction of justice stemming from the sexual harassment lawsuit filed against him by Paula Jones. He was subsequently acquitted by the Senate. Both were embarrassing affairs, and both were politically motivated.

Today, we are hearing Democrats willing to press charges against President Donald Trump for various reasons, some claiming he obstructed justice in regards to the firing of former FBI Director James Comey. Others believe Trump is involved in a political relationship with Vladimir Putin and Russia to promote his business interests, his seeming determination to go to war, either with North Korea or Iran, and whatever else is bothering the Democrats at the moment. Despite all of the hyperbole of his accusers, the accusations are groundless. Nothing of substance has yet surfaced from the many Russian probes. James Comey’s actions are still being scrutinized, and even though there has been a lot of saber-rattling, the last time I checked we were still relatively at peace (aside from minor actions around the globe).

All of Mr. Trump’s detractors claim their calls for impeachment are not politically motivated. Nothing could be further from the truth. This is all about politics, just as it was with Nixon and Clinton (and, for that matter, Andrew Johnson back in the 19th century).

Since losing the 2016 presidential election, the Democrats have been in a state of denial, specifically that a Washington outsider such as Mr. Trump could win and implement an agenda in stark contrast to their own. Instead of admitting defeat, the Democrats accuse the president of foul play, even going so far as to concoct a myth about Russian influence. In reality, Mrs. Clinton and the Democrats should be investigated for selling political influence.

All of this is part of the left’s plans to try to discredit Mr. Trump and derail his agenda. Calls for impeachment are simply a farce aimed at attracting media attention but going nowhere fast. The question though remains, does anyone honestly believe they have a legitimate case against the president? Aside from the liberal zealots who would like to see this happen, No, nobody is buying it. Even the authors of such legislation know it is nothing but a charade and going nowhere fast. They simply cannot stomach his victory and are bound and determined to remove him from office before his term is over.

All of this jealous rage by the Left leads me to believe they are suffering from an acute case of penis envy. Maybe this explains their sense of inferiority and why they possess a castration complex towards Mr. Trump. Oy!

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  A CORPORATE POLICY FOR PERSONAL ELECTRONIC DEVICES – Is it necessary to write a formal policy for use of electronic devices in the workplace?

LAST TIME:  SOME MONOTONOUS WORK: JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED  – The therapeutic effects of collating and punching paper.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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THE FOUR STEPS FOR AMERICAN SUBVERSION

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 13, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– A warning from a former KGB agent.

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The premise behind Hitchcock’s 1935 movie classic, “The 39 Steps,” was not about a staircase, but rather a series of clandestine tasks to ultimately overthrow the government. It was an intriguing movie but as it turns out, it actually takes considerably fewer steps to subvert a government, four to be exact, at least according to Yuri Bezmenov, a former KGB agent. Throughout the 1960’s, Bezmenov served the KGB primarily in India where he spread Soviet propaganda and disinformation to the Western world. He eventually defected to the West in 1970 and settled in Canada where he lectured and wrote about the KGB’s techniques for subverting the West.

In 1985 he was featured in a television interview which is still available on YouTube. During the interview, Bezmenov explains the KGB’s activities are less about espionage in the classic James Bond sense (only 15%), and more concerned with “Ideological Subversion” (85%) which is used to secretly undermine the American government through psychological warfare. Key to this program is to change the perception of reality using subliminal brainwashing techniques over an extended period of time. As I’ve written in the past, people act on their perceptions of reality, regardless if it is correct or fallacious. They are not so much concerned with facts as they are in perspectives and self interests. By controlling the perceptions of people, they become more prone to make erroneous conclusions thereby simplifying the manipulation of the masses. The objective of the KGB program, therefore, is to program people into dismissing true facts as fallacious even in spite of the obvious.

As Bezmenov explains in the interview, there are four steps to transform the thinking and behavior of the population:

1. Demoralization – this is a process which can take about 15-30 years to perform (a generation). During this stage, the moral fibre and integrity of the country is put into question, thereby creating doubt in the minds of the people. To do so, manipulation of the media and academia is required to influence young people. As the younger generation embraces new values, such as Marxism and Leninism, the older generation slowly loses control simply through attrition. Again, true facts no longer matter during this stage, but rather creating perceptions are of paramount importance.

2. Destabilization – the purpose of this step is to change the status quo, particularly the country’s economy, foreign relations, and defense systems. The intent is to create a massive government permeating society and becoming intrusive in the lives of its citizens. This can take from two to five years to perform, again with the active support of academia pushing youth in this direction. Here, entitlements and benefits are promised to the populace to encourage their support. Basically, they are bribing the people to accept their programs.

Bezmenov claims after this stage is completed, the naive college professors are no longer needed and since they will undoubtedly protest government policies when they discover the truth, they will be disposed of quickly. He cites examples of this occurring in Nicaragua, Grenada, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh.

3. Crisis – this is a major step lasting up to six weeks and involves a revolutionary change of power. This is where a cataclysmic event upsets and divides the country thereby creating panic among the citizens. Recent examples include the 2011 upheavals in the Middle East, most notably Egypt and Libya. To Americans, symptoms would include circumventing the Constitution and altering the checks and balances of government, and possibly martial law.

4. Normalization – the final stage is where the populace finally acquiesces and begins to assimilate communism. This can take up to two decades to complete.

Bezmenov claimed the first step, Demoralization, was completed well before his 1985 interview. In fact, the Russians were surprised how easily it had been performed. One clear indicator of the moral decay of the country is the decline of organized religion which, historically, has been a beacon for morality, but now it is in retreat. He also thought step two was nearing completion in 1985 but I believe he underestimated the rise and popularity of Ronald Reagan as president, which led to the end of the Cold War with the Soviet Union in 1991, and the shift to the War on Terror following 9/11. Nonetheless, many would argue America is now realizing Bezmenov’s scenario in 2012, particularly as the November elections loom ahead. This means the third step is in the offing which has a lot of people frightened for America’s future.

Yuri Bezmenov died in 1993 never realizing his prophecy, and hopefully it will never come to fruition, that we will remain a free and democratic Republic bound to the U.S. Constitution. However, as Bezmenov reminds us, communism requires simple patience and perseverance to alter the perceptions of the people. The only way to thwart it is to practice due diligence and not let it go unchallenged.

“America is like a healthy body and its resistance is threefold: its patriotism, its morality, and its spiritual life.
If we can undermine these three areas, America will collapse from within.”

– Joseph Stalin

“The press is our chief ideological weapon.”
– Nikita Khrushchev

First published: April 25, 2012

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  A TRIBUTE TO TYPEWRITERS – In praise of the look, feel, and smell of a typed letter.

LAST TIME:  MANAGEMENT A LA 1961  – Some management lessons from the past.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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