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Posted by Tim Bryce on March 1, 2019


– Is the nation changing or resisting?

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

When I hear the vicious political discourse and boisterous hyperbole of today, it suggests to me the country is embroiled in a cultural revolution the likes of which we haven’t seen since before the Civil War. One of the basic precepts regarding culture is, in order for a person to function and succeed, he/she must learn to conform to the culture or face rejection. Enter the ultimate outsider to our federal government, Donald Trump, a businessman who has never held political office. It is the very fact he was an outsider that propelled him to the presidency. After all, people had grown weary of “business as usual” in the nation’s capitol by both Republicans and Democrats, and were ready for a change.

As an outsider and businessman more concerned with results, Mr. Trump decided not to adapt to the Washington culture, but deliberately contested it instead, thereby causing friction with both parties. His agenda included overturning a great deal of former President Obama’s policies and treaties. More importantly, he wanted to change the mood and outlook of the country. To the public, this represented a “correction,” to the politicians, it represented heresy and a significant change to the status quo. The big question thereby becomes, was this change necessary? To those who elected Mr. Trump, the unequivocal answer is “Yes”; to everyone else, he is perceived as a genuine threat to their existence, which has triggered an uproar.

Some time ago, I wrote a review of author Mark Leibovich’s book, “This Town.” This was a fascinating description of the power and control of the Washington establishment. As I wrote back then…

“Leibovich reveals the true culture of DC, where an incestuous relationship exists between Government, Journalists, and Lobbyists. All scratch each other’s backs in order to climb their respective totem polls and grab as much money as possible along the way. He paints a picture of unadulterated collusion. He makes it clear Washington exists not to solve the problems of the country but to line the pockets of the residents there.”

“Through the book, Leibovich slips and reveals the Democratic bias of the press. Regardless of President Obama’s problems, he can do no wrong in the eyes of the mainstream media. In their eyes, the president is blameless for everything and genuinely the most brilliant president there has ever been. This is only surpassed by the media’s love affair with the Clintons. For some unknown reason, they are totally in awe of Hillary as well as her husband.”

“If the book teaches us anything, it is that the system is broken and in need of major repair.”

More than anything else, the corruption of the Washington establishment paved the way for Donald Trump’s ascension to the presidency.

The push back to President Trump has been incredible, yet expected. Both political parties could not believe he was elected to the highest office in the land. The media considered him DOA as a candidate and nothing but a joke who could be easily defeated by Her Highness Hillary. They grossly underestimated the dissatisfaction of the American public to the goings-on in Washington. In contrast, Donald Trump didn’t underestimate the people and used this to his advantage. His election left the establishment in shock and awe, thereby creating the push back we’ve been experiencing since Mr. Trump’s election.

To illustrate, consider the substantial body of changes we have observed in just the first two years of Mr. Trump’s presidency, and how our lexicon has changed. It has hardly been “business as usual” since his arrival.

* We’re now familiar with the concept of the “Deep State,” representing a body of people believed to be involved in the secret manipulation of government. We never heard of this expression prior to President Trump.

* The terms “resistance” and “obstruction” are now commonly used in Congress to delay and thwart the president’s plans and appointees, such as the recent showdowns over the wall along our southern border.

* Talks of presidential impeachment have surfaced in both the press and the Congress. The 25th amendment of the Constitution was relatively unknown. Now it is frequently quoted as a means to remove the president.

* The “Mueller Probe” was initiated in the hopes it would discover the president was working illegally with the Russians in the election. So far, nothing of any substance has surfaced.

* The term “RINO” was coined to denote “Republicans In Name Only,” meaning moderate Republicans who resist the president’s agenda. There is also the “Never Trump” movement consisting of Republicans dead set against Mr. Trump’s election and policies. It is this latter group that foiled the President’s plans for replacing Obamacare. He could have done much more without such people in the political establishment.

* The “take a knee” protest in the National Football League caused a furor over the patriotism of the NFL players. Further, snubbing a White House visit upon winning a sports championship came into vogue. Such shenanigans were never considered before.

* The public now accepts “Fake News” as a valid concept associated with the Main Stream Media, which continues to lose credibility (and subscribers). According to the MSM, President Trump is incompetent and, as such, is incapable of doing anything right, be it large or small.

* Anti-Trump marches are still popular. We’ve also witnessed the rise of “ANTIFA,” self-proclaimed “Anti-Fascists” who use violence and mayhem as their tactics in demonstrations. We’ve also seen the rise of left-wing organizations, such as the Sunrise Movement, representing young demonstrators supporting such things as the “New Green Deal.” There is also the rise of the “#MeToo Movement” who attempted to disrupt the confirmation hearing of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

* Free-speech on college campuses is under attack. If a talk does not conform to “political correctness,” the person’s 1st Amendment rights are suspended or assaulted. This has resulted in states writing legislation to overturn this policy.

* It is not uncommon for social media to censor postings supporting President Trump.

* Entertainer award ceremonies are now used as a political soap box as opposed to recognizing their craft.

* Trump supporters are now regularly ridiculed and demeaned in terms of their intelligence and values.

* Late night television, which used to avoid political subjects, is now dependent on jabs at the president.

* We have witnessed fraudulent claims of victimization (e.g., Jussie Smollet, Covington Catholic) and false accusations of hate crimes, racism, xenophobia, and homophobia. This is all widely reported by the news media, regardless if it is right or wrong.

* Anything said or done by the President, be it meaningful or a trifle, results in a Pavlovian protest and lampoon. This includes his family, the Vice President, and his inner circle of advisers. Opponents encourage people to openly harass them in public.

* President Trump is frequently labeled a “pathological liar,” yet when the establishment is caught spreading falsehoods, “Oops” is the typical response and all is forgiven. Further, the days of respectful debate are long gone, and replaced by hate and yelling.

* Today, we are witnessing the migration of people away from states controlled by Democrats, such as California and New York, to Republican controlled states, such as Texas and Florida, which are considered economically stable.

* We are seeing the erosion of history and civics in our classrooms, thereby grooming a generation of people ignorant of how and why government works, thereby making them more manipulative.

* Democrat candidates for president in 2020 have difficulty demonstrating their accomplishments. Instead of touting policy, they promise a multitude of public freebies and bash the President at every opportunity. Linked to this…

* We’re witnessing a rise in Socialism in this country as it is perceived as the antithesis of the policies of the Trump administration. Even though Socialism has failed throughout the world, liberals continue to embrace it and vilify anyone opposing it.

Gee, have I missed anything?

Does this sound like a culture embracing Mr. Trump or stubbornly rejecting him? Such fierce refutation of the President denotes the severity of cultural change. It also appears to be orchestrated. Whereas the country was rapidly moving towards a liberal agenda under former President Obama, President Trump has changed the course of the country by 180 degrees, hence the push back.

Within any culture, a person must observe the rules of morality, protocol, and socialization. To change the culture, you must address all three areas, which is what the president has been doing since his inauguration.

* In terms of morality, he has embraced God (and refuses to apologize for it), believes in the rule of law (particularly in the areas of immigration, and law and order), he is pro-life, supports charitable organizations (especially those for children), and believes in the dignity of work as it is important to the well-being of humans, both financially and mentally.

* In terms of protocol, President Trump has let the world know, under no uncertain terms, it is no longer business as usual, that important treaties have to be renegotiated, he has re-appraised our allies and enemies, and spurns the culture of political correctness.

* In terms of socialization, he has assumed a brash, unapologetic tone, and is unafraid to push back against his opponents, particularly the main stream media, which other presidents have been afraid to do. He has effectively used social media to perform an end-run around the press and get his message directly to the public, without the media’s filtering, something no other president has had the luxury of doing.

In other words, he has been bucking the establishment as described in Leibovich’s book.

President Trump has embraced the 3-Cs, Christianity, Capitalism, and Conservative values, all of which causes the news media and Democrats to panic, as well as a few Republicans. Yet, he perseveres. To change the culture of the country, he must remain steadfast and resolute, in spite of constant criticisms and resistance. This is something he became adept at as a successful businessman. He is fully cognizant success depends on “winning,” which explains why he has been pushing hard on economic initiatives, trade, peace, and safety of the country. This is not so much about creating a “Win-Lose” scenario (whereby in order for one to win, the other party must lose), as much as it is about changing the culture to “Win-Win” whereby the secret to success is getting people to take pride in their country, themselves, work together and thwart those who would undermine this extraordinary country as devised by our founding fathers. By doing so, he hopes to restore a sense of patriotism, citizenship, work ethic, and family values.

Yes, President Trump understands this is a cultural revolution we are embroiled in. He has seen it before in business on a smaller scale and understands it is difficult to change it, but he also understands the virtue of having everyone pulling on the same oar. He may have a few scars on him before he is finished, but he is unafraid to lead us into this brave new world. If he was to quit, the status quo wins and the establishment continues unabated.

Had the Democrat candidate won in 2016, there would not be the brouhaha we are experiencing today. Had any other Republican won the candidacy, most of whom were politicians, there would have likely been a cultural revolution, but not to the degree we are embroiled in now as Mr. Trump is the outsider and willing to push back against his opponents.

One last note, the 2020 election will tell us the effect of changing the nation’s culture. If President Trump wins, we know he is being successful, but if he is defeated, the Washington establishment will return to normal and the status quo has won. This will also affect the 2024 election in terms of electing Mr. Trump’s successor. Our support for President Trump will be measured by whether we want to see the culture of the country return to a liberal agenda, or if we favor a return to traditional conservative values.

Stay tuned.

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 | Tagged: , , , , | 6 Comments »


Posted by Tim Bryce on February 28, 2019


– Which can be more alluring than just physical beauty.

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

I want to speak for a moment on the beauty of women. No, I’m not a cosmetologist, dermatologist, hair dresser, or fashion coordinator, just an ordinary heterosexual with a fondness for the opposite sex. I always knew there were differences between boys and girls, but this didn’t become obvious to me until I entered junior high school whereupon I noticed the girls were beginning to apply cosmetics, change their hair, and wear more fashionable clothes. I guess this marked the beginning of our mating rituals as the boys began to sit up and take notice.

It has been my observation over the years that women depend mostly on physical attractiveness to lure a mate. This is why millions, if not billions of dollars, are spent on beauty products for hair, skin, nails, eyes, lips, legs, even the scent of a women. Let us also not forget the enormity of the fashion industry which includes not just clothes, but shoes and hats as well. It is obviously a gigantic business. Some women are naturally beautiful, and know it. Others have to work at it.

I wonder though if women are too dependent on physical appearance and overlook the allure of a personality. Over the years I have met many women who may have lacked looks, but are incredibly sensual just from their personality alone. They may have a good sense of humor, an ease about them, a confidence, or something simply feminine. I guess they just feel comfortable in their own skin and know how to make others feel likewise. Perhaps this is the “feminine mystique” I’ve been hearing about all these years. I have seen women who know how to light up a room with nothing more than a smile and a gentle wave of their hand, yet are considered frumpy otherwise. Men gravitate to such women naturally as they are more approachable as opposed to a beauty with an incredible figure, simply because they know how to carry a conversation and make the people around them feel at ease.

Some people think such things as sex and cooking are part of the allure of women, and I suspect there are many men who think this way. As for me, such things are nothing more than the icing on the cake. Any relationship based on this alone is doomed from the outset.

Instead of spending tons of money on the physical aspects, I wish they would spend a little on cultivating a personality, something that can put men at ease, even be disarmingly flirtatious. Most men can be intimidated by a ravishing beauty, thereby considering them untouchable. After they have summoned up the courage to talk to such a woman, they are crestfallen when they find there is nothing behind the facade. Instead, they would rather be able to enjoy the woman’s company, but if the lights are on and nobody is home, the encounter will be brief. I’m certainly not suggesting the woman be submissive to the male. In fact, I find that rather unappealing. The women who possesses a wit, a warm heart, an openness about them, a sense of humor, and confidence about themselves in spite of some physical defect can be much more interesting and stimulating than a glamour queen.

I guess what I’m describing is the “inner beauty” of a woman, which can be incredibly alluring, and I presume it is essentially no different for how women consider men. However, for those people who lack both an outer and inner beauty, I pray they’re good in the kitchen or bedroom. Either that, or they begin to frequent a salon, gym or a voice coach. Otherwise they are going to remain rather lonely for a long time.

Originally published: November 30, 2012, updated 2019

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 Life | Tagged: , , , , | 7 Comments »


Posted by Tim Bryce on February 27, 2019


– An interesting theory of how people behave in this country.

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

Slavery in the United States was abolished with Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation which took effect in 1863, but I’m not sure it has completely gone away. Slavery flourished in North America throughout the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries where it was an important part of the country’s economic system. Under the legendary Sugar-Rum-Slave triad; sugar was shipped from the Caribbean to Europe where it was distilled into rum, profits from this was then used to ship merchandise to West Africa where it was traded for slaves, which were sent to the Caribbean where they were sold as field hands for the sugar plantations, others were used as indoor servants.

The tortuous life of the slaves involved such things as picking cotton, heavy labor, and just about every menial task imaginable. Some would try to escape, others would resist slavery and rebel, such as the famous Nat Turner rebellion in 1831. Runaways would be recaptured and returned to their master where they were brutally punished, primarily using the whip. Rebels were executed quickly and publicly. Aside from this, most of the slaves were resigned to their fate and adhered to the rules and regulations of their master thereby becoming dependent on him for food, clothing, and shelter. Consequently, they learned to live modestly, avoid responsibility, and be happy allowing someone else to take care of them. So much so, they would defend the master in perilous times knowing their livelihood depended on him.

Slave codes were introduced to prohibit slaves from learning to read and write, carry firearms, attend religious gatherings, and many other activities, all aimed at controlling their behavior. This was all done to dissuade slaves from running away or rebelling, and frankly, proved to be very effective for this purpose.

When the slaves were freed, some thrived under their new found freedom, but many others were lost and became wards of the state. They may have been freed from their masters, but were lost without someone telling them what to do.

The slave mentality is still very much among us. A class of people have emerged in this country who put forth minimal effort knowing the master will take care of them (the government). As more and more people become addicted to entitlements, they become more apathetic and less likely to work. As an example, let’s consider the American Indian where we have been spending in excess of $2.6 billion annually (1) over the last few years for such things as health care, education, public safety, housing, and rural development. Despite this huge cash infusion over an extended period of time, only 25% are employed, and they suffer from the highest poverty rate and lowest life expectancy in the country. The point is, when you become a ward of the state and such amenities are guaranteed to you, there is a natural inclination for apathy to run rampant.

Those imbued with the slave mentality do not simply want something for nothing, they expect it. Whereas they are content to perform simple labor, they expect their master, the federal government, to provide for their housing, welfare, health care, and other amenities. This explains why entitlements have grown at an alarming rate in recent years and why such people have no problem with a massive government. They are mindful of the rules and regulations of the master, but have no true understanding of the concept of freedom which is nothing more than a catch-phrase of the government.

In contrast, those opposed to big government and actively work to sustain themselves relish freedom and truly understand the price of it in blood and sweat. They realize freedom encourages personal initiative to invent, innovate, discover, write, and create. They may either be successful or a failure, but they relish the opportunity to at least try. They are allowed to believe what they want, say what they want, go where they want, but most importantly they are allowed to be an entrepreneur with all of the risks and responsibilities involved. The slave mentality class doesn’t grasp this and shirks risk and responsibility, preferring the safety of the master instead.

The slave codes of today are implemented by the media who cleverly manipulates the people’s sense of right and wrong, thereby defining how they should think and act. As George Orwell correctly observed, “The people will believe what the media tells them they believe.” Political correctness is an obvious example of how the media influences the perceptions of people. In reality, the media is controlled by the government who orchestrates the messages to the masses. From this, the slaves steadfastly protect their master by savagely attacking his detractors, either physically or verbally. Such slaves are simple people who can be easily manipulated by the media.

For the slave mentality to flourish, government needs to grow and become more invasive in the lives of the people. Entitlements are the hallmark of the slaves, something they believe they deserve as opposed to earn; something the master will provide. To grasp the size of the people possessing the slave mentality, consider how the country’s Welfare has escalated since 1960:

So what exactly is the slave mentality? A person who is willing to become subservient to the government in exchange for basic creature comforts as opposed to earning it themselves. The slave unknowingly remains a prisoner and is not truly free. In reality, he/she does not understand freedom, nor do they want it for freedom requires hard work, risk, and responsibility, elements which they have been conditioned to avoid. Knowing this, the government master controls the people through simple bribery and uses the media to manipulate the perceptions of the masses.

The initial reaction to this theory is to dismiss it out of hand, that wards of the state can hardly be considered slaves. However, if they think like slaves, behave like slaves, then in all likelihood they are slaves. It is important to recognize this mentality is certainly not unique to the United States; it has also become prevalent in the United Kingdom as well as other European countries. One thing we cannot overlook is that if the master’s source of money evaporates, he will be unable to take care of his slaves, and then they will have to settle for less. They may resist austerity measures initially, but they will inevitably have to fall in line. Just remember, if the slaves get out of line, the master still has the whip which he is unafraid of using.

1 – U.S. Department of the Interior Budget Justifications and Performance Information, FY 2013

Originally published: December 19, 2012, updated 2019

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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: , , , , | 4 Comments »


Posted by Tim Bryce on February 26, 2019


– “Got to pay your dues if you want to sing the blues, and you know it don’t come easy.” – Ringo Starr

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

My book, “MORPHING INTO THE REAL WORLD – A Handbook for Entering the Work Force,” is designed to help young people make the transition from school, be it high school or college, into the work force.

In my introduction, I indoctrinate the young reader into the first basic truths we must all face as we enter adulthood:

* You are entitled to nothing. If you want something, you are going to have to go out and earn it.

* Nothing is free. Forget what the promotion says, people do not offer something without wanting something in return.

* Life is not fair. In fact it can be downright cruel and dehumanizing. Keep in mind, with rare exception, companies are not democracies; they are dictatorships. As such, they operate at the whims of the person in charge.

* Becoming an adult means assuming responsibility, be it on the personal or professional sides of our lives. Knowing this, put your best face on and act like a professional, someone you want others to respect.

* Becoming an adult also means making decisions. In theory, if you make 51% of your decisions correctly, you will be successful. Also, do not procrastinate; if you do not make a decision, the decision will be made for you (and probably not to your liking).

* If anything in life is constant, it is change. Some you will like, others will have trouble swallowing. Nonetheless learn to accommodate change. Learn and adapt.

* People act on their perceptions, regardless if they are valid or not. As an old systems man, I can tell you authoritatively, if the input is wrong, everything that follows will also be wrong. Don’t jump to conclusions; always seek the truth.

* The only good business relationship is when both parties benefit (aka “Win-Win” relationship). Avoid situations where one party benefits at the expense of the other (aka “Win-Lose” relationship).

* Everything begins with a sale. All of our efforts, regardless of how mundane they may seem, should be geared towards producing income for the company. Without sales, everything else will eventually come to a halt.

* There is only one problem with common sense, it is not very common. The obvious is not obvious to a lot of people. You will undoubtedly discover that decisions are based more on emotion as opposed to logic.

* Your personal and professional lives are one and the same. Some people like to separate the two, but the fact remains, there is only one you.

Finally, I’ll leave you with a thought from a good friend of mine who survived over thirty years of corporate politics:

“You cannot move to the top of the ladder by breaking rungs and breaking rules….
we all must move through the learnings, the little successes, the disappointments, to develop and grow.”

– Michael B. Snyder

Originally published: October 1, 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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 Business, Life, Management | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »


Posted by Tim Bryce on February 22, 2019


– Can it be expressed as a calculation?

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

It had been three years since Joshua Steivenson’s father passed away, yet the son was still cleaning out his father’s belongings. The old wooden house in Buffalo, New York was built in the 1930’s. Years ago, the cellar included an ancient coal furnace and chute, typical for the time. His father, Millard, converted it to a gas furnace a few decades ago in order to develop a clean and quiet place to study. His mother, who still maintained the house, encouraged Joshua to clean up his father’s belongings as she did not want to deal with it anymore. Everything in the cellar was tidy, which is uncharacteristic of a mathematician, but his voluminous books and notes filled shelf after shelf. Joshua had cleaned up the attic and his father’s closets upstairs, but it was now the cellar’s turn for attention. He had looked forward to pouring through his father’s notes, as he remembered the amount of effort and detail the elder devoted to them.

Millard Steivenson was a well known mathematician who had worked at the old Westinghouse plant years ago. His calculations were primarily used in manufacturing and design, earning him accolades not just from his employer, but with other mathematicians through his research papers. Joshua had followed in his father’s footsteps by also becoming a mathematician. As he grew up, father and son spent numerous hours arguing over formulas and equations; it was tremendous mental gymnastics, something both enjoyed immensely. Now that his father was gone, Joshua was eager to look through the elder’s body of work.

Millard’s notes were maintained in meticulous chronological order, in three ring binders, representing over sixty years worth of logic. This made it particularly interesting to study and watch his father’s work evolve over time. A lot of it consisted of simple formulas for use in product design, but now and then, he would try to explain concepts in physics which were often submitted to a mathematics union where papers were printed in journals and arguments presented, both pro and con. The father’s work was frequently featured in these journals.

Day after day, Joshua absorbed the journals, often going late into the evening. He remembered some of his father’s early work, but most of the pages included unfamiliar formulas and algorithms. Analyzing each computation, Joshua began to understand his expressions without having to review the accompanying notes. It all made sense to him. Then, in a binder from December 1965 he happened upon a section marked, “The Secret of Happiness,” consisting of a rather lengthy equation describing in mathematical terms how a person can discover his own personal happiness. This piqued Joshua’s interest as he didn’t recall his father discussing this concept and thought it a rather odd subject for a mathematician to pursue.

Joshua poured through the extensive formula carefully. At the heart of his father’s argument was the identification of a person’s purpose in life, both personal and professional, plus the motivation to achieve them, thus resulting in joy through fulfillment. By doing so, a person could elevate their personal self esteem through their chosen vocation and find happiness. Also included was mathematical language describing how to overcome adversity, to teach morality by discerning right from wrong, and the necessity to subdue passions, such as anger, greed and lust. It was all rather extensive. Basically, the formula was intended to unlock a person’s inner self. More importantly, Joshua couldn’t find anything wrong in the logic. It appeared everything was properly defined and interconnected. The son was rather impressed and began to quietly chuckle knowing of no other attempt to write such a formula. However, why had his father kept it a secret for so many years?

Following the formula, there were several accompanying notes, including reviews of the work. Years ago, his father had submitted a paper regarding the formula to the mathematics union. However, it was rejected out of hand with some rather sharp critiques with the contention, “You cannot synthesize human emotion.” Joshua was surprised by the open rebuff, particularly after analyzing the formula carefully. The critics even went so far as to publicly ridicule him, which may explain why his father stopped working on it. As Joshua read through the criticisms, he became angry as it became rather obvious few of the respondents had actually read the formula. The last note written by his father on the subject was a short footnote which appeared to be added many years afterwards; it simply read, “Joshua, when you are ready,” and was circled in red ink. This surprised Joshua who interpreted it as a request from his father to pursue the formula again.

As it was late, Joshua went to sleep thinking about both the formula and the criticisms of it. The logic was perfect, yet people didn’t seem to grasp the significance of it fifty years ago. What about today? What about today?…

The next morning, Joshua decided to resubmit the formula to the mathematics union for their consideration. He included an introductory letter, and updated his father’s supporting notes. One short week later, his documents were returned by the union with a strong letter condemning the work. “We are well familiar with your father’s work in this regard. As we notified him years ago, we do not consider this a viable formula. Trying to calculate human emotion is pure folly. Please do not waste our time again. Sincerely…”

Joshua was surprised the formula was dismissed out of hand so quickly. Perhaps too quickly. Obviously they didn’t study it in detail as the logic was flawless. He was particularly perturbed by their skepticism.

The refutation did not deter Joshua. As he was also well versed in computer programming, he decided to write an “app” for the formula suitable to be used in smart phones, tablets and computers. He expended considerable time coding the formula into the program. Special touch screen technology was added to simplify the use of the program. To do so, a person would simply need to press and hold his/her finger on the app logo whereby a screen was displayed showing the person’s hidden desires. This was done by accessing the person’s central nervous system through the finger where the logical and emotional spheres of the brain were read and scrutinized. The analysis judged the person’s intellectual and emotional stability, frustrations, along with wants and desires. From this, it would visually display the person’s preferences for happiness and offered viable alternatives for achieving them. Basically, it was offering a blueprint for the person’s next stage in life.

Joshua tested the program thoroughly on himself and was surprised to discover he should be making adjustments in his own life; suggestions he immediately understood and embraced. After making the last few technical adjustments, he uploaded the app to the various Internet app stores for free public download under the name, “The Secret of Happiness.” After he uploaded it, he called it a night and went to bed.

The next morning, he checked on the app counter and found 325 people had downloaded it overnight and more were continuing to do so before his eyes. When checking his e-mail queue, he discovered several messages praising him for the app and how it already was changing people’s lives for the better. Day after day, Joshua watched as hundreds of people downloaded the app, then thousands, then tens of thousands, there was no stopping it as it went viral in the first week. News reporters took notice and began contacting Joshua for interviews. Many had used it themselves and became fans well before they asked their first question. This resulted in an avalanche of publicity and “The Secret of Happiness” became the darling of the press. The requests for interviews and correspondence overwhelmed Joshua, so much so, he started to shy away from reading his email.

Then one day, a letter arrived in the mail from the mathematics union requesting a personal interview with Joshua regarding the formula. This surprised him after receiving the terse letter earlier. The tone of the letter was less antagonistic, so he agreed to meet with the union.

Joshua appeared in the union’s offices at the arranged time, dressed in suit and tie. As he waited to be announced, he looked around the office. The building was massive and very well equipped and decorated. It appeared the union didn’t suffer financially, but he wondered how it was paid for; this certainly couldn’t be based on just equations and formulas.

A receptionist led him into an opulent board room with a beautiful table, chairs, and state-of-the-art multimedia screens on the walls. Several officials greeted him, seven in all, and asked him to take a seat. All were much older than Joshua and were dressed as authoritative figures. Their demeanor was serious, giving Joshua the uneasy feeling this was going to be more of an inquisition than a casual interview.

“Mr, Steivenson,” the Chairman began, “We have asked you here to discuss the app you introduced using your father’s formula for happiness. As you know, we have reviewed the formula, both recently and years ago, and found it unacceptable as a means of defining happiness through mathematical language. In fact, we believe it to be reckless on your part to release this to the public as an app.”

“Sir,” Joshua responded, “There is nothing compelling people to use the app. It also comes with a warning that it can only be used on a voluntary basis. So far, I have received no complaints, only compliments from the public, that it is helping them realize their potential and improve their quality of life.”

“We’re well aware of that,” the Chairman continued, “and that’s part of what disturbs us; we’ve tried it ourselves and could not see how it works on any of us here. It didn’t impact us, so we thought this was nothing but a scam or placebo, and are willing to go to the press in order to get you to retract your claims of its effectiveness. We do not wish to see the public suffer.”

“Suffer?” Joshua said, “Hardly. I have testimonials from hundreds, if not thousands of people from all over the world who have described the positive impact the app and the formula has had in influencing their lives positively. The formula does, in fact, work, but only for those who want to believe happiness can be attained in their lifetime. In your case, I knew you would not accept it, so I added a ‘skeptic’ function to my father’s formula, whereby it will not work with people such as yourselves who do not possess an open mind.”

“You mean…”

“Yes, in order for it to work, you must either believe in the formula or are willing to give it an honest try. Since your minds have already been made up, regardless of how ridiculous your arguments are, you will never be able to use it and, as such, will never realize how it can help you with your lives.”

“That’s preposterous,” the Chairman exclaimed, “You cannot use math to deduce skepticism.”

“Really?” Joshua said smugly, “You also said that about my father’s happiness formula and I now have millions of people who have a new outlook on life thanks to it. You do not believe simply because you do not WANT to believe, and that is sad. It is hard to make progress when the people in charge invent irrational egotistical roadblocks. Sometimes you have to do an end-run to get something done. Good day, gentlemen.”

Joshua rose from his chair and turned to exit. Before he could leave though, the Chairman said strongly, “Young man, you have no idea who you are dealing with; no idea whatsoever. You better be careful.” Joshua didn’t like the sabre rattling but chalked it up to old men in their dotage, and he departed.

Following the meeting, Joshua returned home and to an adoring public who thanked him many times over for helping them rebuild their lives and pointing them in the right direction. The app was so infectious, the mood of the country began to change. A wild spirit of entrepreneurship and prosperity blanketed the nation consisting of new companies offering new products and services, all built or delivered with a high sense of craftsmanship. Consequently, the Gross Domestic Product began to rise, money was generated for the people and taxes; so much so, the federal debt was arrested and actually began to retreat. People no longer resisted going to work, but openly welcomed it instead. Grades in schools substantially improved, and education was made meaningful again. Crime rates declined radically, as did unemployment, and spending on welfare. America awoke from the doldrums to once again become a leader in industry. The rest of the world started reporting similar successes as well.

Then, one day, a computer virus was quietly introduced to the world over the Internet, some claimed it originated from China but nobody knew for sure. It was designed to seek out and destroy Joshua’s “Happiness” app and the virus circled the globe like wild fire deleting it from all machines. In just five short days, it had completely eradicated the app, including Joshua’s machine containing the source code for the program. It was gone, all gone, and the public’s attitudes began to shift back to complacency as before the app was introduced.

Joshua could not understand who or why anyone would want to destroy the app. He began to investigate the virus by capturing and dissecting the code embedded within it. Inside he found some interesting clues consisting of mathematical formulas and expressions leading him to believe he had been sabotaged by the mathematics union. Infuriated, he rushed to the union building and demanded an audience with the Chairman, and surprisingly, it was granted.

Although he felt his blood boil, he stopped to take a breath and regain his composure before entering the Chairman’s office. He desperately did not want to express panic under pressure and maintain a cool demeanor.

As he entered the office, the Chairman greeted him, “Good afternoon Mr. Steivenson, I have been expecting you.”

“You have?” asked Joshua.

“When we heard your app was the target of a virus, we knew you would blame us.”

“And I suppose you are going to claim ignorance on the matter?” Joshua asked.

The chairman came out from behind his desk and sat down next to Joshua. In a calm and fatherly voice, he said, “No, Joshua, we had nothing do do with it. At our last meeting, I tried to warn you that you had no idea who you were dealing with, and to a certain extent, neither does our own organization. We are the eyes and ears for various government agencies around the world, who happen to fund our work, something we are paid well for.”

He continued, “I will admit I opposed your father’s formula at first, but I finally overcame my skepticism which allowed me to work with your app. Frankly, I was amazed how well it understood me and recommended changes in my life which I have embraced. Believe me, you wouldn’t have gotten into this building if I didn’t believe the app worked. I apologize for not believing in your work and not encouraging you to pursue it, but I was directed to discourage you and let the matter drop, as your father did years ago.”

“Why was that?”

“Joshua, ask yourself the question; what government would want its citizens to be truly happy? You’ve already seen some of the effects your app has had on our country, that we were becoming a vibrant society again, one that began to challenge the status quo and change the political landscape. That is more than any politician can stand. They want apathetic voters and people with a low confidence level, thereby making them more inclined to accept government control. I honestly do not know which country produced the virus, it could have been America, China, Russia or many others, it doesn’t matter, it was inevitable. They simply do not want the citizens to rise beyond their control. Your app was a very real threat to them, so I am not surprised. I know this isn’t much solace, but I’m honestly sorry about all this. I had no idea it would go this far.”

Joshua slouched in his chair. He realized he was defeated. To pursue his dream meant doing combat with the governments of the world, very much a losing proposition.

Days after his meeting, Joshua returned to his father’s cellar and organized his notes in another three-ring binder. Included was a printed copy of the app’s source code which Joshua had printed prior to his computer being attacked, along with schematics and other documentation explaining the program’s logic.

Before closing the binder for the last time, he took out a red pen and wrote on the last page, “For my son, when you are ready.” He then swept the cellar, made sure it was as tidy as his father had kept it, and turned off the lights.

NOTE: This is a work of fiction. Any similarity between the characters in this story and any real person, living or dead, is not intentional and purely coincidental.

Originally published: September 23, 2015

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

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Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 by Tim Bryce on February 21, 2019


– Let us look before we leap.

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“Those who do not do their homework do not graduate.” – Bryce’s Law

In its simplest form, a Feasibility Study represents a definition of a problem or opportunity to be studied, an analysis of the current mode of operation, a definition of requirements, an evaluation of alternatives, and an agreed upon course of action. As such, the activities for preparing a Feasibility Study are generic in nature and can be applied to any type of project, be it for systems and software development, making an acquisition, or any other project. It is equally applicable in business, nonprofit institutions, and at all levels of government. Frankly, if you are going to do anything of substance, it is wise to perform a Feasibility Study. Instead of looking at it as a series of a regimented steps, it is a thinking process for specifying needs, assessing risk, and making an intelligent decision. Basically, it is nothing more than common sense.

There are basically six parts to any effective Feasibility Study:

1. The PROJECT SCOPE which is used to define the business problem and/or opportunity to be addressed. The old adage, “The problem well stated is half solved,” is very apropos. The Scope should be definitive and to the point; rambling narrative serves no purpose and can actually confuse project participants. It is also necessary to define the parts of the business affected either directly or indirectly, including project participants and end-user areas affected by the project. The project sponsor should be identified, particularly if he/she is footing the bill.

I have seen too many projects in the corporate world started without a well defined Project Scope. Consequently, projects have wandered in and out of their boundaries causing them to produce either far too much or far too little than what is truly needed.

2. The CURRENT ANALYSIS is used to define and understand the current method of implementation, such as a system, a product, etc. From this analysis, it is not uncommon to discover there is actually nothing wrong with the current system or product other than some misunderstandings regarding it or perhaps it needs some simple modifications as opposed to a major overhaul. Also, the strengths and weaknesses of the current approach are identified (pros and cons). In addition, there may very well be elements of the current system or product that may be used in its successor thus saving time and money later on. Without such analysis, this may never be discovered.

Analysts are cautioned to avoid the temptation to stop and correct any problems encountered in the current system at this time. Simply document your findings instead, otherwise you will spend more time unnecessarily in this stage (aka “Analysis Paralysis”).

3. REQUIREMENTS – how requirements are defined depends on the object of the project’s attention. For example, how requirements are specified for a product are substantially different than requirements for an edifice, a bridge, or an information system. Each exhibits totally different properties and, as such, are defined differently. How you define requirements for software is also substantially different than how you define them for systems. (See, “Understanding the Specifications Puzzle”).

4. The APPROACH represents the recommended solution or course of action to satisfy the requirements. Here, various alternatives are considered along with an explanation as to why the preferred solution was selected. In terms of design related projects, it is here where whole rough designs (e.g., “renderings”) are developed in order to determine viability. It is also at this point where the use of existing structures and commercial alternatives are considered (e.g., “build versus buy” decisions). The overriding considerations though are:

* Does the recommended approach satisfy the requirements?
* Is it also a practical and viable solution? (Will it “Play in Poughkeepsie?”)

A thorough analysis here is needed in order to perform the next step…

5. EVALUATION – examines the cost effectiveness of the Approach selected. This begins with an analysis of the estimated total cost of the project. In addition to the recommended solution, other alternatives are estimated in order to offer an economic comparison. For development projects, an estimate of labor and out-of-pocket expenses is assembled along with a project schedule showing the project path and start-and-end dates.

After the total cost of the project has been calculated, a cost and evaluation summary is prepared which includes such things as a cost/benefit analysis, return on investment, etc.

6. REVIEW – all of the preceding elements are then assembled into a Feasibility Study and a formal review is conducted with all parties involved. The review serves two purposes: to substantiate the thoroughness and accuracy of the Feasibility Study, and to make a project decision; either approve it, reject it, or ask that it be revised before making a final decision. If approved, it is very important that all parties sign the document which expresses their acceptance and commitment to it; it may be a seemingly small gesture, but signatures carry a lot of weight later on as the project progresses. If the Feasibility Study is rejected, the reasons for its rejection should be explained and attached to the document.


It should be remembered that a Feasibility Study is more of a way of thinking as opposed to a bureaucratic process. For example, what I have just described is essentially the same process we all follow when purchasing an automobile or a home. As the scope of the project grows, it becomes more important to document the Feasibility Study particularly if large amounts of money are involved and/or the criticality of delivery. Not only should the Feasibility Study contain sufficient detail to carry on to the next succeeding phase in the project, but it should also be used for comparative analysis when preparing the final Project Audit which analyzes what was delivered versus what was proposed in the Feasibility Study.

Feasibility Studies represent a commonsense approach to planning. Frankly, it is just plain good business to conduct them. However, I have read where some people, particularly government legislators and people in the I.T. field, consider Feasibility Studies to be a colossal waste of time. In their haste, they will sincerely claim, “We don’t have time to do things right.” Translation: “We have plenty of time to do things wrong.”

First published: March 20, 2008, updated in 2019.

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 by Tim Bryce on February 20, 2019


– Haven’t we got better things to do?

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

Over the last few months, the subject of plastic straws has become a political football, brought about by Democrats who contend they are not ecologically friendly. Not surprising, California was the first state to bring it to our attention. Since then, the subject has surfaced in a handful of cities here in Florida, most notably St. Petersburg, a stronghold for the Democrats. Last December, the St. Pete City Council passed a bill banning plastic straws, not the voters. This is related to their ban on Styrofoam which is commonly used by restaurants to save leftovers. As of this moment, you can only get a plastic straw in St. Pete if you ask for one, but the straws will be totally banned by 2020, and replaced by paper straws.

In my youth, I remember paper straws wouldn’t last any longer than a small carton of milk. As to soft drinks, twelve ounces and up, forget it, they’re useless. People would rather drink a soft drink directly out of a can, bottle or glass than using a paper straw.

The big question though, is the plastic straw a genuine problem? St. Petersburg is respectable in size and is listed as the fifth most populous city in Florida. During the winter months the city probably doubles in size due to the influx of “snowbird” tourists who enjoy the beaches and warm weather. St. Pete is also home to the Tampa Bay Rays, our MLB franchise. As such, there is a multitude of dining facilities in the area, large and small, all presumably providing straws to patrons.

The St. Pete council believes the plastic straw is an ecological threat to the beaches, but there is little, if any, proof that this is true. This begs the question, is this a political fad or is there any legitimate science behind it? So far, the answer appears to be “No.” It is reminiscent of Obamacare and the “Green New Deal” legislation introduced by Democrat-Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) which is a laundry list of items to create a Socialist Utopia, but lacking specifics, such as the costs to implement her program and precisely how it will improve the environment.

Because of this, the plastic straw has become an iconic symbol of Democrats pushing their agenda without any science behind it. Such lunacy would not play well in corporate America where you must quantify the return on investment of a proposal. In other words, the Democrats are weak on doing their homework and are acting on impulse as opposed to fact. Instead, they package their ideas and allow the news media to carry the pitch to the public. Even more disturbing is the public is not truly being consulted on this issue which is commonly used by everyone.

Fortunately, cooler heads are prevailing at the state level in Florida where the legislature is drafting bills to prevent cities from outlawing plastic straws. If passed, this will supersede the authority of the municipal level.

This rhubarb over something as simple as a plastic straw is much ado about nothing. The Democrats have simply not made their case and makes me wonder, don’t we have better things to do? It also disturbs me our government officials will entertain any hairbrain idea that comes along, particularly when it is not thought through and articulated properly. They could probably be more productive by counting the number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin.

We could save a lot of time, money and effort if legislators could learn to draft bills more intelligently, such as how businesses write feasibility studies, but I guess that is too much to ask.

To help in this regard, my next column will be, “The Elements of a Good Feasibility Study,” which is intended to provide insight in the preparation of an intelligible proposal. Until then…

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 by Tim Bryce on February 19, 2019


– A lot has changed since 1970.

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It shouldn’t come as a surprise that I haven’t been a fan of the NFL for the last few years. I think they have simply lost their way and become a dangerous masculine role model for youth to emulate. I have written about my displeasure on more than one occasion. Nonetheless, the latest Super Bowl was held just a couple of weeks ago, and I really wasn’t interested. Instead, I watched Super Bowl IV from 1970 pitting the Kansas City Chiefs against the Minnesota Vikings. This was the last game before the merger of the American Football League (AFL) and the NFL, and held at the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. I was in High School at the time.

This was an important game as KC beat the Vikings 23-7 and evened the series between the two leagues 2-2. This was an impressive game featuring some great players from both teams, but this is not what this article is all about. Instead, I want to discuss the differences between the Super Bowls in the early days versus those of today. A lot has changed.

There was no controversy over the playing of the national anthem at the beginning of the game, as performed by actor Pat O’Brien and trumpeter Doc Severinsen of NBC’s “The Tonight Show.” Nixon was president at the time, but there was no mention of not visiting the White House back then. In other words, the Super Bowl was not a place for political intrigue. Everyone was rather patriotic, but I digress.

On the field, there was only one significant rule change, no two-point conversion following a touchdown. I presume this was done due to some conflicting rules between the two leagues. Today, the two-point conversion is, of course, acceptable. I also noticed there were far less penalties than today. Either there were less mistakes back then or the refs didn’t inhibit the play of the game as they do today (or both).

In terms of television commercials, General Motors bought all of the ads shown in the first half featuring their 1970 automobiles. This must have cost them a pretty penny, even back then. Today, it would be cost-prohibitive to so. In 1970 though, all of GM’s brands were featured, including Cadillac, Chevrolet, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, etc. I remember all of these cars quite well, but found the ads rather amusing in terms of their story-line. Car buffs would certainly love watching these ads. The second half featured commercials for beer and razor blades.

As far as I was concerned, the most interesting part of the program was the half-time show. I had forgotten how the early Super Bowls handled this, and I found it most enjoyable. It wasn’t a lame rocker singing lip-synced songs, but rather a big event put on by the City of New Orleans. Proudly leading the way was the Southern University marching band who put on an exciting display. This was followed by famed trumpeter Al Hirt, a favorite son of New Orleans.

This was followed by a re-enactment of the 1815 Battle of New Orleans, pitting British Red Coats against the Americans commanded by General Andrew Jackson. Here, in the Super Bowl, canons with blank rounds were used by both sides creating considerable smoke. An actor portraying General Jackson on a white steed commanded the Americans who turned the British back; making it a great little history lesson.

Next, was a simulated Jazz funeral as commonly found in New Orleans, and famous for this genre of music. Jazz legend Lionel Hampton played xylophone and was accompanied by Al Hirt and Doc Severenson, all of whom picked up the tempo and ushered in a simulated Mardi Gras parade, complete with balloons and a replica of a steam boat.

You could tell all of the participants were enjoying themselves as they proudly showcased their city. And that’s really the point I’m trying to make; in addition to be a great show, it was an invaluable public relations tool for their city. It was so good, I would have paid money to see it as opposed to the half-time shows of today. It also speaks volumes of how our sense of entertainment has changed over the years. Most likely, critics today would argue it was “racist” or “sexist” which, of course, couldn’t be further from the truth.

Frankly, I would love to see the Super Bowl return to this format, but it is highly unlikely this will ever happen as half-times now represent mega-bucks to sponsors, such as Pepsi. As much as I would like to see the entertainment performed by the host city, thereby creating a “win-win” situation, it will undoubtedly remain in the clutches of NFL owners.

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 Entertainment, Sports | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »


Posted by Tim Bryce on February 15, 2019


– Is it unlawful? Is it unprecedented? No, and No.

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

Because the Congress will not fund the southern wall, President Trump has no alternative but to declare a national emergency to obtain funding and continue construction efforts. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) claims such action is unprecedented. Senate Minority Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted it would be “a lawless act, a gross abuse of the power of the presidency.” Both are wrong.

First of all, the “National Emergencies Act” (94-412) is legitimate legislation passed in 1976 and empowers the President to activate special powers during a crisis.

The first President to issue an emergency proclamation was Woodrow Wilson, a Democrat, back in 1917, to improve maritime tonnage to move resources around the United States and the world. This is back when the world was embroiled in the first World War and our allies required supplies.

In recent times, National Emergencies have been called by the president numerous times. To date, 58 emergencies have been declared, and 31 are still in effect. Here is how many recent presidents have issued:

03-President Trump
11-President Obama
13-President Bush
09-President Clinton

Many of these are concerned with blocking the property of people who violate American policy, but it has also been used for imposing sanctions and other situations. Speaker Pelosi made a veiled threat when she said, “A Democratic president can declare emergencies, as well.” The reality is, Democrats have already declared emergencies, as former President Barack Obama bragged, “I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone.”

In Speaker Pelosi’s view, she foresees future presidents declaring emergencies over such things as gun rights. This would inevitably trigger a Constitutional crisis as it would be violating the Second Amendment. This is not the same as in President Trump’s case where he wishes to secure our border. Nonetheless, his emergency will be challenged in court, but he will likely win as he has precedence on his side.

So why all of the fuss? The Democrats are trying to convince the public the declaration of emergency by President Trump is unlawful and unprecedented in order to build public opinion against the president. The fact is, nothing could be further from the truth. It is simply not so.

In order to invoke the emergency, President Trump will have to demonstrate a crisis truly exists. The Democrats claim the problem is being “manufactured” by the president, but there is plenty of data to show a bona fide problem exists. Both parties are cognizant of this, so why are the Democrats adamantly opposed to it? Simple: control. There are now over 22 million illegal immigrants in the United States with more trying to come in every day, some are honest and hard working, others are criminals. Either way, the Democrats are endeavoring to grant citizenship to these people thereby turning them into voters who would presumably support their party, thereby turning the Congress and White House to liberal rule.

Let’s be clear, the Republicans and the president have no problem with legal migration, as we all should be, but there are other forces at play here trying to undermine our country.

Do we have a National Emergency? Yes, I believe we do, both at the border and in the halls of Congress.

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

For Tim’s columns, see:

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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 by Tim Bryce on February 14, 2019


– It is also a universally applicable concept.

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

I have been writing on the virtues of craftsmanship for many years now. I have also given presentations on the subject and discussed it at length with different types of companies. Surprisingly, I find few people truly understand the concept. Perhaps the biggest misconception is that it is reserved for certain types of work effort. Some believe craftsmen are limited to furniture makers, machinists, or watchmakers. And, No, we are most certainly not talking about a line of tools from Sears. People seem surprised when I explain it is a universal concept applicable to any job. My message is simple: “Craftsmanship is a state of mind.”

Years ago, Arnold Toynbee, the legendary historian and economist from the UK, made the observation, “The supreme accomplishment is to blur the line between work and play.” Whereas some people like to separate their personal and professional lives, Toynbee rightfully makes the point there is physically only one person, and their personal and professional lives should be viewed as one and the same.

Craftsmanship is based on three rather simple principles:

First, in order to build self-esteem and give an individual a sense of purpose, we need to acknowledge, “Man must lead a worthy life.” This means people should be given meaningful work to perform, thereby creating the desire to master one’s craft. However, not everyone can be a wood worker, machinist, or watchmaker. Instead, they must find meaning in their chosen profession, which leads to our next principle…

Second, “There is dignity in all forms of work.” We should never look down our noses at anyone’s profession, assuming they are doing it competently and professionally. Regardless of the task, it is always a pleasure to be among people who know what they are doing, and perform it seemingly with little effort and a sense of class. In contrast, there are also workers who are apathetic, put forth minimal effort, and only watch the clock as opposed to the work product they are assigned to. Personally, it is difficult to respect such people.

Third, a simple recognition there are “right” and “wrong” ways for performing tasks. It takes discipline not to skip steps and put the work product in jeopardy. Understanding the differences between “right” and “wrong” is more than just training and experience, it also represents the morality of the worker. One reason craftsmanship is in decline is because of the eroding moral values of the country, such as the inclination to cheat.

These principles highlight the fact that craftsmanship is universally applicable. We can find it in any industry and any type of work, be it janitors, waitresses, programmers, managers, assembly line workers, hairdressers, teachers, engineers, athletes, musicians, the medical community, you name it. Craftsmanship is a state of mind. Think about it, who has impressed you not only by the job they did, but how they went about doing it? Inevitably, it is someone you respect, someone you will gladly give a reference to, someone you would like to emulate.

Craftsmanship requires more than just talent, it is a determination to be the best someone can be. Not surprising, there is a close relationship between craftsmen and the products they produce. Expressions such as “I built that” or “That was mine,” denote the pride they take in their work. Conversely, when someone makes a compliment about a product or service, the craftsman takes it as a personal compliment. The bond between craftsman and work product is so strong, the worker sees the product as tangible proof of their quality of work.

Years ago, people learned their craft through apprenticeship programs. Ben Franklin learned to be a printer at his older brother’s print shop. Likewise, young men learned a variety of crafts through such programs. Over the years though, we have drifted away from apprenticeships. Today, we rely on certification programs and college degrees, but this does not necessarily make someone a craftsman. It only denotes the student has learned something and passed tests and exams. Rarely does it give us insight into a person’s mastery of a craft, which cannot normally be evaluated until it is put into practice and studied over time.

In terms of skills, the craftsman must master several things:

* The resources used in the product. For example, a wood worker will know the differences between types of wood, their strengths and weaknesses, their suitability for the product, and how to work with it. Likewise, a machinist will understand the nature of the different metals he must use in his work.

* The methodologies to produce the product, representing the steps or processes of the project.

* The tools and techniques to be used in the development of the product, all of which may change over time. This means the craftsman is a student of his profession and possesses a sense of history to his craft.

Craftsmanship is something we have taken for granted for many years. Consequently, it has been fading from view. Interestingly, when I teach these concepts to students and business professionals, they are usually surprised by the simplicity of the concepts involved. I warn them though that craftsmanship requires a personality which includes such things as discipline, an intuitive mind, pride in workmanship, a willingness to be the best in your chosen profession, and some good old fashioned morality. Craftsmanship is not for everybody, but we should celebrate those willing to lead such an existence, for they are the people who create the products we admire and cherish.

For more information, see my earlier paper, “Craftsmanship: the Meaning of Life.”

If you want a presentation on craftsmanship, please do not hesitate to contact me.

First published: February 26, 2014

Keep the Faith!

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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

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Copyright © 2019 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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