THE BRYCE IS RIGHT!

Software for the finest computer – The Mind

TEACHING SELF-INITIATIVE

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 21, 2021

BRYCE ON MANAGEMENT

– Where have the inquiring minds gone?

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I have an old friend who has become a well recognized illustrator and now teaches illustration for an art school in the northeast. I am certain you have seen his work over the years in a variety of magazines and books. As an illustrator, he is used to working alone quietly in his studio. As a teacher though, he has to work with a lot of college-aged kids who often tests his patience.

Knowing my background in human behavior in the business world, he calls me now and then to lament about the attitudes of his students. Remarkably, his comments are not any different than what I hear from managers in the business world. Specifically, he complains his students show no sign of personal initiative to learn, solve problems, and try new things, but rather want to be spoon-fed by the teaching staff. They have trouble innovating, adapting, and overcoming hurdles. True, they need to listen to the teachers, but there are few willing to go above and beyond the call of duty. This is perhaps my friend’s biggest challenge, to motivate them to think on their own, something all illustrators and artists must do in order to survive. If the student is unwilling to show initiative, he/she will likely fail not just the course, but professionally as well.

The same is true in business. We are looking for people who exhibit “self-initiative,” something few young people seem to have anymore. For our consulting company, when we hired a young person, we would say something like, “Look, you’re a grown-up now; you’re suppose to be a professional. In this company, we believe in self-supervision. As a small company, we do not have time to supervise you 24/7. We’ll train you accordingly, but we have no time for holding your hand. If we have to hold your hand, we cannot use you.” We were very up-front about this. The young people either sank or swam after hearing this. Most appreciated the fact we were treating them like professionals. We quickly parted company with those who didn’t, and found a replacement rather quickly. At least we didn’t waste too much time on those who couldn’t assimilate into our corporate culture.

This attitude of developing a dependency on another is a byproduct of two things: parental coddling, and micromanagement, whereby nobody is allowed to do anything without the personal approval of the boss. Basically, they are saying, “Don’t think, I know what is best, just do as I say.” This inhibits the initiative of the employee, hinders loyalty, and slows progress. Workers must be able to voice their opinion on work assignments.

We have always found it more effective to “manage from the bottom-up,” meaning the boss should develop the required skills of his people to perform the work, create a productive work environment, give precise instructions for job assignments, and get out of their way. The staff should routinely report to the manager on progress. Other than that, the manager should stay out of the way unless a problem occurs effecting schedules and budgets.

This “managing from the bottom-up” approach has proven very effective over the years as it encourages more management and less supervision, which is the antithesis of micromanagement. Some workers resist the concept simply because they do not want to be held accountable for their actions and prefer to be told what to do, thereby eluding responsibility.

This, of course, leads us back to my friend’s problem with his students. What is needed is to state his position at the start of the term; i.e., “Look, you’re a grown-up now; hopefully, you’re going to be a professional soon. In this school, we believe in self-supervision. We do not have time to supervise you 24/7. We’ll train you accordingly, but we have no time for holding your hand. If we have to hold your hand, you will likely fail this course.”

One other thing I would suggest to my friend, as well as others; provide time for the students/workers to meet and work through problems as a collective group, preferably a short meeting at the start of the day. Let the students/workers each discuss their problems and solicit suggestions and critiques from their peers. Teachers and managers should participate as moderators only. Let the workers do the talking and force them to find the way to solve problems.

Such meetings improve the socialization skills of the people and helps to create an esprit de corps, thereby simplifying the lives of teachers and managers.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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GLIMMERS OF HOPE

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 19, 2021

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Finding the true human spirit on the Internet.

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The spirit of the country has changed since the 20th century, and not necessarily for the better. Gallup tells us Americans continue to believe our morality is in decline. The country is politically polarized, our discourse is visceral, common courtesy has become uncommon, and our social skills are diminishing. It is hard to remain optimistic under such conditions, but I recently witnessed some glimmers of hope in the human spirit which shows promise.

I have been a fan of YouTube for a long time, and it is my go-to channel I stream on both my computer and TV. I find just about everything I want on it, including news, sports, music, entertainment, classic movies, and a plethora of odd-ball videos on a variety of subjects. It is here where I find both the harsh realities of the world as well as the glimmers of hope.

The videos I will list herein may not win any award, but they are some interesting segments which you will not find in the news media today. To them, it is as if such acts of kindness do not exist, but in reality, they do. However, you have to hunt to find them. What follows are some heart-warming clips which demonstrate humans do not have to be crass, vulgar or unkind all of the time; that there are still people with good hearts and well meaning intentions. There are obviously many more of these videos on the Internet, but you should think of this as a starter kit.

* Lending a Helping Hand – a series of clips showing humans going out of their way to rescue animals, and the thankfulness of the rescued. True, people can be cruel and ignore others in distress, but this first clip shows what animals can teach us about ourselves.

* Simple acts of kindness – Yes, we are capable of helping others, even those we do not know.

* Mowing Lawns – this is a favorite of mine, representing another random act of kindness. This shows a man mowing and cleaning up a yard for free. It may not be the most exciting to watch, but it is from the heart. Anyone who has mowed a lawn will relate to it. As an aside, there are several such videos on YouTube.

* Lending a helping hand – much like the lawn mowing video, a church comes to the aid of a stroke victim by expanding his driveway and adding a wheelchair ramp to his house.

* Empathy – a boy and a three-legged dog teaches the concept of empathy.

* Expressions of True Love – shows how dogs react to their owners returning home.

* More expressions of True Love – an outpouring of love when soldiers return home. It is always a pleasure to watch.

* Inspiration – A pep talk from a kid which encourages people to lead a better life.

* Signs of respect – as expressed by athletes.

* Common Courtesy – as conveyed by a television station in Detroit, Michigan.

* Citizenship/patriotism – another favorite of mine showing a group of people taking the naturalization oath to become citizens of the United States. The looks on their faces at the end are priceless.

* The Young Crooner – A young man, Sal Valentinetti, wows the crowd on America’s Got Talent with his charm and his voice singing a Sinatra classic. His story and music is heart-warming.

Such videos are important as they teach by example, and hopefully, people will emulate them. They also reveal we are not all jaded and evil, but possess compassion, empathy, charity, kindness, and respect. Seniors in this country like to talk about the “good old days” when there was more courtesy and spirit of cooperation. Such virtues are not as visible today, thanks to the news media and changing social mores, but fortunately there still seems to be some deep-seeded respect for the human spirit. We can learn a lot about ourselves from these videos, as well as the many others on the Internet. It may be wise to watch these “glimmers of hope” now, before someone removes them later.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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BUILDING TEAM MORALE THROUGH LEADERSHIP

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 14, 2021

BRYCE ON MANAGEMENT

– How a classic World War II movie teaches the basic lessons of leadership.

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In the movie, “Twelve O’Clock High,” actor Gregory Peck plays the role of a World War II Brigadier General charged with taking command of an American B-17 bombing group stationed in Britain, and suffering from a bad case of “hard luck.” To make matters worse, the men of the group hold a fondness for Peck’s predecessor, yet were prone to making mistakes and missing targets. As a result, the group experiences heavy losses and morale worsens. As Peck takes command he makes it clear to his group he doesn’t accept the concept of “hard luck,” that the men should stop feeling sorry for themselves, and they need to build their confidence.

Remarkably, this movie represents a text book description of leadership. So much so, for many years it was considered mandatory viewing in the Officer Candidate Schools in the military as part of their curriculum on leadership. It is also something managers should observe in business, even today.

Due to the nature of the war at that moment (1942), Peck has no time to coddle his young flyers and realizes they have to mature quickly. If his bombing group folds, others could potentially do likewise which could impact the outcome of the war. So, he explains this to the group and why it is necessary for them to take on a professional attitude. Recognizing the discipline and work involved, the young soldiers resist Peck at first, but eventually succumbs after realizing Peck’s refusal to compromise.

Peck finds it necessary to replace elements of his management team, specifically his #2 man, the Air Exec. Interestingly, Peck selects a man who, at first, shows contempt for Peck, but recognizing the flyer’s impeccable credentials, he promotes him, a decision he doesn’t regret as he realizes the job was more important than his personal feelings.

Next, Peck halts all bombing runs so he can hold practice missions to determine the skills of his crews, and identify their strengths and weaknesses. Finally, Peck weeds out the weaklings of the group and puts them in a separate dead-beat team labeled the “Leper Colony,” where they are forced to turn things around.

From the outset, in order to change the psychological dynamics of the group, Peck recognizes he must instill a sense of pride and confidence in his men; that they are not “hard luck” misfits, but professional soldiers who can get the job done with an esprit de corps.

Aside from being an interesting tale about World War II, “Twelve O’Clock High” is a worthwhile management read teaching several lessons:

1. A manager should try to earn the respect of his workers, not their love. Any manager who tries to win a popularity contest is courting disaster. In the movie, the demise of Peck’s predecessor could be traced back to his close attachment to his men. Instead of looking at problems objectively, his mind was clouded by too much empathy for his men. Managers must walk a fine line between jocularity and discipline. Too much familiarity breeds contempt for the manager, and too much discipline can make life unbearable for workers. In Peck’s case, his men initially exhibit slovenly behavior. To curb it, he deliberately intimidates his men to teach them such behavior was unacceptable and discipline would be enforced.

2. A manager should design his department in such a way as it can function without him. Basically, a manager’s task is to do himself out of a job. By doing so, he is displacing the management responsibility on a group of people as opposed to just one. This is a clever way to communicate to workers this is the will of the group, not just one person. If it becomes dependent on just one person, the whole group will fail if the manager fails.

3. Open the lines of communications. The manager must effectively communicate the necessity of a task to his workers, along with its urgency. Only then will they put forth the proper amount of effort it deserves. In the film, Peck gives his men the shock treatment by telling them they are in a “shooting war” and there is no time to coddle them, plus he believes in their abilities. Beyond this, Peck develops a rapport with a young Lieutenant who acts as a spokesman for the flyers. He does this in order to get a pulse of what his young men are thinking.

4. There is no such thing as “hard luck.” The morale of the bomb group plummets under Peck’s predecessor. As much as they liked their Colonel, they felt sorry for themselves, and lacked confidence in their ability to do anything correctly. Such an attitude can be very demoralizing and contagious thereby causing workers to make more mistakes than necessary. A change of attitude is warranted, which leads to the next point…

5. Managers need to build self esteem in their workers, thereby fueling their confidence and building pride in workmanship. The message, “There is dignity in all forms of work,” must come across loud and clear. Sometimes it is beneficial for management to pay special attention to his workers who should respond positively to such attention. Somehow the manager needs to communicate how important or challenging the work is. This means investing such things as time, money, clothes, changing the surroundings, or improving the technology to perform the work. Such token gestures are noticed by workers who appreciate the recognition of management and respond accordingly. With rare exception, workers rise to the occasion when faced with new and exciting challenges, as opposed to tedious and repetitive tasks.

6. Managers must encourage workers to strive for perfection, but realize they may never achieve it. A program of continued practice helps to identify minor flaws in workmanship which can be corrected. In the movie, Peck orders several practice bombing runs to correct weaknesses in targeting and flying in formation. Such practices also raise the awareness of workers to think about their work product and the processes involved with producing it.

7. It is easier to lead workers if they trust you. Quite simply, workers are more likely to follow you if they have confidence in your abilities and decision making skills. This means managers must demonstrate they know what they are doing. Talk is cheap, action is more visible to workers. As such, managers need to go the extra mile further to earn the confidence of their workers. Immoral behavior is not tolerated. If workers suspect the manager is a liar, cheat, or does not support them, they will quickly turn on him.

8. Develop a skills inventory. In the picture, Peck reviews the dossiers of all of the members of the group, studying their strengths and weaknesses. From this, he makes decisions as to assigning people to their area of expertise. In the corporate world, skill inventories are used to track the talents and experiences of workers, along with their level of proficiency. Such a tool is invaluable for selecting people to suitable assignments, not to mention identifying the need for additional training.

9. Identify your weakest workers and encourage them to perform better. Peck assigns a B-17 as the “Leper Colony” where all of the dead-beats of the group are placed. Such recognition encourages them to try harder. In this day of political correctness though, it is unlikely Peck’s tactics would be used. However, it is necessary to somehow put a spotlight on workers who are not performing to their fullest potential. Today, Employee Evaluations are used to document worker strengths and weaknesses, which is normally reviewed between the manager and worker in a one-on-one basis.

10. Get some wins under your belt to build confidence. In the movie, Peck’s group bombs a target that others couldn’t. For their efforts, they were awarded accommodations for distinguished service. This helps build their confidence. This also explains why sports teams have preseason schedules to not only judge the ability of players, but to instill confidence. The same is true in business where it is wise to start small before tackling major assignments. Mentors and coaches should be nearby to offer advice.

11. As manager, articulate your objectives, their urgency, your plan of attack, then lead your workers into battle. Today, it shouldn’t be so much about micromanagement which can stifle worker creativity and initiative. Instead, the manager should establish the right working conditions (corporate culture), provide them with the best training, tools and techniques available, empower them, and turn them loose.

It’s amazing what workers can do with a little leadership, such as conquering the skies over Nazi Germany.

First published: April 7, 2014

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2014, 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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LIVING BEHIND FACADE

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 12, 2021

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Why do we hide behind things?

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I was recently in North Carolina on a little fishing getaway and stayed with an old friend I’ve known since High School. He lived toward the middle of the state, out in the country, and adjoining a massive lake. It was one of those areas in the country where you either had a nice, massive house and property, like my friend, or a mobile home with a small farm surrounding you. I’m not going to pass judgement on which home was better as we do what we can to survive, but I observed both types of properties lived behind some form of facade, and this got me thinking.

Some homes lived behind a plethora of flotsam and jetsam, while others were more orderly, yet I suspect most of it was facade. Ultimately, it represented the image people wanted to express, either “I don’t care anymore” or “Welcome.” It was here when I realized how dependant people are on facade.

We all use some form of facade to our advantage, such as cosmetics to hide a blemish, hair styles, personal hygiene, tattoos and body piercings, clothing and fashion, decor, automobile types, jewelry, even political correctness. All of this is geared to transmit certain messages to others telling them what kind of people we are, and what our interests happen to be. By doing so, it speaks volumes of our values and morality, e.g., what we deem to be important and what we do not.

We’re all trying to convey an image of some kind, particularly when we are young. Is it the true us? Hardly. It is how we want people to perceive us. Facade hides our flaws and imperfections. Perhaps the best way to think of it as a deflector shield, thereby telling the public what we want them to know about us, and what we do not.

Behind facade is the naked truth, something we’re trying to conceal for one reason or another. We do this because we fear honesty and it may reveal a weakness about us to the world. As Jack Nicholson said, “You can’t handle the truth!”

We also see signs of facade on social media where it is having a negative impact on teens, particularly girls, who are falsely replicating themselves as other popular students in their school or celebrities, and it is far from reality. Such false identities greatly impact the ego, particularly if it is detected by others nearby who publicize the falsehood. Then there is the matter of dating sites on the web; talk about facade! Both men and women retouch photos and write glorius descriptions of themselves in the hope of securing a date.

All of this implies people tend to suffer from an inferiority complex; that we do not want others to know the naked truth about us as we consider it embarrassing. Whereas we tend to be consumed with facade at an early age as we try to build careers, but as we grow older we tend to become less concerned with facade because we become less consumed by what people think.

Just remember, a coat of paint works just as well on rotten wood as it does on good wood. What will we find when we peel back the paint on you?

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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OUR RIGHT TO FAIL

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 7, 2021

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Don’t take away this important God-given right.

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failureNOTE: I originally published this article in 2009, back when the government was offering stimulus money to banks and manufacturing companies during the Recession, a policy I opposed both then and now. The point of the article is as relevant today as it was back then, especially in lieu of the $3.5T stimulus bill President Biden is proposing, which includes a list of new entitlements and a redistribution of the wealth. What I am herein describing is an inherent part of capitalism of which I am a proponent, the “natural” way of encouraging change in our society, certainly not socialism. I hope you enjoy it.

As a youngster, one of the things I learned early on was that winning and losing was a natural part of any game I played, be it baseball, football, hockey, Monopoly, cards, you name it. Somebody wins, somebody loses. Nobody likes to lose, but as I have written in the past, there is nothing to be ashamed of if you have tried your best, but still failed. In fact, I have more respect for the person who valiantly tried and lost, as opposed to the person who won by cutthroat tactics or cheating.

The point is, failure is a natural part of life and an inherent property of evolution (see Charles Darwin). It is a strong message telling us what we are doing is not working, and we can either learn from it and change or ignore it and perish. It’s nice to have a safety net, but where would we be if nobody took a risk? Without failure, life stagnates. We cannot make progress if we are not allowed to fail. Entrepreneurs, adventurers, and other Type A personalities understand in any venture there is a certain element of risk, whereby they will either reap the rewards of success, or taste the agony of defeat. They weigh the risks carefully, then work overtime to assure success, but they clearly understand there is no such thing as a guarantee for success.

There are people today who want to eliminate our right to fail, that nobody should experience the pain or embarrassment of defeat. This is why I have a problem with government bailout and stimulus plans. They will only be a temporary fix, and the companies will not make the severe and necessary changes to survive in the years ahead. Only failure will cause them to make the required changes. To my way of thinking, the government bailout plans are only delaying the inevitable.

All of the greed and corruption we allowed to creep into our business practices have finally come home to roost. Consequently, companies are no longer maintaining a competitive edge in business, and are losing money due to unscrupulous self-centered interests and just plain stupid business decisions. The companies are all sorry for the problem and promise to never allow it to happen again. I don’t believe an accused murderer could say it any better. They all want redemption without having to worry about paying a penalty. I’m sorry, but that is not how the game is supposed to be played, but then again there are those who want to change the rules so that nobody loses. This is just plain wrong.

If you believe companies will make the necessary changes in their policies and operations, simply because the government is going to bail them out, you are taking it in the arm. Like it or not, failure is the only real catalyst to invoke change. Nothing is more powerful to truly change someone than failure; ask anyone who has experienced it.

Nobody likes to take their medicine, but I’m afraid it is time to pass out the Castor Oil and tablespoons. It may sound silly and I don’t expect a lot of people to jump on the bandwagon, but it’s time to “Protect our right to fail!”

First published: March 9, 2009

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

tim75x75Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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READING THE SIGNS OF AGING

Posted by Tim Bryce on September 28, 2021

BRYCE ON LIFE

– It’s easy; just check your mail box.

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mailboxNormally, we see signs of aging in the mirror: a new wrinkle here and there, some more gray hair, drier skin, and for men, possibly a receding hairline. Recently though, I have discovered a more precise way of detecting advanced aging, and you need go no further than your mail box where the Post Office delivers the bad news routinely.

In my case, I recently received a brochure in the mail from a nearby assisted living facility who suggested now is the time to move in. Frankly, I was surprised by the literature as I am comfortable in my home and have no intention of moving at this time. This got me thinking though as to how they got my name and what triggered my inclusion on their mailing list. I suspect it originated from county records or perhaps from my wife’s untimely death a couple of years ago. Either way, they believe it is time for me to think about downsizing, being put in a small room and stare at the walls. No thank you.

Aside from this brochure, I have noted other hints of aging through the post office:

* I routinely get offers to buy my house. I suspect they believe I am too old to maintain my current residence, and they want me to move along. Sorry, but I am just fine where I’m at, thank you.

* Hearing aid brochures are also common. I get the feeling if you are past the age of 70 it is a requirement you must wear them. The same is true of medic-alert devices should you take a fall, which is actually something to take seriously as we grow older.

* I’ve also been receiving several invitations to get a free lunch from people who want to re-invest my portfolio. This somewhat confuses me as you should have something planned earlier on, even if you have minimal savings. So, why should I change horses in mid-stream this late in the game? As an aside, I’m told the lunch is “delicious,” which causes me to wonder how they prepare their baloney.

* I also hear from funeral homes who urge people, “It’s time to start planning for the inevitable.” Coupled with this is burial insurance, which is nothing more than a term life insurance policy. If you’ve already got a life insurance policy, you obviously don’t need burial insurance, but they try to sucker you anyway.

* Reverse mortgage promotions are still around, but this is done more on television than through the post office.

* There is also Medicare supplement requests, attorneys hoping to update your will, and a long list of charities begging for your money. I try to stay off these lists as they can fill up your mail box rather quickly. I’m still getting requests from charities my mother supported. As for me, I try to give money anonymously so I can avoid additional junk mail.

The mail we receive is not so much about how to enjoy life in our declining years, just how to get at your money. For example, I no longer receive subscription requests for publications such as Playboy, Sports Illustrated, or Architectural Digest. Instead, its AARP Magazine, Reader’s Digest, and Martha Stewart Living.

I also no longer receive much in the way of travel brochures to exotic lands. Instead, I see flyers featuring bus rides to nearby casinos to spend my Social Security money. Sorry, but I’ll pass; I still know how to get to Las Vegas on my own.

I guess what bothers me the most about the mail is that it assumes I have one foot in the grave which I resent. Yes, we’re all cognizant of the passing of time, but I do not need it shoved in my face every day by the post office.

To solve the problem, I believe I’ll cut a large hole in the bottom of my mail box and put a trash can under it. After all, this is where this nonsense belongs.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

tim75x75Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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THE AMERICAN PSYCHOSIS

Posted by Tim Bryce on September 23, 2021

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– The glass is half-empty.

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deprogrammingAs I talk to friends and contacts around the country, I sense a general malaise in the land, and, No, I do not believe the weather has anything to do with it. It’s been building for some time now, rivaling the level of angst in last year’s “Summer of Hate.” According to recent polls, Americans have lost faith in their government and other institutions (click HERE), such as schools, organized religion, and the media. Rasmussen reports Americans believe the country is heading in the wrong direction (click HERE), and President Biden’s approval ratings continue to plummet (click HERE). Americans feel beaten down and are becoming apathetic. When the people become despondent, and nobody is watching, this is when things start slipping in the back door, such as socialism.

It is difficult to point at anything with pride these days: the federal government keeps spreading fear and defiance in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic; our borders are not secured, illegals are crossing over in record numbers; taxes and inflation are rising; the economy can be described as “sluggish” at best; we’re no longer energy independent; there is also the recent black eye of the Afghanistan debacle; inner cities like Chicago are still battle zones; even the tragic death of Gabby Petito makes us question our moral fiber. All of this adds to a lack of confidence in how we are operating.

I first took notice of this phenomenon five years ago (click HERE) as we approached the 2016 election. At the time, I pointed the finger at the news media for the doom and gloom they reported. Today though, I believe it has gone beyond the main stream media and reflects the changing morality of the country.

As I said in 2016, “The news we hear is unsettling to our sensibilities. We are easily disturbed when our sense of right and wrong is tested, be it through an act of our government officials, corruption, or some other indiscretion. It simply offends us that such an act could occur.”

Whereas, years ago we read daily newspapers and watched the evening news around dinner time, today we live in a 24/7 news cycle. Unfortunately, this has a tendency to disrupt our concentration at work and even sleeping patterns. With all of the bad news being fed to us around the clock, is it any wonder we find ourselves in the doldrums? As I wrote, “Thanks to technology, the news acts like a drug we are addicted to. Even though we are alarmed by what we hear, we cannot seem to change the channel, and want to know more. This is what the news media is counting on in order to fill their coffers. This explains why on a slow news day, they manage to find a small scrap of news and blow it out of proportion to unsettle us.”

We can no longer ignore the events of the day, which is why we’re in a purple funk. We feel helpless to do anything about it. As I see it, we either start taking tons of anti-depressants or get off our ass and change the country, starting with cleaning out the government (through elections), and slamming the door on Fake News. Americans have to learn reactionary politics put the country in this dilemma. If we have any hopes of surviving this depression, we have to become pro-active. Our mindset has to change if we have any hope of enduring this period. As President Kennedy said in his inauguration, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.” In other words, let’s challenge Americans to contribute to the public good, not its destruction. Frankly, it is time to move forward as opposed to backwards. Only then will we rise up from this depressing psychosis we are embroiled in.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

tim75x75Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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AVOIDING POLITICAL CENSORSHIP

Posted by Tim Bryce on September 16, 2021

BRYCE ON THE MEDIA

– Some sage advice for those of you who want to write.

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

censorSo you are a conservative and want to write a political OpEd piece, eh? And you want publishers to print it and social media to promote it. The reality is that it is easier said than done. I do not care how well you write or the importance of your message, it is necessary to form relationships with members of the press. Even conservative publications are tightly controlled by publishers and editors. Frankly, it’s a “good ole boy” club you have to contend with. You’re best chance for success is to correspond with them to establish some rapport. If they happen to make a presentation somewhere, be sure to attend and introduce yourself sometime during the meeting. Like most people, publishers and editors like to associate a name with a face (remember this, next time you print business cards). If you cannot contact them this way, pick up the phone and call them to discuss your idea for writing.

I have been writing political copy for several years now and I have learned a thing or two about censorship along the way. Hopefully, the following tips will be of use to you in getting your article published. First, let’s consider the embodiment of your article; here we need to discuss the Title, the Body, and Follow-up.

1. The Title – give some serious thought to this as it will be used to entice people to read your article, and will be monitored by social media which automatically scans titles to alert them of potentially unsuitable content. For example, try to avoid the following keywords from your title: BIDEN, TRUMP, OBAMA, REPUBLICAN, DEMOCRAT, LIBERAL, CONSERVATIVE, ANTIFA, BLM, KAMALA, AOC, ILLEGAL, IMMIGRANTS, BORDER, AFGHANISTAN, IRAN, GREEN, BUDGET, ENVIRONMENT, SOCIALISM, CAPITALISM, POLITICS, POLITICIAN, etc. Such words are automatically picked-up by social media and may result in one of three things: voiding or delaying your posting, the triggering of “fact checkers” which will also void your copy, or suppression of the dissemination of your message. For example, it has been my experience on Facebook, where I have nearly 2,000 “friends,” depending on my posting, either they will all see it or only a handful (my political pieces typically fall into the latter category). Social media also monitors patterns in your postings which can result in an adverse effect on your readership. So keep this in mind when you create your title, your headline is important to getting your article posted and promoted.

2. The Body – keep it clean and avoid crude language. Both publishers and social media alike will scan your copy looking for foul language and will stop your article from being published if so discovered. Also, add facts to support your argument, but be sure to note their source. Better yet, embed links into the copy to allow the reader to visit the source of the fact.

3. Follow-up – provide a very brief bio of yourself (one to two lines at most). Be sure to include information on how to contact you, such as an e-mail address or web site. I DO NOT RECOMMEND YOU PRINT YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER as you will likely be harassed by wackos.

If your article is published on the web, be sure to follow reader feedback. Under no circumstance should you get into a heated debate with a detractor, just ignore them or, better yet, delete them if possible. As Mark Twain said, “Never argue with stupid people. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.”

Here are a couple more things I have observed regarding social media and e-mail:

1. In some social media, such as Facebook, you may join different clubs. For example, I belong to several political clubs within Facebook. If I have a political column I want to promote, I may “copy and paste” a notice in the clubs as well as notify certain friends (what I like to call “germ carriers” – people who will help spread your message). Here’s the problem: if you “copy and paste” too fast and too often, social media will automatically detect this and cancel your postings. So what can be done? Two things: do not “copy and paste” too rapidly, and slightly alter your postings. For example:

TEACHING RACISM IN THE CLASSROOM – Here is one way left-wing politics penetrates the classroom.
https://timbryce.com/?p=5844

TEACHING RACISM IN THE CLASSROOM – Here is one way left-wing politics penetrates the classroom.
https://timbryce.com/2021/09/07/teaching-racism-in-the-classroom/

BRYCE – TEACHING RACISM IN THE CLASSROOM – Here is one way left-wing politics penetrates the classroom.
https://timbryce.com/2021/09/07/teaching-racism-in-the-classroom/

As an aside, this “copy and paste” phenomenon is actively used by the Democrats, particularly in the “Letters to the Editor” sections of newspapers. They simply “copy and paste” the same text for publication in several national papers. If you are properly organized, it takes just a few minutes to perform this.

2. This same phenomenon occurs in e-mail, particularly if you are trying to send bulk e-mails. If you are using Gmail, Yahoo!, MSN or others, they will be automatically looking for bulk e-mails and, if you are not careful, you will be classified a “spammer” and none of your messages will get through. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do here: break down your e-mail list into smaller batches (30-40 receivers at most); change the name in the “Subject” section of the e-mail to avoid detection of repetition (see above), and; mail to your receivers as “Blind Carbon Copies” (BCC), this keeps people from seeing the other receivers on your list.

3. If you don’t play by the rules of the social media, or write something they do not like, you may get suspended for a period of time (aka, “Facebook Jail”) or expelled completely. You can fight the suspension, but I haven’t heard of too many people being successful in reversing their decision. The length of suspension varies, anywhere from days, to weeks, to months, to permanent. When you come back, you are put on a watch list and carefully monitored. Another way to overcome this problem is to register as a new user, but use a substantially different name. The only problem with this, you lose all of your “friends” you have connected with over time, thereby hampering your ability to communicate with them (which is what the social media wants).

The last point I want to make is regarding fights with Liberals regarding your work. If you write several pieces regarding politics, as I do, and they are not aligned with Democrat dogma, they will assign an individual to monitor and criticize your work. The person’s objective is to harass, discredit, and tempt you into a fight. No matter what you write, they will disagree with you, regardless of how logically correct your argument is. Not surprising, the person is usually an “anonymous” person to avoid identifying themselves and face retribution themself. As such, they are cowards.

If your work is routinely printed in a journal, particularly if it is a public periodical, they will demand the publisher censor you and suppress your 1st Amendment Right to free speech. Again, this is what happens when you become popular and do not follow their political dogma.

When you are censored by a publication or social media, do not be surprised if you are not allowed to defend yourself. We must remember the mainstream media is very liberal, as is social media, making their stranglehold on what is printed or said rather formidable. They have a deep disdain for opposing opinions and will go to any lengths to thwart them.

Mark Twain seemed to sum it up accurately when he observed years ago, “It has become a sarcastic proverb that a thing must be true if you saw it in a newspaper. That is the opinion intelligent people have of that lying vehicle in a nutshell. But the trouble is that the stupid people, who constitute the grand overwhelming majority of this and all other nations, do believe and are moulded and convinced by what they get out of a newspaper, and there is where the harm lies.”

The most important trait you, as a writer, must possess is perseverance. Keep looking for new venues to write for, such as a conservative club newsletter, local papers, political blogs and podcasts, etc. Next, learn from your mistakes; consider language and sentence structure, excessive use of jargon, typographical errors and punctuation. Most importantly, KEEP WRITING! Practice makes perfect.

Good luck!

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

tim75x75Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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TEACHING RACISM IN THE CLASSROOM

Posted by Tim Bryce on September 7, 2021

BRYCE ON EDUCATION

– Here is one way left-wing politics penetrates the classroom.

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

We have had suspicions about what academia is teaching our youth for some time now. For example, are they espousing liberal dogma as opposed to math, science, languages, literature, or even physical fitness? Recently, I came across some rather hard proof of their intentions in an 80 page PDF document titled, “Racial Justice in Education,” as produced by the NEA (National Education Administration), the largest labor union representing public school teachers. It is widely known the union is very liberal and actively supports the Democrats. To illustrate, according to OpenSecrets.org the NEA donated $20 million in 2016 to Democrat campaigns. One of its members is Jill Biden, First Lady of the United States.

The NEA booklet is touted as supporting “racial equality.” It states, “Our mission is to advocate for education professionals and unite our members and the nation to fulfill the promise of public education, to break down the barriers to racial equity, and to prepare every student to succeed in a diverse and interdependent world.” Sounds noble, right? The reality though is the booklet is to be used by educators to teach students about racism from a liberal perspective.

The booklet makes some rather interesting observations:

“Systemic racism is so deeply rooted in our history, culture and institutions that there’s no escaping it. Visible or not, its impacts are ever-present.” (page 12)

– This sounds more like an obsession as opposed to a true problem. I do not believe for a moment that Whites live simply to repress other racial groups. This smacks of paranoia.

“Racism is perpetuated by silence, and silence is complicity. Being ‘colorblind’ often serves as a pretense to downplay the significance of race, deny the existence of racism, and erase the experience of students of color.” (page 15)

– Translation: You must publicly state you are not a racist every 30 minutes but still beg for forgiveness.

“If you are white, you may be used to the privilege of not having to think or talk about race, especially your own.” (page 15)
“White people are racially privileged, even when they are economically underprivileged. Privilege and oppression go hand-in-hand:” (page 34)

– Does this mean Whites are privileged simply because of their race? Hardly. My family, for example, came up the hard way. My grandparents immigrated to the United States after World War I, legally I might add, and worked hard to move up in the world. We never looked down our noses at someone’s station in life, but we did expect people to work professionally and productively, assume responsibility for their actions, and behave morally. So, I fail to see how this is privileged. Neither did we consider ourselves “oppressed,” we were just happy to have the opportunity to prove ourselves through the American free enterprise system.

“Minority/minorities (definition) – A term that has historically referred to non-white racial groups, indicating that they were numerically smaller than the dominant white majority. Defining people of color as ‘minorities’ is not recommended because of changing demographics and the ways in which it reinforces ideas of inferiority and marginalization of a group of people. Defining people by how they self-identify is often preferable and more respectful.” (page 33)

– This is pure political correctness. For example, if your candidate loses an election, you are in the “minority” and the “majority” won. The use of the term is about numbers, not race, and I bitterly resent their insinuation.

“Illegals (definition) – Many outlets have changed their style guides to stop using ‘illegal’ as it applies to immigrants…”

– Another attempt to impose political correctness on the masses. In this situation, did the person try to enter our country lawfully? If not, it is an “illegal” attempt to gain access to the United States. As such, it is a perfectly legitimate word. Check any dictionary.

“Racism (definition) – Historically rooted system of power hierarchies based on race – infused in our institutions, policies and culture – that benefits white people and hurts people of color.” (page 35).

– This again implies only Whites can be racist, which simply isn’t true. I have traveled the world extensively, visited many cultures, and found racists just about everywhere. To suggest Whites have a monopoly over this is ludicrous. In reality, this is an attempt to make Whites feel guilty about being White. Sorry, but I simply do not buy it.

“Talking about racism is just a start. Taking action is the biggest driver of change. Create opportunities and strategies to move from awareness and analysis to action and impact. You and your students can go beyond the classroom by advocating for equity in your school and school district. Speak up and speak out. Be intentional about supporting more voices and leadership of people of color. And be proactive by proposing bold and concrete solutions that embody the values and vision of equity and inclusion for all.” (page 20)

– Shucks, and here I thought the purpose of public school was to teach math, science, languages, etc. I never realized it was intended to train students to become revolutionaries. Such discussions belong at home around the dinner table, not in schools.

The DEA booklet goes on to promote left-wing policies, such as:

* Eliminate police from schools. (page 52)

* Join state comprehensive immigration reform campaigns. (page 58)

* Support Black Lives Matter events and efforts to remove public symbols of racism and white supremacy. (page 63)

* Start or support a campaign to remove statues or change school names that celebrate white supremacy or demean people of color. (page 63) – (by who’s definition I would ask.)

* Fight voter suppression, voting ID requirements. (page 75)

The NEA booklet is strictly political dogma of the left and has nothing to do with teaching a normal curriculum which is what the taxpayers pay for. Instead, it is an instructional manual to teach students how to become liberal fighters.

I certainly do not deny the existance of racism, but it is certainly not limited to the United States, nor is it applied by a single race, but by all races.

It is apparent to me that whoever actually wrote the NEA paper hates Whites and possesses some rather intense anger issues. It is far from “fair and balanced.” Instead of trying to transform our youth into revolutionaries, I would much rather see a curriculum teaching them their Constitutional rights which expresses their individual liberties and equality, but that is not what the NEA is interested in. Instead, they are more interested in inflaming racism for political gain.

At least, we now know of one source where this type of nonsense is coming from, the NEA. Here, at last, is tangible proof, in black and white, on how the left is trying to mislead our youth. Parents should now try to find out who is using the document in the classroom. School boards should be asked this point blank.

For more background, see, “NEA ‘Racial Justice’ Guide Backs Left-Wing Priorities Like Defunding Police, Banning Voter ID,” by Maxford Nelsen.

A tip of the hat to old friend Rick Trader of Conservative Commandos radio show for the lead.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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TROJAN HORSES OF ISLAMIC SUPREMACY – BOOK REVIEW

Posted by Tim Bryce on September 2, 2021

BRYCE ON BOOKS

– Want to know the truth about Islam? Read this book.

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

This September marks the twentieth anniversary of the 9-11 disaster, an orchestrated attack by Islamic Supremacists to terrorize the United States. Since that time, we have invaded and conquered Iraq, took out the mastermind of 9-11, Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, eliminated ISIS from the region and much more. Interestingly, in spite of our involvement it is remarkable how naive most Americans are pertaining to Islam, a “religion” at the heart of these problems, yet has a huge bearing on our future. Enter Dr. William H. Urban and his 2018 book, “Trojan Horses of Islamic Supremacy,” a timely exposé explaining the purpose and goals of Islam, particularly the Muslim Brotherhood.

Over the years, I have learned a lot about the Islamic faith, but Dr. Urban’s book ties it all together in a tidy, easy to understand package. It is meticulously researched and well organized in such a fashion that it should be considered a must-read reference book all Americans should have access to.

Islam is a religion primarily made up of tribes. As such, there are several factions involved, but not a single head like the Pope for the Catholic Church. This explains the number of internal disputes within the religion. Whereas Christians think of God as a loving entity, Muslims live in fear of their god. The book also makes the point, “It is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated; to impose its laws on all nations; and extend its power to the entire planet.” Further, “Killing the infidels is our religion; Slaughtering them is our religion; Until they convert to Islam or pay us tribute” – noted al-Qaeda terrorist Abu Musah al-Zarqawi; July 9, 2005

At the Tehran Conference in 2005, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad described his country’s “War Preparation Plan” which included, “The destruction of Anglo-Saxon Civilization.” In addition to terrorist activities, this is being done by infiltrating and subverting the Western world’s educational institutions, government agencies, and the news media. And they have been very successful in this regard, particularly the Muslim Brotherhood. Bottom line, they want to replace the U.S. Constitution with Sharia Law, thereby overthrowing the American government.

Dr. Urban defines the scope of various Islamic groups, such as the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, al-Qaeda, Hamas, CAIR, and many more. One thing which surprised me was the fact American political activist and tax reduction advocate Grover Norquist has also been active with Islamic organizations. He is married to a Muslim and has been instrumental in helping to secure political appointments for Muslims in the past few presidential administrations. Also, former Secretary of State John Kerry’s son-in-law is a Muslim. Urban also points out the Obama administration was loaded with members of the Muslim Brotherhood, and George W. Bush also met with members of the Brotherhood even in spite of 9-11.

Urban begins the book by describing the properties of the Islamic religion, followed by a historical perspective. He then details what the government has discovered over the years, for example:

* Raids in 2002 and 2004 by the FBI and other intelligence agencies discovered intel related to the Muslim Brotherhood, that they are interested in overthrowing the American government and instilling Sharia Law.

* Under Obama, a CBS news investigation found the State Department sent hundreds of millions of dollars to refurbish mosques and save other Islamic sites around the world. AMERICAN TAXPAYER DOLLARS! Anyone remember the concept of “separation of church and state”? Why didn’t Christian and Jewish institutions receive comparable money? Hmm…

* The return of money to Iran by authority of the Obama administration is scary and financed terrorist operations for years to come. $150B was returned with $18B going to the spread of Islam.

* While it is well known President Obama was a Muslim sympathizer, President Trump overturned Obama’s policies in 2017 and became the first to stand up to Iran and terrorist organizations.

Dr. Urban ends his thesis with a “Call to Action” listing items the Federal Government should deploy to put Islam in check. Unfortunately, none of it will be done by President Biden.

Since the book was published, we have seen new peace treaties between Middle Eastern countries and Israel, the destruction of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, the recent Afghanistan meltdown by the Biden administration, as well as a reversal of Trump’s executive orders on Muslims entering the country and the erosion of immigration borders thereby allowing terrorists to sneak in. Nonetheless, the book provides incredible insight into how Islam works. Quite simply, Dr. Urban “has put it all together.”

The book’s Appendices includes a well organized Glossary of Terms, History, and more. It is available in hard cover or paperback through most on-line stores. It is factual, well organized, and thoroughly researched. I cannot recommend it strongly enough. All Americans should read it. Why? Let me put it to you this way, as Dr. Urban explained to me, “The FBI reports 80% of mosques (in America) are armories.”

Think about it.

To contact Dr. Bill Urban, drop him an e-mail at: urbanww@gmail.com

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

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

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance 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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments »

 
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