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Posts Tagged ‘palm harbor’

UNDERSTANDING NATIONALISM

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 20, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Creating “Win-Win” situations.

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

I find the vilification of nationalism to be appalling. It is being depicted as some sort of Fascist, racist, unpatriotic institution. The reality is, nothing could be further from the truth. It is being characterized as such, because it doesn’t fit in with the progressive/socialist agenda, nor other global developments, such as climate change, immigration, and defense.

President Trump embraced the concept as part of his “America First” initiative, which is one reason why Democrats find it offensive, but it is also being embraced in Europe by the “Brexit” movement in the United Kingdom, Poland, Hungary, Germany, and France. This explains why French President Emmanuel Macron recently made the claim, “Nationalism is a betrayal of patriotism,” as he views it as a threat to his presidency and the European Union.

As just about anyone who has visited the country can tell you, France is one of the most nationalistic countries in terms of its culture and language. You either fit into their way of thinking or get out. Mr. Macron also suggested the development of a separate army to defend itself against China, Russia, and the United States. This is an insult as America has come to the aid of Europe not just once, but several times over the last 100 years, both militarily and economically.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who will not seek re-election following her term of office, also attacked nationalism by warning against “destructive isolationism.” She went on to say, “We know that most of the challenges and threats of today can no longer be solved by one nation alone, but only if we act together.”

I couldn’t agree more, but why is nationalism detrimental to this cause? In reality, it is not. People like Mr. Macron and Mrs. Merkel would have us believe we must all work together in a concerted effort, be it for the environment, immigration, health, and defense. This is all well and good, but what happens when there is a difference of opinion, and a country is asked to implement something in sharp contrast to their beliefs? In the case of “Brexit,” you withdraw from the European Union. In the case of President Trump, you withdraw from the Paris climate control accord, the Iranian peace deal, you move your embassy to Jerusalem over European objections, and you inform your “friends” you will no longer pick up the check for their activities, especially when we get nothing in return.

For many years I taught and consulted in the area of Corporate Culture. All companies, large and small, have a culture, a way of operating based on their values and perspectives. Not all companies think or act alike. In fact, the differences may be very pronounced. Also, within a Corporate Culture there may be a sub-culture, a clique or group of people (such as a department) exhibiting distinctly different characteristics. Such groups may be allowed to operate so long as they do not violate the norms of the overall culture.

Those embracing globalization would have us believe there is one corporate culture. Yes, there may be sub-cultures exhibiting minor differences, but all are expected to conform to the overall culture. This is what Macron and Merkel support. Those embracing nationalism see the world as a group of separate cultures with some similarities allowing them to work cooperatively on mutually beneficial projects. This means each culture is sovereign and is responsible for managing their own affairs. If they do not want to work with another culture, it is their prerogative.

Ideally, companies and countries should work on “Win-Win” projects, where both parties benefit. A good example of this is “NYLON” which was a joint venture based on groups in New York “NY” and London “LON.” If we run into a “Win-Lose” scenario whereby one party benefits at the expense of another, this becomes an unhealthy relationship. Whereas nationalism promotes “Win-Win” situations, globalization allows for “Win-Lose.” And frankly, America is tired of being taken for granted and asked to pay the bill all of the time.

Globalization involves the cultural integration of trade, capital, and immigration among the countries of the world. This tends to force countries to lose their identity and become subservient to others. Again, nationalism respects the sovereignty of a country.

From this perspective, French President Macron is dead wrong; patriotism, which involves the love of country, is promoted by nationalism, not globalization. If anything globalization is a deterrent to patriotism.

There is nothing wrong with forming coalitions for different endeavors, such as the United Nations, NATO, the OAS, the European Union, etc. It is when “Win-Lose” relationships form and one country must dance to the fiddle of another that discord erupts. Think about it; as citizens, does our allegiance rest with the United Nations or the United States? Frankly, I do not understand why this is a difficult concept to grasp.

Nationalism does not prohibit us from coming to the aid of our friends, as we have demonstrated for many years. However, when a friendship is abused and a financial burden added, it is time to ask why.

Nationalism is not the enemy, being asked to relinquish our sovereignty is.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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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FLORIDA: WELCOME TO THE “LAUGHING STOCK” STATE

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 16, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– This is for all of the voters up North.

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

Knowing I write regularly on politics, as well as other things, I have recently been bombarded with calls, messages, and e-mails from acquaintances all over the world asking me about the Florida election recount. An old friend I know vacationing in southern Spain asks for daily updates. High School and College classmates from Ohio also ask me regularly, as are readers from throughout the Midwest, New England, and the South. I can’t remember a time when so many people have been asking me about a single issue.

After asking for the latest update, the next question inevitably is, “Don’t they know how to count down there?” It’s interesting, from the tone of the discourse they would have you believe all of the people in Florida are bumbling idiots, not just because we cannot seem to count ballots, but because there isn’t sufficient outrage to demand an end to this madness. I usually begin my defense of Florida by saying, “First, it’s not my fault.” Like all Floridians who voted, I followed standard operating procedures and assumed my County will tabulate the results correctly.

Prior to the Bush/Gore debacle of 2000, where punch cards were used, Florida also came under scrutiny and we had to endure the ridicule of “hanging chads,” “dimpled chads,” and “no votes.” This seemed to go on forever and we felt the wrath of the American people. As I have been involved with Information Technology for quite some time, I happened to ask some election technicians I knew as to what was going on. They told me there was nothing wrong with the election technology back then and the problem wouldn’t have surfaced had it not been such a close race. Then the attorneys and politicians got involved and blew everything out of proportion.

To make matters worse, the 2000 election caused Florida to abandon the punch card ballot, which was a cost effective method for tabulating results, and caused us to reinvent voting, not just once, but twice. Several million dollars later in new technology investments and we have the problems of 2018. I find it particularly hysterical when I hear election officials claim their tabulating equipment is “so old.” They make it sound like it is something from the 19th century. Even the 20th century isn’t that “old.” The reality is, their equipment is probably no older than eight years at the most, and used just once each year. “Old?” Don’t make me laugh.

All of this would suggest we need to once again reinvent the election methodology down here. Frankly, that is not the point. Regardless of the technology in place, if it is a close race, rest assured attorneys and politicians will find fault with it. Add to it, incompetence at the County Board of Election level driven by party affiliation, and you have a recipe for disaster.

Yes, there were other states who faced election recounts, but because Florida is an important “swing” state, the media spotlight is placed glaringly on us and we begin to suffer from a bad case of the stupids. This results in numerous political cartoons and jokes on the Internet poking fun at our inability to produce reliable computations, thereby making us the “laughing stock” of the country. Republicans are outraged by the moniker, Democrats couldn’t care less as they desperately want their candidates to win the senate, governorship, and agriculture commissioner job. Yes, we all want fair elections, but we shouldn’t try to change existing voting laws on the fly.

Counting ballots is not rocket science, but perhaps we should go back to manual counting since the advanced technology doesn’t seem to be working. The reality is, it is working fine and it is unlikely anything will change in terms of who won the election. Maybe Florida should get special dispensation to hold the election 30 days prior to the normal election day as that seems to be the right amount of time necessary for us to count votes.

As I tell my friends up north, I do not foresee any changes in the outcome of the Florida elections. I’m just ashamed we came out of this looking like a bunch of huckleberries.

Just remember, its not my fault.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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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2018 ELECTION POSTMORTEM

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 15, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– What did I learn from this election?

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

Coming from the business world, I understand the importance of conducting a Project Review (aka, “Project Audit”) whereby we make note of what went right and what went wrong. The intent is to pass these lessons on to others for the future. This is equally applicable to politics which is why I want to review the lessons I learned from the recent 2018 mid-term elections. This may seem a little dry, but it includes some important lessons for both parties to observe.

I have been keeping track of the voting numbers for two cycles now (2016 and 2018), representing Mr. Trump’s rise to the presidency, and the ensuing mid-terms.

The first thing I learned is the national and local political polls are useless and do not reflect reality. Frankly, they are a joke. I do not know their selection criteria for conducting surveys, but whatever they are doing, it is horribly wrong. This was proven in 2016 and 2018. To this day, they would have us believe Gillum and Nelson are still up by six points (and Mrs. Clinton by double-digits). The people who run these polls should find another line of work.

I found the early voting data provided by the state (in my case, Florida) to be much more reliable. In studying the data from both elections, I found the following:

* Republicans win the Mail-In votes (aka, Absentee).

* Democrats win the in-person Early Voting votes. Republicans do not find this convenient as it interrupts their business day.

* Republicans win the Election Day votes.

Turnout is ultimately based on the drumbeats of the parties. Whichever party can inspire their constituents to vote, wins. To illustrate, even though Florida Democrats had approximately 250K more registered voters than the Republicans, the GOP was able to get their members to the voting booth:

66.28% of all registered Republicans voted.
59.77% of all registered Democrats voted.

This resulted in 150K more Republicans voting than Democrats.

In the Tampa Bay area, I found:

* Hillsborough County (representing downtown Tampa) is solid Democrat.

* Manatee County is solid Republican.

* Pasco County is solid Republican.

* Pinellas County – Republicans lost the lead in early voting to the Democrats on the last day, but overtook the Democrats on election day.

* Polk County is solid Republican.

* Sarasota County is solid Republican.

This happened both in 2016 and 2018. Likewise, state-wide early voting resulted in a slim lead for the Democrats, but the Republicans outvoted them on Election Day by 171K votes.

Whereas large metropolitan areas voted Democrat, e.g., Tallahassee, Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa, and Miami, all the rural areas voted strongly for the Republicans. For example, Republicans in tiny Citrus County, on the upper west coast of Florida, had 20K more votes than Democrats, thereby easily negating Jacksonville with +6K votes for Democrats. It was the rural and West Coast counties that carried the day for Republicans.

Other observations:

* Surprisingly, eleven of the twelve amendments to the Florida Constitution passed (#1 was the one defeated). Frankly, I was surprised by this. The only explanation I can think of is, due to the volume of legislation, people grew tired and simply checked off the “Yes” box in order to expedite their time in the voting booth.

* The campaign races were incredibly costly. I am told the Governor’s race alone was the most expensive in our history. The Senate race was also expensive. Even the races for the State Senate and House were expensive. There was one State Senator who spent over $500,000 on his campaign. As you probably know, I consider this enormously frivolous. We should be spending the money on more worthwhile endeavors than the media.

* I was not made aware of any voter fraud down here, except for one instance where a non-citizen tried to vote and the Democrats wanted it accepted. Of course, it was disallowed. There was also concern about northern students attending Florida colleges voting twice (once here and once back home in the north), but I have heard nothing tangible about this. The same could be said for northern retirees who have a house in the South for winter.

* Following close races for the Senate and Governorship, there was a clamor to recall the votes. In the process, Broward and Palm Beach Counties came under scrutiny for possible election fraud and incompetence. Both counties are strongholds for the Democrats, thus heightening suspicions by Republicans. Full investigations are underway. I cannot remember the last time, if ever, an election was overturned here in Florida, including the famous Bush/Gore debacle back in 2000. Unfortunately, this proves our voting procedures are far from bullet-proof. Personally, I had no problem with the punch-card approach. Regardless, here is another reason why reforms should be enacted in our electoral process.

* There were a lot of close races, be it for the Governorship, U.S. Senate, County and Municipal races. Whoever won, be it Red or Blue, should be sensitive to this and realize the people will be watching their performance. Translation: They better get off their duffs and do something.

* The polarity of the country becomes more pronounced with each election. This is caused by differences in morality between the parties in terms of our perspectives as to what is right, and what is wrong.

Mid-term elections used to be as interesting as watching grass grow. Attendance was low. No more. The votes cast in Florida in 2018 were approximately 80% of those cast in 2016, an incredible figure. Thanks to the polarity of the country, the days of sleepy-eyed mid-term elections are long gone and we will continue to have massive political struggles from now on.

Thus closes the 2018 elections.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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: , , , , | 3 Comments »

BREAKING UP THE MEDIA/POLITICAL VICIOUS CIRCLE

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 13, 2018

BRYCE ON THE NEWS MEDIA

– Time to break the cycle.

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

The 2018 mid-term elections was the largest campaign of its kind in history, both in terms of votes cast and campaign money spent, which was in the billions of dollars. Perhaps it is time to reflect on why this happened. We now live in a 24/7 news cycle. Whereas back in the 1960’s we would read morning newspapers, watch evening news, and skim through weekly news magazines (e.g., Time, Newsweek, Life, etc.), news is now offered on a non-stop basis, not just on one television channel, but several, as well as the Internet. Forget reality TV and sports, news is now the #1 entertainment medium and there are millions of news junkies around to prove it.

What we are now faced with is the diabolical manipulation of the American psyche, much more persuasive than anything invented by Joseph Goebbels during World War II. Let me be brutally frank, the news media is not concerned with reporting reliable news and accurate information, it’s about making money, and this includes all of the news sources. They have sacrificed “fair and balanced” for the political agenda they believe will cause the most angst among the American public. This includes the major television networks, cable, the Internet, and printed press. Their influence is so pervasive, it explains why the country is polarized and people suffer from such things as Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS).

To illustrate, during the election, the news media was quick to quote the latest poll du jour. All of these polls were just as inaccurate as they were in 2016 when they confidently predicted Mrs. Clinton would win the presidential election. Instead of examining early voting data as provided by the various state board of elections, they preferred to quote some cockamamie poll instead. Please understand, the early voting data is far more accurate and insightful than any poll, yet the news media refuses to quote them as it doesn’t create as much drama as a skewed poll does.

This overt attempt to whip the public into a frenzy is shared by the news media, the polls, and fact checkers. They are all on the take, which is why they encourage upheaval, cast doubt on politicians, and lack professional courtesy. Their job, as they see it, is to make the news, not report on it.

The question thereby becomes, what can be done about it? The answer is actually simple. Since the source of energy for the media is money, we should minimize the amount they can earn. For example, our electoral cycles have fallen into the rut of creating campaigns lasting as long as two years. This includes campaigns for federal, state, county, and municipal politicians. I just witnessed a campaign here in Florida where I saw state and county politicians, who earn approximately $30,000 a year, spend ten times that amount to be elected, some much more than that. From a business perspective, this represents a lousy return on investment. Again, the only group profiting from this is not the politicians, but the news media who reaps the reward.

As an aside, in 2018, politicians spent in excess of $2 billion for campaigning, a new record. This money was not used for charitable purposes, or to update our infrastructure, or to cure cancer. It was used to line the pockets of the media and create multimillionaire celebrity news personalities.

The end of the 2018 election marks the official beginning of the 2020 campaign, and the vicious circle starts all over again. The pumping of huge sums of money into the coffers of the news media only encourages them to persist in irresponsible news reporting. But what if the gravy train was interrupted; what then?

To curb spending and obnoxious campaigning, we should do as other countries do and reduce our electoral cycle to a defined period, such as 90 or 120 days. For example, there are several countries who have less than a 90 day election period, such as Argentina, Canada, France, and Japan. Further, some countries do not allow the purchase of TV ads, such as Brazil, Japan, and the United Kingdom. Such policies dramatically inhibit the media money machines and causes them to take the histrionics out of their broadcasts.

The symbiotic relationship between the Media and Politics is so imbued in our culture, getting the two parties to agree to my proposal is out of the question. To implement such a program requires changes in our electoral process which must be driven by the citizenry, not politicians. This cannot happen unless the country becomes aware of the problem and expresses outrage over it, but since the media controls communications it is doubtful voters will ever learn of it. In fact, watch this column be torpedoed and sunk.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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 Media, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

CNN’S JIM ACOSTA BUTTS HEADS WITH THE PRESIDENT

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 9, 2018

BRYCE ON THE NEWS MEDIA

– And comes out the loser.

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After clashing with President Trump during a presidential press conference at the White House Wednesday (Nov 7th), CNN’s Jim Acosta had his press pass suspended “until further notice,” thereby sparking a long standing feud between the President and the main stream media. The meeting was intended to give the President an opportunity to review Tuesday’s election. He said he was satisfied with the results and hoped to forge a relationship with House Democrats to work on legislation. He then opened the floor for questions from the press.

Acosta was the second person to ask the President a question, involving “the caravan” moving through Mexico to the United States. Here, he challenged the President’s interpretation of “invasion” of the immigrants. The President answered by disagreeing with the reporter’s interpretation. Acosta claimed the President was trying to demonize immigrants by his description which drew the ire of the President who told the reporter to let him do his job. He then turned to another reporter for the next question. Acosta pressed on by beginning to ask a second question regarding the Russian investigation. The President took Acosta to task saying, “I tell you what, CNN should be ashamed of itself having you work for them. The way you treat Sarah Huckabee (Sanders) is horrible. And the way you treat other people is horrible. You shouldn’t treat people that way.”

As I traveled with the press corps in covering Trump Rallies in Florida, I have had the opportunity to watch Acosta work first-hand. It seems to me, he is more interested in his own personal agenda than anything else. He relishes being the center of attention which is why, I believe, he asks questions unlike other reporters. This confrontation with the President is not the first as he has cultivated a combative relationship with Mr. Trump.

Let us not forget, after a confrontation with Trump supporters at a rally in Tampa earlier this year, where he was shouted down by the audience, Acosta said he felt threatened and suggested children shouldn’t be allowed to attend Trump rallies, as the people are allegedly dangerous. This is what initiated his claim that the President was at war with the press.

CNN naturally came to their employee’s defense following Wednesday’s controversy by stating, “This unprecedented decision is a threat to our democracy and the country deserves better. Jim Acosta has our full support.”

They also called Trump’s attacks on the media as “un-American,” thereby fueling the fire of division.

A couple things come to mind after watching this on television. First, I didn’t hear one intelligent question to the President from an American “journalist.” Here you have the Commander-in-Chief where you can ask a question of substance regarding government policies on such things as the economy, trade, foreign relations, health care, prescription drugs (which the President is discussing with Democrats), the federal bench, military matters, immigration reform, etc. Instead, they are preoccupied baiting the President with trivialities designed to make him look bad, not good. He, of course, would have none of it, and snapped back at the questioners now and then. I found it particularly amusing when he said, “That’s the best you’ve got?” or “That’s a question?”

In other words, the President completely understands the game the press is playing with him and is appalled by the low IQ questions and inflammatory accusations they make. This has forced him to become even more no-nonsense than before, which is why he butted heads with Acosta. Frankly, I’m surprised he hadn’t taken them all to task earlier. I suspect we will continue to see more changes in the relationship with the press following the election.

This brings up my second point, participation as a member of the press at the White House is a privilege, not a right. There is no legislation stating the press has access rights. As I’ve mentioned before, it was around President Theodore Roosevelt’s time when the administration allowed members of the press on the grounds of the White House. The press has as much right to the White House, as they do to the President’s taxes, which is zilch.

So, as a guest, the press should behave with more civility at the President’s home, as opposed to becoming obnoxious. In a way this reminds of when you have a guest at your house who perhaps has had too much to drink or has offended someone. Usually, the host asks him to leave and calls him a cab. Jim Acosta’s taxi arrived yesterday.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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 Media | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

THE 2018 ELECTIONS ARE OVER, NOW WHAT?

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 7, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Get ready for some serious changes.

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

Tuesday, November 6, 2018, Election Night in the United States was the starting gun for the 2020 election cycle. On this day, the Democrats captured the House and the Republicans secured the Senate. Translation: the American public opted for gridlock for two years.

The Democrats needed a victory in at least one chamber of Congress to prove they are still a viable political party. The election cost them a ton of money, not just in Congressional races, but in state races as well.

As Democrats take control of the House, Nancy Pelosi faces a challenge from members of her own party for the speaker’s job. It will be an ugly contest she will most likely win. Their job for the next two years is to derail the Trump agenda. Even though we need it badly, do not look for any major legislation to pass, including the areas of immigration, health care, voter reform, electoral reform, or reduction in the federal debt. The House and the Senate are now officially at loggerheads.

The big question is whether the House will now move forward on impeaching the President. Even though such charges would be dismissed in the Senate, the Democrats may find the temptation to harass the President irresistible and attempt to slur him, and the Republicans, as we approach the 2020 election. If they do, this will become their Achilles Heel and people will react to it the way they did in the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings. In other words, the Democrats will be risking everything if they pursue this route.

The Democrats though are experiencing an identity crisis internally. They couldn’t win in 2016 with Progressive politics, and it appears the country has turned its back on Socialism. Now they have no standard bearer going into the 2020 presidential election, as their candidates are showing their age and politics:

Senator Bernie Sanders – at 79 (in 2020) is the oldest candidate and represents the Socialist agenda.

VP Joe Biden – at 77 (in 2020) is the second oldest, a Progressive, and unable to win convincingly in his own party.

Secretary Hillary Clinton – at 73 (in 2020) is said to want to take another crack at President Trump, but has likely lost the faithful in her own party.

Senator Elizabeth Warren – at 71 (in 2020) wants to run, but her far-left leanings will likely make her an ineffective candidate.

Younger possibilities may include New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (62 in 2020), Sen. Corey Booker (51), and Kamala Harris (56). However, this isn’t about age, it’s about the ideology of the party which the Democrats must sort out quickly. This leads me to believe the Democrats will nominate a dark-horse candidate in 2020, perhaps Michael Avenatti…(doubtful); more likely it will be former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg who will be 78 in 2020. Bloomberg has the financial resources, contacts and media smarts to make a run as a Moderate Democrat, but his age may cause him to balk at a run.

As to our Executive Branch of government, look for some serious changes to occur, including:

* The conclusion of the Mueller probe. If Special Counsel Robert Mueller cannot conclude his investigation before the end of the year, look for the President to bring it to an end as the country has grown weary of this sideshow.

* A clean-up of the Justice Department is likely in order – if the Mueller probe is not concluded quickly, look for heads to roll in the department.

* The President will continue to move forward on negotiating deals in order to reduce the trade deficit.

* The President will face stiff resistance from Democrats in the House for improving the economy as they are bent on raising taxes, not lowering them.

In the Supreme Court, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is showing her age (85). Even though she is determined to hang on, if she passes or is forced to retire for health reasons, President Trump will appoint another Justice. Aside from Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer (80) is another Justice who may want to retire. The next in line is Clarence Thomas (70), but he will likely stay on.

President Trump will continue to reshape the federal bench which will be his legacy for many years to come.

The American populace elected Donald Trump as president in 2016 as they didn’t want “politics as usual.” This resulted in desperate Democrats spending an inordinate amount of money to try and stop him. Now that they are in power, their gridlock and attempt at impeachment will turn the electoral landscape even muddier than we thought possible. If this happens, this will be the impetus for the American people to rise up and re-elect the President in 2020 and re-take the House.

Of course, the House Democrats could surprise me and try to work with the Republican Senate and the President towards some much needed legislation… Nah, it will never happen.

One last note, I would like to thank my readers who congratulated me on correctly predicting the results of the Florida race. The polls got it horribly wrong. It’s not that I am a polling genius, I just know how to read voting data (I guess the news media cannot). More on this to come…

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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: , , , , | 2 Comments »

2018: AS FLORIDA GOES, SO GOES THE COUNTRY

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 5, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Pre-voting is more revealing than any poll.

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

It’s showtime for the 2018 midterm elections, where polls and media contend a “Blue Tide” is going to sweep across the country and the Democrats will reclaim the House of Representatives. After all, the press insists, “the party in power historically loses the midterms.” The only problem is the media has never met a president like Donald Trump, nor do they understand the country’s sense of priorities, where the citizenry prefers peace and prosperity over turmoil.

Certainly, we haven’t already forgotten how horribly wrong the media and polls got it in 2016 by picking Hillary Clinton over Mr. Trump in a runaway election? These are the same people who are now predicting the “Blue Tide.” Frankly, they are as wrong as they were in 2016.

In 2016, I accurately predicted the outcome of the election, not because I am a polling genius or possess some sixth-sense intuition, but because I simply studied the early voting data in Florida and saw the Republicans rallying to victory. I also knew Florida was an important swing state and realized, as Florida goes, so goes the country. I believe this remains true in 2018. In other words, I have found the early voting data produced by the Florida Division of Elections to be much more reliable than any poll I have come across.

Before we examine the 2018 Florida data, here are some assumptions I have learned over the years:

1. Republicans tend to cast more Mail-In votes (Absentee) than Democrats.
2. Democrats typically cast more Early-Voting votes than Republicans.
3. Democrats do less voting in Midterm elections than in presidential years.
4. Republicans tend to cast more votes on election day than Democrats.
5. There are more registered Democrat voters in Florida as opposed to Republican voters, yet Republicans are more inclined to vote.
6. Independent voters are a key factor. Whoever sways independents, wins the election.
7. The majority of votes cast are during pre-voting, not on election day. (Typically 70% vote early, and 30% vote on election day).

Here are the pre-voting numbers in Florida prior to election day:

NOTES:

1. Pre-voting was approximately 60% of the votes cast in 2016.
2. The GOP is winning in Tampa Bay area and Florida overall.
3. GOP is running away with the Mail-In votes, Dems ahead in Early Voting (same as 2016).
4. Although “Other” party affiliations are lacking far behind, “No Affiliations” (Independents) show a strong turnout.
5. 42.1% of registered Republicans have already voted.
39.3% of registered Democrats have already voted.
Translation: Republicans are more aggressively voting than the Democrats.

The biggest difference is the total number of votes cast in Florida between Republicans and Democrats. The GOP took a commanding lead in pre-voting and never let go.

It is impossible to determine how independent voters are voting. Even if it is 50/50 Republican/Democrat split, the Republicans will win. However, we have to remember it was the independent voters who voted Republican in 2016. Floridians appear to be happy with our economic success, whereby the state is #1 in the country for Fiscal Responsibility, and #4 in the Tax Foundation’s State Business Tax Climate Index. Translation: they prefer peace and prosperity over turmoil and confrontation.

What does this all ultimately mean? There will be a “Red Tide” in 2018, not blue. Ron DeSantis will win the governorship, and Rick Scott will be our next U.S. Senator.

And as mentioned, “as Florida goes, so goes the country.” If this is so, it appears the Republicans will maintain control over the House, and will pick-up some Senate seats (I’m estimating five). When this election is over, the media, the polls, and the Democrats will once again wonder “What happened?” And as usual, they will have misunderstood the will of the people.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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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2018 MIDTERMS – WHAT’S AT STAKE?

Posted by Tim Bryce on November 1, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– The morality of the country.

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Midterm elections are normally as exciting as watching grass grow. A handful of people usually show up to elect dog catchers and the like. Democrats tend to avoid it like the plague, failing to see the significance of it in comparison to a presidential election. However, in the Age of Trump and the Resistance, the 2018 midterm elections have been electrified and we may very well see some record voting numbers for such an election. This, of course, represents a bonanza for the news media who reaps the financial harvest by whipping the populace into a frenzy.

The media is quick to tell us the party in power normally loses during a midterm election. I would remind them, these are unusual times and we have a President who doesn’t play by their rules and is only interested in results, not history.

Elections are meters of our morality. This is where we collectively determine what direction we would like to see the country go. It defines our priorities and values; what is right and what is wrong. To illustrate:

COURTS

This election will determine what kind of Supreme Court we want: Republicans want justices to interpret the Constitution, and Democrats want them to enact law from the bench. Whereas the former is perceived as conservative, the latter represents a liberal approach. This also applies to the Federal benches as well.

This same phenomenon applies to State Supreme Courts. For example, in Florida three vacancies are awaiting to be filled. Should Democrat Andrew Gillum win the governor’s race, the three justices will likely be liberal; should Republican Ron DeSantis win, the justices will take a conservative approach.

This aspect alone is highly significant to the midterm elections. In terms of morality, should justices simply interpret law, or pave the way for new laws outside of the scope of the Constitution?

CONSTITUTION

The midterms will also have an impact on the mechanisms embedded in the U.S. Constitution. For example, Democrats want to eliminate the Electoral College and rely totally on the popular vote to decide the victor of presidential elections. On the other hand, the Republicans want to keep the Electoral College “as is” in order to maintain parity between urban and rural America. From a moral standpoint, which is the fairest approach? Should the Electoral College be eliminated, the interests of rural America will be neglected, causing candidates to only focus on the needs of urban areas.

Another area under consideration is the eligibility to vote. Whereas Republicans want all legal citizens to vote, Democrats want to give illegal immigrants and criminals the right to vote. There is also discussion regarding the lowering of the voting age to 16. The question is, what kind of person should be allowed to vote?

THE RULE OF LAW

Some people believe the law should be applied equally to everyone. Others believe exceptions should be granted, that some people are above the law. Republicans believe a person is “innocent until proven guilty” and there should not be a double-standard that allows otherwise (“guilty until proven innocent”). To enforce this, there should be “due process” to entitle citizens to fair and consistent treatment under the law.

The Rule of Law includes Amendment I of the Bill of Rights whereby Congress shall make no law prohibiting “the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Peaceably is the keyword here. This certainly doesn’t support the concept of anarchy as advocated by some people in this country today.

So, the moral question becomes, do we believe in adhering to the Rule of Law, or do we prefer mob rule?

SOCIOECONOMICS

The United States was founded as a free enterprise system which is an economic system where government places few restrictions on the types of business activities or ownership by citizens. This is based on the concept of Capitalism which is a celebration of the individual’s right to try and succeed, requiring a sense of risk. In contrast, the Democrats are embracing Socialism which concentrates on the rights of the group overall, controlled by government, thereby suppressing individual initiative and risk. Unlike Capitalism which allows for failure, there is no such sense of loss in Socialism, nor sense of victory. Essentially, everyone receives a trophy, win or lose. The two socioeconomic programs are as different as night and day, and are simply incompatible.

Under Capitalism, the individual is entitled to enjoy the fruits of his/her labor, such as financial rewards. This is an important benefit derived from risk. Under Socialism, there is no such concept, and instead of the individual benefiting, the wealth is evenly distributed to the work force, regardless if they earned it or not. In other words, a weak worker benefits at the same rate as a strong worker.

Democrat Socialists believe in free entitlements for everyone, such as college education, food and housing, transportation, health care, and jobs. This may sound enticing, but they have no clue as to how to pay for all of this other than higher taxes, thereby causing a redistribution of the wealth, which is anti-Capitalist.

The moral question thereby becomes, which system should America embrace? Republicans defend Capitalism, Democrats prefer Socialism.

GLOBALIZATION VS. NATIONALISM

This election is also about adopting a position of Globalization or Nationalism. Globalization, as supported by Democrats, involves the cultural integration of trade, capital, and immigration among the countries of the world. This tends to force countries to lose their identity and become subservient to others. Consequently, we are seeing a push back in the form of Nationalism as in President Trump’s policy of “America First,” and “Brexit,” representing the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union.

Nationalism respects the sovereignty of a country, meaning their ability to manage their own affairs independently. Globalization loosens these restrictions to promote equality of nations and cultures, a form of Socialism. Nationalism respects the rights of the citizen, Globalization respects the rights of everyone, regardless where they are from. Consequently, this has led to the immigration problems plaguing the United States and Europe. In a nutshell, it means caring for anyone crossing our borders. Whereas under Nationalism, immigrants must lawfully apply to be accepted, respect the rule of law, and adapt to society, Globalization is just the reverse.

So, the question becomes do we want to be a sovereign country, where the rule of law is respected, or do we want to have open borders and an amalgamation of cultural laws? Add on to it, the provision for housing, education and healthcare for anyone on our shores.

As mentioned, politics is morality in action, as it leads to the the laws, rules, and regulations of a body of people, thereby representing their interpretation of right and wrong. To learn about politics and government is to learn morality. The founding fathers felt strongly about this. So much so, in 1828 the text book, “Elementary Catechism on the Constitution of the United States” by Arthur J. Stansbury, was introduced to teach students government and morality. Having the students learn their rights and freedom was considered important in the early days of this country.

Republicans believe government exists to serve the people. Democrats believe the citizens are subservient. This, of course, represents conflicting interpretations of morality.

On November 6th, we will again determine what is right and what is wrong.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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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THE POLITICAL MISCALCULATIONS OF THE DEMOCRATS

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 30, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– How their tactics backfired.

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As expected, this has been an extraordinary midterm election thus far. The Democrats are desperate for a win in order to survive. To do so, they have raised considerable money for Congressional and State races, and tried to create controversy in the court of public opinion. Democrat Congressional candidates alone raised more than one billion dollars for their campaigns, a new record. According to the Campaign Finance Institute, sixty-two House races exceeded $1 million in expenditures (compared to 20 in 2016).

Such expenditures were to be expected, as the Democrats want to retake one or both chambers of Congress, but what about their message?

The Democrats tried to raise the ire of the people on more than one occasion during this political season. Unfortunately, it backfired on them time and again; to illustrate:

* During the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, the Democrats characterized him as a deceitful sex offender and expressed their indignation as to his nomination. This may have fired up their base, but it also inflamed their Republican opponents who took this as a call to action and energized their voting. This alone may have cost the Democrats the election.

* Immigration was used twice during this campaign by the Democrats; first, their indignation over separating children from their parents who entered the country illegally. The second was “The Caravan” of Central Americans marching towards the United States bent on entering any way possible. How this group was organized and funded is suspicious, but unlike the Democrats prepared to welcome them with open arms, the country is now acutely aware of the problems with illegal immigration. This has caused them to adamantly support President Trump’s southern wall, and call for revised immigration laws. The people realize neither will happen with a Congress controlled by the Democrats. Hence, a push back by the country.

* Health Care continues to be their main message going into this election. The fact remains that Obamacare was a disaster and left a bad taste in the mouths of people. The Democrats may think it is important, but they cannot convince the public their party has the answer for it, other than an unworkable $32.5 trillion boondoggle. In other words, their credibility is shot and the public is willing to wait for a new Congressional term to address the problem.

* The Democrats’ attacks on President Trump have continued unabated since he first took office. Despite all of their complaints and accusations, his popularity continues to grow. The reason is simple, he understands the wants and needs of the people, which is why he focused on re-igniting the economy and putting the country back to work. By doing so, he has won over the support of steel workers, coal miners, auto workers, farmers, African-Americans, Latinos, and women, people who had traditionally voted for Democrats.

The re-charged economy is the Achilles’ Heel for the Democrats, which explains why they try to sidetrack the American people with Justice Kavanaugh, immigration, and health care, all aimed at distracting people from the real issue of this election: peace and prosperity.

By taking the tactic of creating turmoil, the Democrats have actually done the Republicans a great service by causing high anxiety among the voters, fearing the gravy train may be coming to an abrupt end, thereby stimulating people to vote. Add on to this the surly temperament and mob action of the Democrats, and people will naturally gravitate away from such shenanigans.

The point is, instead of proposing legislation, the Democrats have done nothing more than create high anxiety among the populace who will naturally vote for stability as opposed to helter-skelter. In this way, the Democrats face another loss in 2018, and once again they will wonder why.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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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GOODBYE SEARS, FAREWELL OLD FRIEND

Posted by Tim Bryce on October 25, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– We’re going to miss you.

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No doubt you have heard about Sears recently filing for bankruptcy. The one-time retail giant has been facing crippling losses over the last few years which caused vendors to stop shipping supplies to their stores. It now owes billions of dollars which will likely not be paid back.

At one time there were over 4,000 Sears stores throughout North America. That number has dwindled to less than 700 with liquidation sales to begin shortly.

Sears originally started out as a mail order house, then expanded to stores both in urban and suburban areas, but they eventually felt the competition of discount retailers and specialty stores, such as Walmart and Home Depot, and their market share fell. The knockout punch was the Internet, an area they entered too late allowing others to dominate the market.

To me, it seemed like Sears was with us forever. No matter where I lived, there was always a Sears store nearby. It was dependable, consistent, and good value. It was also clean and meticulously organized, making it easy to find whatever you were looking for. If you couldn’t find it, the clerks would be glad to direct you to it and answer any question you might have. As such, the store was like an old, reliable uncle or friend in the neighborhood. You were comfortable in it and, unlike other stores with unthinking clerks, you liked to visit if, for no other reason, than to browse the aisles. This is why I consider this news about the company closing as a sad sign of our changing culture.

As a kid, my brother and I would love to page through the Sears catalog as we approached Christmas time, oohing and ah-hing at the latest toys, and dogear the pages we wanted our parents to see.

Sears was the home of Kenmore appliances, Craftsman tools, and DieHard batteries, products you always had confidence in. A Craftsman tool case was perhaps the most coveted prize to have in your garage. My family bought many a lawn mower at Sears over the years, and had them serviced there as well. Their hallmark was fast, reliable, and dependable service.

The Sears auto repair centers also had a good reputation for reliable work at reasonable prices. If the service man said you needed a new belt on your engine, you knew it wasn’t a con job. Nearby was their key center where you could have a duplicate key made quickly. As a lad, I loved watching the people make keys.

Having lived in Chicago, we were all familiar with the Sears Tower which, at the time was the tallest building in the world. It was a dramatic symbol of stability and strength for the company. Chicagoans would later be shocked when it was sold and renamed the Willis Tower, but even today, natives still refer to it by its original name.

This is why the passing of Sears is so troubling and unimaginable to a lot of us. It was a beloved institution which was trusted, possessed a great reputation and was a pleasure to frequent. We were so confident in its durability that it causes us to reflect on our own frailties. Maybe the problem was they simply overextended themselves and no longer could compete with the discount houses anymore. I find it rather ironic that Sears, which was originally devised as a mail order house, fell prey to the 21st century version of the same; you know, the Internet.

And so we turn another page in our culture.

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 timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 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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