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Posts Tagged ‘The Bryce is Right’

THE GENIUS OF IDENTITY POLITICS

Posted by Tim Bryce on April 17, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Diabolical, but genius nevertheless.

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

I recently wrote a column describing the concept of “Old White Men” which is a mean-spirited attempt to discredit the wisdom of our elders, who are portrayed as stumbling blocks to progress. I want to take this a step further as this is a part of what is today referred to as “Identity Politics.”

The idea behind this is to differentiate various groups based on such things as race, religion, sex, and age, so they can be politically manipulated. Once segregated, the groups are stereotyped, vilified, and attacked thereby putting them on the defensive. For example, we see this in:

* Old versus Young people – as mentioned, young people are taught to malign the values of their elders.

* Men versus Women (Feminism) – the values and character of men are portrayed as seedy and heartless.

* Whites versus all other ethnic groups – here, whites are portrayed as racists who have been in control far too long.

* Christians versus all other religions – whereas Christianity was an important part of our culture at one time, now it is portrayed as insensitive to others and an effort is underway to systematically remove it from society.

Gun owners and the NRA are portrayed as evil. In reality, they promote safety and education. Responsible gun owners, particularly those in the NRA, are not the problem. It is those who do not truly understand what guns are and are unfamiliar with how they should be used, they are the reckless ones.

Even American History is under siege as statues and monuments representing important figures from our past are being toppled. The message is clear, “America is evil.” By doing so, patriots are ridiculed and condemned. It’s true, our country has made a lot of mistakes along the way, after all we are only human, but we have also done a lot of positive things to make us an economic powerhouse and the champion of freedom, which are conveniently overlooked.

From this perspective, the epitome of evil is a white, Christian, old man, who supports the Constitution, owns a gun, belongs to the NRA, and believes in hard work, responsibility, citizenship and patriotism. Such a person is falsley accused of being unfairly “privileged” as opposed to everyone else. Years ago, there was respect for such a person, but today he is condemned, and blamed for all of the problems in the country. By doing so, whatever this person’s political inclinations are, others are encouraged to vote as his opposite.

The intent of Identity Politics is to simply divide and conquer. To do so, key words and expressions are introduced such as “Old White Men,” “Racist,” “Hate,” “Deplorable,” “Fascist,” and “Trickle Down Economics,” all intended to solicit a Pavlovian response. This is designed to program people who can only grasp simple words and expressions as opposed to thoughtful dissertations. From a strategic perspective, this is sheer genius; diabolical, but genius. Whoever is devising such expressions is counting on the public to act like a herd of sheep, and regrettably, they are correct.

An inherent component of this is the news media who is used to plant the seeds in the public’s mind, and cultivate their perspective. By making a word or phrase popular, it becomes another image to indoctrinate the masses.

Who exactly is pulling the strings on Identity Politics is hard to say. The Clintons? The Obamas? George Soros? Or perhaps a media mogul. Most likely it is from the Saul Alinsky playbook. One thing is for certain, it is a strategy used by liberals to combat conservatives. The use of simple slogans by the Left is preferred over a debate which they cannot possibly win.

However, not all is lost, as the public grows weary of the trite stereotypes and is no longer buying it. The fact Donald Trump was elected president, and his popularity continues to grow, is indicative of this. Another sign is the unexpected popularity of ABC’s new “Roseanne” TV show whose ratings are skyrocketing as it is the only show addressing issues opposing liberal doctrine. This was followed by “Chappaquiddick,” the popular movie about Sen. Ted Kennedy and his involvement in the death of aide Mary Jo Kopechne, a story liberals would like to see go away. However, these two shows are the exception as opposed to the rule in Hollywood. The fact remains, people are growing tired of political correctness and liberal spin, preferring substance as opposed to facade. This will undoubtedly all have a bearing in the 2018 mid-term elections.

Identity Politics was not invented by accident, but by design. The words and slogans used are incredibly effective in shaping the attitudes of the masses. As I mentioned, it is genius, diabolical to say the least, but sheer genius nonetheless.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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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FAREWELL TAMPA BAY TIMES

Posted by Tim Bryce on April 10, 2018

BRYCE ON THE NEWS MEDIA

– I guess it’s time to say goodbye…

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

After 38 years, I am finally cancelling my subscription to the Tampa Bay Times, “Florida’s Best Newspaper.” I never actually subscribed to their claim as I found it fraught with problems, and evidently I was not alone in this regards. Years ago, it was common to see the newspaper delivered to all of the driveways in my neighborhood. Today, other than myself, I only see three.

I stopped it for several reasons; the price had gone up, the editorial slant has become far too liberal for my tastes, the sports and business sections are mere shadows of themselves, and community news slowly faded away. However, the biggest reason for dropping them was simply they had trouble delivering the paper on time. Over the last few months we have had to call the paper several times to complain about their failure to deliver the Sunday paper. Although they apologized and delivered a replacement hours later, they never seemed to be able to correct the problem. To make matters worse, I got the uneasy feeling they simply didn’t care about the printed version any longer.

I’m the type of guy who likes to read a printed paper with my breakfast in the morning. The only way this can happen now is if I get up early, throw on some clothes, and drive down to the local gas station for a newspaper. At least I know I will get a copy and I can start my day properly. I know other people have dropped the paper due to its slanted content, but it was a simple customer service problem that did them in for me.

The Times claims to have won twelve Pulitzer Prizes, something they are quite proud of. However, I find their political inclination such that when they print their election recommendations for candidates and issues, I take it with me to my precinct and vote 180 degrees in the other direction. This way I know I’ve made the right decision. As such, this is an invaluable service they provide.

For a long time, there were two major Tampa newspapers, the Times and the Tampa Tribune. For a while, I subscribed to both as I preferred the layout and content of the Tribune over the Times. However, in 2016 the Times bought out the Tribune and merged their customers in with their own. Since then, the number of pages in the Times seems to have slowly been diminishing, making me wonder how much time it has left. This was not the first time I’ve seen something like this occur.

Prior to the Tampa Bay area, I lived in Cincinnati, Ohio for several years. Like Tampa Bay, Cincy had two newspapers, the Cincinnati Enquirer, representing the morning paper, and the Cincinnati Post representing evenings. In this analogy, the Enquirer was like the Tampa Bay Times, and the Post was like the Tampa Tribune. Both were older and well established papers; the Enquirer in 1841 and the Post in 1881. Back when I lived there, I subscribed to both papers as I enjoyed one in the morning, and something to read when I came home after work to relax. It was a friendly rivalry, as the two were delivered at different times, but a rivalry nonetheless.

In 2007, the Post was slowly nudged out of business by the Enquirer, like the Times nudging out the Tribune. As the Enquirer was the last major paper in Cincinnati, they flourished for a while longer. However in 2013, the Enquirer dropped their printing operations and contracted it out of town. Not long afterwards, they began printing in a much smaller “compact” format, including supplements from USA Today. The publication is so small and thin today, it was unrecognizable to me when I first saw it. What was at one time an impressive publication you liked to pour over in the morning, it now looks like something frivolous to line a bird cage.

The parallel between the Tampa Bay Times and the Cincinnati Enquirer is uncanny. The circulation of both publications have suffered over the last few years, forcing them to turn to Internet versions. The Times has always been proud of their printed version, but the economic reality is they may very well have to produce a “compact” version much like the Enquirer’s, which will likely not go over well with regular readers.

All of this is but another indication of our changing world. As I think of my cancellation of the Times, I see it more as a cancellation of the printed newspapers as it appears they can no longer sustain such a publication. What a pity. I would probably have stayed with them longer had they been able to deliver the paper on time, but enough is enough. Now I’ve got to figure what I can read while eating my morning cereal. And, No, it won’t be a computer.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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: , , , , , | 15 Comments »

OLD WHITE MEN

Posted by Tim Bryce on April 3, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Recognizing the communication gap between the generations.

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Following one of my recent essays, a reader claimed it was the rantings of an “Old White Man.” I had heard this expression elsewhere during the 2016 campaign but didn’t pay too much attention to it until I was recently accused of being such a person. I find this rather interesting as my rhetoric and politics haven’t really changed over the last thirty years, yet I was never accused of wailing as a “Young White Man” back then.

Frankly, I believe this is a clever political maneuver invented by Liberals to place a wedge between the young and the old in this country. As I was growing up, I was taught to respect my elders, particularly as I entered the work force. Such people mentored me and offered valuable advice based on their many years of experience. Whether or not I used their advice, I listened carefully.

This is evidently not so anymore. It is true I no longer share the younger generation’s tastes in such things as music, fashion, film, food, and other social customs, but that is to be expected with the transition from one generation to the next. We simply get comfortable in our ways and do not like any unexpected twists. Take music for example, I like to believe I have a rather eclectic taste in music. Even though my generation enjoyed classic Rock and Roll, I also appreciate symphonies, operas, Big Band, Jazz, Blues, and some country/western. However, I started to gravitate away from Pop music with the advent of Punk, followed by Rap, which sounds to me like the sound of fingernails scratching a blackboard. I recognize the Millennials will not agree with me on this, but I hope they also learn to appreciate the music from other generations as well.

Regardless of our tastes, I recognize the Millennials will replace us one day, and I obviously hope the best for them. Would I rather have them fail? Certainly not, but I want to pass along what I learned in my walk through life, just as they will some day. It’s natural.

The expression “Old White Man” is a mean-spirited attempt to discredit the knowledge of our elders, and frankly, I do not believe it was invented by accident. It is intended to split the generations along political lines, and implies such people are stuck in the past and can no longer be relied on to make sound decisions in these modern times. Whenever it is mentioned, the younger people are inevitably accused of being “snowflakes” and the chasm widens between the generations.

As we should all know, with age comes wisdom based on experience, and the elders are more than willing to share it with the next generation. They may not have all of the answers, but they will share what they know and, Yes, old dogs can learn new tricks. It has always been such. However, if youth is being trained to tune out their seniors, they will have to suffer through the elder’s mistakes all over again.

Instead of dismissing the advice of their elders out of hand, I would rather see youth develop a dialog with them, thereby seeking the truth and finding viable solutions to our problems. This will never happen if the different generations refuse to listen to each other.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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 »

WHEN THE SHOE IS ON THE OTHER FOOT

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 27, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS & THE NEWS MEDIA

– The Liberals are frightened of conservative television.

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

Earlier this month my liberal and news media friends went into a state of panic over a recent report the Sinclair Broadcast Group was pushing the owner’s conservative agenda through their many television outlets. It wasn’t bad enough the owner was a conservative, but it was alleged by CNN the Sinclair stations were now being forced to run segments in support of President Trump.

Sinclair was founded in Baltimore, Maryland (now in Hunt Valley) by Julian Sinclair Smith, who passed away in 1993. Since then, the company has been run by his family who subscribes to conservative principles. Sinclair is a force to be reckoned with as it is the largest television station operator in the country and commands the larget total coverage with 100 markets, and likely more on the way.

Although there are no Sinclair based television stations in my area, Tampa Bay, they own WKRC-TV in my old stomping grounds of Cincinnati, Ohio. WKRC is a well known station that has served the Queen City for many years. Anyone remember “Skipper” Ryle or Nick Clooney?

CNN was the first to break the story, claiming, by the end of the month, Sinclair will require all of its local news anchors to condemn “national media outlets” for “fake stories” and “using their platforms to push their own personal bias.” The Washington Post took this a step further by claiming, “During the 2016 presidential campaign, Sinclair was criticized for reportedly ordering its stations to air news stories favorable to Donald Trump on a mandatory, or ‘must-run,’ basis.”

The reason the Left is concerned with Sinclair is because television news has surpassed the printed media in terms of market penetration, and local news broadcasts are more trusted than national networks. In other words, Sinclair has developed considerable political influence, and the fact they wish to promote conservative dogma scares the hell out of liberals and the news media.

When I first heard of the Left’s concern, I was frankly amused by their reaction. They would have us believe the news media is unbiased, something the public simply does not believe and explains why journalistic integrity has plummeted in recent years.

ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, MSNBC, et al are widely regarded as bastions of the Left, certainly not “fair and balanced.” This is why I found the liberal reaction so amusing. Let’s be clear about the press in this country, it has always had an agenda and always will. This goes back to the 18th century when newspapers were founded simply to preach the politics of one side or another. They were used to stoke the fires of the Revolution, sell the Constitution to the American public (see “Federalist Papers”), and promote the interests of north versus south prior to the Civil War.

This is why I find the Left’s revelation about Sinclair amusing. They simply realize the Right is starting to put up a fight, and they do not like it. Whereas conservatives had to endure Liberal dogma for many years on television, now it is the Left’s turn. When the Left screams “foul” claiming Sinclair should practice journalistic impartiality, all I can say is, “Don’t make me laugh!”

The only thing possibly worse for the Libs is if a conservative late night talk show would be introduced. I think their heads would spin off.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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: , , , , | 2 Comments »

A QUARTER-LIFE CRISIS?

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 20, 2018

BRYCE ON MILLENNIALS

– Another indication of our changing times.

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

It used to be, you might experience a mid-life crisis in your late 30’s, as you approached the mythic age 40 milestone. This would result in erratic behavior, and cause people to change their lives personally and professionally, possibly even resulting in divorce. However, according to a new report from the United Kingdom, this crisis appears to have moved up in years and is now plaguing our Millennials.

Although the study was aimed at Britain, their conclusions are likely applicable to all Millennials, including those in the United States. The report was produced by First Direct, an on-line banking service in the UK, to study, among other things, Millennial financial habits. To do so, they teamed up with Dr. Oliver Robinson, Senior Lecturer for Psychology at the University of Greenwich.

Remarkably, 56% of 25-35 year-olds in the study claimed they were experiencing a quarter-life crisis which left them feeling “stressed,” “overwhelmed,” and “struggling to cope,” the same type of anxieties as people experiencing a mid-life crisis.

Top causes behind Millennials having a crisis episode in the last 12 months:

Causes by Age Group 25-29 30-35
Financial difficulties 59.89% 47.63%
Your living situation 37.91% 34.41%
Working in a challenging job 30.40% 26.18%
Lack of romantic relationship 25.27% 27.93%
Trying to find a job 25.82% 20.45%
Being in a challenging romantic relationship 23.63% 26.06%
Trying to get on the property ladder 21.61% 9.48%

Source: FirstDirect

Notice the differences between the two age groups. The figures for 30-35 age group suggests more stability than the younger group, more confidence, and maturity.

First Direct produced a report describing these problems and how to address them, “How to turn your Quarter-Life Crisis into a Quarter-Life Catalyst,” which is available for free at their web site. In it, they explain how to use this crisis to spark change in your life. This is a good read, not just for Millennials, but for their parents as well.

Personally, what I find interesting about the report, it hints at a stunting of the maturation process of Millennials due to declining socialization skills. To me, this is likely caused by our growing addiction to technology, where young people now prefer texting as opposed to verbal communications. This is enforced by the report’s encouragement for young people to network socially, something that has been declining in recent years.

Some will make light of the concept of “quarter-life” crisis. I do not. I interpret it as another indication of our changing world, a decline in our culture, and the dangers of technology.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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 Life, Technology | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

IS RUSSIA OUR FRIEND?

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 13, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Have they ever been?

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

We’ve been hearing a lot about Russia these days, be it in congressional investigations, the Syrian war, in the Ukraine, and recent nuclear missile developments. The United States has a long history with the Russians, since its revolution about 100 years ago. In that time, our relationship could best be described as “tolerant” but certainly not friendly. This is due, in large part to opposing political ideologies. We simply do not trust each other and it is remarkable neither side has pulled the trigger to cause a major armed conflict.

During World War II Franklin Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin had a tepid relationship. America came to Russia’s aid under the Lend-Lease Act to give them vital supplies to fight Nazi Germany. Stalin repaid us by snapping up Eastern Europe at the conclusion of the war and triggering the Cold War which lasted several decades. He also consolidated his power by purging his enemies in the country, not once, not twice, but three times. By doing so, he became the model for other Communist dictators to assimilate, particularly the North Koreans.

We all remember the relationship between John Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev during the Cuban missile crisis which was the closest we came to war. Fortunately, Khrushchev blinked, but it cemented our adversarial relationship. It wasn’t until Richard Nixon introduced the spirit of “detente” to Leonid Brezhnev that tensions began to ease and an Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty was signed.

By the time Ronald Reagan became President, the Soviet Union was economically weak. Reagan began to rebuild America’s military and surprised the world with the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI; aka “Star Wars”), offering new technologies to prevent ballistic missile attacks. In turn, the Soviet Union was forced to compete militarily with the United States, which they could not afford to do. Further, Mikhail Gorbachev of the USSR introduced new policies at home with “glasnost” (openness) and “perestroika” (restructuring). All of this contributed to the end of the Soviet Union as a communist entity, and the end of the Cold War.

During the Clinton years, Boris Yeltsin became the first President of the new Russian Federation. Yeltsin proposed a new constitution which became popular and was passed. More importantly, he moved Russia’s socialist economy to capitalism, and the country began to flourish economically. The Yeltsin administration though was fraught with corruption, eventually forcing the Russian president to resign.

Enter Vladimir Putin in 2000 to pick up the pieces. The former KGB foreign intelligence officer and Cold Warrior has served as Russian president for three terms and is now running for a fourth. As the Russian Constitution barred a third consecutive term, Putin took a term as the country’s Premier (Prime Minister) until the next presidential election where he was reinstated, a clever maneuver allowing him to maintain control.

In theory, the Russian Federation is a Constitutional Republic, much like the United States, with three separate branches, including Legislative, Executive, and Judiciary. However, most experts agree it is no longer such as Putin has consolidated power and is essentially a dictator, much like Stalin except without the purges.

Putin has dealt with three American Presidents, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and now Donald Trump. Putin and Bush generally had a good relationship. During this time, Russia cooperated with America in the War on Terror following 911. The two countries have cooperated in space, most notably the International Space Station, but in 2024, the Russians will take elements of their section to build OPSEK, a new and separate space station.

During Mr. Obama’s administration, relations with Russia began to deteriorate. Several incidents occurred:

* In 2013, Russia gave asylum to Edward Snowden of the NSA who leaked classified information. This resulted in the cancellation of a Russian-American summit, the first time since 1960.

* In 2014, Russia invaded the Crimea, which led to the country being voted out of the G8.

* In 2015, Russia’s military intervened in Syria.

* In 2016, Russia interfered in the U.S. presidential election.

Mr. Obama’s policies towards Russia were generally regarded as a failure and Putin took advantage of the situation with bolder activities against the United States.

And now we come to the tenure of Mr. Trump and although the two have met briefly and spoke, they have not had a chance to negotiate policy. Just three short months into the Trump administration, the President ordered a missile strike against a Syrian airfield. 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles were sent in retaliation for the Khan Shaykhun chemical attack. The show of strength demonstrated the decisiveness of Mr. Trump to act, something well observed by Iran, North Korea, China, and Russia.

On March 18th, Russian voters will elect a president. Candidates include Putin as incumbent, and a handful of other token applicants. The only true candidate to oppose Mr. Putin is Alexei Navalny, who has been conveniently barred from running. In other words, there is little doubt as to the outcome of the upcoming Russian election. When his next six year term is over, he will have controlled Russia for 24 years, just six less than Stalin.

Even though the Russian Constitution claims the country is a republic, Mr. Putin’s consolidation of power leaves little doubt the country is returning to a dictatorship. His roots are planted in the KGB and Communist Party which means he resents the success of the United States and considers us his #1 competitor for world domination as we represent a free country based on capitalism, unlike the Chinese which remains Communist. Consequently, it is to Russia’s advantage to undermine America’s political system and constantly test our resolve as leaders of the free world. If America fails, Russia wins.

If we have learned anything about the Russians, it is they respect strength and will exploit any weakness we may reveal. The only time we will get into trouble is when one country treads on the other’s turf. Then we have a problem we must both address.

Although we have forged some good relations with the Russians over the years, are they really our friends and should we trust them? Hell no, but we better find a way to get along, for eveyone’s sake.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

REINVENTING THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 6, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– More political correctness running amok.

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

I’m told English is the most difficult language to learn as it is chock full of colloquialisms, slang, jargon, and expletives. There is even disparity among the English speaking countries of the world, causing the famed playwright George Bernard Shaw to observe, “The United States and Great Britain are two countries separated by a common language.”

I never truly understood why we like to reinvent the wheel every so often, but we do. Perhaps it is nothing more than naiveté but more likely it is just plain foolishness. Take for example, the recent effort at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana where a writing guide has emerged discouraging the students from using the word “Man” as it is considered to be sexist. Instead of saying “Mailman” for example, they want you to say “Mail Carrier.” Instead of “mankind” they want you to say “people” or “humanity” (which happens to have “man” hidden within it). To follow the guide properly means we have to avoid such words as “Freshman,” “Chairman,” “Gentleman,” “Craftsmanship,” “Management,” and many others.

This could also lead to some serious problems in diplomatic relations as we must change the names of countries such as Germany, Oman, and Romania to Gerpersony, Operson, and Ropersonia. I’m sure these countries will understand and follow suit. Let us also not forget Personila, the capital of the Philippines, and Kathpersondu, the capital of Nepal.

Come to think of it, all of the Latin based languages observe the masculine/feminine tense, including English, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, and Gerperson. Instead of saying in Spanish something like, “Donde esta la Casa de Musica?” we’ll have to say, “Donde esta persona Casa de Musica?”

Instead of using the Spanish words of “el” or “la” to denote the sexual orientation of an object, we’ll have to drop the word “the” from the Spanish language, likewise for the others. I still don’t know what to do with “Hombre” as I’m sure this will offend someone. Nonetheless, this change shouldn’t affect too many people.

By the way, we can no longer refer to these various tongues as “Romance languages” as they originated from the language spoken by the Ropersons.

Recently, there have been efforts to reinvent math through the “Common Core” program, as well as rewriting American history to make us feel more guilty about ourselves, and now we are trying to reinvent the fundamental structure of the English language. I can’t wait for them to change physics whereby I’m sure they will contend, “What goes up, must be shared.”

I lectured at Purdue years ago in their business school, a fine institution. As we all know, the school’s nickname is the “Boilermakers,” a reference to the train steam boilers built there years ago. By the way, a “Boilerman” is a person who tends to boilers; I guess this will all have to be changed as well.

I don’t know why Purdue is pushing this effort, as it sounds like political correctness running amok. Purdue is also well known for agriculture and producing first-rate engineers. I just wished they would stop trying to re-engineer the English language.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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 Life, Social Issues | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

MR. TRUMP HITS HIS STRIDE

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 2, 2018

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– He appears to be more cool, calm, and collected with every passing day in office.

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The president’s first year in office can be described as tumultuous at the very least. He faced strong resistance from the Democrats in the form of protests, congressional attacks, fake news, and having many of his executive orders held-up in court. Nevertheless, Mr. Trump persevered and carried on without their support. Despite their efforts, the president still fulfilled numerous campaign promises to reinvigorate the economy, strip away government bureaucracy, and protect the nation.

The president at first seemed stiff in terms of adapting to the job, learning to shift from a campaign role to an administrator and commander-in-chief. Now that he has settled into his job, he gives the impression he is comfortable and confident in what he is doing. Whereas the liberals and media still attack him, the rest of the country has come to the realization Mr. Trump is now in charge and knows what he is doing. And this frightens the Democrats as we embark on the congressional midterm elections.

A few recent events revealed a new Trump, very much cool, collected and empathetic. Even the news media gave the president high marks for meeting with Parkland students and parents and discussing what can be done to improve school safety. Shortly thereafter, when the state governors came to the White House to discuss the same problem, he solicited input from both parties. Governor Jay Inslee of Washington used the meeting as an opportunity to criticize the president claiming the country needed more action and less Tweeting. In response, Mr. Trump showed remarkable restraint. Whereas he could have easily chastised the governor for his remarks, he bit his tongue and let it go as he wanted to maintain the positive momentum he had built during the meeting.

During the service at the Capital for Rev. Billy Graham, the president spoke eloquently and appeared to be genuinely touched by the Christian evangelist. He handled the service with great dignity and respect.

He appeared to be very much in control at the January State of the Union address to Congress where he invoked themes of patriotism and faith, both of which were spurned by the Democrats (and noticed by voters at home). The liberal’s portrayal of him as a self-absorbed over-bearing pompous ogre has worn thin. Because of his victories during his first year he is now perceived as a leader with a results orientation.

Even though Mr. Trump realizes the Democrats will fight him every step of the way until November, he will persevere and try to reconcile differences between the parties for the good of the nation. However, it is highly unlikely we will see any progress on DACA, immigration reform, upgrading our infrastructure, healthcare, or anything else, least of all the southern wall. Liberals are fighting for their survival and, as such, cannot afford to give the president another legislative victory.

Nevertheless, Mr. Trump will continue unabated knowing the country is watching the Democrats fight him every step of the way, thereby preventing the true problems of the country from being addressed. In the end, this will cost the Democrats dearly at the ballot box. While the Democrats have evolved into the party of hate, the Republicans, under Mr. Trump, are now considered the party of prosperity.

This is not to suggest the president has softened his position on anything, he can still be combative when it serves his interests. He has simply learned the mechanics of Washington and is moving full steam forward on his terms, not others. This is quite common in the world of business. In other words: make a big splash, acclimate and dominate, and change the corporate culture to suit your needs.

While the Democrats give the appearance of operating helter-skelter, the president conducts himself coolly, calmly, and with great aplomb. Liberals have been counting on the Mueller investigation and congressional Russian probe to distract America, but the fact nothing of substance has yet to surface is leading the country to believe these were nothing more than witch hunts and a waste of time. In other words, there is a very strong chance Mr. Trump will come out of this smelling like a rose, carrying forward congressional candidates on his coattails.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

IN THE WAKE OF PARKLAND

Posted by Tim Bryce on February 27, 2018

BRYCE ON SCHOOL SAFETY

– Are we attacking the symptoms of gun violence or true problems?

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We all suffered to some degree following the shootings in Parkland, Florida on Valentine’s Day, particularly the High school students there. Their pain is legitimate, their solution to the problem is not. Any time we have a disaster like this, the Left likes to point fingers at assault weapons, the FBI, the NRA, and their favorite target, Mr. Trump. In other words, everyone but the shooter himself. This knee-jerk reaction is obviously done for political purposes and addresses merely the symptoms, not the root problem.

Even if government banned the popular AR-15, there are many other rifles with similar capabilities, and if you were to ban them all, there are still semi-automatic shotguns which can do a lot of damage quickly, not to mention handguns. And if you were to ban all guns, there would be another weapon du jour, such as a road-side bomb, or simply a car ramming into a crowd.

Following the last Federal Assault Weapons Ban held from 1994-2004, the Department of Health and Human Services conducted a follow-up study and concluded, “the Task Force found insufficient evidence to determine the effectiveness of any of the firearms laws reviewed for preventing violence.” In other words, the ban did nothing to reduce violent behavior.

The NRA is frequently criticized and portrayed by Democrats as the bogeyman of violence. As advocates of the Second Amendment, their support of gun safety, education, and animal conservation is conveniently overlooked. True, the NRA supports various politicians, just like many other lobbyists. Hampering their ability to make such donations should only be done with sweeping reform of all lobbyists, not just the NRA. Their vilification is just plain wrong.

There are three areas that need to be addressed:

1. Discipline & Education

The shooter in Parkland came from a broken home, which probably explains why he had trouble differentiating right from wrong. It is no secret the family unit has been deteriorating over the years. It is common for children today to be raised by a single adult who is usually overworked and too tired to manage their offspring properly, and there are others who simply abdicate their parental responsibilities and allow their children to find their own way through life, with the assistance of the Hollywood media. Not surprising, morality is on the decline in this country and shaping the character of our youth. I find it rather remarkable we do not take Hollywood to task for the wanton violence they promote.

Not surprising, I’m a proponent of teaching parenting skills as part of an adult education program, perhaps at the schools in the evenings.

Since parents appear unwilling or unable to teach proper behavior, perhaps some basic classes for the students in morality and common courtesy are in order.

Discipline and respect are in decline in schools. For example, consider this letter sent from a middle school Science teacher in Dunedin, Florida to his PTA following the Parkland incident:

“I am a science teacher here at DHMS and I wanted to share this information with you. This is the real problem; the system is broken to where we cannot do anything or exact any meaningful consequences for this type of student. This article I found today from the Miami Herald describes at least a dozen students here at our school. We write referrals, they might even get suspended for a day or two, but these ‘nightmare’ children return and terrorize our campus as soon as the consequence is served. Students that get reassigned to Pinellas Secondary School end up coming right back after a semester. The description of the student in the first paragraph (aside from bringing bullets) describes many students that never receive a consequence, or are categorized as ‘Special Education’, ‘Emotionally/Behaviorally Disabled’, and know that the school cannot do anything about their atrocious behavior. Before we attack people’s 2nd Amendment Rights, we need to attack our legislators and School Board for forcing administrators to keep these dangerous students in our schools despite their repeated warning signs of violent tendencies. Until we can enact change to report and remove these students, these tragedies will continue. I have been physically assaulted by a student this very school year, pressed charges, and the student continues to walk the hallways and brag about who all he has ‘beat up’. We spot these students early on, and dread their presence, but have absolutely no legal way to protect the rights of the rest of the population from these predators.”

As corporal punishment is no longer allowed in schools as a deterrent for misbehavior, disciplining children is next to impossible, and without it, student grades are affected. To illustrate, ten years ago I wrote about Caroline Haynes, a school principal in Great Britain who caught the attention of the press when she started to implement strict discipline in the classroom. She is with the Tendring Technology College in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, UK, a secondary school which, when translated to the American equivalent, is a private school for children ages 11-19. Her “zero tolerance” policy for misbehavior resulted in a school environment where students were freed to concentrate on their studies and, consequently, improved their grades significantly. I was told the students actually liked the discipline and preferred it over chaos. This is consistent with my contention that people tend to thrive in a structured environment which is well organized and leadership is strong, whether it is in school or in business.

There is also something to be said about implementing school dress codes to influence behavior. Such codes help to promote conformity and decorum. A local high school recently experimented with a “Professional Attire Day,” meaning the students in the business program were asked to dress up for a day. Instead of t-shirts, shorts and gym shoes, they were asked to wear suit and ties for the men, and dresses for the ladies. Remarkably, the lion’s share of students liked the change and took pride in looking their best. The students were questioned about their experience afterwards and reported they felt more positive and confident when dressed up as opposed to being dressed down. Interestingly, they appreciated the respect they received from their teachers regarding their appearance and deportment. The students comprehended the effect of a professional image, both at school and beyond. Some genuinely yearned for a better school dress code as opposed to the slovenly appearance which was currently the norm.

One last note regarding education, some time ago I wrote about my experience attending a concealed weapons class here in Florida. Other states have similar programs. In my case I was impressed with the professionalism and knowledge of the instructors, and felt this was something everyone should be exposed to. An informed public is less likely to become a victim and more likely to survive a shooting situation. Anyone who has attended such a class would probably agree, education is the key. Everyone from Middle School onward should be taught the lessons of gun safety. Even children in Elementary grades should learn some of the basics.

The only problem with these suggestions for education and discipline is they are considered socially unacceptable and, as such, will likely be spurned as opposed to embraced. Parents will probably not be inclined to learn new parenting techniques, claiming they haven’t got the time. They also tend to oppose dress codes as they see it as inhibiting the creativity of the individual, and have no appreciation for the benefits of teamwork. And gun safety classes will be perceived as promoting violence, when in reality, it is just the opposite. This means, the parents and students do not want to put forth the effort to thwart school violence through such education and hope it can be stopped through other means, such as changes in the law. The only problem here though is you cannot legislate morality.

2. Review and revise our rules for obtaining guns.

Following Parkland, there was much discussion about raising the age of a person to own a gun. The argument here is that if a person can join the military at 18 and fight for his/her country, then 18 should be the age. The one difference though is that the military provides proper instruction in the handling of firearms, something others do not receive. Again, I am a proponent of gun safety classes. If a person can be certified, such as through an NRA class, they should know how to properly handle a firearm.

The most difficult aspect to ascertain is the mental stability of the individual, which was at the heart of the problem in Parkland and other shooting scenes. Here, students, teachers, parents, and shooting instructors should be trained in terms of looking for signs of trouble and how to report a problem. Again, it’s a matter of education. In the case of the Parkland shooter, his social media was full of obnoxious references to shooting. This should have raised some red flags in the system. Unfortunately, it did not.

3. Fortification

The era of using schools as gun free zones is quickly coming to an end. Such zones embolden shooters as they realize they are soft targets. School perimeters need to be secured to eliminate unauthorized access. This was a significant problem at Parkland.

Training and arming school personnel should also be considered either using existing staff or hiring supplemental people to secure and defend the school campus.

Such measures as mentioned herein seem unimaginable to those of us who grew up in a different time when we respected our teachers, loved our school, and as such, had no need for school resource officers. But times have changed. Back in the early 1970’s you could simply go to the airport, show your ticket to your flight attendant, hop on a plane and leave. You obviously cannot do this anymore as tight security is now required. The same is true in our schools, it is a new time and we can no longer afford to operate as we did forty years ago. Our social mores and morality have changed radically, making this a much more dangerous time for those attending our schools. It is time to improvise, adapt, and overcome just as we did in our airports.

Even if you implemented all these measures, including the abolition of guns completely, you are never going to solve the problem 100%. There will always be the issue of a social misfit or radicalized person waiting for an opportunity to seek violence. It’s not about the choice of weapon, it’s about the human being. It always has been, and always will be. It is not so much about what laws, rules and regulations we enact as it is about treating human frailties and maturity. Education, discipline, and a little common sense will go much further than banning guns altogether.

Let us stop attacking the symptoms, it is time to look in the mirror and address the true problem.

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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 Education, Politics, Social Issues | Tagged: , , , , , | 6 Comments »

MY HIGHWAY PARANOIA

Posted by Tim Bryce on February 21, 2018

BRYCE ON TRAFFIC

– What happens when we do not cooperate on the highway.

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You do not see much in the way of cooperation these days. Socially and politically we cannot seem to get along any more. We see this in the office, in stores, and particularly in supermarkets where we are not mindful of others and hog the aisles to serve our own personal interests. I still believe painting a dashed line down the middle of the aisles would be an interesting experiment to see if people would keep their grocery carts on one side or the other.

There is perhaps no better illustration of our lack of cooperation than on the highway. We have gone well beyond mere road hogs and rubber-neckers to now include people text messaging, speaking on their phone, checking their social media postings, shaving or fixing their hair. In other words, doing everything but driving their automobile properly. It’s all about the individual and actually quite frightening. The biggest problem though is people give the impression they simply do not care and refuse to cooperate with other motorists, such as to allow others to enter traffic, to stay out of the passing lane until you need it, not going too slow or fast thereby becoming a hazard, and many other things.

The lack of cooperation on the highway is so prevalent, I’m starting to believe there is a premeditated effort to keep me off the streets. As I drive around, I believe the other motorists are in constant communications over the radio and trying to thwart my every move. For example:

* Tsst – “Breaker, breaker, subject has left his neighborhood and is heading eastbound on Alderman. All units Code 2.”

* Tsst – “Copy that. Road Block 1 is rolling and taking position in front of him. Road Block 2 will come along side to box him in. We’ll slow him down to 25.”

* Tsst – “This is Dispatch – Road Block 2, play your radio loud, preferably Rap, and make sure he sees you texting, that should really push him over the edge.”

* Tsst – “10-4.”

* Tsst – “This is Dispatch – We’re changing the traffic lights in front of him to red. How long should he wait?”

* Tsst – “At least six minutes, make it ten if possible.”

* Tsst – “10-4.”

* Tsst – “Breaker, breaker 10-33. The subject suddenly slipped into the left turning lane and will be heading north bound on US19. We are stuck and must continue east on Alderman to avoid suspicion. Need assistance. Urgent”

* Tsst – “This is Big Red over in the northeast corner of 19 and Alderman. I see him and will intercept. Will need backup to keep him in the right lane.”

* Tsst – “This is Dispatch, Over to you Big Red and thanks for the assist. Road Block 6 is taking up position one quarter mile north of you, dressed as an elderly couple and bearing Ontario plates. They will box him in and force him over to the next School Bus stop.”

* Tsst – “But it’s Sunday, over.”

* Tsst – “Not to worry. He won’t know what hit him.”

* Tsst – “This is Big Red, it looks like the subject has spotted us and is speeding away from our blockade. Please advise.”

* Tsst – “This is Dispatch, I have a Rice Burner on the way that will overtake him and force him to the middle lane where we’ll get him back under control.”

* Tsst – “Rice Burner X here. I have the subject in my sights. I have to weave through traffic to catch him. Doing 90. One moment please.”

* Tsst – “Rice Burner X again, I just about had him, but he suddenly pulled a u-turn and is now heading southbound on 19… Wait, it looks like he is heading to a Chili’s Restaurant.”

* Tsst – “This is Dispatch. Good, then we’ve got him. Execute Plan P and fill up the parking lot so he cannot stop there. Good job everyone. We got him again.”

* Tsst – (Various rounds of congratulatory remarks are made).

Some people will say I’m being much too paranoid about driving, but I contend the lack of cooperation on the highways is such that there can be no other logical explanation for the driving habits of a lot of people. Just remember, next time you hit the road and start to experience trouble with your fellow motorists, look to see if they are on their radios and take evasive action accordingly. TSST!

Keep the Faith!

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

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

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 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 humor, Transportation | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

 
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