For those of you that know my love of the US Navy, you might think from the title of this week’s missive that TTG is shipping out once again. Au contraire mes amis. The phrase, “at sea”, denotes someone who is confused and unsure of what to do. It describes me to a tee.
We had great friends over for dinner last weekend. As we lingered at the table, we discussed our state of the union. It wasn’t bitching or grousing but a sincere effort to at least figure out where the problems reside and if there is any hope for a solution. There was no rancor but thought, especially after too many wines and yet our mutual frustration was palpable.
I have always tried to solve problems. For some crazy reason, they appear to me with an amazing clarity and simplicity. Ditto the solution. I am not particularly smart but practical. It just shouldn’t take that long. Now some I have been fortunate enough to act upon and see results. Others have been relegated to my ever growing folder of “100 Brilliant Ideas I Haven’t Done Squat About”. C’est la guerre.
Recent disclosures have demonstrated pretty clearly that a lot of businesses and rich individuals don’t pay taxes. They are not breaking the law but using it to their best advantage. Yet tax reform never sees the light of day. You don’t understand TTG, Congress is overworked. They can’t get to it. Yet we can waste all the time in the world to impeach Trump or fight about voting bills. We work a three day week and take junkets here and there during our numerous “breaks”. Would you hire any of these people to work in your business? No, but isn’t this our business?
Immigration is the best. We have the same situation at our borders that have been there for decades. The last meaningful reform was in 1986 under Reagan. If you can’t do the math that is 35 years ago. Get real! We need immigrants for so many reasons but we can’t have them strolling in without any sort of identification. We spend billions on housing and processing immigrants instead of spending that money to better conditions. Am I the only one who sees this? Of course not.
Education is beyond screwed up. Our test scores are at best mediocre. The system itself was designed in an era where kids had to go to work before and after school. Charter schools are thriving in poor areas because they are succeeding. They are fulfilling a need. Did anyone stop to think for a moment that if it is working might we not want to adopt the theory instead of trying to denigrate it? I know, that is far too sensible to work.
The key to solving any problem is defining it. You have to be unemotional and pragmatic. Take guns. At 375 million and counting there are too many of them. I understand everyone’s desire to defend themselves but an AR15 is a little over the top. Do you tuck it under your pillow at night in case there is a B and E at your home? The solution, ban assault rifles. No TTG, you don’t understand. They’re taking away my freedom. Hmmm, you may be taking away mine.
Back to the dinner party and how we can change. You have to start with factual unbiased data. Give me a set of numbers and I can work them any way I want and our newspeople do just that on both sides of the fence. Pin down these politicos with tough but fair questions and not prearranged soft balls. Give me the news without all the editorial content and innuendo. I want to be informed, not entertained.
Secondly, we have think tanks throughout the world. Instead of opining on the subtleties of a Mideast conflict or the world economic forum at Davos, how about really doing a deep dive on poverty, drugs or our lack of water? Instead of planning our trip to Mars, figure out why people aren’t getting vaccinated and appeal to them as fellow Americans and not a member of this party or that.
Educate your self. Take just one hour of what you would normally spend watching, Netflix or golf and just start Googling a particular topic. Research some so called specialist on TV and find out if they are really that good? If you find one go even further.
Why do I do all this? Plain and simple. My kids and grandkids. A lot of what is wrong is because my generation and yours gave out a lot of passes. Run up the Federal tab like there is no tomorrow. Spoil the environment with plastics and pollutants in our lakes and oceans. Let corruption go unchecked because you have to do it to remain competitive. Looking the other way is just as bad as not looking at all. Stop equivocating whether you are a titan of industry, pillar of the church or just a resident of this place we call home.
Sorry for my petulance. A man in my position should not bitch and moan. Kathy and I have it good here in Fla La Land. You probably do too. But please note it is a not a complaint but a plea for some sane and wise discussion. Just for even a moment don’t think about ourselves but the other guy or girl. We are probably all at sea and looking for land or at least a lifeboat.
Ted The Great.
There are 18,000 interpreters and their families that are trying to get visas to the US. They face certain death when the Taliban. Our State Department can’t figure out how to process so many applicants.
Go to USdebtclock.org if you dare. Watch the dials spin as they relate to the US debt(28.5 trillion at press time) and rising.
We spend $60 million a week to house 16,000 underage immigrants.That is $775 per day per child. This is not partisan but a government system that can’t meet the need.
There are over 7500 think tanks in the world. Some are partisan and some are topic specific. They are very informative as mostly non governmental organizations. Maybe a good place to start.