2022 Propositions, just the facts.

There are 10 propositions on the upcoming election.  I know some people are confused by them, and there is a lot of misleading information about them.  I am going to try to wrap that all up.

First some structure.  Propositions are a 3-digit number, the first digit tells you the type.  1 means a state constitutional amendment.  2 means something that that people collected signatures for and got on the ballot that way.  3 means something that was proposed by the legislature and referred to the ballot.  Ones that start with a 4 are city and county ones, which there are none this year.  The last two digits just go up with each one, year after year until it hits 99 then resets.

So lets get into them.  I will try to explain what each of them does.  I am not going to tell you which way to vote, but I do feel that some are obvious. 

128.  In Arizona if a law was passed from a proposition the legislators cannot change it at all unless it goes to the ballot again. That has made some problems when it was written poorly. This law would allow changes to propositions with invalid provisions.  Arizona is one of only 2 states with this restriction.

129.  This will limit future proposition that are citizen-initiated to focus on just one subject.  Bills in Arizona already have this requirement.  This is so you can’t put something that most hate in a bill that most people like, and then only focus on the good part to get the other part passed.  Many people are low information voters and without this protection someone unscrupulous can sneak something into a popular bill. 

130.  Property tax Exemption for Veterans who are disabled or whose spouse has died. This was a law previously but was removed over 30 years ago.  This had unanimous support from the legislature. As with any property tax the taxes are a set amount for each year, so if less people pay then everyone else pays more.  Under 2% of the population will qualify for this, so you should see your property taxes go up around 2% if this passes.

131.  Create a new office of Lieutenant governor.  Right now, if the Governor leaves office before the end of their term the Secretary of state becomes governor.  This has happened 6 times in our history.  The sec of state oversees elections so this could be a problem during election season. 45 other states have this office while the rest do not, Arizona is the largest state without.  This is the 3rd time this has been put on the ballot with 1994 and 2010 being the other two times.  The governor and Lt governor would run together as a team.  Over 70% of the legislators in Arizona voted yes to put this on the ballot. 

132.  Supermajority required to raise state taxes.  This would mean that any bill that raises taxes will need 60% to pass.  There has been much argument in the past about bills and if they raise taxes or not.  9 states have this law on their books.  

209. Debt forgiveness on health debt.  This would make it harder for debt to be collected and easer to be forgiven if that debt is related to healthcare services.  It would limit the interest rate to 3% or less per year on such debt.  It would eliminate late fees. It would also raise the limits for protections of exempt assets.  For example, if currently if you own a car that has more than $6000 equity a judge could force you to sell it to pay the debt, this will increase it to $15,000.  On homes that exemption will go from 250k to 400k, and from $6k to $15k for personal property like electronics, guns or jewelry.  If this passes, then it is likely people and companies who provide these services will charge more to everyone to offset the ones who do not pay.

211. Campaign Finance Disclosure. This requires that anyone that make an independent expenditure of $50,000 or more on a statewide campaign or $25,000 or more on a local campaign must disclose the names of the money’s original sources.  This could cause a chilling effect and limit free speech, it also could be used to harass people who donate, who would have remained anonymous without this. An independent expenditure is money that is spent outside of the campaign, by a group not related to the campaign.  Donations to campaigns are already reported, and for much smaller amounts. 

308. In state tuition for everyone who went to school in Arizona for two years and graduated from High School in Arizona.  Currently if someone is not a US citizen, they pay out of state tuition even if they went to school in Arizona, this would change that. The in-state tuition does not cover the cost of education and is subsidized by those that pay out of state tuition with any deficiency made up by the state.  Private colleges don’t offer in-state tuition.  Currently in state tuition is about 12k per year while out of state is about 30k per year.  

309.  This would increase ID verification for people who vote by mail. It would require that a voter put their birthdate and any number from any government issued ID, or the last four digits of their SSN, for their ballot to be counted.  It will also make getting an Arizona state ID Card free for anyone who needs an ID.  For in person voting only photo ID will be accepted, currently non photo alternative ID is still accepted. 

310.  Fire district fund.  This would add .1% to the state sales tax for 20 years.  This money would go to the 141 rural fire departments in Arizona.  1.5 million people in Arizona live in these districts while all 7.2 million and any visitors will pay the tax. 

How to be successful

Image result for brain

I have often wondered about the source of human intelligence and the ability to do something.  After decades of observation I have found that  most humans have decent innate ability, however some are made to push this innate ability into true ability more than others. 

The to make it easier lets look at the human brain like a computer CPU chip. Not all CPUs are made the same, some have less processing power, more or less cores and operate at various speeds.  There can be powerful CPU’s with the ability to do deep instructions but they could be at a slow speed.  There can also be very weak ones that do one thing very well, but most of the rest not too well, but can do it very fast, more like a CUDA core.  But to keep the CPU metaphor there can be strong and powerful CPU’s that just run idle most of the time.  Think of the genesis stuck in a third world nation, who does not have access to information or higher education.  

Humans in general rarely live up to the potential within them.  Most are far lacking, and for most it is not their fault, they simply are not challenged, they are not pushed hard, they are not confronted with ideas that cause them to grow.  The true sad part is that many are never even given the chance.  Some need to spend their mental energy just to survive.  How successful can you be if you must spend hours each day to get food and water?  Some live in a rigid culture that does not allow them to grow outside of the box, their rank, or families rank in society does not give them the opportunity to move up.  Others are given everything to them on a silver platter, and even then many don’t have the innate ability for success. 

People observe the world around them and rarely think about why it is that way, or even if it is changeable, they simply operate within the rules they are given.  They do what they are told, they strive to learn, get good grades, maybe get higher education and then get a good job.  That is exactly what society needs them to do.  If not enough people do this track then society could start to break down, we need people to do many millions of various jobs.  So society entices them, shows them a standard of living that is beyond what their station can provide, and puts them in the bondage debt trying to get that.  Debt is the is the strongest tool of modern society to keep people in line and keep people working.  People want that dream house, that nice car, the nice phone, to eat out almost daily, and for that they give up the majority of their waking hours.  It is a never ending cycle for most people of trying to earn more so they can buy more and look more successful to their friends and live what society has shown them as a happy life, but the more they buy to be happy, the more they owe, and the more time and energy they have to give to pay for this.  It is getting worse year after year, and the younger you are and the lower you started the harder it is for you.  Now half of our workforce can not even afford housing, they cannot afford the lifestyle that they wanted for themselves.  They blame the system for not providing enough of an opportunity for them, but not the system that wanted to put them in bondage in the first place, causing them to live beyond their means. 

Image result for red pill

There are many people who have taken the red pill, who have seen the world for what it is and have opted out of this world.  There are two main paths that these people take, one is highly destructive, and the other leads to success.  Many have chosen to just give up, let the system destroy them, give up on the dream, give up on being more, being better.  Our new society lets them do it, with free money, easy government assistance and endless entertainment or chemicals to keep them numb about their situation. 

See the source image

Then there are the others that also reject the system, and they rise above it, looking at how to use the system as a tool to get what they want in life.  The first step is usually to reject the idea of working for others.  Then to find a way to make massive profits, to buy themselves out of debt and bondage, and then to live their dreams.  Unfortunately these people are quite rate, and the ability to do this has much to do with the origins of the person trying to do it.  If you are born in a nation like North Korea, Nigeria and even most of China you have very little opportunity to rise up, you are given a set of rules to work with and all the tools you need, even basic tools like being able to buy and sell something are taken away. There is little way out and little hope.  In other places like India and most of Africa the vast amounts of poverty, and cast systems, make it very hard to get ahead.  For this reason, when people are desperate they resort to breaking the rules in a bad way by scamming people.  Therefore, many people in places like India and much of Africa are so eager to scam the rest of the world. They see is as their way of rising above a very broken system that keeps them down. They have rationalized the idea that the rich and the “West” owes them, and that we are open prey for them.  They use the internet and phone system against the “West” to get ahead.  They are so in need of money that they are willing to say and do almost anything to take their success, mostly because they are in a position where earning it is almost impossible. 

Most everyone in the world sees on their TV’s and on their computers that their best hope for success is to get to the successful places in the world.  For many decades this was mostly America and western Europe.  America, keenly aware of this has severely restricted access, there are 100 times as many people who want to come to the US each year than are actually allowed to do it. Most waiting lists to get the USA are decades long, so out of desperation, and exhaustion from the process, for the hope of a better life and a better system people take the arduous task of coming to the US without permission.  In recent years other bastions of freedom have popped up in places like South Korea, Singapore and the UAE, however in many of these places you must be a member of the right race, or the right religion to be given full access to the success the place offers. 

In the last 15-20 years there has been a great shift.  Many people in many places have pulled up from squaller, and pushed up to a lower middle class life.  If they can’t go to a different place they will make the place they are in better.  Bold and eager people all across the world are trying to rise up, and take their countrymen with them.  The sleeping giant of America has had their middle class eroded because this is the greatest transfer of wealth the world has ever seen.  America is trading its success around the world by buying the worlds resources and products.  We are giving them our currency, something that still has values, not because it has been protected, but because we are just slightly better as managing it than the rest of the world.  Yes, America prints money, and is in high debt but the world economy works as a comparison and America is printing less and is more able to manage its debt than most of the rest of the world.  For this reason places like Taiwan, Philippines and China have pulled up millions of people from poverty and have put them into a lower middle class existence, and a few into even better levels.  They have had great building booms and the health, education and tech level of these cultures is vastly improved.  There are whole cities popping up all over China, all over Africa, the middle east and other places with new modern places for people to work live and shop.  American, 60 years ago was 60%+ the GDP of the whole world, now it is under 24%, still not bad for being under 4% of the population of the world, and anyone knows who has been to America that most of that wealth is in the hands of the top 20% of the population.

See the source image

However not all nations have done this with the same eye on freedom that America has.  Many nations have done it this fast by using force, and totalitarianism to make it happen.  China is the prime example of this.  There is very little you may do without the government as your partner.   Many other nations are starting to reject the ideas of freedom, fairness, and capitalism.  They are looking at a socialist version of capitalism.    Different nations do this to various degrees, and even the US does it at different times.  The freedom to be successful is also the freedom to fail, but we do not want to see people fail so if someone is close to failure think that it is best to step in and save them.  We have entire nations that have taken this to the extreme.  They have decided that no one may be to successful and no one will be too unsuccessful, they are trying to build a nation where everyone is middleclass.  Nations like Denmark, Norway, New Zealand or more recently Germany come to mind.  Where there are high taxes on success, to the point that beyond a certain point there is no reason to try.  But on the other hand there is a basic standard income, so even if you don’t work you still have money.  There is free health insurance, housing allowance from the government, free college education, massive spending on clean energy.  The goal of life in most of these places is to just get along, be happy, be content and live a good live.  Which, for most people on earth sound like a great idea.  But for someone who is driven, freedom loving and entrepreneurial, this idea sounds like torture.  And that is the fundamental difference in America, you have half the nation looking at Norway and wanting to move us in that way, and the other half looking at freedom and our past and wanting us to keep that and go back in that direction.  That, to me, is what the fundamental difference between the Democrats and the Republicans in America is.  As someone who has looked at Macro economics and the fact that if we do a Norway style entitlement program, we will no longer have the strong currency that we have grown to use as the blank checkbook we buy everything we need with.  If we go that way, and hurt our currency along the way, where will that leave us?  Is that a risk we are willing to do?  So how does Norway do it, well they pump and sell massive amount of Oil.

For all these social economic reasons the experience and opportunity for one person to another varies considerably across the globe, and even from house to house within the same city.  So this forms the input on the mental health and the brains of each person.  The ability to create success, and to rise above this system that we have built is mostly determined by the mindset you carry.  The thoughts and ideas that come to your head.  With different inputs you get different outcomes, and the differences can be staggering.  I often talk to people about topics such as this, and I can tell in a few seconds if they are someone with their mind open or if these concepts are beyond them.  

You need to start early in the life of most people.  Where people invest their time is usually where they will go.  Some spend countless hours reading, studying and trying to figure out the world.  Recently the entire world of knowledge has become available online, with just access to YouTube you can learn almost anything you want, but what do the vast majority of people do with such a powerful tool?  They use it for entertainment, for watching the latest dance craze, for watching mind numbing entertainment.  For most people there is not eagerness to learn or to grow.  I see this as the biggest failure of the education system.  Education is not there to teach you facts, it is there to give you a passion for life long learning and for knowing how to learn the best, then you will learn for the rest of your life.  A third of Americans have not even read one book after leaving their last year of school. 

Image result for idenity culture america

There are only so many hours in a day, and so many days in your life, what you choose to invest these hours into will define what you become.  If you need to spend half your day trading manual labor just to earn enough to pay for food and water, how can you ever spend enough time to gain the skills and knowledge, this is where over half of the world finds itself.  They are in a system that eats up all their time, and takes whatever is left and focuses on entertainment, games and socializing.  If you are a female you may easily spend an hour a day trying to make yourself look better to the world, trying to keep up with cultural beauty norms that zap your time and earning and learning potential.  Many systems discourage advancement, and if you try to get ahead people pull you down.  Many places are too hot and people spend their time just trying to stay cool.   There are cultures, even within the USA, that are destructive to their members, they tell people to not get ahead.  They encourage poor choices, getting into debt, taking drugs to fit in, being drunk daily, spending all your excess on entertainment.  No matter what you say to fit in an be successful in America you need a good grasp of English, yet millions in our nation are so embedded in their “community” that they have handicapped themselves by refusing the learn English.  The more they shelter themselves with the community and the larger the community the worse it gets.  There are non-assimilated groups of immigrants all over America.  Very few other nations have this problem at all, and none as bad as America.  This causes distrust and putting the ideals that that community over the ideas of being an American.  America needs to melt a bit more, to mix, to not focus on these communities.  In recent years the melting of America has been significantly slowed.  We need to stop doing things to address these communities and focus more on helping everyone melt into the American culture.  These culture differences are one of the primary things that are tearing America apart.  It if find to love your culture, and embrace it, but you also need to function well in the greater America.  So many people are willing to divide the cultures and find anything to put a wedge between people.  There is so little unity in America, so many want to define themselves by this identity culture, and it has been common to ask people about their identity.  It has even moved to what sex you feel like you are at that time, and who you choose to love, and of course their race.  All these things have become part of the conversation because identity has become the thing that defines us more than what we do in life.  This is tragic for the evolution of the American society.  If you want true success you need to reject this pull, and focus on your dreams.

What you focus on you get better at.  If you want success in life first you need to define what success looks like for you, if success is having a home, a spouse and a few kids then that is all you need to focus on.  If success is just getting by then you have sent a low standard and can probably get it.  If success is being a self-made deca-millionaire, then you got to get working, less than .1% of the world’s population will ever reach that goal.  If success is to have all your bills paid, just figure out how much that will take and work to get that much in cashflow or assets.  Once you figure out what success looks like to you then you need to have specific goals and make a plan to getting to them.  You need to free up your time and your resources to focus on these goals.  So many people don’t do this, and by just doing these basic steps you are far ahead. 

Most people take the lazy, or comfortable path, they don’t plan, they just let the world loft them around with little firm goals or plans as they move.  They don’t take the time to learn every day, to meet people to make them better, to stive to do what it takes each day to gradually get to the next level.  They want to do what is fun, what feels good in the moment, time is of little importance, they have no drive.  Maybe having fun all the time, is their definition of success. 

I think that most humans have the innate mental capacity for success. There is a small part of the population that have a mental defect, that will make it much harder for them to have great success.  There also another small part that have great mental abilities and for them things just come easy.  It does not matter your race, or your sex, humans are given brains that are capable of almost anything from the start.  But then the environment kicks in.  For many this happens even before they are born, they grow based upon what their parents consume, maybe nutrients are scarce, maybe the culture encourages drugs or alcohol.  But once they are born the differences from the environment have massive differences.  The economic situation of their parents, the time their parents have to nurture them, the ability to get quality food, quality housing, the ability to send the kids to a good school, to provide educational tools, the mindset and culture of the family, the town, the nation….all these things have great effect on the development of the brain of the child.  Early development is the key and quite often things start getting engrained, making it harder and harder has times goes on to reject the system the child is born into.  A high level of travel and exposure to different cultures is shown to vastly improve the life of someone later on.  But again how affordable is this, and if you come from a country with little power you are not even allowed to leave.

The fundamental problem is time, very few people use their time to reach their goals.  So many spend 40 hours a week working a job they don’t like, and usually 10 more hours getting ready for the job and getting to the job.  That same person could use their spare time, learn a few new skills and move way up in life, be a leader in their company, or even start a whole new company.  But most people are exhausted, they don’t look at it this way, have no drive or vision to move up, and spend their time in ways that don’t move them forward.  Time if your greatest asset and choosing how you spend it each day, each week, each year is one of the most important decisions that you will make in life, it is a decision that we make daily, and it takes the dedication and will to make it happen.

Because of this I have tried to expose my children to as much different information as they can.  They have already been to many different nations, we focus on education in our home, watching videos of other places.  One child has taken a deep interest in Japan, and has done countless hours of study into the culture of that country.  One told us he wants to spend his next summer traveling to the Philippines. 

When you learn you need to not learn in a bubble, you need to get knowledge from people who actually challenge your current thoughts and concepts. You may move your position, or you may better understand your position. Try to get your news from different sources, try to listen and follow people who you don’t agree with. 

Another hugely impactful thing to remember is the 80 20 rule, this is a shortcut to doing so much more in the short time you are hear on earth.  It is quite easy to become decently good at something very quickly.  There is a saying that it takes 10,000 hours to master most things.  If you want to play the piano very well 10,000 hour are needed….but with just 2,000 hours you can play decently and enjoy the piano.  The same goes for almost anything you may want to learn.  You want to make videos, or be a web designer, a coder, a graphic designer, or good at almost any task, you don’t need to master it, you simply need to understand it and be proficient.  You can probably be a good drone pilot in just 100 hours of practice.  You can start a great career in sales with 100 hours or less of training.   There are very few things that you need to master to be good at them.  They key is that you can be broad, learn a ton of different things in your life, and soon you will start seeing patterns in how the world works. 

I see how business works, I and see patterns in how marketing works, but also how systems are important so that you can duplicate your self and buy your time back.  If you create a good system than any capable person should be able to step in and run that system to a adequate degree.  Once you do this your goal is to make systems for everything, replacing yourself out of every aspect of your business that you want to.  Soon you have bought back almost all of your time, and can go onto other ventures, repeating the process.  Finding out what works, making systems and finding people to run those systems.  That is how someone like Elon Musk can run 5 different companies and they are all successful and on the fast track to success.  This is exactly how someone like Warren Buffet is able to buy companies that are in distress, and quickly turn them around and make them successful.  It is simple get them to focus on what the company is good at, relieve them of most debt, make everything a system and implement the system.  Running a business is not too hard when you understand how it works. 

Well 4000 words later, hammered out in 2 hours in the middle of the night, it is good to get my thoughts into the internet, I hope they inspire someone down the line, I hope that someone gets some good out of it.  Thanks for reading my ramble and I hope to do more soon.

2022 Arizona Primary

As a PC in the Republican party it is part of my job to help educate voters about the elections. The Primary is coming up on Aug 2nd.   I have spent about 30 hours listening to candidates and trying to decide who I will vote for any why.  So here are major races in Arizona.  Every candidate I am suggesting is someone I have meet in person, and shook their hand.  I have listened to all sides in each case, as much as I could, and these are the conservative choices I have found.  For me it is important how a person carries themselves, and how they get their message across, this makes it easier for them to win the general and to be better when in office. I also look for fighters, they will fight to win and will fight for what is right when in office.  We have way too few of them. 

The most important thing is that no matter who wins in the Primary that we will help them in the general election.

Az Governor: Keri Lake.  I have been on the fence for her but after talking to her in person and going to three events with her I think she is the best choice.  Very much a fighter.

United State Senate: Jim Lamon, the only one to build a business, he understands what it is like to be an entrepreneur, he know that government gets in the way more than it helps.  If we were at war I would choose General McGuire, but we are not at war, and it is way more important for us to focus on the economy and business right now than the military.

Az Sec of State:  Shawnna Bolick, Another bold fighter, and a great speaker.  Has passion for helping the state.  Her opponents have great resumes but she was the only one that was a great fighter.  Honestly any of them in this race would do a great job, but I have seen Shawnna more and she has more passion I feel.

Arizona Attorney General: After listening to them all I feel that Rodney Glassman would probably do the best job, he knows who he serves, and he is the only one who has actually ran a law office, and this role would be running the largest law office in Arizona, we don’t need someone who never was the boss.

Superintendent of Public Instruction: Shiry Sapir, has the most passion by far, comes to a ton of events and is a great speaker, she ticks all the boxes.  She also is a business person and knows how to get things done.

State Treasurer: Kimberly Yee, a great speaker and someone who has done a great job building and watching our state funds even in this down stock market.  I think she deserves another 4 years.

Corporation Commission (2 open seats): Kim Owens and Nick Meyers.  Kim has been an important part of the Republican party for years and would do great in this position.  Nick Meyers knows the job well and has worked in this area for years. 

Maricopa County Attorney:  Gina Godbehere, another fighter and passionate person.  After listening to all of the candidates Gina clearly stood out and will get my vote.

All the other races only have one person running, or is too local for this post. 

Understanding the divide

The natural drive of people is different but can generally put into two categories.  There are some people who are driven to survive and others who are driven to succeed.  When it comes to life there are two vastly different attitudes that exist.  It is based on what you want out of life.  Do you want to be someone who wants to reach for the stars, make your dreams happen and take risks to do it, or are you the second type the ones that want to survive, have a happy life that you can enjoy.  This fundamental difference in attitude creates our great debate of how society should be structured.   Countless movies and books have been made about this subject.

In most of the world the survive mentality has taken hold.  People work to just earn enough so that they can live.  People want to be taken care of, they want to have a “fair” society, they work, and give a large amount of their earnings to the government, in exchange the system gives them guaranteed housing, food, health care, and leisure.   For people who lack ambition this is the dream society.  And of course, billions of people on this planet love the idea.  But then there are other people.  Men and women of who have a dream to be better than the norm, to make an impact on the world.  They want to build an empire and make it or fail on their own merit.  They want the government to stay out of their way. 

America was created by the dreamers and the ambitious, the people who came to America did so because of the promise that it offered.  Even though the ambitious are in the minority of the world population, they were the vast majority in the USA.  That is how we became exceptional, that is how we became the most successful nation in the history of the world.  This is how we became great.  The idea of a great America was not the idea it was great for everyone, but the idea that it is great for the ambitious, the dreamers, the empire builders.   And that has been taken away from us, little by little over the last 100 or so years.   But the seed that was sown into our great nation is being strangled.  American attracted the best, the boldest of the world.  Our nation was built on the idea that anyone here could rise above where they were born and build their Empire.  This is why New York is called the Empire state, it was the place to go to have the ultimate freedom and connections to be successful, and if anywhere has fallen the most it must be New York. 

The idea of empire is in jeopardy from the other group.  The millions who came here, not due to ambition, but by the desire to survive.  Some were forced to come long ago, others came from the poverty of the world not looking to build something but just because anything was better than where they were from.  The largest part of those who don’t go after ambition are the children who grew up in this prosperity, who had everything handed to them, who were told that everything they did was great.  They want a country that takes care of them.  It is sad now that for most ambition and the dreams of empire no longer exist.  They simply want to live a life where everything is given to them.  Then at the same time they see the rich, and the successful and they form tons of envy, they want that handed to them also, they talk of wealth inequality or injustice of every type.  They think life should be fair, but for them they are already well better off than the average human on this planet.  They have no idea how it is to live in India, or Africa, and how most people on the earth fight every day to survive, and yet we have a generation that is unhappy they can’t earn $15 an hour for almost no contribution to society, they are unhappy that they can’t have a nice car, a nice phone and still live in a nice house without working a decent job. 

Then we have an election, it is a very stark difference, on one side we have the people who believe in American exceptionalism and the idea that America should be a great place to build your empire.  Many people believe in this even they are personally too timid to ever do it for themselves, but they want the option to be there, for them or their kids.  On the other side we have the people who think that America should be a place that gives everyone what they need, no matter their contribution to society, that we need to be a fair and just society, where the rich pay for those who just want to live a life of leisure, they want a living wage enforced by the government and they want all of their creature comforts paid for and guaranteed no matter what they contribute to society.    It is a stark difference, and the way things are going we need to pray for the future of our nation. 

Life is so unfair….

Life is so unfair……and I am glad it is. We are so lucky to be in the position we are in this world. We have enough freedom to conduct business, we can use our mind to focus on higher things than survival, most in the world can not do so, 2 Billion people don’t even have clean water to drink. Half of the world does not even have a bed to sleep in, they sleep on a mat on the floor or something like that. We need to thank God every day for what we have, and remember to help others out.

I am so blessed to be here, in the US, and have the chances I have to be successful. It was work, but mostly mental work, something that 80% of the people on this planet never even get the chance to do because their situation is hard. It does not matter how smart you are, or how creative, in most of this world the system will eat you alive. But in America is it only your perception of the system that exists that holds you back, everyone, who has the mental skills, can learn the system that makes success happen, and with mental and physical work get that success. The problem is that many people are taught the wrong things, and many are too busy making a living to make a life. Some may call it white privilege, but really is it American privilege, and anyone here can take advantage of it. No one know this more than the smart person who comes from another country, where they don’t have the ability to use their mind and be successful. This is why many business people who come from other countries are very successful here. It does not matter the color of your skin.

For many years I was VERY frugal, most of my friends would joke about it, but I wanted to spend way less than I made, I wanted to take that money and put it into my business. Yes I took calculated risks and almost every one worked out. Looking back I wish I took more risks, God was always there to protect me. I spent hours every night for years, reading books and changing my mindset. But more importantly I spent time talking with and being around other successful people. Finally now in 2020, everything is finally coming together, I can be less frugal, and some of the risks are paying off well.

If you are in America, and you want success, it is within your grasp…read the right book, take the risks, be your own boss….never trade your time for a wage. Buy other people’s time at wholesale prices and sell it at retail prices. Buy stuff at wholesale prices and sell it at retail prices. Market inefficiency is your friend. But everyone has time to be better, most people have at least 5 hours a day that is yours to decide what you do with it. How you spend this time is what shapes your future. Do you spend it watching TV? Do you spend it playing video games? Or do you spend it learning how the world works, how to be a better human, how to make the world a better place.

The American Dream Act

So there is a voters initiative going around in Arizona, called the American Dream Act.  This act would remove property taxes off of any citizen over the age of 65.  On the face of it, you may be willing to support this effort, as I was, but after just a little thought about it, it is clear that this must be defeated.  Being a Realtor, I have a high degree of interest and knowledge in this subject.

First we must look at how property tax is calculated in Arizona.  First the county accessor figures out how much every property in that county is worth.  It can only go up at a small rate each year, so properties that have not changed hands in a long time are valued much less than they should be.  The amount the county says a property is worth is the Full Cash Value, then we have the Limited Property Value.  The property can go up any amount but the LPV can only go up 5% per year.  So in the last 8 years most property has gone up much more than 5% per year, but the LPV is a benefit for people who still own the same house.  The LPV gets reset to the FCV when the property is sold.  On an owner occupied single family residence the tax is based on 10% of the LPV Value this is called the assessed LPV.   Most commercial buildings are assessed at 18% of the LPV Value.  Empty land and investment property is 15%, Senior living centers are also 15%.  Schools and churches are even 15% though churches can apply to be exempt. 

So if you are a taxing body you send the amount you need to raise to the assessor’s office.  They then add up the Assessed LPV of all the properties in your jurisdiction and divide that by the amount you need to raise, and those properties are assessed that amount.  So lets say you are school district, you need $10 million to run your school.  Your district has $2 billion in Assessed LPV then that would mean for each $100 in Assessed property value a property has they will have a property tax obligation of 50 cents.  So if the home in that district is worth $200,000 and has an LPV of $120,000, then an assessed LPV of $12,000 that person will owe $60 to that school district.   Then we have layers and layers of different taxing bodies, each with different borders and different amounts.  This is a large task, mostly done by computers now, but after figuring out everything a bill is sent out for each property with a list of each taxing body they are paying tax to and how much.  All of this data is public record for every property.     For example a home in Sun City that is worth $173k has an assessed LPV of $10,376.  They have a tax obligation to three taxing districts, $102 to pay for Maricopa County Community Colleges, $342 to pay for Fire service in Sun City, and $70 to pay for Street Lighting improvements.  This is only $5 per $100 in Assessed LPV.

So lets say we make all senior citizen property owners tax exempt then they won’t pay these taxes any longer, BUT they still we be paid, the assessor will just have the remaining properties pay a higher amount.  So lets say this bill passed, and in sun city about 70% of the properties are owned by someone over the age of 65.  The rest are churches, businesses, property that is rented and such.  So in order for those 70% to pay nothing the rest must pay over 3 times as much as they are paying now because the tax base has shrunk. 

Imagine you are a business in Sun City, you already are assessed at 18% instead of 10% on the value of your property, but now that amount will go way up due to a smaller base.  If you own a building worth $500,000 which would be a small business, you already are paying on an assessed LPV of $90,000, about 9 times as much as the average home. If we use the same amount of $5 per 100 in LPV we would expect a tax of $4,500 for this small business per year.  If the base is shrunk by 70% this business will see a tax INCREASE of OVER $10,000 to over $15,000 per year.  This sort of thing can make the difference of that business staying in business or failing. 

Imagine you are renter in Sun City, you live in a nice home, or senior living and you rent from a landlord.  This property is also not exempt.  You may not directly pay property tax, but it is part of your rent, and if it goes up your landlord will surly pass it on to you eventually.  Lets say it is an average house with a $700 a year tax obligation, and lets say that 70% of the property value in sun city becomes non taxable, your new tax is over $2300 per year, about $135 more per month.   Let’s think about who rents, usually these are the most fragile, and poorest among us, the people who can least afford a tax increase. 

Because this new law is not means tested that means you will get the benefit no matter how much you make or are worth, but a renter, or someone who is just out of college struggling to pay their bills, or that small business will pay for your benefit.  You lived a good life, you are reaping the rewards of home ownership and now you want more benefits on the backs of those that can least afford it. 

If you are for this still for this, and your reasoning is that taxes are bad and that taxes are theft, I am with you.  But this will just shift the taxes to people who have a hard time already.  Furthermore, the senior population is with us on this cause to lower taxes, and once their taxes are gone they will no longer care about lowering property taxes, this will lead to even higher taxes.

If you are still for this because it will put money in your pocket, have a heart and care about the rest of the population, you had a good life, you own a home, you are ahead of most people, the generation that is coming up has it much harder than you had it.  

Luckily for me I live in Peoria, where the senior population is much lower than sun city, but if this was to pass it would still be a fairly large impact because I own a business also that pays a lot in property taxes but I have never minded them because I see where the money goes and those are things that I support.  But I don’t want to pay more than my fair share. 

When the Founders said “democracy is two wolves and a sheep deciding what’s for dinner” this is EXACTLY what they had in mind.

So I implore you to not sign petitions for this, and if it makes it on the ballot vote against it.   Unless of course you only care about yourself and are greedy then do what you want.  

The Biz Guy is back

So for the last 9 months this blog had been offline. My server got hacked and this blog was the source of that hack. It was a bad plugin. So in order to get all my sites up again I needed to delete this blog. I killed the folder, but the database was intact. After 9 months of neglecting I was able to get the site going again with about 30 minutes of work, and all of the posts and pages are still here. 173 of them that I wrote over a 10 year basis though most were written in 2005-2008. Blogging gave me a way to get the ideas out of my head. and to share with people these ideas.

In this failure I lost the folder that had all of the photos, so now we don’t have photos for historic blog entries. My average post had two photos so that is a big loss and lots to rebuild. I also lost all my plugins, these were the cause of the failure, but I will add them back in soon once I know they are OK. The data in these plugins is likely also lost.

During the last few years I started to vblog on youtube, but I feel that it rambles and it was hard to edit it. I like the written word much better. I don’t know how much I will be blogging but at least the site is up, you can read the things I wrote long ago, and I can post new things.

Presidents in the age of the extreme.

For a long time now the country has been becoming more and more extreme.  You have people on both sides who listen to friends who think the same way they do, and maybe even more extremist.  Both sides have news networks and major blogs and publications that will support their point of view.   People see these stories and repost them, and their friends repost them, and the see them over and over in their feed.   This is the echo chamber effect.  What is being said is irrational.

I can tell you that I have never unfriended someone for having different political views, and I see both sides in my feed.  If you remove news that opposes your views you will be ill-informed.  You will only see one view, and that view gets more and more radical as time goes by because no other voice is there to bring rational thought.

This happened as Obama took office.  People on the left made him out to be their savior, that he would fix all of their social concerns.  People thought he would pay their bills, give them free health care.  There was so much hope in him that he was given the Noble Peace prize before he did much of anything.  On the right the same thing happened.  People kept saying he was the worst president ever.  People thought he would be the source of Socialism, Sharia Law,  FEMA Camps, death panels, martial law and much more.  They thought he would take their guns, promote abortions and generally destroy the economy and the nation as a whole.  Obama is NOT the savior and Obama is NOT destructor that so many memes and blogs made him out to be.

BUT this is ALSO true about Trump.  Most of those that loved Obama now hate Trump, most of those that hated Obama now love Trump with as much varicosity. All of these people protesting what could happen with Trump are misled by the media just as much as when Obama was given the Peace prize.  On the other side these people who think Trump is the savior are probably just as misled as when they thought Obama was the destroyer of our nation.

In retrospect Obama was a fairly weak, non-effective president.  He did not bring disgrace to his office as Clinton did but he did not inspire us like Reagan did.  He spent his first part fighting with the Dems and getting almost nothing done, and then the Dems were replaced by Republicans and then nothing of major importance got done.  He could only act by executive order.  Most of what he did was not majorly important to the vast population, and easily reversed because it was only an executive order and not a law.  His only major impact was Obama care.  Passed in the middle of the night on a holiday weekend using rules that were hardly fair.  It never should have passed.  But then it did have some positive effects, helping some get health care, but making it harder for others.  But it was not good economically, and most companies involved in it had major losses.  So it did have some good parts but a lot of bad also.  He ended up leaving office by going on a goodbye tour, going on TV shows and giving speeches.  It was nice when he was singing the national anthem when he arrived as his goodbye speech.
He seemed to be a good man, focusing on the prayers during Trumps inauguration.

Trump has been plagued by a media that is highly negative on one side.  They have been creating fear in their audience, and whipped them into a fervor. Resulting in protests that are on the verge of riots, smashing windows, and setting things on fire.  Fear is a very powerful motivator, just after Obama took office this fear fervor created the Tea Party movement, record gun sales (Because people thought Obama would stop sales any day), and grew the Republican party faster than any time in recent history.  The people who are anti trump, however, have much less respect for law and order than he people on the right did.  They will be much less peaceful than the right was.  They forget that people on the right spent the last 8 years buying guns, and gun laws have become much more free in right leaning states.
My prediction is that Trump will not do anything of consequence to hinder the LGBT community, he has shown that it is a non issue to him.  He loves and adores women, and will not trample their rights, no matter how much the liberal media has made you think he will.  Trump is very smart, and I honestly think he loves America and will do what he thinks is best for America.  The problem is that what he thinks is best is not what others think is best, but maybe his logic is correct.  He does not think we should let Muslims in during this time of ISIS, and I think he is correct, just as we were correct not to let Germans or Japanese in when we were at war with them.  I am not sure that the block on trade is a good idea, having studied economics so much, but it will bring more jobs in the short term.  I think a wall is a good idea, but when it is in the middle of nowhere I am not sure we need a real huge wall, just a fence with some good sensors.  Over half of our border is wilderness.

But I can agree totally that a smaller, less intrusive and less restrictive government will be better.  We do not need the government to be our nanny, we do not need them to tell us what to do and how to do it.  We also should not be babies and not put out our hand every time we are hungry or have any need.  We should be adults, standing or failing on our own efforts. The adults in our nation love this idea, but the ba
bies, the snowflakes hate it, they have grown up with it and will be forced to grow up without it, so they protest, just like any baby.

People should give Trump a chance to be a good person and not be what the liberal media makes them think he is, just liked they asked the opposite people 8 years ago when Obama took office.

The problem with me writing a story like this is that those on the left and those on the right will disagree with parts of this, causing no one to share or promote this article.  Lets see, I hope I am proven wrong, just like all those anti trump people will soon be, and all those Anti Obama people were.  This is the problem that happened with Glenn Beck.  At the start of Obama he came to fame feeding the echo chamber, and massed a huge following and created a media empire.  But recently he saw that this was part of the problem, and that it was dividing and not uniting our country.  Mr Beck has lost most of his followers and his empire because of this stance.  The people who consume the media want the extreme.  The more extreme a story is the more it will be shared and promoted, even though most of it is fake.  This is the key problem, they make money promoting and increasing the extremism even if it is clear it is tearing our nation apart.  My hope is that Trump will not do anything the left is afraid of, that he will make government leaner and fairer again and soon much of this extreme talk will subside, just as it did in the last few years for Obama.


Free speech in the world of the illogical

More and more I feel that free speech is under attack in America. There are things that groups watch out for, they want to silence their opponents. So what they do is that they put a zero tolerance approach on the speech of their opponents. If you are a public figure they will also try to shame anyone who associate with you, they will announce a boycott on the people who support you.

Here are some examples.

NY is banning workers even going to NC for something about bathrooms.
Professors are getting fired all over the country when they say things that were considered truth just a few years ago because those ideas are no longer accepted.
LA and other parts of CA tried to ban doing business in Arizona because it passed a simple bill requiring cities to ask people if they were here legally because some cities were not doing this task and harboring illegal immigrants.
In most media you can not even say illegal immigrants.
It is not acceptable to say anchor baby, that is considered hate by the left.
So many people are getting their speech banned on Facebook, Twitter and other social sites
You can not question global warming, even though it is not happening, now they call it change, simple because has always happened and always will.
You can’t say anything about someone in one of 20 different catagories, Gay, Musim, Mexican, Illegal or anything else without being called a hater, even if your point is valid, they cut you off and tear you down right away.
They are given free reign to tear us down as much as they can, because we are white, male or Christian. Because we think on logic and not emotion. We are open minded, and try to help everyone else, and they are there to take and take advantage of us.
In most public places free speech is now relegated to a small zone that makes it not very free.
A friend of mine fired from his job because he said something on Facebook years ago and then decided to serve in a political position, the enemys of the person he was helping found this, took it to CNN, CNN called his boss and said they would make it a national story unless he was fired on the spot, what choice did the boss have, he can’t have his company ruined by a bully with a tv station. How is that not extortion.
This is all so frustrating. This is why I have not been posting much about politics on Facebook.

The left is so illogical. How can a democrat who loves gay people support the Muslims who will murder and stone gay people on sight? How can a small group of scientific leaders bully the world into believing that climate change is something to worry about and that no more research is done, the issue is settled they say and any new evidence is unaccepted, how scientific is that. They had a whole security theater thing at the airport, no way will that stop a determined perp, but they inconvence us all. How can they be against the death penalty for murders and evil people but be in favor of killing the innocent unborn, and forcing us all to pay for it even. How can these groups be against bulling yet be the biggest bully in town towards their opponents.

In America you have the right to free speech, most other places you don’t. But people have been bullied into not using it. Many people say things that make them look dumb or stupid even, but they have the right to do it, and we can point it out but should not attack them over it with venom.

So many people have been torn down and destroyed over one small statement, especially when they said it in the long ago past when we had free speech. Hulk Hogan scourged out of WWE history. Paula Deen, losing her show for saying a word that most black people use often but white people are not allowed to say.

So I think that many of Americans think about these things in a way opposite than what the media is trying to tell them. BUT they will never say it out loud, they don’t want to be attacked, they keep their head down, they invoke self-censorship to protect their company, job and families from the venom of the left. I think most Americans feel being gay is wrong, being an atheist is wrong, being a socialist is wrong, that illegally entering out country is wrong, that killing the unborn is wrong, that taking our guns is wrong, and that censoring our speech is wrong. But they are making sure that all students thing all these things are great, and soon the greatest generation will die out. They have a long term plan to take over out country and we are nearing the realization of that plan. I fear that an election of either of these democratic candidates will make that plan happen, and the country we grew up in will be gone forever.

I think this is a big reason that Donald J. Trump is winning, because he says the things that most people only think. And the media is flabbergasted because for the first time they are not strong enough to shut him down despite all their efforts. The problem is that he says so many things that now some on the right also can’t stand him. My problem is that he has a need to always have an answer and often talks when he should not and he has not thought it out. Ted Cruz also says the truth, but presents it with logic, with lengthy arguments that destroy his opponent. His problem is that logic and solid arguments don’t work in a world that runs on 3 second soundbites and emotion, in a world where most people don’t use logic. How can someone like Ted win based on logic, only the logical will vote for him, and there are just not enough of us around to win.

Please share more examples you know of…please share your personal experiences with self-censorship.

Income Inequality in America

Recently there has been a lot of talk about income inequality in America.  There is some notion out there that it is ‘unfair’ for someone to make a lot of money.  The thing is that there are million of people working hard each day to get rich.  A few million people are entrepreneurs, people who take a risk and start a business, they hire people, come up with new ideas and in the mean time risk everything, and many of them fail, the best ones get up again and try again.  Many of them work for years without getting paid more than the people who work for them, some work a whole year and make nothing.  The stress about the business, the sales, the clients, and mostly about helping out the employees.  Why do they do all of this?  They do this because they have a dream, the dream to building something that will last, something they can give to their kids, and the dream of being rich.

So they work for decades and finally they are successful, they have a system that works and they are making good money, and they are now rich, making more money than any of their employees will earn in their lifetime.  These are the people that the pundits are calling the problem now, they took the risks and made the hard choices to put themselves in that position, and people look down on them for it.   It is a sad day in America where prosperity is a bad thing.

The main problem is that very few are educated now on how the economy works.  America is a great country, there still is a lot of opportunity here.  Someone can start with nothing, not even knowledge and learn in a short time how to do something useful for the economy, they can then work hard, and smart  and become successful in a short span of time.  I love to see how people come from other nations, nations where there is not much opportunity, and it is hard to get ahead, they come here and work hard, work smart and in a few years they are better off than most Americans.  And most Americans resent them for it, sad.

I think that a lot of this comes from the lack of education most Americans have about how the world really works.  Americans for the most part do not travel out side of the US.  In fact only 36% of Americans own a valid passport, and only 6% of Americans, on average, leave North America per year.  It is estimated that only 20% of Americans have ever left North America, and about a third of them did it while in the military.  Once you see how the world works, your understanding of how good things are here in America really changes.

The Philippines is a below average nation in wealth, with a per capita GDP of just about $3,000.  The average American makes more in 3 weeks than someone from the Philippines does in a year.  But they still need to spend on food and housing and many other things.  But no one there has an attitude of this being unfair, and that they should be given something for free.  That is a very American attitude.  They are thankful for what they have, they are happy for the most part, and everyone helps each other out.  If someone is in need the family and community helps them.  When they travel abroad, they come to work, because they know how they can make as much in a day here, as they do in a month there, they work hard, live simply and for that reason they usually have great success in the US and other nations.  If you earn $1000 a month there you are upper middle class.  People look at the wealthy there as something to aspire to become, not something to be taken down.

2015-08-23 10.50.40The attitude there is so much different and better than in the US.  In the US people feel entitled to free stuff, we are raising an entire generation who feel that if they don’t want to work they should have free health care, free food, free housing and free spending money just because they live here.  They feel that if they should bother working that they should make $15 per hour at least.  They have not yet seen the reality of the world.  Most Americans feel they need tons of money because they must have a $500 smart phone, with unlimited data, and they must have a nice big TV along with a big cable bill and of course, the most expensive of all they must have a car.  In almost all of the world a car is a luxury only the most wealthy have.   In most nations car ownership is under 15% of the population.  In our entitled society even the most poor among us feel that they need a car, and of course they should not pay for it.

I am a fair guy, I think that if you really can’t work that you still should be taken care of, I feel that the primary job of this should be done by charity, and that the successful among us should support such charity, but this is being done by the government, and we are forced, with threat of violence to support it, so we have become a less giving society.  I think that widows and orphans should be taken care of, given food and housing.  I think that the really disabled should be also taken care of.  In none of these cases should they be given money that they can spend on anything, but given vouchers for housing or food.  We need to redefine what a disability is, right now anyone with even a minor problem can be called disabled and get free money.  The vast majority of ‘disabled’ people could easily hold a job.  In fact many people who are getting free money from the government do hold jobs, they just work under the table, that is why the number of people working under the table or 1099 is now almost 1/3rd of the workforce, they want to work, but don’t want to mess up their free government money.  We have really gotten ourselves into a huge mess.  The problem is that about 1/3rd of the population is dependent on this system now.

We need to start to see things as they really are.  When you take money from someone who earns it without having the use of it and give it to someone who has it without earning it you are a thief.  You are teaching them both the wrong lesson, you are teaching the earner that they will be punished for doing well, most do it anyway because they still get to keep most of what they earn, but there is talk to make it more and more progressive of a tax if you earn more.  You are teaching the receiver that they can use the government to get them free stuff, that there is no need to better themselves and to work hard, that things will be handed to them.  This also puts the government in a morally wrong position, a position of being the thief, true everyone loves robin hood but he was still a thief.  This is on a much more massive scale.

I have no problem with a well run government to provide for the common defence, to build roads, and provide a good education, safe places to live and places to gather such as parks.  I even think that the wealthy enjoy such things more than others, and use such things to prosper themselves so they can pay a bit more.  I don’t think that there should be loopholes, the government should not use the tax policy to tell people what to do and what not to do.  But most of all I don’t think that they government should be taking money from one group and giving it to others as a wealth transfer.  Did you know that only 34% of our federal budget is spent to actually run the government, all the rest is used to move money around from one group to another.  Now to me that is what I call Unfair.  Some CEO who worked hard his whole life and makes a huge amount of money is ok by my, he worked hard to get there, he is likely providing much more in value than he costs or why would he be there.  But taking his money and transferring it is totally unfair.  Most people who are in favor of such transfers are usually the recipients of these transfers, or they hope to be.

I am sure that many will argue with this essay, they simply see the world differently than I do.  They usually have never owned a small business, have never traveled overseas, or they simply were raised with a different mindset.  People can rework stats and %’s to make almost any argument, all of my stats came from the most common official sources.

Let me close with a story I heard, if you have a bed to sleep in, a toilet that flushes, and a fridge to store your food you are in the richest 23% of the world population, if you have a computer or smartphone, now you are in the richest 17% and if you have a vehicle you now are in the richest 8% of the world population.  There are 6.4 billion people in the world, so 64 million people would make up the top 1%….of those 64 million people over 40 million of them live in the US.  If you live at the poverty line in the US, you are still in the top 5% of the world population.  If you live at half the poverty line in the US you are still richer than over 85% of the people on this planet.  So stop wining, and take advantage of the opportunity this nation provides, literally billions of people would do almost anything to be in your shoes.