September 25, 2011

Leadership and Intention

When people share the same intention pyramids can be built and large banks can fail. Intentionality does not always flow from leadership. More often leadership flows from intention. Like Moses leading the Jews from Egypt, Gandhi led a billion people to their freedom with humility and grace. Yet, Gandhi said that he was led by his people. Oracle is the dominant company in its space with a near $150B market cap, yet no one would accuse it’s founder/CEO Larry Ellison of being humble. It’s my humble opinion that leaders are almost arrogant about the intention of their belief, whether that’s politics, religion, business or freedom. Their intention, or the intention of the group is either to impose their beliefs on others i.e. pyramids, or to persuade others that their intentions are worthy of others to follow or possess, i.e. Christianity or Oracle. But a passionate leader must never hijack the intentions of the group. Effective leaders share the group’s intention, they invite participation and closeness to the intention, they themselves humbly open their arms to the group and say, “show me how to help you achieve our shared intention.” The success of the group, the achievement of the intention MUST be shared by all.

Which may be why no one on Wall Street has gone to jail for the mortgage securities “fraud” that led to the financial meltdown: the intention of opening up the opportunity to less or unqualified buyers to experience a part of the American Dream (home ownership under the Community Reinvestment Act) was born by the government, enabled by Freddie and Fannie and packaged and sold by the investment banks. Because the banks were simply the conduit through which government’s intention was channeled, it’s difficult to pin the failure of the system to a few Wall Street firms.


July 29, 2011

The “UnAffordable” Care Act

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 6:40 pm

As the President postures to place the blame for the debt ceiling catastrophe on Republicans, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) issued their report on the economic impact of Obamacare or more officially, the Affordable Care Act. While the ACA may offer coverage to some 30 million Americans who cannot afford traditional health insurance and allow many to qualify for Medicaid who did not qualify before, the cost to our nation may well be beyond our means to pay for it.  It’s no wonder Tea Party’ers are holding the the debt ceiling hostage in exchange for meaningful spending cuts; but one has to question the liberals who say that the spending surge was really a Bush-era mishap inherited by Obama.  Clearly, the chart attached demonstrates that, beyond the $787B American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, introduced in 2009 AFTER Obama took office, supported and signed by him, and this unwieldy health spending bill, disguised as the AFFORDABLE Care Act, Obama is spending our nation into oblivion.


July 28, 2011

How to Remain Cynical in a World of Toothy Smiles

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 2:27 pm

For at least 30 years I’ve considered myself and have mostly voted republican. Ideologically, I believe in less government rather than more government. I believe the private-sector is better at running a free-market system than government would be. I altruistically believe that the poor, weak and infirm who don’t have families to help them should be helped by the states, cities and locales where they live, not a behemoth federal government with no close connection with those people or with the communities in which those people live.

Cynically, I believe the dems have offered no meaningful immigration reform because they depend on many of those immigrants for votes. Cynically, I believe that Obama has alienated small and medium-size business and the community banks because socialism can only succeed when there is a true proletariat class, which explains his penchant for inciting class warfare. Unlike other recessions in America, small businesses are for the first time not leading the way out. Small business has no access to capital, no REAL incentives to hire (i.e. minimum wage laws and the Affordable Care Act). Unlike large business small companies cannot sell stock, bonds or commercial paper to raise money. The GOP may understand capitalism but they are particularly blind to business formation and innovation. Small businesses and business owners are not large campaign contributors. Republicans fight to keep government regulations from impeding business expansion without recognizing that repealing or extending regulatory action tends to help larger, established businesses at the expense of more flexible, agile small business who better anticipate regulatory change or moreover, often are in the business of fomenting that change (i.e. Tesla Motors, Brammo). But worse, they seem as blind to the march toward socialism in America as Obama thinks we citizen are. While Obama happily congratulates GM on their recovery, they still owe us taxpayers billions. Bernanke favors the 12 largest banks with QE’s 1&2 (what were the commissions and bonuses paid to buy back all of those bonds and T-Bills?), concentrating wealth even further into the largest Wall Street banks who just 3 years ago required nearly a $1T bail-out and are principally responsible for the mortgage and housing mess.

It’s my opinion that the only epidemic in our country worse than obesity, is ignorance…and I don’t mean of government…I mean us. We cannot throw off those leaders who have brought us to this point if all we’re going to do is hand the job to the next toothy smile in line. We need a strong voice, intelligent, large, cohesive and passionately committed to real, long-term and abiding change. I don’t have all the answers but I know many of the reasons…and agree that BOTH parties have taken the road that best serves them, and not us. But we are now in the age of “crowd-sourcing.” Unlike our forefathers we can convene at Internet Speed whenever and wherever we choose. For now, I leave you with this excerpt called the “right of revolution” clause:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

June 17, 2011

Barack Obama: Unity president or great divider? – Jun. 17, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 8:55 am

Barack Obama: Unity president or great divider? – Jun. 17, 2011.

Obama hosts a Whitehouse picnic while our country faces a most critical crossroads. With rising debt strangling our economy, millions who want to work can’t find it.  While small business has no access to capital, the fed feeds the biggest banks trillions to buy Treasuries that fund government spending.   The big banks then sell these notes to foreign investors (making the bankers rich with commissions) while we mortgage the country’s future to Russia, China and other nations.  America is becoming the sub-prime borrower, leveraging us beyond our capacity to pay.  Let’s hope the world doesn’t foreclose on the U.S. they way it has decided to pull the carpet out from under Greece.

April 6, 2011

Is it Cotard Delusion?

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 8:46 pm

Cotard Delusion is defined as thinking of oneself as dead or the inverse, thinking one is immortal. In either case, it is a severe mental disorder usually associated with severe anxiety and stress. I guess if you already think of yourself as dead…maybe you ought to be.

March 10, 2011

Saudi unrest (cont.)

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 5:08 pm
Tags: , ,

Like Rip Van Winkle the people of the middle east have finally woken up to the notion that absolute power corrupts absolutely. The UN sanctioned Libya for firing in it’s revolutionaries. If it’s good enough for Libya does it work for the Saudis? Does it matter the type if bullet?

When communism fell all of the western world celebrated it’s demise. Yet, while oppressive middle east monarchies and despots fall the west seems to be holding it’s collective breath. Clearly, oil is the mitigator of all attendant evils. So long as we have cheap gas for the Hummer, so what if the average Egyptian has never owned a car.

History will remember this moment and your children will know it just as you now think of Nazism and the fascism that lead to World War 2. The form of rule in the middle east is an anachronism and would have fallen decades ago if not for the sea of oil under its feet. Perhaps the Mayan calendar was intended only for those civilizations in existence when the calendar was set, although it seems unlikely the Saudis may make it to 12/12/12.

March 4, 2011

The media thinks we’re stupid. Are we?

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 10:45 am

Today, CNN reported the following:  “The economy gained 192,000 jobs in the month, roughly in line with economists’ forecast of 190,000 jobs. Businesses added 222,000 jobs — their best hiring month since last April — while state and local governments cut 30,000 jobs.”

Just yesterday, CNN reported: “There were 368,000 initial jobless claims filed in the week ended Feb. 26, the Labor Department said Thursday. That was down 20,000 from the week before, and the lowest since May 2008.”

You don’t need an HP12C to figure out that, if you combine these two data, the economy shed a net 176,000 jobs last month.  Yet, both headlines read as “Good” new.  In the first case CNN said, “UNEMPLOYMENT FALLS AGAIN”  In yesterday’s story the headline read: “JOBLESS CLAIMS FALL TO NEARLY 3-YEAR LOW”

The media has become an establishment tool, spewing the news they want us to hear in the way they want us to hear it.  By misleading us this way, consumer confidence rises on a false premise that everything is getting better.  The rising confidence will get consumers spending more which fuels the economy.  The savings rate in the U.S. is at its highest point in 10 years and it’s expected to continue upward as more boomers near retirement.  Boomers have seen their financial futures on the brink and are voraciously saving (and not spending) to avoid the disaster of the past three years.  But savings don’t help big business, they don’t even help the banks.  Banks want billion-dollar deals with major borrowers, investors and arbitrageurs.  In fact, the credit default swaps and other sketchy Wall Street innovations that lead to the taxpayer bailouts were designed to convert cash reserves, like the cash in bank savings accounts, into fungible securities that Wall Street could sell to investors and trade amongst themselves…remember Lehman Brothers?  Savings are for wimps.  Go buy a new car and a big screen TV and a new house.  That’s what Wall Street and the government wants.

The moral of this story is:  Don’t believe everything you read. And… if you want to know how scary Wall Street really is watch the recent Oscar-winning documentary, “Inside Job.”

February 4, 2011

Narcissistic Supply – Keeping the Delusion Alive

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 10:14 pm

We all like positive reinforcement from people around us.  The narcissist extracts reinforcement much like an alcoholic extracts pleasure from drink.  It is his “high.”   His whole behavior is formulated to extract attention from others, good or bad, so long as the attention is focused on him.  His lifestyle, work, accessories, even his mate or companions exist to satisfy his boundless need for admiration and attention.  His self-worth is measured by the attention he receives.  He may be habitually late or keep others waiting simply to satisfy his need to grab attention from those he has inconvenienced.  He’ll gravitate toward people he admires and try to attach himself to them professionally to falsely elevate his own perceived professional standing.

But the false self is everything the narcissist is not, omniscient, omnipotent, rich, influential, well-connected, generous, loved or admired.  From his business partners or employees he demands constant attention and feedback, affirmation, admiration, approval, fear, respect and gratitude.  Should this demand for attention not be met the narcissist will resort to extortion through threats and intimidation.

To the narcissist attention and notoriety matter more than accomplishment.  His false-self can be a complete fabrication so long as someone believes him.  To the narcissist form is truly more important than substance.

January 16, 2011

Corporate Narcissism

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 5:06 pm

Corporate narcissism occurs when a narcissist becomes the leader (CEO) or a member of the senior management team and gathers an adequate mix of codependents around him to support his narcissistic behavior: “narcissistic leadership is about reproduced copies, not about originals.” This leads almost inevitably to a deterioration in the organization’s performance. “The narcissistic leader prefers the sparkle and glamour of well-orchestrated illusions to the tedium and method of real accomplishment.” Narcissists profess company loyalty but are only really committed to their own agendas, thus organizational decisions are founded on the narcissist’s own interests rather than the interests of the organization as a whole, the various stakeholders, or the society in which the organization operates. As a result, “a certain kind of charismatic leader can run a financially successful company on thoroughly unhealthy principles for a time. But… the chickens always come home to roost.”

Psychoanalysts have suggested that “one of the ways of differentiating a good-enough organisation from one that is pathological is through its ability to exclude narcissistic characters from key posts.”

Malignant Nacissism

The malignant narcissist differs from narcissistic personality disorder in that the malignant narcissist derives higher levels of psychological gratification from accomplishments over time (thus worsening the disorder). Because the malignant narcissist becomes more involved in this psychological gratification, they are apt to develop the antisocial, the paranoid, and the schizoid personality disorders. The term malignant is added to the term narcissist to indicate that individuals with this disorder tend to worsen in their impulse controls and desires over time.

January 6, 2011

Pseudologica Phantastica

Filed under: Uncategorized — DoNP @ 11:13 pm
Tags: ,

Pseudologica Phantastica may present itself as false memory syndrome where the sufferer believe that fictitious events have taken place when in fact they are complete fabrications. The sufferer may also believe that he has achieved a super-human level of altruism or love when in fact he is despised by the people around him.

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