• Call it like it is. Stop with the games.

    This election season has my head spinning with polls changing as fast as the dollars zip by when I pump gas into my Harley. Are the American people really so fickle? I understand the transitions from and to various candidates during a primary. After all, there are really very little differences between the Republican candidates this year, regardless of what some more intransigent types might have you believe.

    But what about the national polls addressing the various Republicans vs. President Obama? I find these more than a tad distressing. I find some comfort in the fact that things should become clearer as people coalesce around a Republican nominee.

    How are we to take the game playing involved here? I wonder about how the polls can be so skewed one way or another, then I learn so many of these polls actually stack the sample with more Democrats, or left leaning independents than Republicans or conservatives. Say what?

    Speaking of playing games. We see Democratic pundits running around flouting the 8.3% unemployment rate, which is the “official” number. Official, which only in government could be in contrast with the “actual” number, which is over 15%. Again, say what?

    We don’t count the unemployed people who are no longer looking for work. So, if you don’t have a job, but are looking for work you are unemployed. But if you don’t have a job, but are not looking for work you are…what, no longer unemployed. Is there another term for a person without a job?

    How about we call a spade a spade for a change? Count the people who don’t have a job, not by choice, and that amount equals the amount of unemployed people. Now, I’m no math whizz, but I think even I can do that calculation. And when conducting a non-partisan poll regarding the national election we make sure the sample taken is as close to, considering the liberal-conservative-moderate makeup of the country’s voters, 33% of each group.

    Or am I just being too radical for today’s politics?

  • If you fail to plan, you plan to…well, you know.

    In order to accomplish anything worthwhile in life, or even to change your life, it’s easier if you have a plan. I often told my kids as they were growing up: if you want to do a particular thing in life, study people who are doing what you want to do, and do what they did. This may sound simplistic, but it’s actually a good foundation for a plan.

    Of course no two people will take exactly the same route to any form of success—or failure, for that matter. However, if you have a plan, you at least reduce your chances of failure.

    I think some people fail to plan because they believe it locks them into some sort of commitment. Like they’ve written it in stone and any diverting from the plan is failure. They focus on failure before they even start. The only thing a plan locks you into is a commitment to try. It doesn’t even matter if you accomplish the exact plan you set out to. The most important thing is a plan lets you focus. It also lets you break down the goal to more manageable steps along the path to success.

    In 2003, I set out a ten-year plan to become a professional writer. Why that year? In ten years, I would be eligible to retire from my day job. Though I had a plan, I did not accomplish my goal exactly as I’d planned. But it didn’t matter. I have become a professional writer and author of three books. But I’ve also learned that while becoming a published writer brings about an indescribable satisfaction, it does not guarantee a Stephen King-sized bank account. Well, not yet anyway. But I’ve got eighteen more months; we’ll see how it goes.

  • Free for whom, President Obama?

    I don’t write too often about President Obama directly. There are plenty of great writers out there who do a better job than me. However, the President’s speech yesterday regarding the religious liberty issue was appalling.

    Surreal just isn’t adequate in describing an American president standing at a podium issuing an edict that mandates private companies provide “free” services. And putting the religious and liberty issues aside for the moment, “free” for whom?

    It certainly won’t be free for my wife or me, or all of our hardworking taxpaying friends. Our tax money will be redistributed to those who can’t, won’t, or now, don’t have to pay for controversial items. This president behaves more like a king than the president of a constitutional republic. In recent comments, he’s expressed his belief that the Congress and the Constitution are impediments to the imposition on the American people of his view of a perfect society.