We’re walking in the Race for Research 5K this coming August 23rd in Denver’s Washington Park. Please join us or donate if you can’t attend in person.
One visit to our house on Halloween will usually double how much candy a kid already has. Because I slam two big handfuls per trick-or-treater. I run through two giant Igloo coolers in just over two hours.
Have you taken the StrengthsFinder test and gotten your personalized results? My boss had me do it, and I’m glad. Over the last several months, I’ve been writing a series of blog posts all about my Top 5 Talent Themes. I’m up to Analytical now. Go read that post now, and stick around because the others in the series are pretty interesting, too.
My thoughts this evening on the financial bailout bill:
- Question the premise. The premise is “we must bail out the financial services industry over mortgage-related bad assets”. Is that true? We’ve been told by people in the Treasury, from Wall Street, and from Congress that it’s true. But those people have a vested interest. We don’t know enough about the nature and extent of that interest, their motivations, or the facts of the matter to determine if the statements are true. Do you know?
- If we must bail out, what is the right amount? Treasury Secretary Paulson has stated that the $700 billion price tag currently requested is not based on some calculations or formulae, the administration just picked a number that would be “really big”. So what is the right number? Do you know?
- If we must bail out, what is the right plan of action? There are at least two plans at play in Congress right now. A hybrid came up for a vote today. Which plan is the right plan? What are the criteria that define the “right plan” for America? Do you know?
- What were the specific elements, provisions, and terms in the bill that was voted down today?
- Did the members of Congress who voted today have sufficient time to read and understand the 120-page bill that was delivered yesterday? Boing Boing today linked to a petition to ask Congress to take 72 hours before voting on the bailout bill.
- Many partisan Democrats – politicians and non-politician citizens (like Robert Scoble) alike – have attempted to blame House Republicans for the bill’s defeat today.
a. Could Congress really have had a legitimate vote today, given my questions 1-5, above? Or were they voting on other, partisan, reasons? Or were there some Nay votes due to some Congress members’ discomfort with some unknown elements of the plan? Do we even know if today’s bill represented the best plan?
b. The House of Representatives is controlled by the Democrats, in a 235-199 majority. Why couldn’t the Democrats pass the bill, if they truly thought it was the best action to take for America? Fully 40% of House Democrats voted against the bill. So why do partisan Democrat critics blame the House Republicans? If the bill is such a great idea, and the Democrats believe it, then why were 95 House Democrats against it today? Could it be that the bill was not the right answer to the problem? Or could it be that those voting against it believe there is a better way? Or could it be that many voted against it simply because they didn’t know enough about it and its consequences?
- Our thinking and opinions about what’s going on in Congress regarding this problem assume that Congress truly wants what’s best for America. But that assumption is a fallacy, as Lawrence Lessig and others have demonstrated. We’re seeing a lot of election-year posturing – I can’t believe so many members of Congress are 1) so ignorant, 2) so disingenuous, or 3) so callous toward voting taxpayers that they will continue to drag our government and our economy through the dirt much longer.
Have you ever thought about discovering your talents? I’m doing that through StrengthsFinder 2.0. I took the little quiz at their online assessment tool and now I’m writing a 6-part series about interpreting the results of my personalized list of top talent themes. Come subscribe to my blog to stay with me through this series and beyond.
I’m constantly making changes to my official web site, adding new stuff and updating things regularly. You can follow my blog to keep up with all the news, and browse my photo gallery as I add my best of the past and present. The most recent addition is Every Week, a collaborative creative photography project with my friend, Melinda Miller.
We like being put in boxes if the boxes are sufficiently attractive and if there are plenty of things to make and do. This place is a box. In the best sense of the word.