Oct 302012

There is a lot more to success and happiness than simply having a God-given great computational noggin. It is easy to see that our companies and our communities are not often led by rocket scientists sporting 160+ IQs.

Why is that?

Well, I think the reality of it all is is summed up eloquently by this one quote:

But the person who scored well on an SAT will not necessarily be the best doctor or the best lawyer or the best businessman. These tests do not measure character, leadership, creativity, perseverance.

— Dr. William Julius Wilson

I personally would add a few more qualities, such as emotional IQ, empathy, experience, faith, optimism, and taking decisive action, to the recipe for success.

When your kid comes home from school, discouraged because she just earned a bad grade on a test, please embrace the opportunity and teach her of what it really takes to succeed, starting with perseverance above all.

I.M. Optimism Man


Oct 152012

A lot of people are dismal on the American and global outlook. They see the huge fiscal cliff that is looming. President Obama has tried to borrow > spend & stimulate his way — correction, our way (since he won’t have to pay the bill later) — out of an anemic economic recovery. It hasn’t had the desired result. We just let him run up America’s liabilities to more than 60% of GDP. Yes, that’s getting uncomfortably close to the Greece and Spain neighborhood.

The Treasury Department said Friday that the deficit for the 2012 budget year totaled $1.1 trillion. Tax revenue rose 6.4% from last year to more than $2.4 trillion, helping contain the deficit. Translation: We are spending $3.5 Trillion with tax “income” of $2.4 Trillion and borrowing $1.1 Trillion to get to a total debt of about $16 Trillion smackers. If the interest rate on $16 T is 2% a year, we need $320 B just to pay the interest. Imagine that the interest rate could climb to 6% as it has in the past. America would then pay $1 Trillion a year in interest alone!

There is plenty of evidence that current policies are just not resulting in the hoped for economic comeback. At the same time, the rest of the world is in an economic funk. China is slowing, the EU is in sad shape x-Germany, Japan is not pulling it together, Russia suffers Putin-political-cronyism strife, and even the emerging markets such as India and Brazil are not ready to pop. Global anemia we have.

What an opportunity global anemia is for an optimistic America!

America is positioned to solidify its global leadership position as “the” superpower if we take steps to put our fiscal house in order. No other country is ready to step up. We need an optimist in the White House to make the great first step. The President and Joe Biden are pitching more of the same — its not our mess, we want bigger government, more taxes, less free enterprise, less capitalism. Yet capitalism is what makes America great and business is what will simultaneously drive our comeback and reduce the employment worries.

CEOs need a reason to believe better days are ahead. If they believe, they will hire and they will build and they will invest. Reagan showed how powerful America’s momentum can be once she believes in herself. American business has the dry powder on its balance sheet to make it happen but we will not get the mojo back with the “stay the course” Obama Biden ticket.

I hope the voters can see that there has never been a better time to elect an experienced, successful, ethical business man to our highest office. We have a great opportunity to shine because no one else is prepared to take the lead. More of the same borrow-then-spend-spend-spend is not the right play.

The solution is not to tax more and more. The solution is to spend less and live in a budget again. It is nuts that the government keeps kicking the cans down the road without solving anything. Lets solve one thing at a time, starting with social security. The people want one thing solved so that they can once again believe in Congress.

Elect Romney and Ryan. We can’t afford four more years of this — the opportunity to regain “shining city on the hill” leadership status won’t wait four more years. Another country will rise if we refuse to take the opportunity before us.

I.M. Optimism Man