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http://www.well.com/user/mp/host.html
Expert witness in nearly all areas of business: finance, marketing, management, compensation, ethics...Author of 11 books on money and commerce
Interests: Licensed Pilot Single Engine Sailor Skier Welder Chinese Martial Arts student Motorcycles
Recent Activity
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When I told my friend Bob what I had seen in the strawberry fields near Salinas, I saw a look on his face of total disbelief. Bob was a founder of California Rural Legal Assistance, more than 45 years ago. He lived in Salinas for several years and worked on the legal issues of immigrant farmworkers. Most of what he... Continue reading
Posted 6 hours ago at Pro Commerce
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I recently went to the Monterey aquarium. For two hours of entertainment, it is $40. The kelp forest is interesting especially for me as I have spent time in the actual kelp forests at Monterey. When I surfaced I tried to swim on the tops of the kelp and failed. Scary. The tentacle exhibit was interesting, as we slowly come... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Pro Commerce
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My friend Hans recently drove to Alaska. As he passed through Canada he was struck by the working class people he met everywhere. It then occurred to him, based on our joint knowledge of Canada, that Canada is really not a giant industrial commercial nation, it is an extractive economy based largely on mining, oil, timber and some agriculture. I... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Pro Commerce
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Back in April I wrote four blogs about the impending San Francisco minimum wage. Those blogs made it clear that thousands of businesses would be forced close because of the new $15 minimum wage due in three years and tens of thousands of workers would lose their jobs. We are now less than two weeks from the vote on this... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Pro Commerce
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There is some point at which government is so large, so parasitic and so demonically supported by its subsidized citizens that it effectively suppresses innovative commerce. Do we know that point? We can begin by looking at Europe. Europe is dead from the vantage point of innovative commerce. Since WWII Europe has not produced significant technological innovation. To know how... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Pro Commerce
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The wonderful journalist and Middle East reporter Michael Totten has raised the issue that we are in the era of zombies. He wrote an article for City Journal that summarizes the situation. It is fairly clear that we have gone through an era of popular zombie fascination. Many of my friends and my son are zombie fans. My son argues... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Pro Commerce
Right Ann. Mencken fully understood the issue. We are at our roots a Puritan country, much as I may dislike many elements it may be the source of our vitality. Jews are the original Puritans.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Our era at Pro Commerce
1 reply
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I believe that there are several pervasive social phenomenon occurring in our current era. One is the dominance of Puritanism. Puritanism is not merely the repression of sex. It is the repression of all forms of pleasure that are enjoyed by someone else. Clearly, sex is a subset of the larger category Pleasure. Puritans were hostile to dancing and Jazz.... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Pro Commerce
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San Francisco is on a peninsula. One of the towns further down the peninsula is Palo Alto. Palo Alto is a rich town that includes Stanford University and a high-end shopping mall. It is the home of many tech executives. A few nights ago my TV news reported that the entire Palo Alto police force available, meaning those on duty... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Pro Commerce
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I stayed in a Marriott hotel last week that said on the website that it had a swimming pool. I probably wouldn't write a blog on this subject except for the fact that 15 years ago I gave up running every weekday for nearly 30 years in favor of swimming. After swimming in an inadequate pool on my back looking... Continue reading
Posted Oct 17, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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A friend of mine, who was the economist for the City of New York, asked why the following chart is such a puzzle since we have never seen anything like it before. I answered that it was the result of Democratic party policies and Obama's socialist anti-business agenda. He wanted me to cite examples. The following is a list of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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My question in this blog title would seem to be fairly irrelevant. France was on the winning side of World War I and played a major role in eviscerating the losing Axis side. But would it be reasonable to say that France won World War I? I say “yes” because France is the heir to the French revolution in which... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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A lovely Austrian friend of mine and the I were discussing my desire to have a word for people who are well-educated but stupid. This comprises many people on the Left and a disappointingly large number of my Lefty friends. For example: it is stupid to think raising the minimum wage won’t create unemployment for low income people. Stupid. We... Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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Some of my readers know that I live in one of the most hostile environments for poor people and minorities in America. San Francisco. It is also one of the most hostile places in America for people who are happy. The local Democrat-Union government puts a high priority in running people's lives. It is a nanny government with a Puritan... Continue reading
Posted Oct 13, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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The ‘point’ in my blog title refers to the Point Foundation started by Stewart Brand in roughly 1971 with funds from the Last Whole Earth Catalog. Google seems to take the word ‘point foundation’ to a separate organization that makes grants to LGBT's. There are plenty of documents that the Point Foundation I am describing left behind. They don't appear... Continue reading
Posted Oct 12, 2014 at Pro Commerce
Phil, I'm old enough that all but 3 of my 180 'friends' are people who I know by touch and smell.
Toggle Commented Oct 11, 2014 on The shock of defriending at Pro Commerce
1 reply
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I recently had a cold and could not find the appropriate zinc lozenge to treat it. So I bought a box of lozenges online in case I got another cold. One morning last week I felt all the symptoms of a cold coming on, sore throat, sore muscles, slight headache and low-energy. This time I was able to take the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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A few blogs back, I was talking about the positive elements of pro-commerce, as I usually do. In that instance I was thinking about what type of philanthropy might have long term positive benefits for humans by encouraging commerce. I imagined a philanthropist in the U.S. in 1800. I then, in my own mind, did a thought experiment about what... Continue reading
Posted Oct 10, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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During the recent Israeli defense of its citizens from the rockets launched on its cities from Gaza, there was a furious explosion of Jew hate throughout Europe and to some extent in the United States. I found myself defriending six people on Facebook who would previously have been considered friends. In four cases I told them what form of Jew... Continue reading
Posted Oct 9, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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When you read the extraordinary history of Jew hate in Europe in David Nirenberg’s book, you are inclined to see it as central to Christianity both Roman Catholic and Protestant. Hundreds of thousands of people were killed between these two religious sectors (as well as others living in Europe) over the issue of religion. Both sides had their version of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 8, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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I truly wonder about the level of historic knowledge among most people in the world. On the Left in the United States there is the preposterous notion that Islam is not a threat to Western progress. Some on the Left argue that there will be a modernization of Islam that will create tolerance. Others argue that Islam at its core... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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My son pointed out that the current Lefty hysterical academic creation of every possible minority-oppressed-group is inappropriate in the world of commerce. Commerce is based on meritocracy and diversity. Commerce thrives in the most diverse social environments. It does much better in the United States, Canada and Israel than it does anywhere else. That diversity is not definable but it... Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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In the last blog I mentioned riding on the shuttle seated next to a PhD candidate in statistics. One of the startling pieces of information for me is that the Common Core educational curriculum includes sections on statistics and probability at the high school level. That is fantastic. I believe statistical understanding and probability are fundamental to living effectively in... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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Last week I rode on a shuttle from Denver airport to Boulder sitting next to a PhD candidate in statistics. What a pleasure. What I was delighted to find, was in the 50+ years since I taught statistics as a TA at San Francisco State College, there have been no significant improvements in statistics. My shuttle friend described her various... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2014 at Pro Commerce
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Haiti is part of an island. It is the black African part of the island. The other half is Spanish and Latino. Haiti was a slave colony that had a rebellion and threw out all of the French, Spanish and British overlords more than 210 years ago. Haiti has been total chaos and poverty ever since. Every effort has been... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2014 at Pro Commerce