We Need More “Can Do” in America!

September, 2014

shamrock_possibleAmerica’s success is being restricted by not enough “Can Do” and too much “Can’t Do.”

America was built on the attitude of “Can Do.” Regardless of the problems we have faced—and we have had many—the American people have rallied to solve problems. The key to success has always been leadership…

Accomplishing the right objective at the right time!!!

“Reflections” readers have been exposed to a number of ideas that, if implemented, would generate greater success for America.

Recently, George Shultz, the former Secretary of Labor, Treasury and State, offered some sound ideas:

  • Cleanse the personal income tax system of deductions and lower the marginal rate on a revenue neutral basis;
  • Reduce corporate taxes so our companies can compete on a worldwide basis, and keep more jobs in America;
  • Get control of spending. If we don’t, debt service will be unbearable when interest rates rise to a normal level; and,
  • Address Obamacare. Let people buy the coverage they want and need. Expand health saving accounts.

Implementing these ideas, plus expanding our own energy resources, would have a positive effect on the economy and create more jobs in the USA!

Can’t Do

We have government agencies placing one road block after another, reducing our ability to do the right things.

EPA is enemy number one. They issue one regulation after another shutting down electrical production. They have no regard for our electrical output. Coal provides 40% of our electricity. Where will the power come from if EPA shuts them down? Solar and wind mills won’t cover the loss. Prices will go up. Jobs will be lost!

The Dodd-Frank law was passed four years ago. We are still waiting for the unelected bureaucrats to issue the final regulations. In the meantime, try to get a home loan.

We could go on and on about the government epidemic of “Can’t Do” regulations. Why does the government want to regulate more of our lives?

I live in a prairie state. You can still see the ruts in the ground from the wagon trains as they headed west. These hardy souls piled all of their possessions in a wagon, bound for a place they had never seen. They made it to the west coast without the benefit of the EPA, IRS, Labor Department or OSHA.

Their hearts were filled with a “Can Do” attitude and they built America!

Summary

We need a “Can Do” attitude in Washington more than ever. Only our own “Can’t Do” stupidity is holding our nation back from achieving greatness.

We have an election in a few months. When you vote, choose wisely.

Let’s get America moving again!

More Skills = More Pay

August, 2014

shamrock_skillsCongress and the President continue to focus on the minimum wage. They should be focusing on how to Increase the skills of the American worker!

Millions of jobs cannot be filled because workers don’t have the necessary skills. What’s the solution?

More technical training programs!

In metro Kansas City we are fortunate to have a number of quality programs at our high schools and community colleges where young men and women can earn certifications and degrees in highly skilled, high demand fields like manufacturing, health care, auto technology, welding, graphic design, culinary arts and more.

The Olathe, KS school district is a state and national award winner where the lives of students are being changed and the new face of the American work force is taking shape.

Here are just a few stories from the Olathe Career and Technical Education programs:

  • After being shot, a young man turned away from inner city gangs, found a new pathway in auto technology, graduated from the Olathe Advanced Technical Center (OATC) with multiple industry certifications, became the first in his family to go to college and is now earning over $60,000 right out of community college.
  • The athletic trainer for an NFL football team is a  graduate of the Olathe Sports Medicine Program.
  • Chefs graduating from the Olathe Culinary Arts programs have won national competitions, received scholarships worth millions and are now working in the finest restaurants in the U.S. and Europe.
  • Nearly 100 young men and women graduated, earned industry certifications and found well-paid jobs right out of Olathe high schools this year alone.

Industry representatives are literally standing at the end of the graduation lines to offer these kids jobs.

What’s particularly moving about these stories is that many of these students were ready to drop out of school before they found these hands-on, career training programs. Nationally over 75% of all kids who are failing in school are boys. On the other hand, over 90% of boys who take technical education programs at schools like OATC graduate with above average grades and go on to meaningful careers or success in college.

Programs like these prove that we can get a great return on our education dollars. Economic research shows returns of up to four-to-one on the cost of career and technical training programs vs. the taxes collected and economic benefits generated by these well-training and highly motivated new workers.

Nationally, there is talk of the income gap. I believe it’s an opportunity gap. When a person doesn’t have the necessary skills to do more than flip burgers, then they’re only worth minimum wage. But, if our schools and businesses can provide the training these people need, their skills will be magnified and their pay checks will grow accordingly.

Looking out over the coming decades there will be millions of new jobs available that require skilled training, industry-required certification and some post-secondary education. They’ll be in the health care, manufacturing and high-tech fields. But, the vast majority of these jobs will not require an expensive, four-year college degree.

Summary

Urge your local, state, school district and federal government leaders to focus on the solution to higher pay: Greater Skills!!!

Let’s not focus on the minimum wage. Focus instead on more skills for greater income and success!!

Fed Up

July, 2014

shamrock_ballotboxAs we celebrate the founding of our nation, the American people are FED UP!! with the Federal government, Congress and the President. Take your pick of polling data and you find the approval or confidence ratings for

  • Congress: +/-10% (the lowest since 1973)
  • President: 30-40%

The American people have lost faith in Washington and are frustrated over the lack of leadership they see in the Capitol and the White House.

Eric Cantor

People ask, “Why was Cantor defeated in Virginia?”

The answer is simple, “He was out of touch with the voters!!” The voters spoke and elected an unknown who ran on conservative values. He had little backing of the Tea Party. With a campaign fund of approximately $200,000 vs. Cantor’s $5 million, the people liked what he said and voted for him.

Regulations

According to the Competitive Enterprise Institute

  • More than 3,600 new regulations hit the books annually, a rate of nearly 10 per day.
  • Federal regulations cost the economy $1.8 trillion per  year; a hidden tax of almost $15,000 per household.
  • Last year Congress passed 72 bills but government agencies issued 3,659 regulations.

Let’s tear down these regulatory barriers to success!

Executive Orders

Congress votes down a bill dealing with immigration. The President signs an executive order implementing a policy rejected by our representatives in Congress.

The President continues to modify Obamacare to his desires.

It is Congress’ responsibility to pass the laws. The President’s responsibility is to enforce the laws…all of the laws, not just the ones he likes.
IRS

The most feared government agency—the IRS—is out of control!

It is well documented they are singling out conservative groups who request 501 c 3 or c 4 tax status. For over a year Congress has been trying to obtain key information. Now we find key e-mails have been “lost” due to a computer hard drive accident.

How dumb do they think we are???

Who will be the next group the IRS goes after? How sad that people are afraid of their own government!!

Middle East

The Middle East is now in flames! Iraq is divided along tribal groups. Oil supplies are threatened. Thank goodness for fracking in the USA or we would be waiting in gas lines again.

Energy

It is imperative that we continue to expand our own energy plus oil from Canada and Mexico.

We have been sitting on approval of the Keystone Pipeline for years. Canada is tired of waiting. They have now made the decision to build a pipeline to the West Coast to sell their oil to China and Japan.

We cannot afford to lose this safe energy source. Approve the Keystone Pipeline NOW!!!

Summary

We are the greatest nation in the world. Yet, due to lousy decisions by our government, we are losing our strength both domestically and internationally.

We continue to waste too much money; our deficits go up, while the value of the dollar goes down. Take a trip out of the country to see what your dollar is worth.

Elections have consequences. Get out and vote in August and November. Let’s return our great nation to the conservative values that built America.