Human Version of Twitter

For the most part, Twitter is 144 characters of communication. We can all stipulate to that.

How many of us stand in line or drive up to a window to purchase coffee in the morning (or at any time during the day)?

I usually go at the same time give or take 20 minutes to a Dutch Bros on Glendale and 12th Street in Phoenix. (Even though I prefer Starbucks, this place is really close to where I reside.) I see, generally, the same 12 to 15 kids as they rotate through the week. Most are just happy to see and pet Bruno but I do get to have quick exchanges with these 20 or something year olds. Some are in college. Some are working two or three part time jobs. Some are full timers. All of them have tattoos (is that a job requirement) and all of them have a story. (It’s amazing what you can learn during a 30 second exchange.)

Today I learned one of my favorite servers is leaving “for a big girl job”, as she calls it. “Betsy” (May or may not be her real name) is always happy to see us, very engaging, and has an interesting story. It’s not mine to share but suffice it to say she always has something interesting to talk about. And, she can do it all in 30 seconds or less.

It occurred to me these quick snippets of conversation during the exchange of debit cards and coffee cups are the human version of Twitter.

Sadly, as Betsy leaves to pursue bigger and better things, it’s also an example of how easily people pass in and out of lives.

Trade War Taxes

Tariffs are an interesting phenomena.  At first glance, one thinks the “bad guys” have to pay to get their product into the country.  Actually, it is the local IMPORTER who has to pay these taxes and he / she / it simply raises prices and YOU end up paying for it.  So, in the end, you, the consumer pay these taxes.

Unless, that is, you decide to buy American.  Now, the problem is America is not known for its manufacturing prowess anymore.  In addition, there are some countries that are putting out electronic products (think Japan and South Korea) that we could never duplicate (not because we literally couldn’t, but because we’re too lazy to do what it takes to learn a trade and get our hands dirty).

In today’s paper of record there is an article suggesting China is running out of ammunition in the trade war.  They simply can’t match the monetary amount of tariffs our administration is placing on them.  Do you know why?  Because 1) we don’t manufacture as much as the Chinese, 2) there is a significant trade deficit between our two countries, and 3) they don’t want to buy our stuff anyway.

As we seem to fall deeper into our protectionist, America First (which I really don’t have too much of a problem with) and tariff policies, we have to realize all those great tax breaks we think we received last year are getting absorbed by the taxes we’re now paying on imported goods.

Taxing imports is not the answer.  Forcing companies to manufacture here and forcing companies to recruit and / or train the labor force should be “first”.  By doing so we get the following: lower unemployment / increase in a skilled workforce; an increased tax base; more factories and resources necessary to protect ourselves in the face of threatened war (think WWII when car companies quickly converted to machines necessary to support the war effort).

If we’re going to pay taxes, let’s get the taxes working for us !!!!

It’s Amazing What You’ll Find on The Internet

Out of curiosity, I completed an internet search seeking to determine, simply, if there were any immigrant child detention centers in Arizona.  Considering Arizonians back and forth position on illegal  immigration I was pretty sure no one would stand for any such facility in the state.   To my shock, I was able to find, not only the number of centers but, the exact location of the centers.  There are 9 in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area alone !!

A NEW LEAF operates two of them.  SOUTHWEST KEY PROGRAM, INC.  operates the other 7.  4 are in Mesa.  3 are in Phoenix.  1 is in Glendale.  1 is in Peoria.  One of the facilities in Phoenix is 5 streets west of, and two blocks north of, Phoenix Children’s Hospital.  I can get there by bicycle.

The centers are referred to as “foster care centers”.  Apparently, we here in Arizona have a huge problem with illegal immigration until we can make some money off of it.  Then, we welcome it with open arms.

Trump Wants Protesting to be Illegal — I’ll Be Blunt

What? This is the president of the United States saying that the 1st Amendment should be banned. I recall, very clearly, Trump’s press conference following his meeting with Kim Jong Un. Trump said, and I quote, “He speaks, and his people sit up at attention. I want my people to do the same,” Now, don’t try […]

via Trump Wants Protesting to be Illegal — I’ll Be Blunt

Trump: “Real power is, I don’t even want to use the word, ‘Fear.’ ” — I’ll Be Blunt

In 2016, candidate Trump was being interviewed by Robert Costa when he uttered this sentence. Certainly, a voice of a dictator wannabe / mafia crime boss wannabe. Yesterday, the Washington Post released an article titled, “Bob Woodward’s new book reveals a ‘nervous breakdown’ of Trump’s presidency”. It was written by Robert Costa and Philip Rucker. […]

via Trump: “Real power is, I don’t even want to use the word, ‘Fear.’ ” — I’ll Be Blunt