NFL Super Bowl Robbing Minnesota Blind-Civic Boosterism Gone Wild-Podcast 698

Minneapolis and Saint Paul is happy to be hosting the Super Bowl. Costs for the event are not at the top of the local media’s list of things to talk about. We will in NFL Super Bowl Robbing Minnesota Blind-Civic Boosterism Gone Wild-Podcast 698.

Losing Proposition

Local leaders say this big event will generate 400 million dollars of revenue. Cooler heads say that number is pie in the sky. 400 million doesn’t come close to covering the costs of the US Bank Stadium and The Super Bowl.

Who Pays?

Minneapolis is on the hook for 700 million dollars over the next thirty years with US Bank Stadium. Especially relevant is the fact that the Minnesota Vikings owners got one of the best stadium deals in the league. All they had to do was threaten to move the team to LA. So much for loving the people of Minnesota.

By All Means Kneel

Minneapolis and Saint Paul’s Super Bowl Committee agreed to most of the demands of the NFL for a Super Bowl. On the list? The NFL will pay no state, county or municipal taxes for any Super Bowl revenue. Guess who’s paying?

Evil Corporations Do Not Include The NFL

Truth is the taxpayers of Minneapolis and Saint Paul’s metro and the State of Minnesota are paying for this event. So much for evil corporations politicians like to rail about.

Pleased As Punch For The Super Bowl

Hot dish and frozen lakes are all the rage on the local TV and radio stations. The picture of the cute kid in a Vikings jersey at the Super Bowl Experience in the newspapers.

Meanwhile the NFL is making big deals in the presidential suites of all the local hotels the city and state are paying for.

Oh by the way, they get free police escorts as well.

Boosterism Gone Wild.

Legal Corruption

These days free stuff for corporations is what it’s all about. Subsidies for apartment buildings near the train lines. Subsidies for the Mall of America to build an addition. In addition, sweet deals for businesses juiced in to events like the Super Bowl abound.

The game isn’t football. The game is a legal corruption that robs citizens blind.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.

NFL Super Bowl Robbing Minnesota Blind-Civic Boosterism Gone Wild-Podcast 698

Friday Night On Mean Street Hennepin Avenue Minneapolis-Podcast 648

Have you been to downtown Minneapolis lately? These days some don’t feel safe there. In Friday Night On Mean Street Hennepin Avenue Minneapolis-Podcast 648 we run the gauntlet on Hennepin Avenue.

After Billions Spent, New Questions About Safety Downtown

The media is starting to ask questions about crime in downtown. Opinion makers and the city’s leaders are apparently concerned. The questions they don’t ask are revealing.

Another New Crisis

The Crisis in American Cities has been grabbing headlines for a hundred years. From The Gateway District to Mayo Square it’s the same formula. Use taxpayer dollars to Demolish. Rebuild. Repeat. Has it been worth it?

Robert Moses and Richard Daley Would Be Proud

Light rail and mixed use condos. Expensive restaurants and Hipster art districts. Bike paths. Safe spaces. Higher Minimum Wages. Political fights about redevelopment and economic inequality. Tax Increment Financing to bring in big retail and big companies.

When these efforts produce mixed results, the process starts all over again. More money. Newer stadiums. More buildings. More condos that are sold as ‘affordable’ but cost at least two hundred thousand dollars. Higher rents. Traffic Jams. Crime.

Downtown Minneapolis was never a ‘thing’

The neighborhoods and retail business were located in North Minneapolis and North East, Uptown, Lake Street in South Minneapolis and Saint Paul’s ‘Midway’. Sure, Hennepin Avenue always featured bars and hotels, places to eat and entertainment. But downtown was for warehouses, light industry, office buildings, city and county government. And drunks.

Not DisneyLand

Let’s just say it. Downtown Minneapolis isn’t Disneyland. It never was. That’s the reason punks loved in in the early 80’s. The gritty nature of Moby’s and other Block E attractions made it ‘charming’. It’s one of the reasons First Avenue was able to gain a foothold as a seminal and nationally famous music and punk culture venue.

These days, the well connected, with impeccable credentials in the Twin Cities’ public-private partnership world, continue to sell ‘more of the same’; Taxes, regulation, and fees that make seeing a show or going to a baseball, football, or basketball game and having dinner after, impossibly expensive for most of the disappearing middle class.

Investment For What?

Want to start a business downtown? Want to buy a condo downtown? Better be juiced into the money or have a lot of money. No wonder people are concerned about the nitty gritty nature of Hennepin Avenue. Walking down this street you’re mixing with the great unwashed. Unruly, scantily clad, vulgar, of different races and often from the poor side of the cities. And it’s really, really fun.

What Does The 21st Century Look Like?

We need to start asking questions about the nature of the city in the mid twenty first century. Retail is dying. Corporations don’t need tons of office space anymore. No one wants to pay more and more tax. No one wants to have to pay 22 dollars for a hamburger to fund the sports cathedrals for billionaire team owners that live around Lake of Isles or out in Minnetonka.

Is the solution really more cops downtown. Another Light Rail line? Subsidized office space? Another redevelopment of Nicollet Mall? More incremental taxes added to the bills at the Smack Shack? Who lives down here? Not the servers. Nor the kids hanging out at the LRT station.

Spend Daddy’s Money Downtown

Downtown Minneapolis is a place for trust fund babies, lawyers and corporates relocating. People who are used to having things their way. No wonder they think it’s unsafe. Sadly, they’re making everyone else pay for their own personal Epcot Center. It’s a con.

Present Becomes Past?

No matter how much they spend when you walk this street, you’re walking where the bums in the Gateway used to spend the winter drinking. The past echoes up and down Hennepin, even if the buildings are long torn down. That’s never going to change.

We Pay For Power In The Shadows

When you think about how much of the taxpayer’s hard earned dollars they’ve spent, one wonders when the Downtown Council and the real shadow power in Minneapolis will be held accountable.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing of Saint Paul

Friday Night On Mean Street Hennepin Avenue Minneapolis-Podcast 648

Fear Anxiety Hope In A Time Of Fast Change-Podcast 643

In Fear Anxiety Hope In A Time Of Fast Change-Podcast 643 a look at coping with angst. Social media and instant coverage drives more worry and concern. How do we cope?

Fast Change

It’s hard to believe how much the world has changed in just ten years. Five years ago social media was in its infancy. Twitter is just 11 years old this year. The iPhone is only ten years old. Smart devices are getting smarter. Especially relevant is the truth that change is going to go faster. Drones. Cyber Terror. Driverless Cars. Autonomous Machines. Some of the effects will be good. Some will not be good.

Fear Anxiety Dread Anguish

Seems like we used to talk about robots disrupting traditional businesses. Now it’s happening. So, when Amazon buys Whole Foods, there is a reaction. Does this mean people will lose their jobs? Does cheaper food mean deflation? When there is a new development we’re immediately told what the effects will be before anyone has had a chance to soak it in. In In Fear Anxiety Hope In A Time Of Fast Change-Podcast 643.

Gonna Take More Than Just Love

What is the antidote to fear and loathing? Truth is, it would be easy to say love is the answer. What is love without knowledge? Remember how we learned to swim or ride a bike? There was fear at first, until we figured out step by step what we had to do to float, or balance. From knowledge and experience comes judgement.

Building A New World

New technology forms the cornerstones of the world we’re building, whether we want to build or not. Social media, constant coverage, blathering back and forth, isn’t going to stop. We need to learn more and fear less in order to make the right choices. Perspective comes from the combination of knowledge and life experience. The more we know about things we don’t understand the less we fear them. We’ll talk about it in In Fear Anxiety Hope In A Time Of Fast Change-Podcast 643.

Taking Charge

Human connections and real experiences are also important. Turning off the shouting back and forth. Taking a break from politics. Giving to and accepting help from those that come from different perspectives helps build a base of experience and knowledge. Reading a book about something not relevant to the day to day. Travel.

Try a Head Stand!

Finally, it helps to have some kind of physical practice. Whatever it is we like to do. Hiking, hunting, yoga, martial arts, camping, running. It all helps to get away from the natural inclination to check your twitter feed or post another selfie on Instagram.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul

In Fear Anxiety Hope In A Time Of Fast Change-Podcast 643

Warning! Media BS Reaching Dangerous Levels-Podcast 641

Back in the studio after a long trip. When you drive over long distances there’s lots to think about. Of course, just because I am on the road doesn’t mean I disconnect from day to day news. Fact is, I would much rather talk about travel and adventure. Sharing some stories from the road and looking at some of the latest news in Warning! Media BS Reaching Dangerous Levels-Podcast 641.

Gasoline on The Fire

That’s right. Warning! Danger Will Robinson! We’re going to talk about the latest news in this podcast. Especially relevant, the stuff people share on social media. Charlatans and paid agents blowing on the already hot conflagration that is supposedly our body politic in this country.

Join Us For The Congressional Baseball Game

Last month I didn’t even know there was a congressional baseball game. Nor did I care. In the wake of a tragic shooting we’re still being treated to commentary and articles that simply rehash the same things written and said about every shooting. Next, they’ll be televising the congressional baseball game like it’s the All Star game. Time to call them all out in Warning! Media BS Reaching Dangerous Levels-Podcast 641.

Feeling Sorry For Day To Day Commentators Who Have To Fill The Airwaves With Nonsense

These days I get the feeling most of what we see and hear that passes for ‘news’ isn’t memorable at all. More commentary written by people who don’t know anything, telling you what to think and what to do. Once these articles are shared all they do is fan the flames of discord, serving none of us and no purpose.

Civil War? Really?

Not content analyzing the latest mass shooting event, commentators are now telling Americans to be prepared for an inevitable civil war. I just came from touring Missouri and Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia, West Virginia and Ohio. These are all states where small towns proudly display highway markers denoting deaths and destruction dating back to the Civil War from 1860 to 1865. Seems like every southern town has memorial parks and places of remembrance, well maintained and marked. Considering the bloodletting of the civil war years, it is irresponsible to compare these times to those dark days.

Who’s Fault Is it?

We’re responsible for this, because we’re the ones that keep reading, liking and sharing this crap. The right thinks anything not written and posted by their favorite sites is fake news, and the left thinks anything from the right’s favorite sites is fake news. While people actually know very little about the issues, they’re up on all the latest agitprop from their favorite mouthpiece.

Maybe There Is A Planet Out There To Collide With Earth

Considering all this, sometimes I wonder whether some event will intervene and somehow bring us all back down to earth. Or not. A pandemic, perhaps a visit from aliens. The United States is in trouble, and we’d better wake up from this slumber pretty soon or it will turn into a nightmare of biblical proportions. (Editor’s Note: I refer to the Governor of New York being killed in the 1930’s in an Attempt on FDR’s life. It was Anton Cermak the Mayor of Chicago.)

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul

Warning! Media BS Reaching Dangerous Levels-Podcast 641

Podcast 595-Money

Money and Controlling the Media Battle Space

Money. Money. Money! Everything the new President says and does is controversial. The latest eruption concerns Trump’s executive order regarding immigrants from several war-torn countries in the middle east region. A handful of court rulings challenging the order are centered on whether due process can be denied people allowed into the United States legally. The court rulings do not suggest the President cannot use executive orders to control departments in the executive branch but whether if the executive orders deny legal rights without due process.

This is just another in a series of actions and comments by President Trump and his administration that have received wide comment and coverage in the media. While protesters protest and media outlets gas-bag about the latest affront to society, Trump and his people throw another rock into the lake creating new ripples that have to be protested against and reacted to by the already too reactive media. This is a tactic or strategy known as an OODA Loop. Trump is forcing the media and his opponents to react to him. When they react his team observes their reaction, decides on a new initiative and then acts, restarting the loop. In this way the administration controls the media battle space.

About the Money

In Podcast 595-Money: When it comes to Money, once the initial spate of executive orders and stunts at press conferences passes, Congress and the President will get down to work on legislative initiatives to address the moribund economy of the United States. Podcast 595-Money wonders whether what has been talked about by this president on the campaign trail and in the media will indeed, make America Great Again.

No Growth

The United States has grown less than 3 percent a year roughly for the last eight years. Those old enough to remember the early 80’s know that the experience of robust economic growth in that era was real. People didn’t worry so much about getting jobs. As inflation came under control and interest rates came down and as unemployment started to come down, optimism took hold. We have not had that kind of feeling in the United States for a long time.

The question is whether the things Trump wants to do will actually produce economic growth. Middle Class taxes are already historically low. Cutting corporate taxes may result in higher profits which is good for Wall Street but may not translate to jobs. Some parts of clearing out the thicket of Federal Regulations can be done by executive order but most of it will require congressional action. Will a Trillion Dollar Stimulus package to build roads and bridges spur economic growth?

A Republican Stimulus?

President Obama’s Trillion Dollar stimulus was supposed to stimulate economic growth and didn’t. Part of the problem with big federal stimulus efforts is the money has to be block granted to states and the spending becomes political. Another issue is the fact that most people in the United States are employed in services rather than construction trade. Aside from the fact that government spending doesn’t ‘create’ jobs, putting people to work in a small swath of the population usually doesn’t result in a high multiple. This is why the Obama Stimulus produced dubious results.

Another problem is Trump’s Trade Protectionist sentiments. While the trade unions love the idea generally the United States has been a free trade nation. Trade agreements are negotiated because most of our trading partners are trade protectionists. The agreements generally break down borders to our trade. The fact certain kinds of manufacturing is cheaper in Latin America and Asia has actually benefited Americans in the form of cheaper goods. Putting up barriers to manufacturing overseas also means goods in the US will become more expensive.

Most of the jobs lost in the last decade or so have been lost due to information technology, robotics and automation. New manufacturing plants are much more automated these days which means they will not produce the manufacturing jobs expected. When one considers completely automated warehouses like Amazon’s and robotic manufacturing like Elon Musk’s showplace plant, don’t expect ‘bringing manufacturing back to the United States’ means jobs at the factory for Uncle Mike.

If you believe the economy is the sum total of individual’s transactions then an economy can be considered a force of nature. This is the first time in recent memory a ‘conservative’ president has endorsed trade protection and big government spending. Two of the biggest problems economically in the United States are the ongoing budget deficits and the total public debt. One wonders how the cornerstones of the Trump economic policy will produce enough growth to reduce the deficits and public debt.

Finally in Podcast 595-Money, the proof will be in the pudding. With all the other controversies swirling around this president after just two weeks if his policies fail to produce the promised economic growth republicans will have real problems in the 2018 and perhaps the 2020 cycles, especially for the politicians that endorsed Trump. Be careful what you pray for.

Sponsored by X Government Cars and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.

 

Podcast 592-New Era

Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show 62

While the media ‘predicts’ the future of the new Donald Trump Era, I’ve been under a self imposed news blackout. I prefer to see what happens with the Trump before I comment. It seems to me an unpredictable personality as President is going to make it very difficult for pundits to tell you what kind of presidency it will be. Why not just wait and see? I think there are bigger trends at work.

Big Changes

We’re living through the dawn of a new industrial revolution. It seems to me, as everything around us changes government is changing too slowly. Technology is changing work and trade despite all this talk of returning America to 1950’s greatness. The biggest transportation company in the world owns no cars. The biggest hospitality company in the world owns no hotels. One of the biggest retailers in the world doesn’t own that many retail stores. It’s often difficult to determine the difference between a national export or an import.

Most of the jobs lost in manufacturing in the United States have been due to IT not outsourcing. Then there are the markets. One-size-fits-all mass markets are transitioning to mass specialization markets. Many new manufacturing plants will be automated and located close to markets they serve. It’s sad to me that in the midst of all this technology development we have a government designed for the 1950’s. Maybe this is something that will change.

In Podcast 592-New Era Day One-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show 62 I discuss what we need in the future. It seems to me this is more important than what someone said about Trump’s big speech. As a so called conservative takes power, I want to know whether Big Government Republicans will reduce the pernicious power of government. It seems to me we should be asking ourselves what will be required of us. What do we know? How do we know what we know? How did we learn what we know? Why do we fear competition? Why do some of us we fear change?

Sponsored by Hydrus Performance and X Government Cars.

Podcast 441

Shopping, Trump, Lies & Liquor. Welcome back from the big Thanksgiving weekend. The weeks starts with the National Retail Federation, AKA The Propaganda Ministry for the Big Box Retailers. If they’re not making up stories about how many people will shop the day after Thanksgiving, they’re blaming lackluster retail numbers on … wait for it … The Internet and specifically Amazon.com. This is the latest nonsense cooked up to convince lawmakers ‘something has to be done’, and that something is regulation of the Internet, so people will continue to shop at obsolete brick and mortar retailers located inside something called ‘The Mall’. Do we have data that shows the Internet is killing the Mall? Not really. Meanwhile ‘Black Friday’ is more and more an example of all that is wrong in America, and provides a great ‘look at the fat Americans fighting over flat screen TV’s’ story often seen in the foreign media. Maybe people aren’t shopping because they don’t believe the fairy tail about our growing economy, or because the new job only pays half what the old job pays, or because there’s a double digit health insurance premium. Yeah, right. We’re going to ‘spend the savings on two dollar gasoline’ at the mall. You know, like a tax cut. Meanwhile, Political Information Lag produced a lot of surprises at the Thanksgiving table as relatives discovered each other were rooting for Trump, or Bernie Sanders. Both candidates are outside the ‘establishment’ Republican and Democrat story line. Everyone HATES Washington and they HATE mainstream media charlatans who lie to them, while they work for candidates like Hillary Clinton. Once real people actually start voting, we’ll see whether anti-establishmentarianism is a ‘thing’, or not. Jeb! shouldn’t hold his breath tho. Meanwhile the City of Edina’s liquor store apparently can’t complete with ‘cut throat’ discount liquor stores (that actually have a responsibility to their stock holders to make money; how quaint.) Thus, the Mayor of Edina wants a liquor store tax, to make up the loss. “It’s a good business, and we’re going to stay in it”. Why are municipalities in the business of selling liquor? Bottom line, if government can’t even make money selling liquor apparently its incompetence knows no bounds. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and X Government Trucks.

Podcast 411 – New Audio Book – The Chieftain 2021

Introducing The Chieftain 2021. I’ve been promoting a change for the Bob Davis Podcasts for a few weeks. The Bob Davis Podcast IT Specialist Mitch Rossow joins Podcast 411 to introduce a brand new fiction story, and a brand new page to serve fiction by Bob Davis. The Chieftain 2021 is a story about an American family embroiled in a national political upheaval in the not to distant future. I’m taking a few risks with this story. So what else is new? This podcast tells you how to help us beta test the audio book delivery system from the Bob Davis Podcast from the Pay Pal process to getting the podcast onto your PC, Mac or smart phone. The first ‘episode’ of the Chieftain 2021 is posted because subsequent episodes have not been written. Oh, they are outlined but I will be writing them in real time, with input from people who have bought and listened to the story. I have come to the conclusion that you can say more, do more, and have more fun writing fiction than dealing with the so called ‘reality’ in the day to day news. The people and situations in this story are fiction, and any resemblance to real people alive or dead is coincidence. Some of the places though, are real. Thanks to Mitch Rossow, my son Andrew Davis, the General Manager of the Bob Davis Podcasts (my mom) for encouraging and helping along the way … and thanks to you in advance for downloading and enjoying The Chieftain 2021. Sponsored by Tara Baklund’s Weight Free Wellness and by Eric and Erum Lucero at Pride of Homes and Luke Team Real Estate. 

Podcast 302

Mass Markets and Politics. As the death rattle of the Mass Market echoes through the land, why do politicians, specifically those on one side of the spectrum continue to attempt to appeal to it? In discussing the rhetorical and organizational challenges of the politics recently, it was suggested that the reason some politicians make lurid comments is to ‘appeal to the mass markets’. If you were born at a certain time in the US, you became very familiar with something called ‘The Mass Market’. From Elvis, to the 1960 Nixon/Kennedy Debates, the Beatles on Ed Sullivan, favorite TV shows and songs and the radio stations people listened to, there was a collective experience. Millions had to wait a week for the next episode of their favorite show. You had to go to a big department store to examine consumer goods. It was an era of shared experience; one after another, from Johnny Carson to Star Trek, to All in the Family and Miami Vice. Radio multiplied from AM only to AM and FM, but all still served a mass market and provided a mass experience. First came cable television, which brought scores of nationwide channels into the home, then the VHS machine, the DVD, Netlfix and very recently, on-demand audio and video, You Tube, Google Hang Outs, Vimeo, Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Prime, HBO Go, and more to come.  Now people can have the experience they want, when they want it, how they want it. They can research characters, content and what it said. Now, the experience is between the content provider, the retailer, politician, entertainer or writer and the individual. While we still have shared experiences, we may have it at different times, we may binge listen and view, we may not have the same experience as someone else. Why then, do politicians insist on lining up and yelling at each other, say ridiculous things to get publicity, why do political parties insist on mass promotional orgies called conventions be televised on the ‘networks’, when the era of Mass Specialization is upon us, and growing stronger every day? Are candidates that play to the mass markets making a mistake? What new tools are there and how can they be used to win. 1965 called, and left a message. It’s not coming back. Ever. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating

Podcast 265

China Wins! Weekend updates start with the news that China has overtaken the US as the largest economy in the world. Except it’s not true. According to the IMF, using one measurement of economic magnitude, China has overtaken the US. Of course the US media jumps all over this story despite the fact that the measurement called PPP is controversial for many reasons. In fact China’s economy is considerably smaller and poorer than the US. However, it should be pointed out, when your neighbor is saying ‘things are better now’; if the US continues to have sub par growth (par in this case would be a normal dynamic growth of 4% or more for the same length of time as the recession), China will eventually overtake us. All the more reason to advocate growth policies focused on production, rather than trying to stimulate consumption. Protesters, variously reported as protesting the Ferguson Grand Jury decision and advocating for a higher minimum wage, blocked I35W just outside of the downtown Minneapolis. (Editor’s Note: The confusion in reporting got me talking about minimum wage, but the effect is the same. I don’t understand how making people angry because they sit in traffic for an hour makes them amenable to the cause, whatever that is.) The kinds of people who make more money are the people who develop time and productivity saving innovations, and figure out how to market them. Increasing wages by fiat won’t make anyone’s life better in the long run. Moreover, it’s possible in the short run, some fast food and service industries that employ human beings will automate most of these processes and actually improve service and the quality of their product. Low and middle skilled labor in the next twenty five years will face some grim employment challenges. Protesting this sea-change in the production and labor equation, is spitting into the wind. Black Friday sales are down, provoking all kinds of discussion about ‘what it means for the economy and retailers’. Probably nothing, either way. But, it does provoke a discussion about why some retailers are going out of business, and it isn’t because they’re not offering discounts. Its because they’re not retooling properly for the new consumers who don’t want to wait until the day after Thanksgiving for the best deals, and they want better service. Some stories from the consumer front prove this thesis. For example, a new study says people care more about the WIFI connection than they do the bed, when it comes to choosing a travel hotel. Did the North Koreans really hack Sony Pictures. Not so fast. Investigators now think it was a disgruntled employee. But the real story is how much these Hollywood types are making … but you won’t see any minimum wage protesters on the Sony studio complex. Meanwhile, more TV viewers are streaming their favorite shows, and its happening with radio too as people listen to podcasts and services like Pandora, over the internet. Finally, that all meat diet you’re on may actually be better for your heart than the gluten free bagel diet. New studies show its the carbs that kill your heart. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul, and by Depotstar