Playing The Something Is Going To Happen Game-Podcast 644

You can already feel it. The long fourth of July weekend approaching. We’re starting to slow down. So, for the ride to the lake. During periods of rain. It’s fun to think about what might happen. In Playing The Something Is Going To Happen Game-Podcast 644.

Podcasts Have To Go Deeper

I podcast a lot about media’s role in our society. For a deeper look at angst listen to Podcast 643. We’re awash in media informing us of the latest developments. ‘Breaking News’ is the norm these days. Podcasters have to go deeper. We’ll do that in Playing The Something Is Going To Happen Game-Podcast 644.

The Next Black Swan Event Is…

Truth is, I do feel a growing sense that ‘something is going to happen’. A true ‘Black Swan’ event is something unpredictable. An event that changes the course of history. Black Swan events like the stock market crash of 1929 or the September 11th Terror Attacks were not predicted, although some might have had some forewarning. Some predicted the financial crisis of 2008, but on the whole, it was a surprise.

A Personal Story Of A Shocking and Unexpected Event

A recent example of an unpredictable event in my own life illustrates the kinds of changes we go through when things change, unexpectedly and unpredictably. Moreover in my experience a sense expectation can mean something good is about to happen too. Especially important and relevant is an expectation of a major event that changes history. This kind of expectation is a sense of foreboding.

Not The Latest Dispatch From Washington

In a broader sense our social angst is driven by constant coverage of breaking news and new opinions on every little thing that happens in a place called Washington DC. Playing the ‘Something Is Going To Happen’ game is not anticipating news out of Washington.

Making History

A true Black Swan event is something out of the so called left field. An event in the financial world. Something breaking loose from the sense of normalcy in the rest of the world. An unexpected and totally new development from the world of invention. An event that changes history.

We Don’t Change on A Dime…Or Do We?

We think of eras as decades. The 1950’s, the 1960’s, and so on. We think of changes taking place when governments transfer power. So, the Obama era gives way to the Trump era. Except that is not the way it works, Steve Jobs said what we think of as the 1960’s actually happened in the 1970’s. Events actually determine when we move from one era to the next.

To sum up, a new president took office in January. After a lot of chatter and fireworks, nothing substantial has really happened. The test of the new president hasn’t really emerged yet. Fertile ground for our imaginations to break free from the daily news feeds and imagine what could happen. Enjoy the July 4th holiday! (Editor’s Note: In This Podcast I refer to Nouriel Roubini as the person who coined the term ‘black swan’. It was in fact  Nassim Nicholas Taleb.)

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

Playing The Something Is Going To Happen Game-Podcast 644

 

 

Summer Solstice Walk and Talk-Road Trip Takeaways-Podcast 642

After so many road trips I get a lot of questions. Why do you do it? What are the three best things that happened on the trip? In Summer Solstice Walk and Talk-Road Trip Takeaways-Podcast 642.

Long Road Trips Are The Best

Road Trips have been a part of my life since I was a kid. As an adult I would often drive pell mell to reach a location. Since acquiring Mobile Podcast Command I’ve spent more time on the road, taking my office and studio with me. Road Trips are an escape both positive and negative. For me, happiness is a clean windshield and a full tank of fuel.

Goals Are Good…And Bad

These days each trip has an objective or two. It‘s best though, not to fill your road trip with objectives even if you are a type A goal setter. You have to leave time to change your mind, turn around or stop in that town. In Summer Solstice Walk and Talk-Road Trip Takeaways-Podcast 642.

Is Life Real?

Travel is like a dream. Especially road tripping. The more you do it the less specific your memory is. I’ll be doing something and think about an experience and wonder, “Where was that?”. Don’t know. Doesn’t matter. The longer the road trip, the more surreal the experience. From Truck Stops and Wal Mart parking lots to State Parks and small towns. In Summer Solstice Walk and Talk-Road Trip Takeaways-Podcast 642.

Back Roads Are Better

This Bob Davis Podcasts Road Trip to me through Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas (twice), Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin. Pretty much all on backroads. The first takeaway is stick to state roads, and US highways, even county roads. In Summer Solstice Walk and Talk-Road Trip Takeaways-Podcast 642.

Ready To Go Again

Meeting interesting people, visiting prosperous and not so prosperous towns and villages, seeing family and taking a dream-walk through the town I grew up in are some of best things that happened on this road trip. In conclusion, most of this country is flat out empty, and it’s going to be just fine.

Sponsored by X Government Cars

Summer Solstice Walk and Talk-Road Trip Takeaways-Podcast 642

 

 

If You’re Looking For Truth You’re Getting Conned-Podcast 639

Coverage of former FBI director Comey testifying forces a political podcast. As a result, a velvet summer midnight in Western Virginia is the backdrop for  If You’re Looking For Truth You’re Getting Conned-Podcast 639.

People Actually Watch This Crap?

Out here the Internet is slow. With no movie packages we’re stuck with reality shows, local news and lots of commercials. I’ve seen a lot of drug commercials. I’m getting a lot of screen time on my ‘device’ because of the long commercial breaks. You know, the device get-off-my-lawn types complain about. Time to blow off some steam In If You’re Looking For Truth You’re Getting Conned-Podcast 639.

The Mighty Wurlitzer

Do I have to say it again? Everyone is selling a point of view. Like a thickener for soup. Depending on who owns or funds one of these partisan ‘news’ websites, it’s their point of view sold through shares on social media. And why not? If you agree with something, share it. Right? Truth is those shares aren’t aren’t news. Not ‘fake news’. Propaganda. In If You’re Looking For Truth You’re Getting Conned-Podcast 639.

Believe Whatever You Want But It’s Not The Truth

For example. the ‘biased mainstream media’ reported the FBI was investigating Trump, right? Are the Hillary Clinton emails and the Russia hack question one and the same? Does the now famous Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch conversation in the tarmac have anything to do with the Trump administration? Are you sure? How do you know?

Join Us As We Con America!

When you can’t tell the difference between the good stuff and formaldehyde and rubbing alcohol you take your life in your hands. Or so the story went in the 1920’s. As a result, we don’t know the difference between snake oil and snake oil.  Most of all, readers don’t fact check. We don’t know who funds these outlets. Eyeballs don’t google the author. Clicks. Shares. Numbers reached. Get your propaganda on twitter and Facebook. A majority of Americans get their news from social media. Especially relevant is the fact that Americans are being conned as never before. In If You’re Looking For Truth You’re Getting Conned-Podcast 639.

The End Of Politics In The United States?

Seems like we live on opposite shores of an ocean of opinion. Due to storms raging shore to shore, driven by outside forces seemingly beyond our control. As much as this may seem true the antidote is talking to each other. Especially relevant is the question, when was the last time you had coffee with someone to talk about solutions? Do we have discussions anymore about what actually works? Seems like our conversations are all about whether ‘we think’ this is or that is true. Furthermore, we live under brands and act as if our brand is the best. Are Republicans going make an already dangerous government less powerful. Moreover, who pays for minimum incomes and free health insurance, and free education Democrats promise? Meanwhile, a ‘conservative’ president pushes to borrow another trillion dollar stimulus for roads and bridges we don’t need.

Getting Nothing Done

Any analysis of the day’s news I might do inevitably leads to the conclusion very little coverage sheds much light on anything. On the contrary, it is designed to convince us to support a person or point of view. The bottom line is, while republicans have large majorities at most states and the federal level, they’re not getting much done while Democrats move further left every day.

Sponsored by X Government Cars.

If You’re Looking For Truth You’re Getting Conned-Podcast 639

East Tennessee Reflections On Radio’s Fade-Podcast 637

One of the greatest benefits to a road trip is seeing old friends. If you spend any time working in radio, you will have a lot of friends all over the country. Even better when they live in East Tennessee. Good thing about friends you went to high school with? They really know you. In East Tennessee Reflections On Radio’s Fade-Podcast 637.

Two Different Paths Same Industry

John Holland and I took different paths in the radio business. When we get together, we compare notes. Naturally radio is going to come up in any conversation. Join us in East Tennessee Reflections On Radio’s Fade-Podcast 637.

Local Radio

Holland appears to be obsessed with the potential of local radio. Specifically a radio station in Taos, New Mexico. I just don’t want to do another political podcast. So, a hot mess of random topics is on the menu in East Tennessee Reflections On Radio’s Fade-Podcast 637.

Taos New Mexico’s Number One

In fact, my friend talked so much about this radio station in Taos, New Mexico I had a vivid dream about working for that perfect radio station somewhere, only to realize it doesn’t exist, and especially not these days. John says it does. In Taos. New Mexico.

Radio’s Fade And The Rise of Digital Media

Radio is fading as a medium and as a business these days. It seems like the part of the reason is a decrease in local radio’s ability to remain relevant to local communities. At least that’s John’s position. I believe much of the fading relevance is due to the fact that people have a vast array of choice on the Internet. Podcasts. Music services. Social Media. E-Books. You name it.

Work Until You’re Dead

The older you get, the more you hear contemporaries talk about retirement. Nether one of us can understand why. My feeling is one should work until they drop. It keeps you engaged and relevant. Finally, what’s so great about Tennessee.

Sponsored by X Government Cars

East Tennessee Reflections On Radio’s Fade-Podcast 637

Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625

We hear a lot of words used to describe various political factions in the US. Most will say the US economic system is capitalist but is this just an illusion? Are we socialist? Have we been socialist for a long time? It seems to me, we have. In Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Socialism Is Everywhere

Just because a country’s economic system is socialist, does not mean it’s a tyranny. Denmark and Canada aren’t dictatorships. Singapore is a Socialist Market Economy. Places where ‘the people’ own or control the means of production. Most socialist countries these days enjoy democratic political systems.

Government and Non Profits Dominate State Economies

Americans think of themselves as capitalists. The thing is, the top three employers in my state are public institutions. Americans depend on social security, medicare, or medicaid ‘entitlements’. Home buyers get tax subsidies. We enjoy many tax deferred investment options. Farmers get subsidies. Public workers get pensions. All kinds of grants for education exist. Then there are the business subsidies and government contracts. Some popular business personalities receive billions in subsidies from the government. We’ll talk about it in Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Both Parties Support Socialism

Democrats complain about light rail projects running through their backyards, but support government programs because ‘It’s the right thing to do’. Republicans complain about big government unless it’s the military, support for their businesses, home mortgage tax credit, social security and 401K programs.

The Right Thing To Do

It’s true that many of these programs date back to the depression in the 1930’s. Also true that creation of these programs came with the best intentions. Whether we like it or not, government is deeply involved in our lives. Of course, what the government giveth, the government takeaway. We’ll talk about it in Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Classic Liberalism Is Forgotten

Republicans and Democrats argue the same side of the coin. Both are collectivists. Neither adhere to Classic Liberalism, a philosophy of limited government with the sole purpose of securing a maximum amount of individual liberty, property rights and free markets. While no political scientist would argue the US is Socialist maybe we should consider the possibility we are and have been for some time.

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

Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625

 

 

 

 

 

 

Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624

Summer is coming. Peak Road Trip season in the United States. In Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624 we consider some road trip ideas, past and future.

Do You Travel Well?

Travel requires a bit of zen. A ‘let it come’ attitude. Excitable, exacting and difficult people don’t always travel well. There will be delays, bad food, wrong turns and unmet objectives. Those moments are usually when the magic happens. If you can let it happen. You want an objective, but you don’t want to over plan.

Weekend Road Trip or Mega Road Trip?

My preference is for the mega trip. Across the northern United States, down the Pacific Coast Highway to Los Angeles. Down through the mid south all the way around Florida, along the gulf coast, back up through Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Iowa to Minnesota. On those long trips you feel like you’re sailing. You forget what ‘home’ is, and let go.

So Much To See

Truth is, there are so many places to see within a day’s reach. All too often those of us who prefer the mega road trip forget the gems just around the corner. State Parks, small towns, little bits of forgotten history.

In The Blood

Most people I know who love long road trips have it in their blood. They remember warming up the wagon in the cold light of dawn in Illinois, or Massachusetts for the big escape to warmer Floria around Christmas time. Rock City, brand new freeways, Stuckey‘s, Travel-all and Howard Johnson’s.

What Is It About Road Trips?

You don’t need much money. Camping or staying in cheap motels. Alone or with friends or family. You see. Pass through. Learn. Butte, Montana. Duluth, Minnesota. Lincoln City, Oregon. Bizbee, Arizona. Mountains. Beaches. Deserted highways in the middle of the night. Everyone who travels comes back with great stories and memories. There’s no right or wrong. No arguing about whether Rapid City is better than Great Falls.

Enjoy

In Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624, just some thought starters for your next trip. Whether you’re pulling a vintage trailer, driving a brand new SUV, rolling in style in some kind of massive motor home or sporting the ten year old Subaru, there’s nothing like the call of the open road.

Sponsored by X Government Cars

Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624

Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621

Social Media Rules

More of us get our news from social media these days. Problem is most of the ‘news’ on social media doesn’t adhere to standards. Might feel better informed, but it’s hard to tell the difference between writing to a standard and propaganda. In Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621.

Internet Never Lies

People are in the habit of posting, sharing, liking and commenting on stories that support their point of view. People apparently believe anything published on the Internet that looks credible and comes from a site they visit often. We are floating on a sea of bad information.

Garbage In Garbage Out

News stories not written to standard assert things that turn out to be false. What’s worse, this kind of information poisons the discourse. Thoughts, insights and ideas based on bad information form into concrete assumptions and conclusions. Those conclusions drive people’s ideas about the world.

Propaganda and Manipulation

In Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621 I’ll provide some examples of story-lines that have not been proven. Most of the time these stories reinforce the right versus left thinking that ruins friendships and family ties. It’s what makes social media so angry and vitriolic.

There are standards. When you know the standards you can determine whether a writer lives up to those standards. Without standards we’re susceptible to a steady stream of propaganda and manipulation. It’s up to us to learn the standards and choose what we post, share, like and comment on accordingly.

Context and Perspective

A steady diet of Social Media, 24 Hour Cable News and Talk Radio is like junk food for the mind. This ruins a person’s ability to discern whether assertions are true or just opinion. When all we do is read stuff online, watch You Tube videos and listen to cable news and talk radio we lose the context of major stories. We don’t get the details to be able to master the issues. Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621  explains how to do that.

Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621

Sponsored by X Government Cars 

 

 

Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616

In Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616. March 29th, 2017. Noon Pacific Time. Burning Man 2017 tickets on sale. Already did my ‘burner’ profile. 2 weeks ago waited on line to register for the ticket sale. Third year in a row. All out for tickets to the biggest party in the universe. Out in the Nevada desert. August 27th to September 4th.

Gonna Get My Burning Man Tickets!

Tick tock. One minute to 12 Pacific. Count it down. Here we go. This won’t take long. I won’t have to cancel the big client meeting at three in the central time zone. I’ll get on. Get my tickets. Smooth as silk. A friction free transaction. Forty-Five minutes later I’d canceled the meeting. Oops, tickets sold out. In Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616.

Scalpers

Quick Internet search. Stub Hub has tickets at double the price. Frustrated. Angry. Must have done something wrong. Maybe I should register for the STEP program like last year. Yeah. Or maybe call some ‘burners’ in Chicago. If you ingratiate yourself with the ‘burner’ community you might be able to score some tickets from someone who isn’t going to use theirs.

Jeff Bezos Party of 20? Come right in

Remember. Tickets to burning man in the general sale are 400 plus dollars and nearly 100 dollar for a vehicle pass. There’s a final sale coming up. Those tickets are 1200 dollars. What’s under my skin is the way Burning Man is sold. Over Sold and Under Delivered. Clearly there’s a lot of people who want to go and can’t get tickets. Fix it. Find out about my experience trying to buy tickets in Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616

We’re Hippies. Really rich hippies

This year Burning Man will gross 43 million dollars from ticket sales alone. They say It’s something you need to experience. A city in the desert. A culture of possibility. A network of dreamers and doers. Oh wait that’s the commercial. Reality is you’ve been waiting for 30 minutes for the kid with dreadlocks who can’t remember whether you ordered a strawberry smoothie or an emerald peanut butter…for the third time.

Not Radically Inclusive

Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616. Burning Man still sucks because if you’re wealthy enough to buy a thousand dollar ticket from some ticket reseller, which I am told Burning Man ‘doesn’t endorse’, you’re a ‘burner’. Part of a ‘radically inclusive experience’. Yeah. No. “A citizen of the worldview that is Burning Man. May it be encountered everywhere”. It won’t.

Drive a Maybach Motor Home? Coming out from Santa Rosa for the week to do some acid? Like the old days before, you know, all the corporate stuff. You’re in! Welcome Burners. And all your cash. A unique and distinctive culture awaits people like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, but not us working stiffs.

Welcome To The French Revolution

Ten principles for Burning Man: Radical Inclusion, Gifting, Decommodification (which basically means no sponsors), Radical Self Reliance, Radical Self Expression (although any and all media ‘projects’ have to be pre approved), and on and on. It reads like the French Revolution’s ‘Rights of Man’ Declaration. You know the one where the peasants are crushed and everyone ends up living through Thermidor II.

Stupid Rules At The Radical Burning Man Festival

And the rules. Don’t run that noisy generator at night. If your truck is old bring plywood to catch the oil dripping from that nasty crankcase. Watch out for the undercover cops checking up to see that you’re not trafficking. Be careful of your carbon footprint. Oh by the way, Burning Man has a bigger carbon footprint on average than the dirtiest of the dirty polluters. Don’t worry about that though. Nothing to see here folks. Move along.

Burning Man is a symbol of the possibilities of Silicon Valley. That’s why I wanted to go. A temporary society built on the ‘No Rules’ Punk and Anarchist pathos. Sadly the Burning Man approach to customers is basically ‘so long suckas’. So yes. Sadly, Burning Man is in fact a symbol of the possibilities of Silicon Valley.

America We Have A Problem

Yep All this tech. We’re On It! Really good at customer service. We give you an experience. We’re here for the environment. We use cloth bags. We Care. The truth is you wait on the phone or on line for service for hours. You can’t get a seat at the Genius Bar and they’re just going to tell you to buy a new iPad. No one cares about your problem because you’re not Jeff Bezos. Steve Jobs is turning over in his grave.

I thought these burning man guys were really smart savvy artists and computer geniuses. Turns out they’re just a bunch of idiots. Despite all the tools available they can’t figure out how to create an event with a seamlessly positive experience for people from the first contact and ticket sale, to the event itself, to heading home happy after its over. And then there’s the police state thing. Customer satisfaction? Oh wait. That would be capitalism. Let’s talk about it in Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616.

Yes, I know this is sacrilege but…Sponsored by X Government Cars.

 

 

 

Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal

In Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal, everything comes to an end. True in life. True in politics. Voters sent Republicans and Donald Trump to Washington in 2016. One of if not the most important issues was repealing Obama Care. On Friday, March 24th 2016 the president and the republican party made a colossal mistake and broke a major campaign promise to voters.

A Waterloo. A Donnybrook

An ill-conceived ‘repeal and replace’ bill never made it to the floor of the House for a vote. First the President blamed this donnybrook on the republican Freedom Caucus. Ultimately Trump blamed democrats. Blame anyone or anything. Never yourself. Now the president says he will court democrats. My reaction in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

They’re not listening

The republican rank and file suddenly wonders what happened. Fed a steady stream of fairy tales from the right wing media they thought President Trump had one of the most effective and productive first 100 days in history. What happened? A new president who claimed the government should be run like a business was taught a very important lesson. The United States Federal government is most decidedly not a business. Find out why in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

Rich Moderate Businessmen Rule

Members of Congress and the Senate have their own ideas about things. Members of Congress and the Senate do not work for the President. The president does not tell members what to do. Rather than lobby effectively, president bluster spent the days leading up to the vote blowing the horn of a semi tractor and bellowing to the press he was a team player. Except when he isn’t.

Is The GOP dying?

This podcaster made three predictions before the election. First, that New York Developer Donald Trump could win the presidency. Second, that an Obama Care repeal would not pass. Third, Trump would destroy the republican party. Two of those predictions have now come true. The third depends on what republican voters do now.

They’re Not Listening

Why don’t they do what we tell them, they cry. The fact is republican congressmen and senators cannot rely on any kind of support structure from the rank and file or grassroots republican rank and file. They don’t do what ‘you’ tell them to do because ‘you’ don’t do anything. A party founded on principle today has no principle and no rudder. What controls the republican party? Rich businessmen who support moderate religious republicans.

Suddenly Trump’s a Democrat?

Whether you’re talking about the US Congress or the ‘republican’ Minnesota legislature, you vote one way, and you get something completely different. Now you have a ‘republican-populist’ president ready to make common cause with the progressive democratic party because he’s miffed at the Freedom Caucus? Principle. There’s that nasty little word again. Let’s talk about it in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

It’s A New Day When YOU Say

Find out what you need to do to actually make these politicians do what you want. It’s not pretty. It’s not fun saying it. The failure to repeal the ACA is a political mistake of titanic proportions. It will go down in history along side ‘Read My Lips’ and the Isolationist republicans before World War II. All things must pass. Maybe its time for a new day to dawn.

Time to look to ourselves rather than personalities. In Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

Sponsored by X Government Cars.

 

 

Podcast 611-Define Political Progress

When it comes to politics these days noise is the norm. The latest outrage drowns out talk about political progress. Voters in 2016 made their choices for a reason. Not too early to ask whether the politicians are making progress toward addressing those reasons. We talk about it in Podcast 611-Define Political Progress.

ObamaCare Repeal

Number one issue on the campaign trail. Bogged down in congress already. Republicans wanted a full repeal of the ACA. New GOP plan isn’t a full repeal. President Trump has already endorsed it. What happened to promises of a full repeal?

Economy

Somewhere around 96 million people are out of the workforce. Need to create 375,000 new jobs a month for several months to get those people back in the work force. For years we were less than impressed with a quarter of a million jobs each month. Economic growth has been promised. In Podcast 611-Define Political Progress.

Cutting Federal Budget

Smaller government? Proposed budget cuts are accompanied with proposals to shift money to defense. Does this reduce the size of government? A hiring freeze can be considered progress. Corporate tax reductions can be progress. However making up corporate tax reductions with higher taxes somewhere else doesn’t cut the budget.

Foreign Policy and Military Spending

Resurgent Russia. Rising China. Political changes in Turkey. Expanding NATO. Cyber Threats. US troops in Iraq and Syria. ISIS. Terror. Climate Change. How will reducing foreign aid and increasing military spending address these concerns? What should the foreign policy of the US be? It’s all in Podcast 611-Define Political Progress.

Too Early?

First benchmark on progress made by a majority republican government in the United States. Did you vote for republicans? Are they doing what you wanted them to do?

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