Harvey Irma North Korea-DACA-Back In A News Rich Environment-Podcast 661

Back to the grindstone in Harvey Irma North Korea-DACA-Back In A News Rich Environment-Podcast 661. As Texas struggles with the aftermath of one major storm, another is on the way. North Korea’s Hydrogen Bomb and a full congressional schedule means we’re suddenly we’re back in a news rich environment.

President Trump Is Santa Claus

Especially relevant is the question of whether the US Federal Government is actually Santa Claus. Make your list, check it twice. While Republicans talk about individual responsibility when it comes to disaster, concerns about debt and overspending go out the window. Another hurricane, another opportunity for presidents to wear the jacket and the hat and show up to help. It’s all about public relations. We’ll talk about it in Harvey Irma North Korea-DACA-Back In A News Rich Environment-Podcast 661.

Hug Some Babies Phase Out DACA

President Trump made the obligatory trip to the hurricane zone over the weekend, then signed an order to phase out DACA at the beginning of the week. A campaign promise fulfilled, or kicking a problem to congress? Is it wrong to suggest a complete immigration reform package passed before phasing out the program with an executive order might be a better path?

It’s a Business, right?

We expect presidents to rule through fiat. “Run It Like A Business!” Problem is Santa Claus can’t do much with executive orders. Real reform requires congressional action. Getting that done requires real political acumen of the president. Businesses can’t print money to pay off their debt. In Harvey Irma North Korea-DACA-Back In A News Rich Environment-Podcast 661.

Tax Reform Means Raising Taxes

Tax Reform now looms as the next legislative failure for a GOP majority. ‘Cutting Taxes’ might mean raising taxes in places people who voted Republican might not expect. Requiring ‘revenue neutral‘ proposals means ‘tax cuts’ rather than spending cuts. With debt over 100 percent of the GDP maybe Santa Claus should stay home. Not a chance. Find out why I say this in Harvey Irma North Korea-DACA-Back In A News Rich Environment-Podcast 661.

Bombs Away

Then there’s North Korea. They’ve got a bomb and a missile. Trump has a saber to rattle. Maybe it will work. Then again maybe the Doom Merchants on You Tube are right about September 23rd, 2017.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul

Harvey Irma North Korea-DACA-Back In A News Rich Environment-Podcast 661

Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660

There is a sudden nostalgia for the 1970’s. New TV Shows. Fashion. Summer’s end is a time of nostalgia. Something about the drier air and State Fair time in Minnesota. We’ll talk about it in Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660.

Where Were You in ’72?

Back in the day, the week before Labor Day we went to Sears. New Jeans as hard as concrete. Some collared shirts. Heavy t-shirts. New tennis shoes. New Hard shoes. By the end of the next summer those jeans would be tattered and worn. The shoes unrecognizable. T-Shirts worn out.

Summer’s Long Goodbye

End of Summer also meant new school supplies. Pencils. Notebooks. Things like protractors. Cartridge Pens. Fresh paper. The first day’s of school were hot and uncomfortable. They were also filled with hope and the promise of new romance. In Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660.

Midwesterners All Share

As summer winds down you can hear it. Feel it. Humidity goes out of the air. Trees start to change. Temperatures cool off. Doesn’t matter which decade you grew up in. This longing for more summer mixing with expectations and excitement for fall is something everyone of every age in the Midwest shares.

Hip Huggers and The Road Runner

As far as nostalgia is concerned. Steve Jobs once remarked that the 1960’s actually happened in the 1970’s. There were two parts of the 1970’s. The early part was good. Kind of like a continuation of the best parts of the 60’s. Muscle Cars and Bell Bottoms. Hip Huggers. In Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660.

1970’s Weren’t So Great, right?

The second half of the 1970’s wasn’t so good. Vietnam. Nixon. Violence and Protests. AM Radio and Black and White TV was fading. Things started to go bad. Inflation. Gas Lines. Watergate. Urban Decay. Racial Strife. Drugs. Why is the 1970’s suddenly imbued with all this power?

Nostalgia For A Strange Time

New shows about New York City in the 1970’s. Times Square a cess pool. Garbage in the streets. Bankruptcy. Perfect for the all seeing eye of dramatic television. The newest fashions these days are all throw backs to the 1970’s. How did the people who came of age in that time feel about it? In Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660.

Spinning Out Of Control

There was a sense, in that time, that things were spinning out of control. The 1970’s were not a fun time economically, especially the second half. Yet there was a sense of innocence. If you were born just after the 1970’s perhaps the decade holds a little more sway in the imagination.

Winter IS Coming

Something to think about listening to the sounds of summer, mourning the passing of the heat and intensity, welcoming the coolness and color of fall but not thinking too hard of the inevitable winter to follow. Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul

Hollywood Brings Back 1970’s-Nostalgia-End Of Summer-Podcast 660

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

Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645

Are you a political junkie? Wake up in the middle of the night to check headlines? Scan social media in the bathroom? Watch the 24 hour cable news channels? Listen to talk radio on the weekend? Inbox full of political emails? We’ll talk about it in Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645.

Relevance

TV Stars and channels just want to keep their brands and their personalities foremost in your mind. Same with politicians. This is what people in the media call ‘Being Relevant’.

Inside Baseball

The problem is, the twenty four hour political chatter is less relevant every day. Those addicted to what we call politics these days are driving a conversation about tweets, traded insults, and stunts by people who seem more and more unhinged as each minute passes. In Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645.

Lies Conceal Truth

Politics and those who cover it are talking about each other more than they actually report on the news. The result? The actual political community continues to do whatever it wants, whenever it wants.

Mika Joe and Donald

Even though we have all kinds of ‘news’ coverage, it seems like the function of our government is a mystery to most people. Relating new things to the audience becomes more and more difficult in a sea of nonsense. Television presenters who poke at public figures getting a taste of their own medicine is news? Featured in Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645.

Meanwhile We’re Bankrupt

Puerto Rico is bankrupt. Illinois, California and New York are next. Debt is at record levels. Both political parties promise more and more. Someone, somewhere, someday will have to pay for it.

People vote for personalities. When their ‘guy’ takes office, it is expected he or she will do what ‘the voters’ want. That is not what happens. Why? Political Junkies these days know it all. They can tell you why Trump is a sociopath or why Loretta Lynch should be in federal prison but they can’t tell you what a republican stands for or what a democrat is. Maybe it’s time to watch less and do more.

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

Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645


 

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

 

 

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

Family Stories In Virginia-Where To Next-Podcast 638

Short road trips are great. Going away for the weekend is fun. My preference is for much longer trips. Storm Chasing in Missouri. Visiting the National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma. Don’t forget Arkansas. Meeting up with my son on his own road trip in Kansas. Visiting old friends in Tennessee. Now in Virginia checking in with family in Family Stories In Virginia-Where To Next-Podcast 638.

Happiness Is A Clean Windshield and A Full Tank Of Gas

There is a sense of peace that only comes from seeing the highway through the windshield. If you happen to be in the mid south, try a couple of the highways I mention in Family Stories In Virginia-Where To Next-Podcast 638. Backroads are always better and some of them are spectacular through Tennessee and Arkansas.

Seeing The Real America

The media is full of locators. This happened in California. That happened in Florida. Atlanta. Chicago. LA. New York City. York PA. The news gives us a sense of the United States as either exclusively urban or hopelessly rural. Travel on the highways and backroads reminds us how vast and actually empty our country is.

Family Stories

One of the missions of this road trip is to visit the hometown of my grandparents and great grandparents, great uncles and aunts and cousins. Most of my life I’ve been hearing apocalyptic stories of coal mining in southern Ohio. I don’t know about your family get togethers but mine are punctuated by confirmations of some of those stories, and guffaws. “Grandpa made that up!” is a common refrain. Time to at least go back to the old village and at least get a sense of the ground. In Family Stories In Virginia-Where To Next-Podcast 638.

Where Did That Happen?

Doing a long road trip? You’re mind will wander. Thoughts will come in and go out just as quickly. Months later you’ll be doing something and a thought and experience will come to mind. You will think, “Where was I when I thought that?”. We don’t always have the time to do this, we don’t travel like this enough, and it is good for the soul to do it. In Family Stories In Virginia-Where To Next-Podcast 638.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul

Family Stories In Virginia-Where To Next-Podcast 638

 

Dad Dog And Son Road Trip Meet Up-Podcast 635

Father and Son have taken many trips together over the years. We’ve crisscrossed the nation. Taken the train to ski out west. Gone to China and hit the highways out east. Father is storm chasing in North Eastern Oklahoma. Son is heading North East from California to New York, hauling an oversized U-Haul trailer with a little jeep. There’s a dog in the story too. In Dad Dog And Son Road Trip Meet Up-Podcast 635.

Two Different Road Trips Meet Up In Kansas

Used to ‘red balling’ it from the campaign trail, it’s a hop, skip and a jump from Miami, Oklahoma to Wichita Kansas. Taking a run across highway 133 all the way to 35 North, onto the Kansas left exit rest stops. I spent the night at Belle Plaine service plaza. Later in the day we figured out my son was emerging onto 35 from Kansas 400, about twenty miles north.

Meeting Up Ain’t So Easy

No problem! Back on the highway. Hauling ass for the next service area, north of Wichita. Towanda! This is where we met up in Dad Dog And Son Road Trip Meet Up-Podcast 635. Obviously when father and son get together there will be a podcast involved. And a dog. And some fast food.

Relaxed and Calm On The Road

Don’t worry I’m not missing any storms. Blue skies and sunshine out here in Kansas. Not a cloud in the sky. Being On The Road for any length of time changes my energy. I am much more relaxed and calm. More at home out here on the highways and interstates than when at home. A little bit of an energy mis-match between Andrew Davis and his father Bob Davis.

Lots of Content in This Podcast

Yes, he wants to talk about politics. We cover traveling with a dog that weighs about as much as me, and a giant U-Haul full of other people’s stuff. China’s history also comes up. The desire people seem to have these days to tear it all down. Andrew has concerns about losing our stability. That’s all it takes for dad to engage. And we’re off!

Son and Father Enjoy A Deep Connection

Discussions between us have always been this way, since he was a little kid. My favorite moment is when I ask him, “So you’ve traveled from California to Kansas and all you noticed is there are more trees?!”. We also talk about rural America’s trials and tribulations, how geographically large the United States actually is, and a lot more.

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

Dad Dog And Son Road Trip Meet Up-Podcast 635

Missouri Storm Chaser Steven Coy-Podcast 634

First Road Trip of the summer in effect! I’ve been very interested in Storm Chasing as a sub culture for a while. Lots of storm chasers these days. Steven Coy is just 21 years old, but already an experienced storm chaser. We join Steven in his hometown of Stover Missouri, and on his family’s farm which turns out to be a great place to chase a storm. In Missouri Storm Chaser Steven Coy-Podcast 634.

Storm Chasing Ground Zero

As Wall Street is to finance, Hollywood is to the film industry, Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma are to storm chasing. OU student and avid chaser Steven Coy is deceptively young. I say deceptively because his experience and knowledge become obvious in this podcast.

An Interview and a Storm to Chase

Steven Coy talks about his interest in storm chasing. His heroesMissouri Storm Chasers FaceBook page is over eighty thousand strong these days. No hype on the FB page. Just good content to let people know about potential threats. Stover is in a ‘blind spot’ for radars at regional centers. Storm chasers like Coy perform a service for locals.

They Call Him The Weatherman

It is Saturday. Mobile Podcast Command is parked at the local storage facility on the west side of Stover, Missouri. Steven and his mom show up for the interview. After, the Coys invite me out to the family homestead a few miles outside of town. Not wanting to impose, I decline. A few minutes later they are back. In Missouri Storm Chaser Steven Coy-Podcast 634.

Chasing On Foot

Ok, off 6 miles down the road. Then a gravel road. Then a rutted driveway. A few hundred feet more. Twenty minutes later we are out by the shed. Here on the back 40, or the front 40 if you take Steven’s mom’s word for it. A vista from which to chase “on foot” as Steven says. This is where he takes a lot of photographs.

Coy Delivers

With a practiced eye and a little help from an extensive radar application on his phone, Coy precisely predicts the path of the storm. It will come right to us he says. When the storm hits, right on schedule, we head for the horse barn to take cover and take pictures. Steven measures wind velocity at 78.5 miles per hour. I thought the building was about to come down. He calls it in to the weather service. They sound skeptical. Later we hear about damage in a nearby town consistent with that windspeed.

I get an education about the nature of these thunderstorms, what causes tornados and how they form. When the storm clears, it’s time to wrap it up. From here it’s onto Oklahoma, and more hail. Thanks to Steven and the Coy family for making sure I was safe during the storm. There’s a lot of unwarranted criticism these days of young people. Steven Coy is one young person doing what he loves and learning everyday. By the way, Steven’s mom days if you leave their house hungry, it’s your own damn fault!

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

Missouri Storm Chaser Steven Coy-Podcast 634

Round The Way Girl Joins Bob Davis-Podcast 630

Neighbors and friends for years. In today’s world that means family. Round The Way Girl joins the Bob Davis Podcasts to talk about life challenges. I get a street slang lesson. We talk about the new HBO Bernie Madoff movie and more. In Round The Way Girl Joins Bob Davis-Podcast 630.

Bde Maka Say What?

Let’s put the madness in Washington on hold, drink some coffee and talk. Round The Way Girl and I wonder at the new bizarre name for the main urban lake in Minneapolis. Both of us conclude people will never say, “Meet me at Bde Maka Ska”, they’ll just say, “Meet you at Calhoun”, no matter what the official name may be.

Prince Stole My Motorcycle

Whether it is Round The Way Girl’s recent adventure, when we get together a single podcast barely scratches the surface. We talk about my Prince dream, our television viewing habits and the kids playing soccer in the park next door. She tells stories about me I have long forgotten. That’s the whole point of having a neighbor and friend who knows you. In Round The Way Girl Joins Bob Davis-Podcast 630.

It’s called Having A Conversation

Before social media, twenty four hour cable news, people shouting at each other and constant provocations there was a thing called the art of conversation. Talking about nothing and yet everything. This is how people used to share the challenges of their life. To learn from others. To have fun in the evening, or anytime. Maybe even tell each other secret fears or triumphs.

Red Flag!

When I was a kid, my mom’s best friend did not have a phone. When she wanted to come over for coffee, or have my mom over, she would run a red flag up their flag pole. That’s how two friends knew it was coffee time.  At least these days we have text messaging. “Getting back from Yoga about 8:30. Come on over we’ll do a podcast!”. That’s what started Round The Way Girl Joins Bob Davis-Podcast 630.

Round The Way Girl Never Disappoints

We’re having an incredible May in the upper midwest. 2 weeks ago it was snowing. Now it’s in the 80’s and the trees full. Birds are singing. Suddenly the latest machinations on cable news and talk radio have started to fade. Of course they’ll be back. For the time being, though, it’s nice to just sit down, drink some coffee and have some fun.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.

Round The Way Girl Joins Bob Davis-Podcast 630