The Missing Piece in the Recent Election

Take a look at the numbers below. Do they mean anything to you? Would you like more information surrounding the numbers?


We’ll come back to the numbers in a minute. In the meantime, let’s recall the issues that were prominent in this fall’s election.

Syria, ISIS, Ebola, immigration, the Keystone Pipeline, Obama’s ineffectual or authoritarian leadership, etc.

Now, let’s look at what are, objectively, the biggest issues confronting the United States, few of which were featured by either side in the 2014 mid-term election:

Continued recovery from the 2008 recession, confronting campaign finance abuses, continuing withdrawal from two drawn out wars, reducing political gridlock between our two leading political parties, containing Iran and Russia in their insistence on destabilizing a peaceful world.

I wonder who were the geniuses who decided what the campaign issues were to be and how they managed to take the country’s eye off the ball. Where were Obama’s message mavens who got him elected and reelected? Of course, the answer is that he was not running at all, and his party was running away from him.

I cannot think of a stupider process, which takes us back to those mysterious numbers.

Does the additional information inform you better? If it does not, you better move on to some other pages.

When Obama took office the country was on the edge of a serious financial collapse. We still had to extricate ourselves from Afghanistan and Iraq. And, Obama had promised a health care plan.

This year, while the Democrats were running away from Obama because the polls had been coopted by grotesquely misleading advertising and made him out to be a feckless, incapable leader, we have been treated with great news. See above.

There is a lot to be concerned about in how Obama has handled the job.

History has to judge him well, however, because he achieved admirably in addressing his most important challenges when he took office.

History will also criticize him and the Democratic party for having failed miserably in managing the messages of this year’s election.

The cost of those mistakes may be with us all for a VERY long time!



We all have some sense of time, whether the agonies of waiting or amazingly fast moments of excitement. But, most of us rarely reflect much on where those senses and sensibilities come from.

Humans began measuring time so long ago that there is no clear beginning to when and how the concept emerged.

Obviously early humans observed the daily rituals of sun up and sun down and the rise and fall of the moon. Gradually, people began to calculate the intervals and attach what we call numbers to those events.

It was not as if anyone ever discovered a universal element of time that dictated those passages. If that had happened some of our concepts of time might well have evolved differently. But, as Einstein proved, time itself is relative.

For example, today we think that the time since Jesus was on earth was a LONG time ago. If you were told that that long period of time (about 2000 years) was only one tiny part in 2,000,000 years  (quicker than an eye blink) since the beginnings of planet Earth, you would probably have a hard time grasping the meaning of that metric in human terms. Still, it does seem like a long time.

To many humans alive today, JFK’s death 50 years ago seems like ancient history. The 150 years since Lincoln’s Gettysburg address seems so long ago that few grasp its nearness and timeliness today.

ople 80 years old today have been alive for more than one-third of the life of the United States. For someone that age, it’s hard to believe. (Younger readers will simply have to trust me.)

A light year is the distance light travels in a year (at a velocity of 186,282.4 miles per second, or some 461 million miles per hour).

One might say, “How on earth are we supposed to think about time and distances like that?” In human terms such scales are unfathomable– and a lot of our potential theoretical destinations are thousands or millions of light years away.

So, if we want to begin to think seriously about exoplanet exploration, will we have to go back to square one and rethink our basic concepts of time and distance and perhaps reengineer the human species –at least for some of us—for indefinite life?

Some of the fundamental measurements of time, distance and direction, such as 360 degrees in a circle could possibly have been other numbers, such as 3600. But the concepts of those fundamentals are fixed, and universal. (To get around this apparent limitation, some physicists are now positing the existence of maybe billions of additional universes!). And, up to now, these fundamentals, our system of time and distances as we need them here on mother earth, have served us pretty well.

In earlier times, different places and regions kept their own time schedules somewhat the way we have time zones today. Then Greenwich, England became the base marker of global time and chronometers (the forerunners of individual clocks) as recently as a couple of hundred years ago. And, now with the Internet, though it may be darker or lighter in different places every day, we really are in one time zone globally—which is NOW!

What all this adds up to is this: since time is basically a human construct to fit the needs of humans as we grow and evolve, it stands to reason that we can and should rethink and try to adapt our ideas and use of time into something that will be more useful in the coming age of the Universe.

Too Big Fails

In the last few years we have been regularly treated with the phrase TOO BIG TO FAIL.

That term was used to describe certain types of financial institutions which, IF they failed, would likely wreak such havoc throughout our economy and the world that they could NOT be allowed to fail.

And, governments would step in and prop them up financially until conditions changed enough for them to proceed again independently under stricter rules.

Now we seem back to business as usual and concerns about size have receded back to their historical invisible corners of consciousness.

Left behind from that intense period of TOO BIG TO FAIL were the questions of why institutions were allowed in the first place to get too big and what could/should have been done to prevent them from getting that big.

The questions then that drew the most attention were more regulations about balance sheet management and regulation, not the many other serious questions of problems with gigantism.

As we look back at the past 100 years there are several amazing examples of TOO BIG FAILS.

The first point to address is lack of nimbleness and inability to adapt to changes in the world around them.

Sears may be example A. In 1900 they were still tiny but they saw the catalogue business and RFD and mass buying of product and rapidly became the largest retailer in the US. After WWII Sears was impregnable. Then Sam Walton came along with Walmart seeing opportunity in small town America enabled by brilliant inventory and logistical management and low prices. Today Sears is all but dead selling itself off piece by piece. And, now Amazon is out there knocking on Walmart doors saying, “let your fingers do the walking”.

Example B is IBM. It became the biggest and best computer company in the world. In the late 1970s personal computers were getting started. A young man named Gates was in over his head and early in the 1980s he was prepared to sell his Microsoft to IBM for $50,000,000. IBM declined seeing no future in personal computers and software by itself. WOW? Most likely if IBM had acquired Microsoft, the Microsoft story we know would never have happened. But Apple would have.

And, then came Google with a fantastic search tool but no obvious way to monetize it. That all changed and now Google is the biggest innovator in its field. But, they too got blindsided by social media.

In financial services similar problems occurred. AIG got too big for its britches and Merrill Lynch did the same. Some money managers — Fidelity — got so big they could barely buy or sell without distorting the markets they were in. Those problems are ongoing.

Similar things happened in the steel and auto industries. We all are generally familiar with the causes and consequences of those problems.

The second point to address is what if anything either the private sector or government could or should do to dampen the effects of gigantism.

Teddy Roosevelt 100 years ago more or less attacked the problem based on the underlying issues of illegal restraint of trade. Size was obviously an issue as well. Today antitrust issues are a lot less relevant in this arena for several reasons–political as well as economic. Doctrine today disbelieves in government playing any role of consequence in managing issues relating to size of private enterprise.

That said there is growing evidence as indicated above that strongly suggests there are serious questions about the impact of size of enterprises on the progression of innovation and progress in society.

The simplest way to deal with TOO BIG TO FAIL is to start by understanding that TOO BIG FAILS in and by itself.

That suggests to me that we should begin to seriously address how to deal with just plain and simple TOO BIG!


Have you ever read something in a newspaper or magazine about something which you happened to have firsthand knowledge of and realized that what was reported ranged  from distorted to just plain wrong?

Then, have you shrugged with annoyance and simply turned the page and resumed reading about unfamiliar subjects and believed every word?

If you have not had similar experiences, you are probably someone who does not believe anything in the news. If that’s the case, perhaps you do not care and in a perverse sense you are lucky.  But, you will be depriving yourself of interesting and important stuff.

In the law there is something called the ‘best evidence rule’ which requires a party in litigation to put forward the best evidence available. In life at large the best evidence of news etc. has come to mean well edited newspapers and other modern media.

Being a ‘curious George’ deep down, I am always open to and seeking  new ideas, which I guess is the reason why suckers like me  turn the page and go on believing even after experiencing disappointment in the quality of what I have just read on the previous page based on my own knowledge.

In such cases the suckers among us face a serious dilemma. Either we have  to become ‘ doubting Thomas’’ and thus be deprived of a lot of genuine news, or, we have to grin and bear it and simply hope for the best and accept that not everything we have ‘learned’ is fully reliable.

What options do we and the news sources have to address this dilemma?

One option might be for news sources—without compromising their sources—to reveal more about the basis for what they report.

For example, if there is a report about a resignation of an official, it would help to know if the sources included both sides of the story.

Surprisingly, to beat the competition, frequently breaking news simply parrots a news release. And, then the back story [if there is one] rarely catches up. It would be helpful if a publishers’ standard could be established.  Perhaps such a thing exists but it is invisible or simply hard to enforce. At least, they should say if they have not YET heard from both sides in the matter?

Another option would be for curious folks like me to teach ourselves to be more discriminating.

A third option would be to REQUIRE all news sources to make timely space available to any significant persons effected by the news to present their version of the stories—not just corrections but a different perspective.

News geniuses will most likely say these ideas are impossible, denigrate the reputations of the news intermediaries and even violate First Amendment rights. That being said, there is a good case to be made that such ideas would improve the right to free speech of parties whose speech is often muffled by the monopoly power of news purveyors.

For example, a long time ago I was contacted as a confirming source for a sensitive charge against a prominent politician after business hours by a reporter from the New York Times.

Before I was fully alert to what he was seeking, I vaguely remembered about what he wanted confirmed, and stupidly said I thought he might be right.  Then I told him that since I did not have access until the next morning to the files which would confirm or refute, I would call him back then and NOT to quote me.

He said my first recollection was good enough for him because he was on deadline. I said that it was not good enough for me and in the strongest terms I demanded that he must wait.

The next morning his story was published below the fold on page one and my files revealed that what I had initially mis-recalled from the distant past was simply wrong. I called him immediately and chastised him. His response was that I had been ‘skinned back’ [an old CIA term for being ‘turned’] by one of the parties to the matter to change the facts. I had spoken to no one!

My name was in his short piece; I was embarrassed and I complained to a managing editor I knew quite well. Not long thereafter the young reporter left the Times. I still see his byline in lesser publications and do not believe anything he writes.

That kind of misreporting I fear happens too frequently. And, the turn the page and believe everything phenomenon continues to plague too many of us, even after we have learned better time and again.

We live in a time when the very future of journalism is at stake—which may account for some bending of rules; it is incumbent on all reporters to make sure they (a) get it right, (b) report both sides, and (c) be transparent about sources and gaps in their knowledge and the facts.

The issue really needs to be addressed by the right people. They know who they are.

They only have to come out of hiding.


Just after 9/11, in a little town not far from Frankfurt, Germany called Rotenkirchen, from where my maternal great grandfather had immigrated in 1848, we were being shown around by the daughter of the town’s very long time Lutheran minister. She mentioned that as a girl right after WWII, she asked her father what had happened to all the Jews who were there before the war. His answer was: “I do not know. They just went away.”

That prompted her to spend much of her life trying to track down those people who “just went away.” Some close German friends from Hanover somehow found her, and asked her to show us the community where my mother’s family roots began, in about 1850.

The Jewish cemetery was well out of town and thus had been spared destruction simply because the SS had never stumbled on it. It was amazing to read on headstones, virtually all still standing, familiar names such as Sondheim and Lehman.

It appeared to have been a Jewish community of educated, striving and upwardly mobile but oppressed people. Many of their descendants did well by their ancestors.

Few people are aware that the number of people who self-identify as Jews in America today is roughly the same as it was in 1900. Given normal patterns of population growth, that number would be much greater today, except for the exceptional assimilation process of Jews into the miasma of America.

A family that I know very well began with two Jewish parents, who had three children.

–One of those children married a non-Jew and they raised their four children in a secular fashion.

–One of those four children married a non-Jew and they raised their three children also in a secular way.

— And one of those children also married a non-Jew who has two children. One of those children – who is, of course, 1/8 part Jew — currently goes to a Synagogue day care school where she, at age 3 has become very aware and interested in the reasons for Jewish holidays. Told that her great grandfather is 100 percent Jewish, she insisted on seeing him on the VERY next holiday so she could tell him what she knows.

Is that little girl part of a cutting edge renaissance for Jews everywhere?

One of her great uncles, who attended a Catholic school years before, went to the Bar Mitzvah of another cousin – who was half Jewish with a Catholic name, because his father was a Spanish Catholic. The cousin with the Catholic name had met a rabbi who introduced him to Judaism and the structure of religion.

At the Bar Mitzvah of the Catholic cousin, the boy from the Catholic school crossed himself, as he had been duly taught when the rabbi said “Amen,” The presiding rabbi visibly went into shock!

These pictures of scrambled religions and customs is another piece of evidence that may help partly explain “where they all went” after the holocaust and after changes that followed WWII.

The staying power of religion and beliefs transcends lots of secular developments and pressures. Those underlying truths are sharply illuminated in the glowing innocence of three-year-old minds.

The young people of today truly cannot comprehend what caused the WWII Holocaust because the rise of interpersonal religious tolerance may be driving out many forms of historical prejudice.

Perhaps we may begin to see even more tolerance in coming generations of political thought built on a new era of religious tolerance?

Climate Change: Science Vs. Emotion

Recently Steven Koonin, former Undersecretary of Energy for science under Obama and former professor of theoretical physics at Caltech and chief scientist at British Petroleum, published an elegantly balanced, nuanced and extremely informative article on September 19th in the Wall Street Journal about the debate on global warming.

Basically he makes the point that the data that suggest there is a human factor in climate change that can be addressed is clearly there but he believes it needs a longer time frame to be definitively clear without doubt. His position is perfectly appropriate for a two-handed economist/scientist. Accordingly, he implies that it may be premature to start now.

While he may be quite right that the reasoning, pro and con, about taking human steps to control the human variables is not yet fully dispositive, the very fact that he is so credible as a scientist is very likely to have a, hopefully, unintended consequence of deflecting political will from gathering steam to get ahead of the problem before it becomes too late.

We know that opponents of taking steps to reduce human effects on climate grasp at all straws to try to stop progress, and Koonin’s legitimate caution as an academic is all too easy to be misunderstood.

It is true for sure that all human impact on climate is smaller than the effects of nature. But, that does not at all mean that at the margin human effects are altogether irrelevant. He says that, but cushions his observation by observing that it will take a lot more time to be positive of what the effects have been or could be.

The case for beginning to address the human effect on climate matters is grounded on solid evidence that there very well may be a trend underway, which if addressed timely and properly could be reduced early enough to save our planet from extinction in due course.

Therefore, why wait until it might be too late, particularly if the costs of proceeding wisely now are manageable by global society?

Perhaps Mars is the best available example of what can happen with climate change. Admittedly, another few thousand years on Earth is hard to imagine or even deal with now, but it is mere blink of an eye in the life of a planet. I doubt if anyone on Earth today would like to see Earth look like Mars. And, if there is anything we can start doing now to avert an end result like Mars, the price is right.

I salute the wisdom of Koonin’s article. I do wish, however, that he would have been clearer that despite his scientist’s caution, he supports the steps being taken to BEGIN to seriously address climate change and should be continued aggressively subject only to reassessment and change if in due course the science clearly indicates over time that it is not necessary.

No one yet has argued persuasively that human steps to address the problems of climate change can do earth any harm. Quite the contrary.

We really do need to demystify the subject and eliminate emotional and visceral responses to this goal to make Earth safer for our descendants.

Evolution needs its chance to survive so that the whole Universe can benefit from humans’ extraordinary intelligence and understanding of the Universe. It is not just us that matter; it must include all intelligent beings everywhere in the Universe.

Stay Alive by Staying Alert

The simple wisdom of this piece’s title is, of course, very well known. But it is also very well and regularly overlooked. Why? And what can you do about that?

The “why” probably lies in the well-known phenomenon called “denial”. Denial comes in all sizes and shapes and does have some advantages in helping some people navigate through life.

But, certain forms of denial are quite dangerous.

For example, if you notice a little something new and different growing on your ear and it is merely annoying, though it slowly keeps getting a bit bigger, you may very well dismiss it as just another trivial wart and put off having someone look at it.


Most probably you are right: it is benign and nothing. BUT that one chance in 10 that it is a cancer could cost you the rest of your life by simply delaying.

There are most often two reasons why you delay. One is that you are afraid of the possibility of bad news. The other is that you hate to waste money on doctors. Both those reasons are lousy reasons and you should keep reminding yourself–if you love life–that you should remain alert to any and all signs no matter how little or seemingly trivial and catch them early, not late.

Another area where people are often asleep at the switch is in driving cars. There are statistics that show that an amazingly large percentage of auto accidents occur within a half-mile of people’s homes.

There would appear to be only two types of reasons for that. The first is that as one begins to drive from home perhaps one has not quickly enough adjusted to open road risks. The other is that, as you approach your home, the self-defense mechanisms that protect you on highways begin to relax in anticipation of reaching the haven of home. Whichever direction you may be going, remain aware and alert to this dangerous fact.

A third arena to be careful about is in dealing with people new in your life. This is sound advice for people you know socially, in business, or even romantically. For those you meet in politics, it’s absolutely vital!

Humans are hard wired to be both cautious and trusting but those two instincts frequently cancel each other out, leaving people exposed to invisible signs and signals they would otherwise notice in dealings with others.

There is one pretty simple way to protect against these risks. Remember to ask yourself in all situations what YOU might be thinking if you were in the other person’s head in whatever the situation might be.

For example, if you get into the politician’s head, you will surely see that he/she is probably concentrating on your money and/or your vote.

In the person of the opposite sex, you may be able to see the thought that you represent security more than happiness?

In business dealings, the other person’s head is full of getting your business, getting a good price or just the kick of winning.

And, socially, the other person’s head may see you as a stepping stone to a club or something similar.

This may all sound very cynical and you obviously must also remember that the reason for thinking this way is not by any means to conclude anything definitive based on these types of thoughts BUT to use it to start the process of weighing carefully what may be in the other person’s head and from that hopefully avoid unnecessary risks in your decision-making process.

You may be wondering where and why is all this “wisdom” coming from? Sigmund Freud is reported to have said to a young person who asked his advice about a certain type of unusual behavior; “is that person you describe, you?” It was not in fact the inquirer in that case, but somewhere, somehow all these types of behavior occur in most of us and it could from anyone anywhere. So remember the other old piece of advice: a word to the wise should be sufficient.

A Congressperson’s Dilemma

When the U.S. Constitution was created, the custom and expectation was that Representatives would be elected for two-year terms and that they would be in the Capitol representing their districts for only few weeks at the most — each year. Hence, members of Congress kept and maintained their real jobs as business people, innkeepers, lawyers. etc. Accordingly, they had little or no expectation that their livelihood would depend on remaining in Congress for most of their working life.

Today’s situation is entirely different. People run for Congress expecting a full-time job with generous compensation and perks most people can only dream of, not to mention a sizeable staff. As a result, today’s members of Congress have become very dependent on their position as a way of life. And, after a few terms, most of them can no longer even envision any other job. They are a big deal to most people, particularly in their home districts, except in the Capitol, where most of them remain pretty obscure.

Consequently, it should be no surprise that when they are confronted with decisions on how to vote and behave in ways which might put their tenure at risk, they get pretty tense. The idea of losing an election and having to start life all over as an ex-congressperson must be pretty daunting. The choices are [1] do the right thing and loose the cooperation of their leadership, [2] do the wrong thing and lose the confidence of their voters or [3] do nothing, and hope for the best, but probably get the worst outcome as a gutless nobody.

This pretty much is what we are witnessing today for around 100 “moderate” Republican Representatives. Many are very decent people trapped between what’s right and the Right. On the right they are threatened by primaries from well-funded tea party types. On the left, moderate Democrats, who appeal to moderate voters distrustful of the tea party. The result: a very real threat of losing a great job, a good income, and prestige with all expenses paid.

In some ways, these problems are not of their own making. It is a classic situational confrontation, a long time in the making, which badly needs to be dealt with, or along with them we might all lose our jobs/livings, if the current stasis takes us over the cliff.

One of the few options most of these conflicted folks have when/if they lose their House seat is to stay in DC as lobbyists and help make the overall situation even worse.

Now, here is a radical idea that would need a lot of horse trading to happen, but in a perverse and perhaps surprising way, could help fix the basic problem of job dependency undermining the country. In the larger scheme of things, it would not cost a lot of money, certainly as compared to the cost of the damage elected officials inflict by not doing their jobs properly.

Remember, too, that something similar is used in the Federal judiciary, where judges get their salary for life. This is meant to ensure an impartial judiciary, free from both deep-pocketed influence and fear of making an unpopular decision that costs them their job.

THUS: a sample plan for Congresspersons would be to provide a lifetime pension AFTER they have been elected at least five times and are 45 or older with some appropriate scale related to their salaries PLUS (very importantly) a lifetime ban on being a lobbyist.

The intended and hoped for effect of an arrangement like this would make it a lot easier for a lot of these House members to make their voting decisions free from the very corrosive, distracting and realistic pressures related to self-preservation.


John Boehner is in a real pickle. If he simply folds his cards, he ends up as a failed Speaker in history. If he stays the course, he may be seen in history as worse than a failed Speaker, as a fool with no spine. If he participates in finding some kind of “grand bargain” with the Senate and the President, he may cling to some credibility but he will have lost his ability to manage his far right membership.

He is in a box of his own making from which there really is no good exit.

He does have one possible option to consider, if he is clever, smart and realizes that he has little to lose.

He should IMMEDIATELY -without consulting his party–announce that he is resigning as Speaker and then with sufficient Republican moderate support, which there is, join with Democrats and end the impasse and provide interim leadership of the moderate portion of the Republican caucus.

Then the struggle for a new speaker will begin and he probably would have the best chance -under those circumstances- of being reelected Speaker again with a mandate to not be stubbornly doctrinaire but to make practical deals across party lines tailored to the country’s great needs, because he would control the swing votes.

Result: he might go down in history as a courageous, clever leader who knew how to lead in difficult and strange circumstances.

Not only would that outcome serve him personally, it would serve all Americans, and he would go from being hated and despised to heroic status.

Stay tuned?

How about a Political Safety Net?

After many incidents, and finally the tragedy of September 11, the Congress in 2001 created the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA). Since then, there have been no hijackings of planes in American airspace.

But hijacking is hardly a thing of the past. Since 9/11, we have witnessed almost regular hijackings of Congress and the country in which small bands of zealots pursue an extreme minority agenda that poses grave threat to the American people. They may not be armed, in the traditional sense, but they certainly are dangerous.

It’s time, finally, for a Political Safety Net (PSN).The Constitution and a lot of political history have been reasonably successful in preventing majorities from taking undue advantage of minorities. But we have a lot less history with – and far fewer protections from -political minorities that wage legislative jihad by hijacking the process and holding it – and the country – hostage to their demands.

The current chaos over the federal budget (to be followed, all too soon, by another battle over the debt ceiling) takes obstructionism to new levels. The House of Representatives’ repeated attempts to undo a law that was passed by both houses of Congress three years ago, upheld by the Supreme Court and fought over again in the 2012 Presidential election – and their willingness to bring down the house, so to speak, to get their way – underscores not only a political divide, but a complete abdication of leadership.

Historically, minorities had to cool their heels until a new election enabled them, or not, to impose their will on a former majority by a popular vote. Even the most recalcitrant of minorities knew well the first lesson of politics – how to count to 50 percent plus one – and strove, through the normal electoral and legislative process, to build a majority through compromise, negotiation, cajoling and back-room deal-making. Sure, Newt Gingrich shut down the government (in the 90’s), but he also raised taxes, cut deals (most famously on welfare), and accepted his foremost responsibility to the American people to govern. The malcontents of the current dispute show no such devotion to democracy.

What could a PSN do about this problem? One has to start by assuming that a Constitutional amendment is a near-impossibility, so such an entity is likely to be limited to moral suasion based on its perceived impartiality and expertise. A PSN could be created by mobilizing together a group of people who are ‘beyond fear or favor’ –distinguished public servants whose careers have ended.

It could include, for example, all living former Presidents and Vice Presidents, all living retired members of the Supreme Court and assorted others, such as former heads of the Federal Reserve, retired chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, former Cabinet heads and perhaps a few Senators and Representatives- all retired for good. There are, no doubt, others, but the precise size and makeup isn’t important here. And they surely are capable of making their own process.

Such a distinguished group of senior citizens, who would be asked to consider the most divisive issues of the day and, might very well provide a healthy influence on the political system, particularly if the group weighed in only when a healthy majority of them (2/3rds?) concurred in a course of action. A random set of individuals speaking might be helpful, but a collective view would have far more impact and effect on public opinion.

Why could it work? Because it would help drive public opinion in a non-partisan and fact-based manner, free from the hyperbole of the political arena and unshackled by an obvious need to win elections. The PSN would really need no power beyond the collective reputations of its members and their willingness to “educate and influence” the American public on matters of great import.

There is no way to know how such a group might view today’s amazing performance in Washington.

However, if a group of elders as proposed above, free of any personal political fears or ambitions, were to hold a clear and substantial view on a question, perhaps more sense might creep into more thinking across the whole country to everyone’s betterment.