Sunday, October 10, 2010

Things are getting right with the world...

Woke up this morning and realized there are a growing number of reasons to think optimistically that things are getting right with the world...here are just three of them that come immediately to mind:

1) Michigan State Spartans are on the rise! 6-0 after a dominating win over Michigan!
Spartans have now beaten arch-rival UM 3 times in a row for the first time since 1967.  The defense held UM's awesome QB, Dennard Robinson, in check and rattled him enough into throwing 3 interceptions.  MSU has to have the best 1-2-3 punch of running backs in the country...the #3 guy was #1 last year!!  And they're playing without the kind of juvenile mistakes that have plagued them over the years.  The Spartans have matured into a team that KNOWS it can win instead of just one that's hoping to win...and have left behind that old habit of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory...and that's the difference between the top-echelon teams and the wannabes.  While beating Michigan again is a great feeling, you still have to look objectively at Michigan's horrible defense and can't call MSU a sure thing winner against anyone left on their schedule. Everyone's talking Iowa as the next big test, but Illinois dominated Penn State at Penn State yesterday, and they're a program that's on the rise, so can't take them for granted.  6-0 so far is awfully nice, though!  GO GREEN!

2) We've escaped another hurricane season here in South Florida without any big scares...
I can't stress enough how disruptive hurricane scares are to our economy here.  Every time we have to shut down for two or three days of hurricane prep, it's millions of dollars in lost revenues to businesses and their workers...and it hits small businesses hit exceptionally hard.  And with the economy finally leveling out these past few months at new normal levels we can still only call 'bare bones survival mode', we can't afford any more significant disruptions here.  Fingers crossed that we're through this season unscathed...

3) Businesses here and around the rest of the country seem to finally be resolved to recognizing that our new, lower levels of economic activity are a new 'baseline reality' for economic expectations.  Indications are becoming more evident that businesses are getting back to business and ramping up operations and planning for some growth, albeit slow, in the coming year instead of buttoning up,  battening down the hatches and clamping down on hiring and spending as they've done for the past couple of years.  On a local level, I see it in our growing advertising revenues at every level...and I'm sure others do, too. And consumers are back out and about...spending more cautiously and wisely, of course, but they're out there again...and that's encouraging. Don't believe me?  Go to the mall today...they're out there.  Go to your favorite restaurant one night this week...they're out there. Empirical observations that a whole lot of experience tells me we'll see showing up in the economic indicators very soon. 

And there you have it...just a few of the reasons I remain optimistic about the way things are going with the world.  And I'm going to enjoy them thoroughly...for today, anyway!  :)

Best! George Q.

Monday, August 30, 2010

A Lesson in Demographics..."Orange County Is No Longer Nixon Country"

"Orange County Is No Longer Nixon Country"...Say What???  Gotta admit, the title in the e-news caught my eye...so I clicked on the link. 

As I read about the transformation of what was once perhaps most legendary of all Republican stronghold areas anywhere in the country into a place where registered Republicans now number a 70-year low of a mere 43% of registered voters, I stumbled upon one of the best quotes I've ever read on the REAL benefits of demographic diversity. And I just want to share it with you...if only to put into a little perspective some of the immediate and tangible benefits of the inevitable march of demographic change we're seeing today in the U.S. 

To read the whole article, which I do recommend and which you'll likely find politically informative and more even-handed than you might imagine...especially to those of you who see the NY Times as a bastion of the liberal press...see http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/30/us/politics/30orange.html?_r=1&nl=us&emc=politicsemailema1

But the real gem and grin-inspiring quote from the article (to me, anyway!) was this, to wit, paragraph 7 about the transformation of Orange County:

Manuel Gomez, the vice chancellor of student affairs at the University of California, Irvine, said the county where he was born 63 years ago is almost unrecognizable to him today. “With diversity comes more cultural voices and political voices,” he said. “And certainly better food.”

Could anyone say it better???  Maybe we could do without all the culture wars, racial hatred and religious angst during these demographic upheavals if we just focused on the end result and benefit...better food!!  Think about it!  :)

All the best!  GM/GQPublic

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Thinking aloud this evening and wondering why...

Why do we even have elections for Judges?  The way it is now, unless you happen to know a Judge or a candidate personally, how can you really know or learn enough about them to actually make an informed decision about whether or not you should vote for them?  For all intents and purposes, while the legal community may know or know of these candidates as colleagues, it scary to think that among most of the rest of the voting public, voters could (and probably are) simply picking 'names' rather than actual jurists!

Solution:  Let the legal community elect Judges!  They can learn about and know their peers better than anyone else out there.  Think about it relative to the medical community:  They don't leave it up to the public to elect surgeons and other specialists to high ranking positions, they keep that evaluation and award that position based upon peer review and the candidate's education and merit! 

Of course, there's always the 'let's get rid of all the lawyers' crowd railing against giving so much power to the lawyers!  For my money, though, I'd rather give that 'election power' to those who have proven they have the reading, writing and reasoning ability that Law School requires them to have to get through it...and who probably can be expected to give some circumspect thought to whom they vote for to be a Judge...than to give it to the largely uninformed public. 

Just my two cents' worth on this subject.