Friday, May 28, 2010

More Lessons Learned

The more you live--the more you learn.

We've learned yet again that those who portray themselves as "Super Patriots" are more than happy to use bullying techniques and threats to get their way. Officials with Midwest Realty Management are getting death threats this week from people who are upset that tenants were not allowed to display an American flag in their windows. Adding to the "media friendly" nature of this story is the fact the tenant is a veteran.

We could go into the lengthy legal debate about personal property rights--but suffice it to say it is well within Midwest Realty rights to limit what is displayed on its private property. It's not just American flags that are not allowed--but Mexican flags, Nazi flags, Confederate flags, Obama campaign signs and Ron Johnson for Senate signs are also banned. Given today's political climate, we would probably have the same bruhaha if someone was allowed to display a Mexican flag. The same people calling for the death of those banning the Stars and Stripes would be calling for the death of those permitting such an "unpatriotic display" in our country.

We always hear about how soldiers are "dying for our freedoms". Well those freedoms include the right to live without threats of personal injury or death from others and the freedom to live pretty much wherever we want. My advice: find an apartment complex that allows you to put whatever you darn well want in your windows--or save up to buy a house and exercise your right to control what what is displayed on your private property.

President Obama is learning a tough lesson this week: Government cannot fix all problems. We hear every day how the President is "frustrated that nothing can be done to stop the oil leak in the Gulf." Is he frustrated that BP can't fix it--or is he frustrated that there isn't some Government entity that he can send in to "save the day"? You know that there had to be a tense White House briefing where the President learned that there is not an Office of Oil Spill Management in Washington, that there isn't an Oil Spill Management Czar and that we don't have billions of dollars of personnel and equipment just sitting around waiting for major oil spills along our shores.

You know that it is killing him that the private sector is the one who has to fix the oil spill--because we all know the private sector is the problem--not the solution. At least he's able to publicly bash BP at every oppunity he can. What would the President do if BP was to say "Hey, you want to crucify us for what happened here--then you can handle the fix and clean up yourself, 'cause we are out of here." The business management materials I've read usually recommend identifying the problem, making sure there is some accountability and working together on a solution or fix. Not continuing to harp on the mistake and continuing to bash the responsible party every chance you get.

Of course those lessons were learned by people who were successful in the actual business world--not someone who has spent their lives in the worlds of academia and politics.

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