Roles: They are important


My hammer has a role.  I use it to hammer nails into wood and take them out.  I could use it as a lever to pull a sheet of wood off a wall, but I don’t.  I don’t because sometimes this ruins the handle.  Instead, I use my crowbar.  My knife has a role.  I use it to cut rope, paper, tape on boxes, and straight lines into wood.  I’ve seen knives used as screw drivers but after they are used that way they don’t cut a straight line into wood.  When I think about my tools, I don’t think my hammer is better than my knife.  I think it is important to have them both to be successful at what is being accomplished.

People are like tools.  We all have things we are good at, and sometimes, if we are lucky, better at than anyone else.  Just like there are a lot of different hammers there are a lot of different men.  Just like there are a lot of different knives there are a lot of different women.  Men and women are not the same.  They look similar and they work together well, but they are not the same.  A hammer is not a knife and a man is not a woman.  They are different.  Just like I can use a knife as a screw driver, a man can nurture and rear a child.  Just like a hammer, a woman can be an effective instrument in war.  Personally, I prefer that children have soft gentle kindness as an example of how to treat people in their lives as a primary influence from their role models.  I also want my children to develop that hard survival core that allows them to survive in all situations by removing themselves emotionally and executing practically.  However, I prefer this influence to take up less of their time.  As a man, I recognize that the survival imperative promoted by testosterone is useful but not always desirable, just as the social imperative promoted by estrogen is essential but not always practical.  I do not place a moral construct around this.  If anything, I recognize it as a universal truth, that all animals and plants strive to survive in an environment where resources are limited.

When men are demonized for being who they are, not the assholes that abuse others, but the ones that are inept but still clumsily trying, we are moralizing the hammer.  Men want to be loved, be admired, and propagate.  Some may not be good at the competition, lacking knowledge of how to ask or to approach women for what they may both desire.  If they are clumsy, are they an atrocity?  Is there really a moral value being placed on asking?  Have we come to a place in history where we refuse to use the hammer because of the moral implication of the blunt nature of the tool that makes it effective?

There are many men and women who are assholes.  They promote themselves at the expense of others.  They use inordinate power to take what they can get.  They make villains of an entire category of humanity for not dancing correctly to the music they are playing.  The vast majority of all us are inept at the sophisticated protocols required to broach a need.  We lack the sophistication to overcome the barriers to entry in order to meet our need for solace, love, kindness, a relationship, and yes sex and the need to propagate.

The rules of engagement between men and women are a slippery slope with vast implications.  If you write the rule book without agreement from both participating sides, then you can expect discord.  Men must be able to approach, to try, and women must be able to deny or accept without resentment for the attempt or condemnation for making her own decision.

Man bashing is ridiculous.  Deifying women is ridiculous.  We are all humans, like the hammer and the knife, useful tools in the belt of mankind, equal in our value.

Male silence after #MeToo is teaching algorithms what being a man means




AI Language Translation and Programming

I am sure that what I am about to discuss is not original.  Writing this is based on my eternal frustration with programming in so many languages over the years that it amazes me something has not been done about it.  Now, I imagine, it is being done, just not out in the open.  Let’s start with a simple image of the Google Translation Engine.

So, what is the big idea?  Seems to me this same mechanism can be used to translate any programming language into another almost instantly.  Now, wouldn’t that be great?


Allow Our Heroes to Rise


I graduated in economics 45 years ago.  In those days we were taught that humans were rational and made rational decisions based ultimately on utility, the exchange value of what they received for what they delivered.  Forty-five years has taught us a thing or two about psychology and how the mind works.  We now know that humans are far from rational and the Theory of Utility has been replaced by the Theory of Propensity.  We often exchange more value for less value irrationally.  In fact we act irrationally about many decisions, so much so that the vast majority of our decisions are knee jerk decisions caused by racing neural impulses following well worn tracks in our brain.  Today, one day after the inauguration of Donald Trump, I can’t help wonder, “How can so many believe they know the future having done so poorly predicting it in the past?”


Years ago after having taught Karate for over 15 years, coached soccer and basketball for over 10, hired and fired in business for 20, I came to some realizations about judging people and their performance, “The impossible will happen.  Some you never expect will rise.  Some you believe are indomitable will sink.”  The key to good coaching is to be patient, train to incentivize dedication, respectful communication, discipline, and objectivity.  Above all things you do as a coach you give everyone an equal opportunity to shine and be a victor over the obstacles to their success.


We live in a country dominated by a media where the heroes and villains are decided by the clothes they wear, by the tribe they belong to, by the cadence of their speech, by the money in their pocket, by what they have said over the history of their lives. Our media immortalizes the down trodden and makes villains of the successful.  The employees in the media corporations around the world have become the prognosticators of value.  They tell us who is good and who is bad without objectively balancing the equation.  In their delusional attempts to demonstrate  objectivity they fail the acid test of reproducibility.  Subjective claims of moral values often times disregard the long term cause and effect that may result.  In our wild claims of human atrocity in Iraq America dismantled their physical and political infrastructure causing the murder of millions and creating a political vacuum that may not right itself for a thousand years.


It is a sad day when you don’t let the person who has done everything they can, sacrificing time, money and respect to prove themselves a champion of the people.  Perhaps we are delusional believing the presidency is an wonderful office to hold with prestige and pomp.  In fact, it is the hardest job on earth, and any champion who rises to wield the sword of prosperity should be given a chance to wield it for the hope and future of our nation.  They may rise, they may sink.  Our history is replete with both.  Since none of us know the future, or can predict it based on words, skin color, or age, we must let our victors rise on the field of value, gauging not by our dislike of their personality but by the temper of their spirit and value delivered over time.  We do not enter this fight afraid.  We enter this fight aware.  If we predict our teammates failure, they surely will.  Let us all place the might of our collective desire for a better America and better world behind Trump’s back and push predicting victory.



Ebola – Politics as Usual and the Doom of Mankind (Part 8)

John Kerry chastised organizations worldwide for not throwing enough money at Ebola apparently believing that we will fall for the old leader who follows the news and asks for money story. Leaders mobilize without money.  They take action that does not cost a dime.  They shut down borders,  shut down air traffic,  and create processes that ensure safety. 

Our questionable leaders ask for more money in times of crisis and are proud they shook the hand of the known victim of a contagion.  Perhaps they are not leaders at all. 

Ebola – The Tragic Comedy of Prescience (Part 7)

“The CDC is asking all 132 passengers on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 from Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth on October 13 to call 1 800-CDC-INFO (1 800-232-4636). The CDC says the risk of infection is low, but that the agency still wants to interview all of the passengers.” – Healthline News, Written by Sandra Levy | Published on October 15, 2014

“Hey listen, there is almost no chance of you getting Ebola or infecting someone else, we say that because it has never happened before, well, except in one instance just prior to this, but if you have a couple of minutes, you know, you’re not do anything, and you want to chat, why not call us at the CDC?”

I have assigned 132 people the task of tracking down and isolating 132 passengers from the Frontier Airlines flight 1143 from Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth on October 13.  All 132 people tracking down the passengers and the passengers themselves will be isolated in separate locations purchased by us in the town they are located in.  All people they have come in contact with will be tracked down and isolated as well.  There will be no physical contact with these individuals from the outside world for 21 days except using technological communication.  We will compensate all parties financially and provide facilities so that all involved individuals can carry on their work remotely if possible.  Each physical location will be guarded around the clock.  Every effort will be made to make the facilities pleasant to live in and not a prison.

The reaction of those involved in securing our future and protecting us is abhorrent.  Demand better.

Ebola – Weep Tears Now for Your Culture Lost (Part 6)

Weep Tears Now for Your Culture Lost

Shed your tears now
Cry for the clean water you drink
Cry for the light at night
Cry for the safety in our streets
Cry for the roads you drive on
Cry for the family alive that you love
Cry for the friends you cherish
Cry for the society you have shared

Soon, too soon, all your tears will be shed
Your water will be soiled
Your light will be gone
Your safety will be lost
Your roads will be shattered
Your family will be smaller
Your friends will expire
Your society will not endure

Perhaps we can still save ourselves.  To do so we must elect new leaders who understand prioritization, who are not the puppets of power, but leaders through prescience and compassion.  We need leaders who are not the victors of the downtrodden, but the heroes of our future.  Men and women who look past what other’s want to hear to what we cannot afford to hear.  We cannot afford to hear that Ebola is airborne.  We cannot afford to hear that borders are open.  We cannot afford to hear that our healthcare system, weakened and riddled by the prosperity of assured payments and specialized medicine is prepared and capable of handling Ebola.  Our healthcare system is woefully inadequate.  Is our healthcare system in your home?  Is it at your work place?  Is it sitting on the park bench?  Are their members brothers and sisters of the massive homeless population, the auger of Ebola.  Who will protect us from those who don’t know, don’t care, and won’t act?

We have one hope and one hope only, that you, the populace recognizes the danger and acts accordingly.

I, who do not believe in God, pray that you do.

Ebola – Should Have Kept Those Damn Gloves On(Part 5)

Mass Murderer?

Mass Murderer?

Perhaps, if we all survive the many threats to our modern survival as a species, we will eventually have predictive models that use the momentum of words written all over the world to somewhat know the future and act accordingly.  Until then, we are left with the wise words of any great combatant that ever lived,”Always overestimate your opponent.”

Before going any further in this article, I want to personally note that Thomas Eric Duncan could turn out to be the most horrible man in the history of the world through total neglect of his potential impact on humanity.  If Ebola breaks out in the United States and is unchecked for many months there could be global economic disaster.  He was unwilling to sacrifice his investment in an airline ticket to see his relatives in Texas while being willing to spread what he had seen first hand as the worst virus we have faced since the dark ages.

How do we sift through the mountains of information and come to some conclusion that allows us as a population to act appropriately?  First, we have acted too late, sitting in the twin towers because others were sitting in the twin towers, unwilling to raise the alarm.  We start by overestimating our opponent, Ebola.

“The virus behind this outbreak made the jump to humans late last year, in Guinea. The key event in the spread to Sierra Leone was the funeral of a faith healer who claimed to be able to cure Ebola patients. When she contracted Ebola and died in late May, a large number of people attended her funeral.

Twelve of the first Ebola cases in Sierra Leone all attended that funeral, and appear to have contracted the virus there. These include two distinct forms of the virus which diverged, in Guinea, in late April.” – Rob Brooks (2 September 2014, 3.21am BST)

How does one go about overestimating an opponent?  We start by analyzing their strengths and our weaknesses.

Ebola’s four greatest strengths are:

  1. It can appear like any other virus in the beginning with aches and a runny nose
  2. It has a 7 to 21 day gestation period
  3. It is a new strain of Ebola, mutating rapidly, in a highly diverse DNA portfolio
  4. It is lethal in at least 40% of all cases

Our greatest weaknesses are:

  1. Arrogance
  2. Less than timely action
  3. Fear of loss based reactions, i.e. loss of money, loss of power, loss of credibility
  4. Protocol based behavior, i.e. we do what we have always done

How to mitigate the strengths of our opponent?

It can appear like any other virus in the beginning with aches and a runny nose

The result of this will be many false positives, people believing they have Ebola when they do not.  The consequence of this in conjunction with our protocol based behavior is that we will flock to Hospitals, ERs, and Day Clinics and sit in rooms waiting to be told if we have Ebola.  Some of the people in the room will have Ebola setting up a quarantine situation that is untenable.  Where will we house all these people in quarantine?

We should set up community clinics outside in wide open spaces with tables spread far apart with medical personnel dressed appropriately to avoid both airborne and fluid contact.  If chairs are used for the waiting patients they should be set very far apart and signs should be posted asking them to avoid contact with others.  If there are ketones specific to patients with Ebola sensors should be manufactured that can provide a first data check on whether to test blood samples.  The new blood test system that Elizabeth Holmes invented should be used in all cases to avoid transport and possible testing issues.

It has a 7 to 21 day gestation period

Because the greatest risk to our communities is based on rapid transportation’s ability to move the virus throughout the country in days rather than years it is important to quarantine cities after a very small number of infected individuals have been found in a city.  This means no travel out of the city for 21 days after identification has occurred.

It is a new strain of Ebola, mutating rapidly, in a highly diverse DNA portfolio 

We must assume the the virus can become airborne whether it currently is or not.  All of us acting with a respect for personal space and making sure neither our air, spit, or body liquids touch others is a good policy during this time.  Advising that the virus is not airborne is a huge mistake.

It is lethal in at least 40% of all cases

A 40% death rate is very conservative.  In fact, it has attained a 90% death rate when conditions favor the virus.  What are those conditions?

  1. Religious ceremonies conducted taking a priority over safety
  2. The cleanliness of the environment
  3. The respect given to the potential of infecting others

How do we address our weaknesses? 

Before you believe you have this fight won, prepare for the fight and believe it is lost unless you have your best fight ever.  If you think you have Ebola, immediately get checked and avoid contact with others.  Act immediately as an individual, as a community, as a nation to be safe.  Fear of the loss of our culture should take precedence over money, time, and power.  Be safe.