Michael Phillips

Gods of Commerce


Reliability: Very likely is A+ ... highly doubtful is D-

I love commerce.

The marriage of commerce and technology is by definition the "modern world."

Commerce and technology thrive on three values: Meritocracy, diversity and openness.

Heroes of Commerce

Harold Geneen

Morita, Akio

Louis V. Gerstner, Jr

Sanford I. Weill

Jeffrey Bezos

Almost Heroes of Commerce

Jeffrey Bezos


Joeseph Williams

Gratuitous Advice




Daniel W. Drezner

Daniel Pipes

Catherine Campbell

Gaiko Forum

Stephan Sharkansky

A rather nice way to order books from Amazon and give this blog 15%: click here


April 2003

March 2003

February 2003

January 2003

December 2002

05/28/03 - 18:45 Unions

My daughter in Salt Lake asked me about unions because I pointed out that the lefties of the 1960's did not support unions and still don't. Earlier lefties built their ideologies on the working class and unions.

My business experience leads me to suggest:

Labor unions represent the true and deep values of workers; values that management forgets or at least dislikes. There are two primary values that workers hold: security of the job and the greater security of recognized seniority.

These are the two organizing values of labor unions.

Management has no interest in either value. The value management least appreciates is seniority. Seniority in business is worth only a little to management. Seniority maybe worth 1-2% of wages per year but definitely stops after five years. A few employees are more valuable because of seniority but they are usually promoted to management.

Employees never see the world that way. So unions mitigate this difference of opinion. Sometimes for the better, when industry is shrinking or inherently bureaucratic and sometimes for the worse when industry is growing rapidly.

05/28/03 - 18:15 Davis recall

In the heart of San Francisco I found a woman collecting ballot initiative signatures including the Gov. Davis recall. Since she is in San Francisco she had to start with "Don't hit me with your candy bar, but are you interested in signing the recall petition?" I signed then I stood around and watched. Nearly everyone reacted pleasantly and most signed the recall.

What is happening here?

05/24/03 For the Japanese

I have written two new articles for the Japanese Foreign Affairs magazine. The first is why America and Israel have such a strong bond and why the bond gets stronger over time.

The second offers a synopsis of our Viking heritage to explain the current adoration of President George Bush.

By the time I return from Tokyo at the end of August, I plan to write about the American shift to the Republican Party. It happened in ways that no one ever expected and for surprising reasons.

05/23/03 Tax cut

President Bush #2's second tax cut may be of greater historic importance than any piece of legislation since the creation of Social Security in 1938.

The history of this tax cut is simple. The Republican Party has advocated less government for most of the 20th Century.

The history of efforts to have less government is marked by failure after failure.

The Republican Party has seldom simultaneously controlled both the Presidential (Executive) and Legislative branches of the national government, and when it did in the 1920's and 1950's it tried to merely restrain government. The Republicans failed both times.

In the early 1970's, President Nixon tried a modest tactic of transferring government programs to the States. It didn't slow the growth of federal programs.

In 1980, under President Reagan, the Republicans tried a radical tactic and cut taxes significantly and abruptly in Reagan's second year in office. Reagan had just been shot and had garnered sufficient Congressional sympathy to pass a bill to cut taxes.

The Reagan tax cut did nothing to restrain the growth of government, as the Congress continued to expand programs in spite of a deficit. The Congress seemed to be comfortable spending more money regardless of a deficit, large or small.

President George Bush #1 tried to solve the perpetually expanding government by getting an agreement to raise taxes and operate with a balanced budget. The tax increase proved to be politically unpalatable and the Bush #1 tactic failed.

In 1996 the Republican Senate tried another radical tactic. The Senate voted to amend the Constitution to require a balanced budget. The Constitutional Amendment got 66 votes, one vote short of passage. The Republican Senate and Democrat President Clinton came to a compromise for which Clinton got political credit. Both parties agreed to try to achieve a budget surplus within a ten year period by restraining government. When the surplus was unexpectedly achieved early, in 2001, the balanced budget tactic failed when the outgoing Congress of Winter 2000 voted fresh and astounding amounts of spending for their own districts, and brought terror to the hearts of all fiscal conservatives. The 1996 compromise aiming for a balanced budget and a surplus was deemed a failure.

The new President Bush #2 tried a new tactic in the Republican effortr to stop government growth. Bush #2 passed a ten year tax cut in his first year in office. The ten year tax cut was designed to make sure there would be no surplus to tempt any new Congress to expand the government. Bush #2 gave immediate cash to the public in hopes of generating grass roots support for tax cuts. No strong tax cut support was evident. Congress has successfully exercised restraint on government expansion.

Now in 2003,when a large Federal deficit is a certainty, and most States face monumental tax shortfalls and government cut backs due to a recession, Bush #2 has gotten his second large ten year tax cut. He is again giving the grass roots citizens a fresh infusion of cash. This second ten year tax cut is a radical political move with a large deficit guaranteed far into the future.

Will this radical, long-term tax cut creating a deficit in peace time act as a restraint on the growth of government?

Regardless of whether it does, this is a novel policy action taken out of a sense of desperation. Nobody knows how to restrain the inexorable growth of government.

We can only watch to see if this policy works.

05/22/03; 16:30 Business

I have added a feature on the left side of this blog. An Amazon click button. When you click on it to buy at Amazon, I get 15% of your purchase.

I don't plan to live on the revenue but I do recommend it to anyone who reviews books or CD's.


05/22/03; 16:00 Kindness of commerce

The Bridal Registry is a godsend. Four things amaze me about bridal registries. A bridal registry is a list of potential wedding gifts selected by a bride and groom. The registry is posted on the website of the store or stores of the wedding couple's choice. Before the web existed the bridal registry was merely available in the store. Couples planning a wedding tell their friends where they are registered.

The bridal registry meets the definition of kindness. Kindness is being generous to others in a way that is appreciated by the recipient. This condition makes generosity difficult because without it the gift may seem paternalististic, patronizing or self serving. Finding out whether an act of generosity will be appreciated is often difficult. The bridal registry is a kindness because it makes generosity a confident act. A bridal registry invariably offers a range of gifts with many price options for the gift giver.

The bridal registry is an evolutionary addition to our social institutions. Institutions learn. Before the existence of bridal registries, the wedding guest had several options: ask the parents or the close friends of the bride and groom what type of gift was appropriate, give a standard gift at a store where returned gifts were welcomed or take a chance on a gift that was unappreciated. The bridal registry solves this problem in an institutional and commercial way that satisfies all parties to the act of generosity.

This is commerce doing what it does best: satisfying consumer desires. The bridal registry is an amoral creation. There is no moral structure to it. The bride and groom can choose any store or stores they want to register in and the gift giver can use the bridal registry or not. In the most extreme of circumstances, the store can be owned by avid Zionists and the wedding party can include anti-zionist Arabs. The store owners can be anti-black racists and the wedding party can be a black man marrying a white woman with mixed race wedding guests. The same can be true of nearly every other form of moral opprobrium, gay, anti-gay; drug lovers, anti-drug prudes, etc.

Nobody has noticed this commercial godsend. I find no comments about this wonderful commercial contribution to kindness. Not in google, not in any online journalism search engine.

Commerce may be a blushing bride hiding her beauty from all of us.

05/21/03; 12:20 Cuba

I spent a week in Havana a few years ago. My report on Cuba was fairly clear headed in light of the recent re-emergence of Castro-the-tyrant.

What I recommend as U.S. policy at this point is for a high ranking person in the State Department to announce that we want elections in Cuba. No date, no threat. A few months later this would be followed with an off-hand comment by President Bush in reply to a reporter's question about elections in Cuba: "We're looking into that."

Castro's paranoia would bring him down. His paranoia is evident in the arrest of 75 dissidents before the beginning of the Iraqi Liberation War.

05/21/03; 12:00 Art Cars

I've been proposing a guerilla project. I suggest that on a Sunday morning in Fall we have a Run-With-The-Cars event in San Francisco.

A dozen art cars would follow a few hundred costumed runners on a one mile course around the downtown streets.

San Francisco's version of Pamplona's Running with the Bulls. More in keeping with San Francisco and America.

05/15/03 Friend's blog

My friend and client Bob Gnaizda now has a sort-of-blog. Its really more like a weekly op-ed piece.

Bob argues that the U.S. and California could collect $ billions more in taxes if they made a significant effort.

Bob should know. He was a brilliant Yale lawyer when he went to work as a prosecutor for the IRS. He could collect $ billions by himself. Bob knew tax law and was a superb tax analyst ... and aggressive as hell. So what did the IRS do with Bob?

The IRS sent him out to collect taxes from 2,000 sailors who each owed $500 that was fifteen years past due. Bob left the IRS shortly after that and founded several prominent public interest law firms.

The IRS still has the same loser mentality and we U.S. citizens lose $ trillions in tax revenue as a result.

In the early 1990's, a State Treasurer in Massachusetts decided to collect taxes from the rich and found it was very easy. Just prosecute a few rich fish and the others come clean quickly.

Republicans, Democrats...nobody collects from the rich potential donors.

05/15/03 Updates:

The suggestion for a democratic caucus at the United Nations (3/30 ) was made by Congressman Tom Lantos in a recent piece of legislation.

The outrageous classification of crap-eating chickens as organic (2/21) was overturned in April by Congress according to Environmental Defense Newsletter Solutions for May, page 9.

Great new internet idea: meetup.com They help you create a group of similar minded people in your area. There are many ex-pat groups, knitting, yoga and lonely trekkies. They are everywhere from Karachi to Madison, Wisconsin.

05/11/03-17:00 Second Struggle

The First Struggle in life is to become credit worthy. Americans learn to handle credit fairly early. Many students get credit cards when they are in college.

Learning to handle credit takes quite awhile, starting from college age and continuing indefinitely. Some people learn about credit fast, some learn slow and have outstanding credit card and student loan balances in excess of their income until they are in their 40's. A few people never learn to handle credit and become social outcasts.

The struggle about credit is a struggle to bring desire within the realm of self control.

The Second Struggle is about the same issue: bring desire within the realm of self control. The Second Struggle, for most people, happens later in life. The Second Struggle usually begins when people are in their 30's and early 40's. The Second Struggle is the struggle to control their weight.

The Second Struggle has many similar adverse consequences that the First Struggle for credit worthiness has. The consequences of failing to control weight are social segregation and declining health. People who can't control their weight find it hard to go to the beach, to be involved in active sports and to have a large circle of friends. Often people who can't control their weight live with perceptible social ostracism. People who can't control their weight certainly live with increased health problems.

I realize the Second Struggle remains a taboo subject. Oprah is still popular and so are other public and media figures who can't control their weight. I think public acceptance of this failure is just temporary. Yuppies hate obesity; I expect that opprobrium to slowly become more pervasive in our society.

I have been involved actively with the Second Struggle for several decades. I'm beginning to see that it requires the same life long attention that I have given to my own credit worthiness.

I once asked my wise and beautiful mother, who was 70 at the time, how she controlled her weight: "One meal at a time, Michael."

05/11/03-16:00 No one seems to have mentioned

No one seems to have mentioned that George W. Bush is the first president of the United States who has won a war. A war of liberation, at that.

Think about it. No other president has won a war. Lincoln was shot before the end of the war, which was a civil war in any case. Roosevelt died before the end of WWII. America didn't win any other clearly decisive wars. Andrew Jackson got credit for winning the Mexican-American War, but he wasn't president.

I think this is significant. In my view, American Culture (in the anthropological sense) is a direct offspring of Viking Culture. We and the Vikings love victory in war.

I think George W. Bush, unless he tarnishes his reputation very badly, is automatically in the Pantheon of top American leaders. At this moment he stands with George Washington.

05/8/03-11:00 A new gasoline tax

I don't know if anyone is using a Ratchet Tax anywhere in the world, but gasoline would be a good place to try it out.

A Ratchet Tax is applied to a product with a volatile price to make sure the price continually goes up and so does the tax revenue.

Example: our recent average U.S. gasoline price rose from $1.55 per gallon of regular to $1.67 and has since fallen back. With a Ratchet Tax in place, the price would still be $1.67 and the tax revenue would be the difference of 1.67 minus 1.55 or $.12.

With a Ratchet Tax, each time the price of gasoline rises because of market forces and falls back, the tax would keep the price at its highest level.

The consequence is that the price of gasoline would keep going up indefinitely, the only known effective way to reduce gasoline consumption, and the public would not blame the government for raising the price. The price would rise because of supply and demand, not politicians.

Please send comments for publication.

05/8/03-10:30 More on Prager

I remember something else Dennis Prager said (5/07). I paraphrase it: Our country and the world are dividing into lefty fundamentalists who are aligned with France, America with its allies, and Islamicists.

* The French and our lefty-fundamentalists are oriented around a charter banner of: liberty, equality, fraternity. * Americans and our allies rally around our charter banner: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. * Islamicist rally around Allah Wakbhar Leilei LaAllah, Mahamed Rasu LaAllah.

Interesting difference.

05/7/03-21:00 From one to hundreds

I heard Dennis Prager speak in San Francisco tonight to a group organized by the Republican Jewish Coalition of Northern California. A few years ago the Republican Jewish Coalition in San Francisco was one person: Bill Lowenstein. Tonight it was nearly two hundred people at $20 a head. The whole audience was enthusiastic and supportive of the speaker who explained why the Left Hates Israel. Prager is an LA radio personality and great speaker. I ran into one old Briarpatch member at the talk. (The Briarpatch, which I started, was a 1970's hippy business group with nearly a thousand members).

Prager said three things that stuck in my mind. Both America and Israel are religious nations built on the Torah (sometimes mistakenly called the Old Testament) and both America and Jew are ideas. No other people in the world are defined by an idea. Which is why we can have self-hating Americans (lefty fundamentalists) and self-hating Jews, but not self-hating Swedes or self-hating Mexicans.

05/7/03-20:30 A big political realignment is going on in America.

* Jews to Republicans are a fast moving trend.

* The largest organization at U.C. Berkeley is the Campus Republicans with 500 members. I was the only Republican on campus when I was there in the early 1960's. Of course, the University won't give them an office on campus.

* The disenchantment with lefty-fundamentalists is becoming evident in many ways. Not one of the nine Democratic candidates for President identifies him/herself as part of the Peace Movement.

05/7/03-20:00 Time for Castro

Now is the time for the U.S. to leave Castro alone. When Castro jailed 75 dissidents and sent three to the firing squad, he showed his paranoid fear. He is doomed. There isn't much leadership in Cuba, but there is enough to smell blood and organize to overthrow Fidel without U.S. help. Fidel has no power, absolutely none, based on a trip I made there two years ago.

Five years after Castro is gone, Cuba could be the richest nation, per capita, in Latin America. A la Miami.

05/6/03-19:30 Farmer's Market

The farmer's market that used to be near Telegraph Hill on Saturdays has moved. This is the top-dollar fresh produce and goodies market.

The new market is bigger and is at the Ferry Building. The crowd was even bigger than the expansion alone would warrant. The market is now outside on Saturdays and they have added Tuesdays and Thursdays, too.

The Ferry building has been transformed and will soon open with a large indoor version of the farmers market. Indoors will have all the high-end produce names, plus a few food boutiques.

The glory of the farmers market is all the friends I bump into. That seems to be what other people enjoy, too.

05/6/03- 19:00 My doctor

I have had the same doctor for 42 years; he's in internal medicine. I've seen him every two years for my bi-annual pilot's physical. This year he answered the phone when I called for an appointment. This year there was no secretary/assistant.

I told Dr. Brown that I've been advising small business people for years and that I always tell them to reduce their operation down to themselves (one person operation) whenever possible.

Congratulations Dr. Brown, you did it. We talked a while and he finds all the benefits I promise my clients. His net income is higher, he likes his work more because the pressure to pay wages is gone and the variety of work (including typing forms) is greater. Paperwork is actually reduced, all sorts of economies come into play and contact with clients is improved.

05/6/03-18:15 Take me off your list

This is the message I'm sending to all the Peace lists that I am on: Take me off your list. I renounce any association with your organization. I regret any past association with your organization.

The failure of the Peace Movement over the past century is similar to other losing ideologies of the 20th Century, including Communism, Marxism, Trotskyism, Nazism, Fascism, Baathism and Anarchism. Each one attracted well-meaning supporters, but historical experience showed them to be unrealistic and unworkable at best.

The two most recent failures of the Peace Movement were the movement's support for two genocidal tyrants: Saddam Hussein and Yasir Arafat.

(1) In opposing American liberation of Iraq, the Peace Movement accepted leadership from International Answer, a Trotsky group with a long record of dishonesty and deception. Answer and the Peace Movement filled the air at their rallies with anti-Semitism, lies about American motives and exaggerations about Arab reaction to a U.S. liberation force. Moreover, the Peace Movement continued to hold protest marches after the liberation invasion had begun in a direct affront to the American people and the lives of American soldiers.

2) The Peace Movement has consistently opposed the Israeli Defense Force protecting its citizens from Arafat- and Fatah-supported murderers. Peace activists have directly intervened many times and jeopardized the lives of Israeli soldiers while siding 100% with the Palestinians. Peace Movement activists have never tried to protect Israeli civilians from Palestinian bombers.

For that matter, the Peace Movement has never tried to protect civilians in Belfast because the Irish war is entirely a Christian matter. The Peace Movement has a long history of opposing only the United States and Israel, and ignoring the welfare of civilians in Sri Lanka, Kashmir, Chechneya and the black-on-black murder of civilians throughout Africa.

The Peace Movement was also a failure in Kosova in the 1990's. In Pristina the Peace Movement organized the most successful campaign for citizen participation in history. But when a Belgrade tyrant drove 400,000 Kosovars out of their country it took U.S. military force against Belgrade to get the Kosovars back to their homes. No honest, self-reflecting Peace Movement examination occurred after the Kosovo failure.

The Peace Movement, like the other failed ideologies of the 20th Century, has not acknowledged it failures.

Now Israel has become the first country to ban entrance to Peace Activists and Peace Movement supporters. Israel will soon be followed by other democracies that will ban entry to their countries by Peace Movement activists. This is a wise and justifiable policy.

I do not wish to have my freedom to travel to democratic countries curtailed by any association with the failed Peace Movement. My opinions are not and have not been associated the Peace Movement failure. I therefore take this opportunity to renounce any prior personal association with or support for members of the Peace Movement.

I am no longer associated with the goals or activities of prominent peace activists David Hartsough, Joanna Macy or Fran Peavey.

05/2/03 Party migration

Beginning in 1955 there was a significant migration of Negroes from the Republican party to the Democratic party. Lincoln was a Republican, which held Negro loyalty for nearly 100 years. The giant migration of 5 million Negroes from the rural South to the urban North between1955 and 1965 was a major vector in the change. Negroes could vote in the North and they did.

The shift from one party to another required two changes in American politics.

First was the open embrace of Negroes into active politics in big cities by the Democratic machines of their day. This happened in Chicago, Detroit, New York and D.C. This Democratic party opening at the big city level led to integration of the nominating conventions and integration of local partisan offices. The 1952 and 1956 Democratic Conventions were much better integrated than the Republican conventions of those years. By 1960 there was a fight over seating a southern state's Negro delegation over a white one.

Second, was departure of the Dixiecrats from a stranglehold position in the Democratic party. While this began in the late 1950's when Jim Crow was falling apart; it took until 1974 to become a total rout.

Many labor unions were bastions of anti-Negro sentiment, but a few big labor unions were neutral on Jim Crow. On net, labor looked neutral to the new new urban voting Negroes. Negroes rapidly migrated to the Democratic party, became Blacks and more recently began calling themselves African Americans.

The major migration of Negroes in the Republican party to African Americans in the Democratic party took roughly 20 years -- 1955 to 1975.

Once the Blacks had left the Republican party, the Republicans rapidly gained a major foothold in the South, which they still hold today.

A new party migration is underway. Jews are moving from the Democratic party to the Republican party. Jews present only a minor voting force, except for their role in swinging New York State. Jews play a major role in campaign finance and have since the mid 1980's.

Again, two forces are at play. First, President George W. Bush has become the strongest supporter of the Jewish people in a 2,000 year history. He has supported the strong defensive posture of Ariel Sharon and Israel and vehemently rejected Yassir Arafat. He has done this at a time when every other nation in the world turned its back on the Jews. A particular example of the Bush stand was an anti-Semitic UN conference in Durban in 2001. Bush refused American participation, while more than a hundred nations voted in favor of anti-Semitism.

Jews are increasingly noticing the extraordinary historic and moral position that Bush has taken.

The second force is what is driving the Jews out of the Democratic party. Nearly all the modern day anti-Semites are Democrats. The pro-Palestinians, the anti-Iraq War zealots and the vociferous anti-Semitic voices on Black radio in big cities. The Democratic party also has a discouraging legacy. President Jimmy Carter was never a friend of Israel and played only a pro-forma role in the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty. He has usually sided against Israel in all serious matters. Still worse was President Bill Clinton who was personally and viciously betrayed by Arafat and has never said a harsh public word about the betrayal. Worse yet, in Israel's dark days of daily civilian bombings, Clinton had the outrageous gall to ask Israelis to be 'patient.'

How long will the migration of Jews from the Democratic party to the Republican party take? The wealthy donor Jews have already made a major migration. The rest of the Jewish community will take less than twenty years.

05/2/03 Addendum

It is hard to mention Jimmy Carter without being reminded that the 39th broke a precedent when he publicily attacked the 43rd President's foreign policy, particularly on a matter of war. Carter had done little in international affairs other than supervise a few elections (remember Haiti), build low income housing and start a foundation in his name. Shortly after attacking the 43rd President, Carter accepted the Nobel Peace Prize.

It is hard to mention Bill Clinton without remembering that in his last days in office he broke a precedent by pardoning Marc Rich for no reason other than a campaign contribution.


05/1/03; 20:00 Is the sky still falling?

A contrail in this morning's sky, an article by Freeman Dyson and a talk last night by Bill McKibben are all related to the "sky is falling" worldview.

The contrail in this photo reminds me that right now, today, is the time to examine the "Global Warming" Armageddon scenario (a term that Dyson says is now more cautiously called "Climate Change").

There were three days from 9/12/01 to 9/15/03 when almost no commercial airlines were flying. During that time, satellite data reported a significant drop in the earth's albedo. The earth reflected less sunlight in the daytime and radiated more at night for a few days.

This startling experience presented the first evidence that airplane contrails may have more to do with any human-generated global warming than the greenhouse gas effect.

This issue can probably be confirmed, one way or another, with current data. Commercial airline traffic has dropped significantly due to the decline in the International GNP, terrorist fears and SARS. Commercial airline traffic should have dropped enough to re-measure the contrail effect and give us some fresh, reliable data.

I personally have never been a global warming/climate change supporter, because I have looked at significant amounts of temperature data covering centuries of measurement and never seen evidence of the reported trends. I read numbers with the same interest a horny 15 year-old reads bodies in skimpy bathing suits on a summer beach.

Freeman Dyson wrote about the global warming subject in the latest (5/15/03) NY Review of Literature. Dyson points out two surprises to me.

(1) "We have accurate measurements of sea level going back two hundred years. We observe a steady rise from 1800 to the present, with an acceleration during the last fifty years."

What does this statement say to you? To me it says a sea level change was underway when humans were building fires in the hearth and using whale oil and candles to read by. Hardly a human effect on the atmosphere. Fifty years ago is just when military jets started to fly in large numbers, followed by larger numbers of commercial jets.

(2) Dyson says we can't measure bio-mass accurately, certainly not total global topsoil. Dyson calculates that all the theoretical increases in annual global CO2 could be absorbed in plant roots in one tenth of an inch of top soil in just one-half of the land surface in the 48 contiguous U.S. states. So a major trap of CO2 is exists and is unmeasured.

We also need to keep in mind that our planet has a 100,000 year ice age cycle with 90,000 years of ice and 10,000 without. We are now in the 12,000th year of a 10,000 year period. Nobody has even a faint idea of what drives the ice age cycle.

Is the sky falling or isn't it? If it is, why?

Should the U.S. have signed the Kyoto Protocols to cap and reduce CO2 emission? Should we be hated by so many Europeans for not signing it?

Last night I heard Bill McKibben promoting his book on human genetic engineering. The title tells you his stand: Enough.

The introduction was off-putting. A friend of mine did the introduction, which was a short tirade on the horrors of our lives today caused by a horrible administration and a failed war in Iraq.

What she didn't bother to mention to this audience, which she considers to be Lefty Fundamentalists, is the following: Two years ago on national TV, President Bush delivered a most powerful and clear public speech outlining the reasons to ban human genetic engineering. He will sign a bill to ban human genetic engineering in one minute. Also, my friend left out that the current Senate has over 55 votes to ban human genetic engineering, but the Democratic Party Caucus has announced a filibuster against the ban. That means 60 votes out of 100 will be required to pass it. The Republicans who support a ban are only 51 members of the Senate. The current national politics on human genetic engineering were never mentioned by any of the four speakers, or anyone else, over a two hour period.

In the question period, McKibben was asked to give the audience some hope about the prospects of passing a ban. He cited the restraint of global population growth as a sign of humankind's ability to make right choices. He also phrased the answer to suggest that we still have a population growth problem. His response is based on the common dishonesty found in the "sky-is-falling" cohort.

The dishonesty found in the "sky-is-falling" peer group is based on the failure to acknowledge the reality of the population "bomb" as Paul Ehrlich and his sycophants called it. This gang projected world population would exceed 12 billion by 2020.

When I was able to study the 1980 world population data I found that population growth was slowing down significantly. By 1996, I had the 1990 world population census and could say for sure that there was no "bomb." I was able to see that world population would not reach 9 billion by 2050. There is plenty of food and plenty more food on the horizon for 9 billion people.

I published my data in 1996 and had a party in the Spring of that year, called the End of the Population Bomb Celebration, with invitations sent to every prominent sky-is-falling person I knew. It was a good party, but the facts of the failed Armageddon were never openly discussed or published by the sky-is-falling people.

The reason the population bomb didn't happen has nothing to do with human wisdom, Paul Ehrlich's insane lies on the subject, nor the good policies of any development agencies. The two innovations that caused the population explosion had simply played themselves out. One was sanitation which reduced infant mortality, the childhood death rate and the maternal death rate. The second was Modern Medicine which increased life span by ten years. These two innovations caused the population explosion and they have contributed only a minor amount to survival and life extension since their radical contribution that began over 150 years ago.

The benefits of life-saving and life-extending innovations created a temporary bulge in the population growth rate and they have played themselves out. That's it.

So, "No, Bill." The wisdom of humanity to make right choices is not relevant. Get your facts straight in the first place and then understand them before you draw any conclusions.


See April Archive

5/1/03 B- Gray Davis spent millions of dollars to hire every expert in collecting signatures in order to stop the recall drive against him which requires a million signatures. Now the campaign has moved to the internet where it will easily get the million signatures.

04/24 B Deep Throat was not one person. But the main source for the "Deep Throat" information was: Svetlana Godillo, who wrote the astrology column for the Washington Post until she died in 1982. She had a very deep voice and smoked heavily.

04/7/03 C-Israel wants Marwan Bargouti to replace Arafat. The show trial is intended to gain Bargouti Palestinian voter support.

Turkey made a deal with the EU to oppose the U.S. in Iraq in return for membership in the EU next year. The U.S. was OK with the deal.

04/2/03 D- U.S is making war plans for attacking Syria in the event of a new terror event in U.S.

04/1/03 B+ Best source on the war is Debka.com

03/18/03 D- Planning is beginning on a future international mechanism for approving pre-emptive military action.

03/12/03 B-The U.S. will be delivering its Launch Stage Missile Defense to Japan by the end of 2003.

03/12/03 C- The two new Japanese satellites will give nearly live coverage of N.Korea with longitudinal orbits passing overhead more than four times a day.

email: mp@well.com