2022-07: We The People: War, Monarchy, EVs, and Love

by Santa John McDaniel
The View from the Bridge is an opinion piece which explores how political, societal, and other changes will impact the future. In these articles, we’ll suggest ways these changes apply to the Graphic-Products industry and small businesses in general.


On the Pandemic Front

Our sources indicate that there are two more variants coming. One we are experiencing now, another later this year. After that, COVID will become endemic and may require an annual shot, similar to the annual influenza shot. For now, the recommendation is to get vaccinated and boosted.

On the War

Know – this war will pass, they all do – Ukraine will prevail – Putin will not survive – something major will happen this fall. Russia will, at some point in the future, join the democracies of the World.

If you have no further interest in the Russia/Ukraine War, please skip the rest of this article about the war.

As this story unfolds it’s SJ’s OP (Santa John’s Opinion) that VDP (V-la-D-emir Pup-kin) had planned this invasion of Ukraine for some time. As a part of that plan, he wanted to weaken NATO and US resolve to stop his aggression.

History will reveal the extent to which he and his money have interfered in USA politics. The subpoenas are coming!

It turns out that “We the People” are doing exactly what we should, supporting other democracies. This is a fight between Totalitarianism and Democracy. China is watching!

Our current administration is following a strategy used by FDR (Franklin Delano Roosevelt). That strategy is arming the enemies of your enemy. Putin is an enemy of We the People.

History is interesting. Although Vladimir Putin might deny it, We the People of the USA provided much of the armament, i.e., artillery, tanks, guns, and ammo which helped Russia defeat Hitler.

Hitler needed Russia’s oil. Russian forces were heroic throughout WWII, and especially at Stalingrad. With the help of Uncle Sam’s armaments, Stalin’s Russia was able to prevail and deny Hitler the oil he so desperately needed.

The same was true in the Middle East. At that time, USA arms helped England, Australia, New Zealand, and India deny Hitler Middle Eastern oil.

According to Wikipedia – German Field Marshal General Erwin Rommel aka The Desert Fox, “was comprehensively defeated by the British Eighth Army and Allied material superiority meant that he had little chance of rallying his broken forces.”

Rommel was in pursuit of middle east oil for Hitler’s war machine. Sometime after his defeat, Rommel realized that Germany would not prevail. He joined a group that attempted to assassinate Hitler and end the war. He was a popular figure in Germany, so rather than face a firing squad, he was invited to commit suicide by Hitler. Interesting person.

Allied material superiority in part was due to the USA war machine ramping up production. The AXIS powers (Germany, Italy, and Japan) could not compete.

We, the Allied powers have more and better bombs than you have… We know where you live… We can reach out and touch you anywhere in the World… And best of all, our citizens have tasted freedom. They will fight to the death. Patrick Henry – “Give me Freedom! Or Give me Death!”

It turns out FDR (Franklin Delano Roosevelt) knew what he was doing. He believed Hitler’s ravings about World domination. FDR knew war between the AXIS powers and the USA was inevitable.

Through his lend-lease program FDR used the practice of helping and equipping the enemies of your enemy, just as our current president is doing in Ukraine.

Help those under attack by your enemy as much as you can. Ultimately, that saves lives. Had Hitler taken England and / or Russia, WWII may have ended very differently.

Politics – We The People

Having been a boss in corporate America and heading several small businesses, I was frequently required to interview new employees.

From my perspective, “We The People” have forgotten that the president, governor, all those politicians at any level of government work for us. We hire government leaders through our votes, or we allow others to choose them for us by not voting. It turns out democracy is a participation form of government.

In short, Mr. / Ms. Politician, on your application for employment include your qualifications, previous experience, and most of all, what is your platform. In other words, what are you going to do for me and other people?

Finally, are you an honest person? Can we rely on your word? Above all, don’t sow fear! Don’t tell me that I should FEAR your opponent and vote for you. In short, be positive not negative.

We are in charge! Act like it!

On a positive note, is seems that many of the R-cants and D-cants have finally revealed who they’re really working for. Yes Mr./Ms. Donor, I’ll get right on that. Yes Mr./Ms. Voter – we probably don’t have the funding for your request. Check back next year. It’s what we’ve known all along – Money Talks – BS Walks.

We have allowed corporations to be seen as persons and contribute unlimited amounts of money to political campaigns via something called Citizens United. Another Supreme Court decision that removed power from We the People!

FYI – in SJ’s opinion,
(1) most corporations, and especially large corporations, are essentially monarchies, controlled from the top down.
(2) The founding fathers of the USA lived in a World controlled by Kings! (remember King George?) Yes, even the American Indian tribes had Kings.
(3) So, what our founding fathers chose to create through the USA Constitution and government-structure is a monarchy controlled from the bottom up (We the People), rather than from the top down. In top-down structures, money counts; customers and workers be dammed! Customers – Anyone remember auto companies’ resistance to seat belts? Workers – Anyone remember breaking unions by sending jobs to Canada, Mexico, and ultimately China? I do, I lived through both.

Here is SJ’s breakdown or monarchies: currently the President of the USA or the President of a company would be known in the past as King. The difference is that in the past, the original Kings were self-appointed by violence. Which seems to remain the current dictators around the world. Currently in the USA we Elect our President for what he or she will accomplish for all of us. In the corporate world a company president is appointed for his or her perceived ability to make more money and grow the company. The fewer the federal regulations the better.

As perhaps you can see, allowing monied interests to control legislation will lead to less power for people who have less money. Seems that’s what we currently have. Some with very much money and power, but most with not enough or just enough. Ever notice how the very powerful try to point out our differences? It’s your problem, whatever it is, because of this group? Sounds a little like Nazi Germany.

Money is not evil but can be corrupting.
Be sure to get out and vote this November. Let’s show them who has the real power!

Looking Ahead

As we emerge from this pandemic, we are prompted to assess the cultural and economic changes we have all experienced and observed.

Future Trends – This Time – Electric Vehicles – Introduction…

Current Events: With fuel prices increasing, many are looking for ways to cut commute costs. Electric vehicles new and used have become very desirable. As a result, used car prices for EVs have climbed and dealers are adding fees to the sticker prices on new EVs.

Future Trends: That said, many economists have predicted a downturn in demand for new and used autos this fall due to the rise in the Prime interest rate set by the FED. Whether that will reduce demand for EVs is yet to be seen.

In the longer term, some of the major auto manufacturers have committed to moving from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to 100% electric by 2040.  That’s a good thing. It will clean the air and diminish the power of OIL Tyrants like Vlad P. and others. Not to mention It Will Save You Money! And with solar, electricity will always be cheaper than burning gasoline.

Our Story: As some of you may know, we’ve had the privilege of driving 2 fully electric vehicles, a 2018 Nissan Leaf, and a 2020 Tesla Model 3. Both of these vehicles were acquired while we were living in Arizona.

Unfortunately, we no longer have either vehicle. Both were traded for “Beast”, the affectionate name we’ve chosen for our “I can tow anything” F350 long bed diesel ($6.99 per gallon) pickup truck.

Beast has a generous 50-gallon tank, so you don’t have to stop so often for fuel, while towing at 10 miles per gallon. Oh, and if I remember my grade school math; 50g x $7 = $350, 50g x 10mpg = 500miles, and $350 / 500 = $0.70 per mile. (Your results may vary,) I really dislike paying a travel tax to dictators around the World.

Some Background: While living in Arizona, we installed solar panels on our home to eliminate our electric bill. Later we acquired our first electric vehicle, a 2018 Nissan Leaf. It was a dealer demo unit, so essentially new.

After acquiring the Leaf, we installed an EV charger in our garage. Our solar panels eliminated our electric bill and provided the Nissan Leaf all the power it needed. In turn, the Leaf eliminated any need for gas.

The Nissan Leaf is not a vehicle that needs gasoline to move you around.

RANT: By the way, have you ever noticed that very few mansions are built near oil storage facilities, oil refineries, or airports? Ever drive by one? The poor get to choke on those fumes, and the rest of us get to choke on smog. Capitalism doesn’t care unless government, we the people, make them. Anyone remember the auto industries’ fight over seatbelts? I do.

During January of 2019 my first wife Judy, whom many of you met at our training seminars, passed from cancer. Don’t get me started on our broken, money-grubbing healthcare system.  Judy started with one small lump in her breast. Radiation and chemo managed to spread it throughout her entire body.

END of RANT – for now: At the end of 2019, I acquired a Tesla Model 3. Then met my current wife, Holley. Holley and I married in the spring of 2020 just before the Covid lockdown. She wanted a June wedding, oh well, Covid said no.

I’ve included this little biography because I intend to share Judy’s and Holley’s comments and feelings regarding both vehicles.

Overview 2018 Nissan Leaf – 2019 Tesla Model 3.

2018 was the last model year of the older Leaf body style. Some called it the electric frog. Both Judy and Holley think it’s cute.

That said, the interior is very much like many of the mainstream small vehicles of the day. In other words, the dashboard, steering wheel, buttons, and controls, i.e., the driver’s cockpit with all its lights and switches is much more like vehicles we’ve all driven in the past.  All 3 of us preferred some of the features of Leaf’s cockpit over Tesla’s.

One final point on the controls. If you’ve not driven your vehicle for a while, it can be easier to reacquaint yourself with physical controls that are labeled than a computer screen.

One major drawback of 2018 and earlier Nissan Leafs is their batteries. The one we purchased was essentially new. However, these early models have batteries that are not temperature regulated. They are air cooled. They may have battery temperature monitoring systems, but no active cooling systems. Over time extreme temperatures and age will degrade these batteries which in turn will decrease the vehicle’s range. 100-to-120-degree air temperature means the asphalt may be 150-to-200-degrees. Hot air and radiant heat from the highway are hard on air-cooled batteries.

Our Tesla M3 had what newer EVs have, a battery cooling system and other features to help extend battery life. It also had a much longer range. The Leaf could go about 80 to 100 miles between charges. We got between 250 to 300 miles between charges with the Tesla.

What we plan to cover in future articles is our experiences with EVs and what we will be looking for in our next one.

Please stay tuned for more EV experiences. And, how our son is fed up with gas prices and is running his business using an electric bicycle.

Creating – Your Future Life, Income Stream, and a Business

First, it’s important to understand some of the rules of Creation. We’ll cover each of these in more depth. This time:

  • Like everything else in the Universe, Humans are drawn toward Love.
  • After 78 years on this planet, I know that all the things I’ve experienced in this lifetime have been for my good, even if I didn’t see it at the time. I know that in this Universe, all things work together for the good of ALL.

For Rules of Creation 1 through 7, please see past issues.

– This Time

#8. Like everything else in the Universe, Humans are drawn toward Love.

When Judy and I started our graphic products business, we made the decision to do the best we could for our customers. Our customers in turn gifted us with their loyalty. Our love for each other and for what we were doing along with the customer loyalty we received allowed us to build our business from nothing over 100k.

The secret to success in anything is finding your calling. That is your life path. Following your life path will provide the greatest joy. SJ’s life path is sales. More on that next time number 9.

When you love what you do, it shows in your work. It will also show to those you work for, be it your customer or boss. Caring for you customer’s needs, no matter the profit, is a form of love.

What is your interest in the Graphic-Products Industry?

First, realize that everyone on earth is an artist. How you dress, the clothing you wear, is art. A person’s makeup or lack of makeup is artwork. Many people decorate their bodies with tattoos, that’s artwork. How people decorate their vehicles, homes, landscaping, etc., etc., all works of art. Even the rusting hulk of an old machine is considered art by some.

In today’s world, artwork for most graphic products begins life as computer art. Some artists create and sell computer art for use on the web. Some create and sell physical products using their artwork, think t-shirts, mugs, awards, etc. Others create graphic products as a hobby or to help organizations to which they may belong.

 Answering a couple of questions might help you evaluate your interest.

  1. Do I have any interest in creating digital art?
  2. Does my interest in digital art include producing products?
  3. Is my interest in creating personalized products for Fun or for Profit?
  4. What do I do, or does my business do? Are you an Artist or Commercial Artist?
  5. If I’m a commercial artist, who are my competitors?

In Short

Thank you for your attention. Keep in mind that we don’t know what we don’t know. So, don’t take our word for it. Meditate and find what is right for you.

For 2022 and beyond, we pray for peace.

When the power of love overcomes the love of power, we will know peace.

Thank you, see you next time.

News and Resources for CorelDRAW Users