Good News!: Obama to Approve Anti-Small Business Policies, Cheat Middle Class out of Billions

Via the Huffington Post: Obama to Approve a Series of Anti-Small Business Policies That Will Cheat the Middle Class out of Billions.

In the midst of the worst economic downturn in U.S. history, President Obama is abolishing the nation’s oldest and most successful program to direct infrastructure spending to minority-owned small businesses, which could cost them between $25 and $50 billion a year. The President has continued to allow billions of dollars a month in federal small business contracts to be diverted into the hands of big businesses. His administration tried to cover up the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants by destroying data in the Federal Procurement Data System such as the “small business flag” and the “parent DUNS number,” that allowed watchdogs like myself, and the media, to monitor the actual recipients of federal small business contracts.

And now, President Obama will reauthorize a Department of Defense program known as the Comprehensive Subcontracting Plan Test Program (CSPTP) that makes it easier for prime contractors to cheat small businesses out of billions. Under the CSPTP, large defense contractors are exempt from reporting their subcontracting actions and also exempt from any penalty of non-compliance with congressionally mandated small business procurement goals.

The idea of the CSPTP is ludicrous.

Small business you say? Why… I have one of those…

But thats not a requirement to see that this is bullshit of the highest order. read the article and weep.

The bottom line here is that in the U.S., small businesses equal jobs. Taxes, on the other hand do not create jobs. But for some reason, the mainstream media seems more concerned with the handful of pennies that the President and Congress are bickering over in payroll tax cuts than the billions of dollars that are diverted away from small businesses by the federal government every month.

Apple products were overpriced from day 1

Apple Co-founder Steve Wozniak reveals a lot in this interview, but his discomfort with Steve Jobs’ profit plan in the beginning days are specially interesting. Not only because it confirms the price hiking profit plan but because it shows that that was the whole idea from day 1.

“Steve had a background working in computer stores buying stuff cheap and selling it for a lot more. I was shocked when he told me how you could buy something for 6 cents knowing he could sell it for 60 bucks. He felt that was normal and right, and I sort of didn’t. How could you do that? I was not for ripping people off. But then we started Apple and I went with the best advice which is that you should make good profit in order to grow.”

It really illustrates how wealth can be created from thin air. Just like that. There’s nothing, and then some sharp mind comes along and turns it into something. and then a bigger something. and then a billion somethings. Pretty awesome.

Woz talks more about his non-profit state of mind vs Jobs’ profit-centric mindset, which is particularly interesting considering Woz was the one with the tech employment and Jobs’ was the one working with plants in a commune.

I never wanted to run a business. I had a perfect job for life at HP. I went to club meetings every week and I passed out my schematics for the Apple I, no copyright, nothing, just “Hey all you guys here is a cheap way to build a computer.” I would demo it on a TV set.

Then Steve Jobs came in from Oregon, and he saw what the club was about, and he saw the interest in my design. I had the only one that was really affordable. Our first idea was just to make printed circuit boards. We could make them for 20 dollars and sell them for 40 or something like that. I had given the schematics away. But Steve thought it could be a company.

This was actually our fifth product together. We always were 50-50 partners. We were best friends. We first did the blue boxes. The next one I did was I saw Pong at a bowling alley so I built my own Pong with 28 chips. I was at HP designing calculators. Steve saw Pong and ran down to Atari and showed it to them and they hired him. Whether thought he had participated in the design, I don’t know and I could not care less. They offered him a job and put him on the night shift. They said he doesn’t get along with people very well, he’s very independent minded. It rubbed against people. So they put him on the night shift alone.

Our next project was when Steve said that Nolan (Bushnell, head of Atari) wanted a one-player game with bricks that you hit out. He said we could get a lot of money if we could design it with very few chips. So we built that one and got paid by Atari.

I’m allegedly related to Nolan Bushnell, though I forget how the family tree works out in that regard since it was explained to me.

Woz was also asked about the legend that Steve Jobs cheated him out of some money in that first computer deal.

The legend is true. It didn’t matter to me. I had a job. Steve needed money to buy into the commune or something. So we made Breakout and it was a half-man-year job but we did it in four days and nights. It was a very clever design.

The next project we did together was we saw a guy using a big teletype machine that cost as much as a car hooked up to a modem dialing in to the Arpanet. You could get into 12 universities and log in as a guest and do things on a far-away computer. This was unbelievable to me. I knew you could call a local time-sharing company. But to get access to university computers was incredible. So I went home and designed one myself. I designed a video terminal that could go out over the modem to Stanford and then on to the Arpanet and bring up a list of university computers.

The far-away computers would talk in letters on my TV set. Instead of paddles and balls in Pong, I put in a character generator. The terminal was very inexpensively designed. We sold it to a company called Call Computer. They now had a cheap terminal. Steve and I split the money.

When the interviewer raised the seemingly odd partnership between the two Steve’s, Woz said they weren’t all that different in his mind.

We were very similar. We would hunt through stores in Berkeley looking for Dylan bootlegs. Steve was interested in computers, and he really wanted to find a way to build a computer out of these new devices called microprocessors. He thought that someday they could replace big computers and everyone could have their own computer relatively cheap. Steve had a background working in computer stores buying stuff cheap and selling it for a lot more. I was shocked when he told me how you could buy something for 6 cents knowing he could sell it for 60 bucks. He felt that was normal and right, and I sort of didn’t. How could you do that? I was not for ripping people off. But then we started Apple and I went with the best advice which is that you should make good profit in order to grow.

Steve was willing to jump right into that. Mike Markkula was the mentor who told Steve what his role would be in Apple, and told me mine. He was the mentor who taught us how to run a company. He’s very low-key. He stays out of the press and he’s not that well-known. But he saw the genius in Steve. The passion, the excitement, the kind of thinking that makes someone a success in the world. He saw that in Steve.

Mike Markkula had worked at Intel in engineering and marketing. He really believed in marketing. He decided that Apple would be a marketing driven company. He was introduced to us by Don Valentine. Don had come to the garage and I ran the Apple II through its paces and he said, “What is the market?” I said, “A million units.” He asked me why that was and I sad, “There’s a million ham radio operators and computers are bigger than ham radio.” We didn’t quite get the formula. Steve Jobs and I had no business experience. We had taken no business classes. We didn’t have savings accounts. We had no bank accounts. I paid cash at my apartment — I had to, because of bounced checks.

Woz left Apple in the mid 80s to start his own company but remained an Apple employee all these years and receives a salary of 200 bucks every two weeks.

It will never happen, but I would like to see him replace Tim Cook (Apple CEO) as the event host rolling out new products. Cook didn’t look like he’s into it or wanted to be there in that role in his first try while Steve Jobs was alive but recently resigned. Woz could do it and could breathe new life into it.

Steve Jobs: Hipster but Capitalist

Mr. Jobs, the adopted son of a family in Palo Alto, Calif., was born on Feb. 24, 1955. A college dropout, he established his reputation early on as a tech innovator when at 21 years old, he and friend Steve Wozniak founded Apple Computer Inc. in the Jobs family garage in 1976. Mr. Jobs chose the name, in part, because he was a Beatles fan and admired the group’s Apple records label.

I am glad he at least lived long enough to see The Beatles on iTunes. I thought it was silly that they made such a big deal out of it until I learned that it was a long struggling goal of Steve’s for many years and why.

Steve Jobs was Apple. He left Apple and Apple floundered. He came back in 1997 and made Apple boom. The company now produces $65.2 billion a year in revenue compared with $7.1 billion in its business year ending September 1997.

The prediction was just made on my Facebook that the Occupy Wall Street protest for socialism currently under way will probably include Steve Jobs memorializing since many of the protestors use and love his products. This would be wildly hypocritical.

I will be hugely insulted if those Occupy Wall Street protesters turn their anti-capitalism of rich people protest into a “oh, but not the one we deemed as being okay” addendum. fuck them. Steve Jobs spent his money better than any “Progressive” government has – and that includes his many donations to Progressive causes and candidates.

He made the products that hippies and hipster socialists use and love by the means that they protest: being non-union, utilizing corporate tax breaks and moving large operations overseas because it’s cheaper to manufacture and operate there.
His employees loved the hell out of him and he wasn’t evil and he wasn’t “greedy” just like the majority of the other CEOs and corporation founders who are responsible for the products and services we use and love.

Its because of people like them and non-“progressive” business practice like that that middle class income earners have the option of buying a hand held computer and telephone that can capture, store and send through the air high definition pictures and video all on a higher resolution screen than any television their parents ever owned growing up for $200 + a phone service contract.

It will be wildly hypocritical and insulting if anyone participating in the Occupy Wall Street protests publicly memorializes Steve Jobs. It would be nothing but flaunting their elitist douchebaggery. “we miss and love THIS billionaire whom we all benefitted from – but not the rest of you pigs! now join me, brothers and sisters in our fight to stop the next Steve Jobs from growing his business!”

Occupy Wall Street is a protest to prevent the Steve Jobs’ of the world from benefiting by serving humanity – which is what capitalism is. It’s the only philosophy that says (to quote myself):

Do what you want. do nothing if you want and the government won’t force you into action. but if you want nice things… you can’t just steal them from other people. if you want services from other people you can’t just force or enslave them – you must give them something they want to GET something you want. SO… if you want these wonderful advantages in life and if you want to be able to have the stuff and experiences your heart and mind desire: you can only do it by serving your fellow human being. Only by creating or providing something that someone wants can you amass wealth. Only by taking risks with your capital to make more of it can you become wealthy.

You have a choice. There are no guarantee’s except in your freedom to try.
Except when you DO try, you’ll find how true the wisdom of Yoda was:
Do. or do not. There is no “try”.

UPDATE: Judge Napolitano on Steve Jobs, Free Market Hero

Occupy Wall Street… and then what?

Across the nation currently, there are “occupy” protests that I have no idea what the point of which is. What dont they like about wall street? what is it they’re protesting? people with jobs making money? I assume it’s something more sinister but I have no way of easily knowing. There’s a general sloganeering among the crowds of Corporate Greed and White Collar Crime but no clear point.

If those two things ARE the entire point though, then why isnt it called the “prosecute economic criminals” protest or something? whats the point of “occupying wall street” as a way to rally against individuals within wall street that are breaking laws? this makes even less sense to me now. Maybe it’s all a prank to make hippies look silly? Idk…

As you may be able to tell, im not terribly interested in it (after all, I *am* aware of Google’s existence and could spend more time reading if I really wanted) and the more i see the less respect i have for it. for the amount of video coverage, news items, blogs, facebook statuses and pictures about this event i’ve seen there is no reason for someone like me to still know so little about wtf it is.

The Tea Partiers, I get. You see a tea party protest and its obvious: bunch of people dressed up like george washington, pro capitalism, desire for smaller government and more freedom. fine. I can agree or disagree with that mission statement and can search for more from there if i want. but this… wtf IS this?

The “about” page on illustrated exactly the awkward mysteriousness that i’m talking about. It’s 3 paragraphs that rephrases the sentence “this is a protest where people protest wall street”. I got that part. now what?

Wtf is going on here?

I found this on their website: A specific demand of action list – and thats great, but it’s not officially endorsed by the occupy-protest organizers. It’s just a related topic chain letter posted by a random member named  in the forum section. Other forum posts include one asking “should we boycott Apple products?“, a call for a 60% tax rate and finally a list of videos explaining why this protest happened even though I watched half of them and still don’t know why this protest happened.

If this is what the protests are all about then this should be front page stuff and encapsulated on signs and banners the protestors are carrying. C’mon people…

Then theres this other list of demands which is wtf-y enough to merit reposting here:

Demand one: Restoration of the living wage. This demand can only be met by ending “Freetrade” by re-imposing trade tariffs on all imported goods entering the American market to level the playing field for domestic family farming and domestic manufacturing as most nations that are dumping cheap products onto the American market have radical wage and environmental regulation advantages. Another policy that must be instituted is raise the minimum wage to twenty dollars an hr.

Demand two: Institute a universal single payer healthcare system. To do this all private insurers must be banned from the healthcare market as their only effect on the health of patients is to take money away from doctors, nurses and hospitals preventing them from doing their jobs and hand that money to wall st. investors.

Demand three: Guaranteed living wage income regardless of employment.

Demand four: Free college education.

Demand five: Begin a fast track process to bring the fossil fuel economy to an end while at the same bringing the alternative energy economy up to energy demand.

Demand six: One trillion dollars in infrastructure (Water, Sewer, Rail, Roads and Bridges and Electrical Grid) spending now.

Demand seven: One trillion dollars in ecological restoration planting forests, reestablishing wetlands and the natural flow of river systems and decommissioning of all of America’s nuclear power plants.

Demand eight: Racial and gender equal rights amendment.

Demand nine: Open borders migration. anyone can travel anywhere to work and live.

Demand ten: Bring American elections up to international standards of a paper ballot precinct counted and recounted in front of an independent and party observers system.

Demand eleven: Immediate across the board debt forgiveness for all. Debt forgiveness of sovereign debt, commercial loans, home mortgages, home equity loans, credit card debt, student loans and personal loans now! All debt must be stricken from the “Books.” World Bank Loans to all Nations, Bank to Bank Debt and all Bonds and Margin Call Debt in the stock market including all Derivatives or Credit Default Swaps, all 65 trillion dollars of them must also be stricken from the “Books.” And I don’t mean debt that is in default, I mean all debt on the entire planet period.
Demand thirteen: Allow all workers to sign a ballot at any time during a union organizing campaign or at any time that represents their yeah or nay to having a union represent them in collective bargaining or to form a union.Demand twelve: Outlaw all credit reporting agencies.

These demands will create so many jobs it will be completely impossible to fill them without an open borders policy.

I had things to say about each one, but unfortunately I stumbled across this post that already said some of them, so i’ll just link that instead of repeating:

Basically they want to pass Smoot-HawleyII because that worked well last time, create trillions and trillions of new debt get paid for a job whether or not they do any work (I actually joked about this before I saw the list. Parody is dead). In general…repeal reality and destroy the economy.

I especially love the demand for an amendment demanding racial equality. Why didn’t someone think of that sooner?

Demand list via Adam Baldwin.

BTW- These people are demanding jobs? If you’re unemployed, how extensive is your job search if you have time to spend days at a time camping out in lower Manhattan?

I would love for someone from a Wall St firm or two come out and start passing out job applications just to see the reactions of the “protesters”.

Amanda Carpenter notes that the “protesters” are looking for help in doing their laundry. An interest in hygiene is certainly a step forward in the world of hippies.

This whole thing is slowly coming together in my mind… I’m assuming the idea for this went something like “lets form a protest with no clear objective other than ‘corporate greed’. not greed. we’re down with greed. we’re greedy as fuck for instance when it comes to other peoples money. but greed by people and businesses selling products and services that we all use and love? fuck that! TAKE TO THE STREETS MY FELLOW PATRIOTS!!”