Like most Millennials, I haven’t yet achieved the success I wanted or expected. It’s been tough, especially if you are are at the older end of the Millennial spectrum like I am in my early 30’s. From being in school for the first internet boom and bust, to near complete economic collapse in 2008 at the beginning of of my career and business – conditions haven’t been absolutely ideal for our age group. This makes me extremely proud of what I’ve been able to do so far, but still I feel as if I could have accomplished more under different circumstances.
I’m not sure if I would change much though, as I may not have crossed paths with my beautiful finance for which I am about to have my first child with, tested the legal system and it’s ability to deliver justice, built my businesses, and all the other lessons I learned along the way.
Because of this I now know what I will do when I’m rich and powerful.
Support and Update Public Libraries
I didn’t have many toys or friends that lived near me. Friends wouldn’t come over to play because we were poor and had no toys, snacks and my mother smoked indoors. I remember learning to read when I was 5, my mother told me that the words next to a picture in a space book I had received read “Red Dwarf” and “Quasar”. I was memorized.
In elementary school, I lived at the library. After burning through the kids section of the Derry Public Library and using all my computer time, I started my first business off an ad for Olympia Sales in a children’s money management magazine called Zillions selling stationary door to door. By age 10, I was reading from the upstairs library about stocks, fish tanks, Rolling Stones and old newspapers on Microfiche, recycling, dinosaurs or whatever else I could get my hands on, providing it was non fiction. It was a way to take control of my life.
I took a break from the library in junior high and high school to be cool and work. Big mistake. Now, I go to the library several times a month to get new audio books ( Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks – I do too!), and continue to read and better myself each day.
Libraries are places of knowledge, solace and opportunity open to everyone willing to respect the rules – the foundation of freedom and deterrent to crime, war, hunger and any other malady of humanity.
Reform the Legal and Justice System
Anyone with a firm understanding of the world around them knows that there is science and there is law. Science is fact; law is opinion with authority. It keeps us civilized and good, but can also be exploited for self interest and financial gain through it’s constant evolution. Laws produce justice, and good, fair legal systems produce true justice.
Justice, if not carefully pruned with the wisdom of human trial and error built over thousands of years, decays. We are in an age of maximum connectivity and access, yet people get mistreated in courtrooms everyday. They get denied their most basic rights to trial and council or to even have their matter heard. The rich and large corporations have an advantage, for there are fees for almost every action and fee waivers are intrusive, unconstitutional, and get denied all the time.
Now, I could write a book about this subject, and some day I will, but the point is that our legal system is corrupt and inefficient.
Overstand Situations, Create Opportunities
When I was young and entering the workforce, I believed that the world was out to help me. The economy was great, money flowed and people were happy. I was happy. Then, I tried to defend myself in court. I had received a DUI with a reading of .09 (just above the legal limit) after being attacked by bouncers and told to leave. I had evidence and a good defense – leaving clear and present danger.
If I were a girl that went to my boyfriends house to spend the night, had a large glass of wine, and then he attacked me and broke my phone so I couldn’t call anyone, then told me to leave, would I be guilty of DUI?
Well, I never got the opportunity to provide that defense, because after 12 court appearances and on the trial date, my lawyer was mysteriously replaced. Knowing I would never get a fair trial, I plead guilty and proceeded to complete my sentence, also getting a restricted license to use for work at a cost of $300. I did not know that it expired, and ended up getting pulled over and my truck confiscated without appeal as required by law in which the city demanded $1300 to release the vehicle. I ended up loosing that truck, and having to fight off a lawsuit from Ford Motors in which they sold my car under market value to one of their dealerships and charged me with the loss. They even fudged the service documents.
Years later in retrospect, I believe I could have easily gotten my truck back by just renewing my restricted license, which no one told me. Instead, Ford took my truck after one missed payment in 2008 – the height of the recession – and proceeded to liquidate the equity I had built into it, leaving me without means to sustain myself 3500 miles away from anyone I had know.
My point is that I was young and looked towards the people in charge to help steer me in the right direction, not take my truck, or destroy my until then successful business, pushing me close to homelessness. See, people make mistakes, and the young have to experiment to find their way. I didn’t grow up with a father – I met him when I was 14, and then he died when I was 18. The closest father figure to me was Bob Perillo, who died in a tractor trailer accident the summer I was going to high school. I moved to California just after my biological father passed, worked 2-3 jobs at a time, then started a satellite tv installation business with the money I had saved and good credit I built. The judges, police, lawyers and other officials knew what they were doing.
If you are in a position of power, you need to “Overstand” the situation. Repression and doing the wrong thing will only get you so far, especially in a connected world like we have today. Money is only real if you are starving. I want to be known as a good man and a hero, don’t you?
There are more examples, but I will save them for my book, there are already over 1,000 words here. Until then, please share this article, reach out to me and others, and comment bellow.
With modern technology, communication has never been easier. Mail, telephone, cellphones, text messages, email, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Open Q & A sessions and Town Hall Meetings – the access to the knowledge we seek is right at our finger tips. And when that fails, we can just write it to a blog, get found on the internet, go viral, and responses will pour in.
Unfortunately, it just doesn’t work that way. Mail gets trashed, voice mails deleted, Facebook algorithms your posts out to make room for advertising spam, LinkedIn charges you to send a message, Twitter is run by robots, town hall meetings (don’t tase me Bro!) and live debates/chat sessions are all pre-screened. Think Bill Gates checks his LinkedIn? Do you?
I’m writing this as I wait for a call back from a Comcast “Supervisor” after being on the phone with a “Customer Account Executive” for 30 minutes to get a installation fee waived after we being told that there was no fee to fix a faulty box. Jennifer (the account executive) told me there were no notes indicating that the fee was waived and that she has been instructed to not waive fees without notes or she would be fired. It was supposed to be a 2 hr call back, which still hasn’t happened over 12 hours later.
The Decision Maker is always NOT Available
You can never find them. “I can’t do that” “I can’t give you a refund” “It doesn’t work that way”. Yes, it does, and yes they can.
Do you think I’m making this up? Well, it took me over 6 years to get my drivers license back. I wrote to every official I could about the injustices I received in California, such as not receiving a trial (though I went to court 12 times) , to getting denied removal from the PDPS (Problem Driver Pointer System) in New Hampshire. I had to ride a bike around everywhere including court appeals, in the rain, only to find out that trial wasn’t that day. It wasn’t until I moved back to my home state and got an office across the street from the state capital building, requested a hearing, filed an appeal and harassed my local representative, governor and DMV Commissioner weekly that I got my license back. I literally slept at that office – secretly living there at the beginning. Then, one day, all holds on my license magically “vanished”, along with most of my friendships. I never did get an explanation or meeting with the decision maker, so I remained quiet and content with just my message making it past the gatekeeper.
Another example is being harassed by a website registration company Register.com for two days when I tried to transfer my website away from them. After showing them the article I wrote, I got offered $500 as an apology, accepted, only to be told the next day that it could only be a credit to their horrible company. I declined the credit and was not given a reason except they looked at my account and they could no longer offer me the cash. I know why though. See, all the top searches for “Register.com Review” belong to hosting groups and review sites that companies like Register.com pay to be a part of, which in turn censors the reviews. They researched it and knew I didn’t pose a threat, therefore they could continue to milk other unsuspecting customers with much less time than I.
I have lists of other issues from countless other companies and organizations that have wasted my time and yours. It seems now there are more and more groups using bureaucracy as a shield to swindle money and time away from consumers. After all – it works for the government.
What really kills me is that growing up, I always believed that people wanted to help me out. That we could find the right solution if we asked the right questions and learned from others, whether from books or mentorship. I have been searching ever since for that place of scholarly wisdom and discussion to no avail. Now there are all types of meetup groups, networking events and such with one thing in common: they are lacking the decision makers. Filled with corporate lackeys and pyramid scheme marketers, members are unable to make any decision besides taking your money as they have been instructed to. There is no deal making or bartering. I want to talk to Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerburg, my local representative, or anyone else besides Sales Associate Level 1.
What Can We Do About It?
I’ve racked my brain over and over about this topic, and the only thing I can think of is to only do business with organizations you can communicate directly to the top with. This includes who you vote for. Why? Because every time you do business/vote, you give away your power.
“It is not beneficial to give power to those that you cannot contact.”
You loose control. Example – Ron Paul. He claims to fight injustices abroad, so I sent him my injustices. No response other than a few “We are reviewing this” from some person that looks at emails that get sent to his site. Never a decision, no “Robert, we are sorry but we don’t see any injustices in your letter and think you should grow up” or “Robert, we are sorry to hear about your problems, how can we help?” . Eventually I got an email to join his pay to view site. Ron Paul is not a man of the people.
I tried it during the recent election when I got a few follows and requests to help campaign (meaning make a bunch of phone calls for free on their behalf) for some local candidates. In turn, I asked them about their thoughts on the issues I faced. No response. No response = No Vote or Support from me
So, since we only have 2 choices usually for office, if none of the candidates respond to me, I do not vote. If did vote, it is for Robert Tanguay, as I would rather get my name out then give my power to my enemy or someone who cares even less about me than my enemy does. I understand people are busy, especially those that run for office, but have someone respond to my inquiry. If you are going to have a Twitter account discussing how open you are, then you best make sure you actually respond to any inquiries made on your posts. It’s what the internet was made for.
When it comes to business, at every chance I get, I work with an independent, small business owner. They care about me. I can always reach them, and most of the time, I’m really just investing in my own community. If an independent is not available, then I go to a small company that I have the most sway over. We can make deals as we are both decision makers. I only go to companies with gatekeepers if I have no other choice such as internet services (for which we are all screwed), and I dream of a day when I can choose from a plethora of small business without gatekeepers for my necessary services.
We will never get past the gatekeeper as long as the gatekeeper wants us out. I welcome all discussion and comments and will always respond. Will you?
Large corporations employ millions in the US, with their assets and earnings representing a large portion of the nation’s economy. Some say that it has lead to American prosperity; however, if you look around in a room full of your peers, you may find it hard to find someone that it has led to theirs.
Big business takes money out of circulation and is inefficient at distributing wealth throughout the economy. You can see this through centralized pay roll in large, multi-state corporations with employee tax withholdings, paid quarterly to the IRS, topping out at 39.6 percent in 2013. That’s not including the Medicare and Social Security withholdings, in addition to state income tax withholding where applicable.
Then there are waves of monetary resources funneled into the stock market each pay period; artificially induced by pre-tax incentives through 401k, pension plans and such. These “investments” come directly out of millions of Americans paychecks before they are deposited into their bank accounts.
All this equals cash flow in the large corporation’s coffers. The government doesn’t care, as they get a nice monthly and bi-weekly kick of payment for tax. Small business never sees any of this cash flow.
It seems like politics are abuzz with talk of “Jobs”. “We have to create more jobs, it will save us all” is how we could all agree to summarize what we’ve heard. Why are we always talking about job creation and growth rates?
It is simply nothing more than the sources we hear about jobs from and their interests in creating jobs in which lies the reason for all the noise. Large corporations, the government, and the media they sponsor get their power (cash flow) and profits from employing people. Employing people for the lowest price and pushing liabilities away from revenue equals high profits.
Regulation of employment and general citizens is the government’s job, and oh do they do it well. The Affordable Care Act taking affect now forces every citizen to get insurance or pay fines. In essence, it is a fee for life. This money is mandated to go into the insurance companies (large corporations and banks) ledger each month first, without providing any service; without providing money to local healthcare providers. Sure, the local sales agent gets a rip, but even they too are more frequently becoming corporate employees.
Centralization of Capital
Of all the horrors mentioned prior pale in comparison to that of centralized capital. When large corporations and governments are allowed to operate, they tend to act in their own best interests. Nothing is more convenient to a large organization then to consolidate and centralize it’s capital.
These days, it seems like every good startup or small company is being bought out. A few months ago, my business insurance went from an independent agent to Liberty Mutual. Last week, my friend’s startup that he has been building for years just got acquired by LinkedIn. Whatever happened to Blockbuster Video, or Twinkies damn it?
Gone, that’s what happened to those brands. All the small businesses across America, now nice little pieces of IP and patents scooped up like an amoeba of capital. No more diversity, sacrificed for only one thing – growth. Unfortunately, we live on a finite planet and I don’t think there are enough tickets to the moon, and unless you buy “Piece of Ship”, you can’t ride with me.
Large corporations are inefficient at delivering resources to far flung bits of corporate empire. When too large, they will not perform, and as all extremities removed from nutrients do, they too will dissolve. This is what gives me the strength to keep working on my businesses. I see the holes and inefficiencies, and just like the Eskimos, have carved out a niche for my small business.
I can help you do the same for your business, or help you start your first one. America was founded by entrepreneurs. It is why we have enjoyed so much success in the past. Why are we straying from that?
Please like, share and email your friends, family and fellow business owners. If you have a question, please comment bellow to get this message out!
As Obama fund raises in New Hampshire and Massachusetts this week, this 20 min video is more important to OUR survival than any wink or smile charismatic leaders can offer:
I did have a great weekend. I would like to continue having good weekends. Stocks plunged today; people need to realize that things aren’t as good as they seem. Obama and Romney continue business as usual with money in politics – our money..
Money in Politics – we can’t seem to get away from it. It wins elections by funding attack campaigns, gains exposure with media coverage and advertisements, and people making money together always seem to endorse each other.
What you may not realized is that the game is rigged. Let me explain how.
All media companies can be easily summed up by it’s expenses:
Now political content is fairly inexpensive to produce- so abundant that politicians hand it out in press releases, hopping to land a favorable sound bite in national news, or any coverage at all. Free content for the media.But if TV stations and newspapers gave away their limited press freely, they would never have received the more than 1/2 Billion in ad dollars spent in the 2008 Presidential Electionby Republican and Democratic leads alone – and that’s only the amount legally reported. It’s not including local elections, congress, state, judge and other appointments nor including the ones that didn’t make it. Big money…So what does the press do? They give out free coverage to the candidates that spend the most on ads, they feature candidates popular with big oil, banking and other special interests in Political Advertorials, failing to mention candidates with opposing views (Ron Paul), calling it news. Ever see those ads that don’t appear to be selling you something, but make you feel good. Those are giant corporations influencing your opinion and their press releases are the news you receive – product placement.
Isn’t it ironic that in the pursuit of democracy, we vote for candidates that will most benefit our interests, however historically and as of the recent New Hampshire primary, we elect the ones that spend the most money. Money donated to them by those that benefit from the current system, the ones with disposable income looking for tax breaks.
The whole idea of elections are to ensure that no particular person, group or entity gets too much power. You know, shake it up a little bit. It is impossible to ever have a fair election when you add money to the equation. The outcome will end up the same way, people in power stay in power. American elections exist only to validate those in power and their right to “rule”. This is a democracy, you know.
But wait, what if the current elite saw the loss of productivity caused by voter disenfranchisement and realized that the old tricks won’t work anymore. People get their information freely from the internet, validated by millions of comments from other internet users and social networkers. They might consider providing an open platform to discuss the real issues, and elect leaders that take us back to our nation’s roots of independent, small businesses and self sufficient families – what made America great in the first place.
Enter SOPA and countless other “Internet Policing” laws getting forced down our throats like medicine to a test patient. Don’t worry – it’s good for us, plus, we get paid in the form of benefits (unemployment, welfare, police). All we have to do is let our Corporation run government control the distribution of ALL our news and media – but that is another article in itself..