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Thursday, November 5, 2020

Attention Teachers: Do not teach socialism or hate for the USA

In my first career, some 33 years ago, I was a school teacher in south -central Los Angeles, CA. Having had a progressive indoctrination in college, I was ripe for the increased indoctrination that the Teachers at my school tried to feed me, but somehow, the radical politics that I was asked to digest just didn't go down very well.  I realized that communism wasn't going to make the lives of these inner-city children (mostly Latinos) any better.  I also learned that I had the wherewithal to inspire children to learn and to make learning personal for each student, in Spanish or in English. 

One of my communist fellow-teachers mentioned to me that, among other things, he would make visits to his students homes to strengthen his bonds with students who were struggling.  Although the lesson came from a self-avowed communist, it was not a concept that required me to adopt a revolutionary mindset - only a pragmatic mindset - so I added the practice to my toolbox and began meeting my students at the homes of their parents, in the heart of gangland. I became one of a very small number of white men who could travel freely in that part of L.A. after dark without becoming a victim of the gang wars.
I also developed other ways of connecting with my students and their grades ascended through the combined techniques that I developed. 

Regrettably, the jealousy that I provoked due to my extraordinary success with my students made me quite the target for many of  my less successful colleagues.

Over time I began to feel ostracized and started to lose enthusiasm for teaching. I ultimately made the choice to pursue another career and left my cherished students a good deal better off than when I first met them.

I could share hundreds of touching stories about these delightful 7th and 8th graders, and also a few heart-breaking stories, but the most important lesson that I can share is that socialism and teaching hate for the USA does not help our inner city youth. It simply pushes them fully towards the gang life which is already present in epidemic proportions. I guess that my years of teaching were really the start of my #walkaway experience, and prepared me to leave the Democratic Party.

In short, there is no need to train our youth to be socialists or communists and there is no need to teach our children to hate our country.  The USA is a great country, and patriotism is important to maintaining our Democratic Republic.



Sunday, September 27, 2020

Conservativism and Patriotism - Awake, not Woke

MY #WALKAWAY

It's a personal tragedy for me to know how completely the Democrats had co-opted me in College, beginning in 1984 I was invited to organize for the Students Against Reaganism (STAR), and the nation-wide Anti-Apartied Network. There was every reason to protest Apartied and press for the freeing of Nelson Mandela. But there really wasn't anything especially wrong with Ronald Reagan's vision for this country. STAR was just the next thing, and therefore, a way for progressives to keep us involved. I know now that I was wholly deceived by the progressives for many years. I am awake, not WOKE. Liberals are all about controlling your personal liberty, because absolute compliance is pre-requisite under a Socialist regime.

SOCIALISM

Everyone is Not equal in a socialist nation. The leaders of the party are treated like royalty and the inner circle of the party leadership is next most affluent. Opposition is repressed, because a socialist country's biggest threat is an organized opposition party. The proletariat are relegated to poverty and stand isolated with no power. Moreover, a dark and dangerous underground grows within socialist countries to fill the void of opportunity that invariably prevails within socialist nations. The ruling class invariably installs a Chairman or President with a life-long term of office; hence, socialism begins to morph into a dictatorship rather quickly as history has demonstrated in China, the USSR, Cuba and Venezuela.

THE PLAYBOOK

I know that the Democrats have a well-honed partisan playbook. Heck, I was instructed to work from it and to improve it during my activist years.

TECHNOLOGY AND PROGRESSIVE ACTION

The Anti-Apartied Network was a nation-wide, social network of colleges and universities. Colleges were among the first places on earth to have reliable access to the DarpaNet which later became the internet. With e-mail and instant messaging applications such as they existed, we coordinated with Universities across the country in opposition to Apartied and to press for change - the ultimate goal was to free Nelson Mandela, which occurred very quickly in response to our efforts.

Democrats have practiced and refined their playbook for years since before Reagan and Nixon.

Many forget that the same playbook was in place with George W. Bush (Impeachment before taking office)! Democrats challenged the 2000 election results going so far as to contend that Jeb Bush being governor of Florida gave GWB the critical advantage he needed in order to win that state.

History

Democrats, with the assistance of Bob Woodward and his pall Carl Bernstein. were able to impeach Nixon - Don't be mistaken, I agree that Richard Millhouse Nixon deserved to be impeached for his role in the Watergate scandal.

IRONY

Isn't it funny? The First duly elected Republican Party Commander in chief after Nixon (who resigned under the eminent threat of being impeached for his part in the Watergate scandal - the alleged and provable rigging of an election) was besieged by the media and treated with utmost disrespect.

Conservatives are not so easily dissuaded.

Democrats believe that if they control the house of representatives they run the country. It is foundational socialist theory on which the Democrats have tended over the years. Socialists, in turn, understand that controlling the Democratic party is the only path to gaining control of our country.

As such, the Socialists have operated from the same playbook that the earliest Marxists operated from. Nevertheless - being weak-kneed Liberals with tears for the dead as their strongest Weapon. Do not be fooled. The COVID Death toll is a massive misrepresentation. And of course, this is precisely what the socialists need in order to launch their revolution: Millions locked down in their homes for months while their family members perish. This is utter nonsense and misappropriation of government and the citizens of our proud nation.

My liberal friends and family who have cancelled me due to my support for conservative issues are blinded by the rage that they have been indoctrinated to hold more dear than their own family members. After all, it is the nuclear family that is the singly largest threat to Socialism. I am irate that my former party creates soap-opera dramas whenever THEIR power is challenged. It's no surprise that Hollywood celebrities tend to support the Democratic Party. Actors have been reading and performing such soap operas for decades as they endeavor to make their path into far bigger productions.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

The Theory of Software Stability

Copyright © Thought Rising 2020 All rights reserved.

Abstract



Software Stability is a software engineering theory advanced by Dr. Mohamed Fayad in 2001; however, the term "stability" in the realm of software has only recently been used by a few technology companies such as Amazon.com, While not with the same methods as Dr. Fayad has documented.  Nonetheless, The notion of Stability has entered the language of corporate America through a philosophy that urges all corporations to be good corporate citizens.  When confronted with the economic benefits both in cost savings and public perception of a commitment to stability and sustainability with respect to concerns including environmental footprint/carbon footprint, the notion arises that the concept of stability might also find a foothold in software economics.  Thus we conclude that Software Stability Theory now must be examined carefully within the the academic literature pertaining to Software Engineering.  Similarly, Dr. Fayad's notion of Software Stability deserves a proper treatment and must be taught and shared with other Software Engineers for the betterment of all software engineers.

Software Stability in a Nutshell

  1. Simplicity and Elegance of Software Architecture, Design and Coding

Software Stability theory targets a renaissance in software engineering and a return to the guiding principles of simplicity and elegance in Architecture, design and coding.  Thus, we start with the mandate that simplicity and elegance of software is a desirable characteristic, which yields superior outcomes.

In a nutshell, Software stability is both a scientific theory for rapid software engineering and it is the only software engineering practice that fully embodies the desired objectives of Agile.  It achieves this objective by emphasizing simplicity and elegance of architecture, design and coding.

The core Principle of this theory of  Software Stability is that Patterns are at the core of any software that is built.  It can also be said that anti-patterns are at the core of any software that is built.    This does not mean that software is necessarily bad if it employs one or more anti-patterns.  What it does mean is that all software can be improved and should be improved as much as possible.  To wit, this is central to the agile concept of iterative development; however Software Stability takes the notion of software improvement to another level.  The objective of a software product must be that it is architected, designed and developed with the understanding that software must be maintained and improved iteratively.

As patterns are at the core of software improvement and software innovation, Software Stability targets solutions that employ stable and reusable patterns throughout the software engineering lifecycle.  By employing optimal patterns (Software Stability Patterns) within a software architecture, design and development efforts, you can greatly improve the economics of any software product.

This point is key: Every software engineer has had the experience of discovering a powerful and new approach to modeling a specific software solution and observed the following benefits:

1) Simplified and streamlined software maintenance
2) refinement of the support model for a software product.

Software stability mandates that we employ this approach holistically thereby creating simplicity and elegance of architecture, design and coding throughout all facets of software engineering.

2. Complexity is not a Friend

Software stability stands in firm opposition to the notion that a software solution must necessarily be complex and that complexity itself is inevitable.  In fact  it is central to software stability that complexity is an anti-pattern and that you must simplify relentlessly in order to build innovative software that yields high quality and remains cost effective over time.

3. Agile is not a Silver Bullet

Agile has received a great deal of hype among all technology companies.  Yet, the fact remains that Agile has failed in software engineering organizations with the same frequency that these teams have failed in non-Agile regimes.  An exhaustive analysis of project success within Agile and Non-Agile software engineering teams would reveal few insights about what exactly has gone wrong, but it  would likely fail to raise the most important point:  Namely, that Agile Methods, such as Scrum, Kanban, Lean, and XP are not software engineering methodologies.  Rather, these are Project Management Methods.  None of these approaches prescribes how software should be engineered.  This is where Software Stability is an important software engineering approach for achieving  true and reliable Agile results.  In fact, Software Stability is the only software engineering approach that embodies the same principles detailed in the Agile Manifesto.






Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Confused about Racism?

Copyright © Thought Rising 2020 All rights reserved.

I am confused by all of the rhetoric about Racism in the news and  in discussions with friends and family.  First off there is this term "White Privilege" that confuses me greatly.  Somehow because I'm  white,  I am a beneficiary of White Privilege.  Because I have White Privilege, it is concluded that I'm an institutional racist.  This simply doesn't calculate.  When White Privilege is explained to me, I do not  recognize any of the privileges that I am an alleged beneficiary of.

I raised an African-American child.  Does that mean that he has White Privilege, since White Privilege is something that is passed down from parents to their children?  What about Colin Kaepernick?  Is he White Privileged since at least one of Colin's parents if not both are white?
What about Nate McMillan, a multi-millionaire coach of the NBAs Indiana Pacers?  Is he privileged because he has spent his entire adult life within the shield of the National Basketball association either as a player or as a coach?  He decries racism in our country, but I'm confounded about how exactly it impacts him. Moreover, I've listened to and read dozens of heated comments about racism from privileged public figures who happen to be African Americans.  I understand that they feel compelled to condemn racism and I don't have a concern about their sincerity, but I'd like to know exactly how a Black man or woman who has made millions or even tens of millions or hundreds of millions over their lifetime has been harmed by racism?  When you call the shots in your life everyday and never have to wonder about where your next meal is going to come from; when you've not had to worry about having a roof over your head for decades, and when you've lived a thoroughly privileged life does the color of your skin give you some privilege to voice outrage over a White-Privileged society that has beaten you down?  I find it completely incongruent with reality., That's not to say that Black Americans of the top tier social class should not comment on racial injustice, I just would rather see the rhetoric dropped down a notch or two and the underlying issues addressed.  Systemic racism is not something that can simply be fixed; however the underpinnings of systemic racism and social justice concerns can be addressed individually.  Black lives do matter to me and, in fact, all lives matter to me; however, through my decades of political and social activism, I have learned that rhetoric tends to cloud the underlying issues that can be addressed concretely, and diverts attention from the good work that can be done to improve our society.

I protested against Apartied as a University Campus organizer in the mid-1980s.  Does this absolve me of any of this White Privilege that I am accused of?  Does it make me any less a racist that I have put my body and soul on the line for Racial Equality?

I am jewish by birth.  I was raised in a family that was not well-to-do.  We lived far beyond our means and mom and dad were perpetually bankrupt.  I had to work hard for everything that I've accomplished in my life.  Nothing was handed to me.  Does this reduce my White Privilege?

For 20 years, I have been counselling Parents of divorce or paternity-related actions involving the family Courts.  I have been emphasizing the importance of Fathers having close bonds with their children.  I have counselled Fathers, and some Mothers of every race, creed color,religion and gender including a number of LGBTQO+ parents.  Does any of this this atone for my despicable white privilege?

I have a 30+ year record of political action supporting racial  and gender equality, yet I am institutionally racist.  This is what confuses me.


Wednesday, June 24, 2020

On Capitalism vs. Socialism

Copyright © Thought Rising 2020 All rights reserved.

It seems of late that there is a rather large mobilization of socialists throughout the country.  This outcry of socialism harkens back to the Occupy Wall Street events of a few years back and rides on the heels of Bernie Sander's push to turn America into a socialist country.

However, all of this belies the fact that people in the socialist regimes of our globe are far less free and far less well off than people are in the United States.  In fact, nearly every socialist country has a miserable record with respect to human rights violations. To wit, socialism has failed miserably in most every country in which it has been tried -- notable socialist countries include:

1) the USSR, which broke up some 30 years ago -- a nation rather infamous for it's Gulags and prisons.
2) China which is notoriously famous for repressing it's own people and killing it's own people should they protest in Tianamen Square or Downtown Hong Kong
3) Czecheslovakia, which is reknowned for oppressing it's own people until the country experienced a Civil War.
4) Romania, A country which repressed even it's national heroes.
5) Cuba, which has been a disaster for most Cubans.
6) Venezuela which went from being one of the most prosperous countries in Latin America to arguably the poorest and most repressive in just a matter of 15 or 20 years.

Why is it that socialism always results in poor outcomes?

I have a theory.  The problem is that the rules of socialism are complicated.  Who makes the rules? How do you compel people to be equal without repression of voice?  In fact is there real equality in any Socialist society?  Scarcely!  There are still ruling class and proletariat class in every Socialist country in the world.  So, what is it that attracts people in this country to Socialism.  I'm baffled.

There's no such thing as a free lunch!  No country and no government is going to pay you to stay at home and sit on your duff for any period of time.  Capitalism offers "We the People" in the United States of America the central concepts  that we have valued for nearly 250 years, and it's working.

Furthermore, the rules of capitalism are much more predictable:  If I have $10, I can purchase $10 of goods or services, but no more.  Of course credit cards add some nuances to the supply and demand concepts, but ultimately, the market prices itself based on consumer tolerances and supply and demand.  Most people understand how this works even if they have not studied economic theory.  Whereas even a year-long course of study in Marxism and Socialism won't help you to understand the rules of Socialism any better than you do at this very moment!

Clearly Capitalism is not perfect and we need a strong government to keep things moving along, but ultimately, Capitalism makes sense and people demonstrably experience great liberties in the USA in part because we have a Democratic Republic rather than a Socialist State, and in part because of the Declaration of Independence.

I am deeply concerned about the Socialist agenda in the Democratic party.  In Socialism, only the ruling class has any freedoms.  So, why wouldn't the Democratic politicians want Socialism.  They can rule indefinitely and control the country at their leisure so long as the Socialist Regime Reigns.
In a nutshell, this is the end goal of the Socialists within the Democratic party, and I cannot stomach any of it.


Saturday, June 20, 2020

Software Accidents Will Happen


Copyright © Thought Rising 2020 All rights reserved.
"Agile is the process used by disciplined professionals observed in the wild."
- Robert "Uncle Bob" Martin


In December of 1992, I traveled to Snowbird ski resort.  While there, I scribbled 4 statements on a chalkboard in the conference room at the resort.  Apparently no one erased that chalkboard between December 1992 and February 2001.

The Agile Alliance met at Snowbird Ski Resort  in February 2001 and published the Agile Manifesto.  According to Robert Martin, they never met again and don't have any desire to do so.  Is it because they anticipate that they will never find writing on that chalkboard  again?

in 2016, Robert Martin, in his talk on the future of programming, he asserts: "Civilization depends on us!" He notes that many dozens of people have been killed by software (due to software in automobiles malfunctioning and the vehicles consequently running into things).  He goes on to assert, "it's just a matter of time before a software cataclysm occurs when perhaps tens of thousands of people are killed by software written poorly."  He describes the scenario of  an airplane crashing into a football stadium.  But we need to consider whether Dr. Martin's "software cataclysm" will be with a bang or a whimper!  Perhaps Dr. Martin's prediction will not be something with so much man and machine carnage as a plane crash.

In the early years of my career, I was responsible for writing programs to manage and control a ballistic testing laboratory at TRW Safety Systems in Mesa, AZ.  The program managed various interlocks, in which the ballistic test (read: explosion) could not be completed until the testbay door was locked from the outside and every member of the test team that had entered the testbay had authorized the test to proceed -- thus indicating that there was no human being in the ballistic testbay.

Thus, I learned a profound lesson about the importance of Software testing and the reality that software could be harmful to humans.

Copyright © Thought Rising 2020 All rights reserved.

Monday, March 23, 2020

The Battle of the Sexes

The Battle of the Sexes


I was eleven years old in 1973 when the whole nation watched "The Battle of the Sexes" play out on television. Never mind that a movie was made of the subject in 2017.  The original competition between Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King was touted as the battle to end all battles. But the hype was far more interesting than the tennis match.

And years later, we are left with all of the hype and very little substance.  The battle of the sexes has played out on many levels in US culture and society.Women's liberation continues to fight for equal rights and against the male-dominated establishment, when, in fact, the male-dominated establishment retired decades ago.  Unfortunately, the gender wars have raged on. We have women in the C Suite, Women in Congress and in the Senate. Still, the equal rights amendment hasn't been passed, and some women are sincerely P-O'ed and feel victimized by a society that seemingly fails to recognize Women as equals.

I disagree.  I think that women have had a far better outcome due to the unsettled nature of the battle of the sexes.  Moreover, I believe that feminists would rather not talk about the changing roles of men and women in society.  Women have enjoyed a thoroughly free ride in the past five decades.

While American Society has evolved to the point where it is nearly impossible for a family to survive on a single income, many women still hold on to the fantasy that they can aspire to be housewives, sitting at home eating cherry Bon-Bons a la Kate Bundy, while their husbands toil away frantically trying to make ends meet, pay the bills and save some money so that the family can enjoy just one annual vacation each year -- or perhaps every other year, and so that the children might go to college one day and become self-sufficient. No thought or dollar is invested in the thought that the bread-winner himself might actually retire from work at least a few years before he's 6 feet under!

What does this all mean?  I have uncovered a blockbuster finding:  Despite all of the pomp and circumstance surrounding the infamous "Battle of the Sexes".  Nothing at all was settled.  The fact of the matter is that our nation has never had a candid dialogue pertaining to gender roles in the age that followed the battle of the sexes.  Absent that we have fumbled along quite clumsily attempting to achieve some semblance of balance in an otherwise unbalanced world.

The end result is that we have a tenuous battle for a woman's right to choose versus a fetus' right to survive.

We also have an ongoing war of words between feminists who have utterly failed to engage in a long overdue dialogue as to what gender roles look like after the equal rights amendment and after the famed battle of the sexes is finally settled.  Surprisingly, the alleged male-dominated establishment does not especially embrace the concept of Women's liberation as defined by the National Organization for Women or embraced by more militant feminist factions.  But it all comes down to the failure of the Women's Rights movement to engage in a constructive dialogue about how society functions after the battle of the sexes -- as if it were the duty of men to sit them down and ask if they might condescend to even entertain such a dialogue.

I don't pretend to know what the solution is exactly, but it won't get solved until the dialogue is happening in earnest.