Many people write or speak to tell us what we should think. Some want to be believed because they are experts, or think they are. Some want to be believed because they claim to speak for us. Some have had revelations. Others want us to trust them because they communicate through prominent media outlets. Many tell us what we should think. I write to encourage my readers to think for themselves. I write to ask you to inquire. Question me. Have fun.

Comment of the Day
The Editorial Board should have no opinion

Jul 11, 2020

The WSJ Editorial Board expressed its opinion about the case of Michael Flynn. It does not matter what they said; in my book, the Editorial Board should have no opinion on any topic. Editorial boards’ job is not to lecture, but to facilitate views from individuals who can present valid arguments. The Editorial Board's job at the WSJ is to guarantee to me, a subscriber, that the different opinions presented are fact-checked. I pay a subscription for the WSJ because I do not have the time nor the means to fact-check whatever is written and posted on the internet. I do not pay for the subscription to be brainwashed by whatever the self-anointed authority of the Editorial Board believes is right. I can make my judgment based on the facts and their interpretation by other individuals.

More parenting is needed
Aug 01, 2019
Peter Gray in Psychology Today advises for less parenting. The problem is exactly the opposite: There is not enough parenting. In the past, when most of our ancestors lived in self-supporting households, often a farm, out of necessity, children were an integral part of whatever adults needed to do during their daily life, and they learned that way. Now, we do not need to do as much at home. Work is outside the home, food is brought in, heat is turned on and off, and mysteriously magical, colorful screens are the center of most activities. If we leave children free to explore what they find the most attractive, they will play video games. There might be some educational value in it, but one needs to learn much more. Hence, we need more effort in parenting, with parents doing more in the home than is otherwise required, and spending more time with children outside in order to introduce them to the real world. This realization hit home after I witnessed the surprise of a 7-year old seeing apples on my apple tree.
Less fight more work
Jul 30, 2017

The fight over Obamacare repeal is over, at least for now. The GOP can start to work on a new proposal that each of us can look at it, and then compare how my particular health care solution would play in it, as compared to Obamacare. In a television interview, HHS Secretary Tom Price said that Obamacare “may be working for Washington, it may be working for insurance companies, but it’s not working for patients.” Maybe it is time to consider patients’ involvement in the preparation of an Obamacare alternative? It could be that Obamacare repeal failed just because it has been prepared by Washington with consultation from insurance companies. Let us start with addressing 19 health care issues that politicians avoid talking about.

How to pay for the wall?
Apr 04, 2017

If you want to build the wall, pay for it with your own money. How much of your own money are you willing to donate? Trump received 62,979,879 votes. If each of Trump’s supporters voluntarily donates at least $1,000, which corresponds to about $42 per month for the next two years, and if we encourage those who are more affluent to double their donations, then Trump can have on hand about $100 billion, which may suffice for a substantial piece of the wall. Hence, all of you who are talking loudly about spending my money on building this wall, stay away from my wallet, but open your own wallet and send money to the “Build the Wall Fund.” Put your money where your mouth is.

What is wrong with Russia?
Dec 22, 2015

It appears that Russian leaders cannot free themselves from the medieval concept of regional influence, where weaker neighbors were subdued into becoming serf states. Is anyone capable of explaining to them that in these times of a global economy, any influence comes from economic strength? Russia, thanks to its size, natural resources and well-educated labor force, has everything that it takes to maintain a dominant position in the region, just by maintaining free trade with all its neighbors. It can do so without military interventions in Georgia and in Ukraine. Russia has everything that it takes to be a respected wealthier neighbor, to whom everyone in the region would turn for help when needed. Instead, it is a bully and a hooligan. It would take so little to change that. But it is so hard for Russia to do it. 

Closed mind for closed borders
Nov 19, 2015

Known to some as a libertarian, Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr. speaks against open borders. His argument is that it is an infraction against private property. He misses the point that most people migrate just because Mr. Rockwell’s neighbors want them on their private property – for picking apples, washing the dishes or writing a computer code. Then, Mr. Rockwell wrongly laments that those foreigners invited by his neighbors violate his private property rights by loitering in the public spaces that he frequents. He wants the government to deny the rights of his neighbors to do on their private property whatever they wish, so he will not need to face immigrants in the public spaces. Mr. Rockwell left the train called “liberty” at the station called “xenophobia.”    

They do not know…
Sep 14, 2015

Mr. Trump says: “A lot of what I’m doing is by instinct.” I prefer that our President would make decisions based on systematic due diligence. The instinct that guides Mr. Trump in his professional life arrives from his vast experience, starting when he was growing up under the mentoring of his successful father, followed by a solid education and years of practice. Mr. Trump's confidence is misguiding, as it gives his supporters the illusion that someone who mastered real estate dealing can be equally skillful as President. It is similar to the illusion surrounding Dr. Carson, that he can be as good a President as he is a brain surgeon. If both gentlemen were humbler, they would realize that they qualify to be President equally as much as Mr. Trump qualifies to conduct brain surgeries and Dr. Carson to run Mr. Trump’s real estate empire. The problem is not that they do not know many things they should; the problem is that they do not realize that.

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Instead of a resume…

It started almost by itself …
Many, many years ago, when I was twenty years old, I published my first article in the nationwide Polish student weekly magazine “Politechnik.” It was a story about a political initiative that hadn’t worked out. I deeply offended some and was highly praised by a few. It was an augury of what was to come. In the following several years, I published a few hundred texts in various Polish magazines.

Deep waters
In recognition of my writing in student magazines, in the summer of 1972, I was awarded a one-month internship in „Życie i Nowoczesność”(“Life and Modernity”), a weekly section of “Życie Warszawy,” a main daily newspaper in Warsaw. At that time, “Życie i Nowoczesność,” under the leadership of Stefan Bratkowski, was the most regarded political periodical in Poland. My internship evolved into continued freelance writing until the fall of 1973, when party apparatchiks had had enough and fired Bratkowski and his team.

Fifteen minutes of fame
After losing independence at the end of the 18th century, Poles turned to tradition and literature to preserve their national identity. In the 19th century, the political situation in Europe did not give Poles a chance to regain independence, and uprisings were losing battles from the start. For centuries trade and banking in Poland were in Jewish hands, and Poles did not have much respect for this kind of activities, and consequently lacked the skills to be successful. This combination of circumstances created a stereotype of a Pole as someone who recites patriotic poems, fails in economic activities, and fights to the last drop of blood for a lost cause. It was in this context that Adam Mickiewicz, the greatest Polish romantic poet, called the ideas of his youth “lofty and stupid”.

Thirty years after World War II, Poles had changed. For all the patriotic talk, they’d learned the value of professional education. They became homo economicus, and in political thinking and action, were more into getting small, but nevertheless real, gains, rather than losses in bravado actions for the great cause. I put it in writing, titled “Neither lofty nor stupid” (“Ani chmurni, ani durni”) and “Polityka”, the main political magazine in Poland, published it in as a cover story. This text shocked the Polish intelligentsia. Almost every columnist in the country responded. I was famous.

A prestigious award
In the late seventies, besides “Polityka”, I wrote for “Przegląd Techniczny” (“Technological Review”), a political weekly magazine targeting young engineers. In 1979 I got the third prize in a competition for the best story about the start-up of an engineer’s career. About fifty authors participated in this competition, among them the best reporters in the country.

Transport. Problems and hopes.
In 1978 I was offered to write a popular book about the transportation system in Poland. So I did it.

The letter written too well
During the “Solidarity” period in 1980-81, I wrote many ad hoc political pieces. My open letter to a top party member was duplicated in hundreds of “Solidarity” bulletins and cost me my job after martial law was introduced.

Could it be better in Poland?
In early 1980, sensing the oncoming crisis, I started writing a book defining conflicts, discussing possible scenarios of their eruption, and looking for peaceful solutions. The manuscript was ready on the day “Solidarity” was born. My book was purchased by one of the most reputable publishing houses, “Wydawnictwo Literackie”. A few days before the manuscript was to be sent to the press, Martial Law was introduced. The publisher attempted to save the book by trying to find an influential politician who would support the book. A former journalist in “Życie Warszawy”, Wiesław Górnicki who knew me personally, then a personal advisor to gen. W. Jaruzelski, took the bait. He devoted three weeks of his summer vacation to write a 30-page (one-sixth of my book) review only to come up with the conclusion that my book should not be published. I wrote an equally long response, showing his lies and errors, and arguing that the only honorable exit for communists is to give up power, which they finally did only a few years later.

In the meantime, I landed in Chicago and published my book here, together with Górnicki’s review and my response to it.

An engineer’s mind
I have a master’s degree in electronic engineering with a specialization in mathematical machines. Abstract mathematics and control theory (of complex technological processes) strongly influenced my understanding of social phenomena. My thesis project was about the identification of complex technological processes, but I added a chapter about identifying complex social processes as well. This was a result of my interest in political science. Besides my engineering education, I took two years of university-level classes in philosophy, sociology, economy, and political science. I was one of the most active members of the student political science club at the Technical University of Gdańsk (Politechnika Gdańska).

In the trenches
At the beginning of my writing career, I met many older colleagues who, after several years of writing, had felt drained of new ideas. Being aware of this, I cherish the inspirational aspect of my professional career. Political circumstances in Poland cooperated to the extent that I was able to publish as a freelancer, but due to my political standing, I could not get a steady job as a political writer. Under martial law, I was forced to open my own business because I could not get a job at all.

In Chicago, I went through the hard times typical of many immigrants. Having difficulties finding decent employment, I started my own company, which I sold profitably ten years later. I enjoyed being an entrepreneur. Being in the service business, I got exposure to the bottomless richness of experience. I had many clients among the affluent and as many among the poorest. I had been in the residences of top GM executives and in the headquarters of the El Rukns. I had seen and experienced America not known to most of the politicians and business people.

I have a professional understanding of current telecommunication systems. As a consultant, I gradually evolved from engineering to business consulting.

For many years I put my writing aside, publishing only a few texts. In December 2000, “Gazeta Wyborcza”, the largest Polish newspaper, published my text about the town of Cicero, IL. While working on this text, I managed to have a two-hour face-to-face conversation with the town President, Betty Loren-Maltese; later sentenced to eight 8 years in prison. At that time, she did not talk to the media, turning down, among others, CBS 60 Minutes.

Seeking inspiration, I went as far as reading hundreds of pages of writings by Marcus Tullius Cicero. None of the authors of more than a hundred articles about the town of Cicero, published within the last several years in the English language press anywhere between Los Angeles and London, had gone that far.

Historical perspective
For Americans, the future is always more important than the past. One of the most famous sayings of my mentor, Stefan Bratkowski, is that “the future has the great past.” In their political thinking, American intellectuals are disengaged not only from the history of other nations that most of them simply do not know but also from the history of America itself. For Bush, the word “crusade” was a figure of speech. For a large part of the world it is a vivid part of history, emotionally embedded in people’s minds as if it had happened eight days, not eight centuries ago. I see many immigrants who in order to Americanize, drop the traditions of their country of origin. The baby is thrown out with the bath water, and in the course of this process, America is a country with no history. About two-and-half centuries, not very rooted in the public consciousness, does not count.

I noted that many political commentators in America, looking for historical perspective, reach the times that they remember as far back as the sixties or fifties. As about five thousand years old history of humankind has not existed.

Could it be worse in America?
Most likely, it will. For those of us who’ve experienced a tougher life, America is really “the beautiful.” It is hard to imagine it being better, but it could easily get worse. When I was growing up in Poland, we were asking ourselves how many years America was ahead of Europe. I liked the answer Stefan Bratkowski gave; for about two hundred years America has been on the sidetrack. At its inception, the U.S.A. took its own path, which proved to be successful, and followed by others. After reaching its enormous wealth and power, America seems confused in defining its place in the world; which in the meantime changed as well. Let us take the Afghanistan experience as an example. It is telling when the richest and most powerful nation on Earth arrives at the conclusion that in order to protect its security, it needs to go into a war against one of the poorest and weakest nations. It is telling even more that Americans did not foresee that it was the war they could never win.

At the beginning of the twenty-first century, America has more questions than answers. The track Americans chose when the Republic was born soon became the main route of civilization development. Stalemate is now the best word to describe Americans’ ability to resolve their problems within the last few decades. The world will not wait. China’s economy is becoming the largest in the world. One may ask how many years it will take before the economic and cultural center of the world will float from New York to Shanghai. Or anywhere else.

About me

I was born in 1951 in Gdansk, Poland.
Since my high school years, I have interest in politics and love for writing. During my college years, I started writing to student papers and soon became a freelance author to major Polish political magazines.

In 1980 I wrote a book “Czy w Polsce może być lepiej?” (“Could it be better in Poland?” – this book is available only in Polish) analyzing major problems in Poland at the time and outlining possible solutions.

I was among those Polish political writers who by their writings contributed to the peaceful system transformation that finally took place in 1989. Since 1985, I have lived in the Chicago area. I went through the hard times typical of many immigrants. Working in the service business, I have seen the best and the worst places, I met the poorest and the richest. I have seen and experienced America not known to most of the politicians, business people, and other political writers. For eleven years, I ran my own company. Presently, I am an independent consultant.

My political writing comes out of necessity. I write when I see that the prevailing voices on the political arena are misleading or erroneous. Abstract mathematics and control theory (of complex technological processes) strongly influenced my understanding of social phenomena. In the past, my opponents rebuked my mathematical mind as cold, soulless, and inhuman. On a few occasions, I was prized for my engineer’s precision and logic.

I have a master’s degree in electronic engineering with a specialization in mathematical machines from Politechnika Gdańska (Technical University of Gdansk).

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