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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As it is

Can we reform immigration just by calling things as they are?

Heralding the upcoming legislation battle about immigration reform, in her column in The Washington Post, Tamar Jacoby gives us an inside look into the process.

Opting for “comprehensive immigration reform”, Ms. Jacoby carefully avoids defining what it means. As proponents of increased immigration and granting legal status to undocumented immigrants, claim the term “comprehensive”, one may only guess that this is the objective of Ms. Jacoby. However, one can imagine resolving our immigration crisis just by capturing and forcefully deporting all presently undocumented immigrants, by militarizing the borders that even a mouse could not sneak in, and by using Arizona style police methods in chasing and removing those who still manage to come in. This approach, formally, could be called comprehensive as well.

Tamar Jacoby explains that we should try reforming immigration without defining the problem as otherwise we could poison the well with partisan politics. Behind carefully crafted wording of the Washington insider, the message is clear: the minds of some legislators are fossilized on ideologically biased positions, and are not susceptible to any rational arguments. Other legislators care less about immigration, but more about how some of their gestures could help them in the upcoming election. Ms. Jacoby warns that we need to navigate carefully in this Capitol Hill reality, because otherwise immigration reform would fail, as it did a few times in the recent years.

One may question this approach, arguing that previous attempts of reforming immigration failed due to that dancing around fossilized minds, private agendas of legislators, and because no one focused on comprehending the problem. Hence, it is time to call things as they are.

Until 1924, Europeans could freely arrive to America. Many did. Those who found work here, stayed; about 25% returned. As a result, about a hundred years ago, the U.S. emerged as a new world’s superpower. It is worth remembering that immigrants made America rich and powerful; especially in times when this position is diminishing.

The Immigration Act of 1924 practically stopped all immigration. One may argue that it was a coincidence that the Great Depression of 1929 occurred exactly when the booming construction business started suffering due to a shortage of low paid immigrant workers. However, one can argue as well that the Immigration Act of 1924 was one of the pivotal causes of the Great Depression, and made growing out of depression harder and longer. It was not the first time that not money, the best financial interest of the nation, but plain xenophobia formed immigration policy. The fear that about 4 million Jews could immigrate from then overpopulated Poland helped to pass the Immigration Act of 1924.

In the 1960s, it became obvious that the country needed more immigrants. Furthermore, it was not possible to keep any longer plainly racist, whites only immigration policy. Politicians went to work, and produced the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. Immigration quotas were established based on the ridiculous concept that immigration to the U.S was a gift that the greatest nation on Earth gives away to the rest of the world. A family reunion concept was introduced. A foreigner could settle here thanks to having a brother living here already, without any consideration if he or she offered any set of skills and personal predispositions fitting the needs of the labor marketplace here.

Immigration policy based on the family reunion concept left foreigners without family members in the U.S. no chance of immigration. To address this problem, politicians in Washington invented lottery, the greatest idiocy of our immigration system. People were given immigration visas not because there was some economical need for them to come here at that time, but just because they had good luck at the lottery. Can one imagine a sane employer who would hire workers by a lottery system?

This logic of Washington produced its results in 1980s, when we faced a growing population of illegal immigrants. Instead of acknowledging the mess that they caused thus far, in 1986 politicians added even more to the mix. For the first 210 years of the Union, every American enjoyed the freedom of hiring anyone he or she pleased, regardless if this person came from across the street or across the ocean. It was legal to hire any foreigner one wanted without permission from the big government. Since 1986, one needs to ask the government for permission.

Our current immigration laws are based on the clearly socialistic concept that some bureaucrats in Washington know best how many foreigners should be allowed to come and work in the U.S. In this aspect, our immigration laws are un-American; this is the main reason that they are commonly disobeyed. The government cannot enforce them without creating an apparatus of compulsion comparable to that in the Soviet Union. It is worth reminding that the Soviet Union was established by the free will of majority people living in Russia at that time. Similarly, police methods of dealing with our immigration problem were voted into law in Arizona recently.

We need an immigration system originating from the principle that everyone who can come and find work here should be allowed to do so. Those who stay some predetermined time, let us say five years, should be allowed to apply for a green card, beginning their path to naturalization. We need to abandon family reunion and lottery visas. We need to keep Washington politicians away from micromanaging immigration.

Politicians in Washington need to acknowledge that they caused illegal immigration by voting in ridiculous laws. The solution should not be in adding more regulations, but in abandoning existing ones. In particular, we need to revoke these provisions of our immigration laws that require government permission to come and work in the U.S. By doing so, we would resolve the problem of amnesty, as we would not need to grant amnesty to people breaking the laws that should be declared invalid from their very beginning. The only amnesty we might consider should be for our lawmakers for creating the laws that brought this immigration havoc on us.

This is how it is. Can our lawmakers face this reality? Tamar Jacoby says no. I am afraid, she might be right.

A version of this text was published by Huffington Post

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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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