Showing posts from 2016

Micro Globalization

I was in Switzerland this week for CloudBees 2017 planning meetings. One night we went out to dinner and there was a Jazz bar next door. Our group consisted of French, Swiss, Belgian, American, Indian, and Japanese people. We listened to an Italian guitar player and piano player sing a British musician's Illegal Alien : I'm an alien, I'm a legal alien I'm an Englishman in New York Modesty, propriety can lead to notoriety You could end up as the only one Gentleness, sobriety are rare in this society At night a candle's brighter than the sun Takes more than combat gear to make a man Takes more than a license for a gun Confront your enemies, avoid them when you can A gentleman will walk but never run If "Manners maketh man" as someone said Then he's the hero of the day It takes a man to suffer ignorance and smile Be yourself no matter what they say 

Small Business Thoughts in the Trump Era

As a  small business owner  (24 employees), our little company has been on a roll since starting in 2010. We are profitable and growing with thousands of happy customers and growing market share. My tendency has been to continue to invest in the business because the fundamentals are so strong. For me, Trump brings uncertainty in several ways: I wonder if other businesses will be a bit cautious on spending and investments until there is more certainty on the moves he will make. That could cause some headwinds that could push us more towards a recession. While I have been in favor of more government spending, the coming tax cuts promise to be less efficient in terms of the multiplier effect of fiscal intervention. The basic concept is that money going to rich people will not be spent very quickly and therefore does nothing to improve the  velocity of money , which is a primary factor in the slow recovery over the past 7 years. Also, between the tax cuts and Trump’s promis

Why I Voted for Hillary

I’ve submitted my absentee ballot voting for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Election. As I did in  2012 , I am giving my reasons in case it helps others make their own decisions. Here are my key reasons: Life long commitment to making the world a better place Investing in major world changes Agree with her Policies and Proposals I like smart people who work hard Making the World a Better Place This is probably what inspires me the most about Hillary – she has had a lifelong commitment to making the world a better place. This video is her commencement speech at Wellesley College.  She was the first student commencement speaker in the college’s history, and you can see from the President’s introduction the amount of respect she had garnered in her 4 years there. Her speech also shows the core values she was thinking about then, and now. From her early days she has pushed forward to be in positions of larger and larger impact. While most of us are satisfied maki

Bickel Cabin - Frank & Mary

After my Great Grandfather Lou established our family cabin , My Grandma and Grandpa (born in 1900), Frank and Mary inherited it. They also lived in West Virginia and would make the long trip up in the summer with their children Bob (my Dad) and Barbara (my Aunt, who has since passed away at a way too early age). Grandpa, Dad, Grandma, Barbara My Dad took my Mom up when they were dating in high school. Mom & Dad My Mom and Dad would take us up as kids. This was a very important influence on me.  The anticipation of going to Canada each summer - making the two day trip - my parents letting me out of the car a couple hundred meters before the cabin so I could run ahead of the car - helping Grandma pick blueberries and make pies - helping Grandpa fill the generators to pump water or light the house each night - family fishing/picnic trips "down the lake" - quiet hours doing nothing but waiting for the fish to be ready with my line in the water next to my Grandpa

Bickel Canada Cabin Beginnings

Bickel cabin in the fall My parents are in the process of handing the family cabin over to my sister and me this summer. We went up this past week to plan an addition and some updates. I took a bunch of pictures of the pictures that were hanging in the cabin, and wanted to post them in phases. This is Post 1. You can also see Post 2 . My Dad wrote up this history of the Bickel (now Bickel-Cross) Cabin: "My father, Frank, and his father Louis P. Bickel, went up in 1937, for a stag party organized by Glen Law, a wrestling coach at Marietta H.S. and Illinois. He was at Marietta when Al Rupp senior was the principal. My father and granddad had a connection to Glen thru Glen's relatives in the Oil and Gas business in WV. Granddad was starting to retire, loved the area, walked around the bay, chose our little bay, and bought the land from Al. Bickel Land Purchase Al went there in 1930 to visit friends from Ohio Wesleyan in the town north of Columbus. The Ohio Wesle