TheLawPreviously we had discussed the first law of decline; Sturgeon’s Law. This law stated that 90% of everything is crud, and showed how you can’t count on 90% of leaders and politicians to do the right thing without some kind of check in place to stop them. 90 percent of them will undoubtedly fall to the second law of decline; Bastiat’s law.

These laws come from Orrin Woodward‘s book ‘Resolved‘ as well as his and Oliver DeMille‘s book ‘LeaderShift‘.

A couple of years ago I read a book by Frederic Bastiat called ‘The Law‘. In this book, Bastiat goes through the concept of having a law; what it is supposed to be used for and what it then actually get’s used for. He shows how laws are supposed to be there to protect a persons property, and thus people themselves, but end up getting used to steal or harm people’s property.

Bastiat’s Law

Bastiat wrote a profound passage that Orrin Woodward takes for his second law of decline, which he first outlined in ‘Resolved: 13 Resolutions for Life.’

Man can live and satisfy his wants only by ceaseless labor; by the ceaseless application of his faculties to natural resources. This process is the origin of property.

But it is also true that a man may live and satisfy his wants by seizing and consuming the products of the labor of others. This process is the origin of plunder.

Now since man is naturally inclined to avoid pain—and since labor is pain in itself—it follows that men will resort to plunder whenever plunder is easier than work. History shows this quite clearly. And under these conditions, neither religion nor morality can stop it.

When, then, does plunder stop? It stops when it becomes more painful and more dangerous than labor. It is evident, then, that the proper purpose of law is to use the power of its collective force to stop this fatal tendency to plunder instead of to work.

– Frederic Bastiat, The Law

Bastiat’s law: Since men are naturally inclined to avoid pain, which labor is itself, it follows that they will resort to plunder whenever it is easier than work. Read the rest of this entry »

Theodore SturgeonIn ‘Resolved: 13 Resolutions for Life‘, Orrin Woodward first introduced us to his five laws of decline; showing how if we are not aware of them, our life, our organisation, and our country, will suffer the consequences.

In ‘Leadershift: A Call for Americans to Finally Stand Up and Lead‘, Orrin and Oliver DeMille go through these laws more in relation to a country. Although these laws apply to everything, and all business leaders should be aware of them for their companies sake, it’s in relation to our nation they really hit home. You may not mind if a company goes under because of these laws, but you will certainly mind if the country does.

As not everyone will go out and get those books, we will go through some of the key concepts; let’s ensure as many people becomes aware of them as we can.

For some of these laws, left on their own, things might not be too bad, even if it’s still a problem. The real issues come when all of these laws are left unchecked; which is often the case since one usually leads to another.

Today we will take a look at the first law of decline.

Sturgeon’s Law

Theodore Sturgeon was a science fiction writer who defended his genre when it was being criticized for being full of crud; that it didn’t keep up with the times and new technology. Sturgeon’s reply was to point out that 90 percent of it was indeed crud… just as it is in everything.

That is Sturgeon’s law: 90% of everything is crud. Read the rest of this entry »

This might be one of the most important questions you can ask about a problem.

Do you ever feel that the government is ruining your country with its partisanship and inaction? Don’t you wish they would just stop all the bickering and come together to pass the laws, instead of always in a stalemate and getting salaries for accomplishing nothing?

I would say ‘yes’ to that in some situations, while in others I’m grateful they are arguing with each other and, as would seem to the average individual, accomplishing nothing. In most cases accomplishing nothing is actually a great accomplishment in the end.

The thing is, how can you be sure that when the government does come together, that they are actually accomplishing something good?

I believe in equality. I believe in equal rights and equal opportunity; this means that I don’t believe in complete equality Read the rest of this entry »

freedomEver since I started on the LIFE subscriptions, I always looked forward to the next talk I would get on the subject of freedom or economics. I have always considered freedom to be one of my core principles, but at the same time I used to be a socialist; I had the wrong information on how the world worked. I had the wrong information on what was right. I thought the socialists ideas helped the poor, helped those in need, while stopping the rich from trampling all over the poor; did I ever have that backwards!

Through many of the teachings on leadership, economics, and freedom from the founders of LIFE, and their subscriptions, I have come to see the error of my ways.

I have come to see the value of free enterprise, and how it actually helps more people get jobs. I have seen how it actually gives people an incentive to get out of poverty and provides paths to do so. I have seen  how governments and big business’ use new laws and regulations to keep people dependent and in poverty; I’ve seen them use regulations to allow themselves to grow beyond where free enterprise would have allowed, at the expense of hard working citizens.

I have seen how important leadership is to bringing back lost freedoms Read the rest of this entry »

Financial FitnessA couple of years ago I went through a finance pack from LIFE that cost me almost $50, but has saved me between $70-$100 every month since. That pack consisted of a small book and 4 audio CDs which proved to be invaluable.

Well, LIFE has outdone itself this time, with a new product; the Financial Fitness pack. It doesn’t leave anything out when it comes to finances. I’ve never really looked into any finance materials before, other than my accounting class in school or from reading Robert Kiyosaki’s ‘Cashflow Quadrant’. From what I understand though, financial education usually only covers one side of finance.

What I love about this new pack is that doesn’t just cover how to spend less or just how to get out of debt. It doesn’t only cover how to save properly. It doesn’t just cover how to make more money. It covers ALL of that in the offense of defense sections of finance. But there is more! It also covers the ‘playing field’ which goes into how money works, giving you the information you need to prosper in any economy.

It goes through 47 principles of finance that make total sense when you read them, but that can really set you back when you don’t even know about them. Read the rest of this entry »

It’s been a long time since I posted anything, and you can blame that partly on not being able to sit down in front of my computer and partly on my lack of leadership over the last few months.

Maybe a little bit of history is needed to explain what I mean.

Back in February I had an operation to remove a Pilonidal cyst, which threw things out of whack for me. In the beginning all was good. There was a business meeting the night of my operation, and since I was out of the hospital, I went to it, even though I was told there was risk of feinting if I stood up for a long period of time after the operation (I couldn’t sit). Everything was ok though, and I was fired up as it was Joce Dionne giving a presentation.

Things went downhill after that. I was getting infections in the wound for the next 3 months, and it wasn’t healing. This is probably due to the fact that I never took any time off of work since they don’t pay me if I don’t go; I had no sick days left due to being in the hospital for crohn’s disease last fall. Read the rest of this entry »

Have you been watching playoff hockey lately? If you’re Canadian, the chances are you have. You would then have seen those commercials about Canada’s Economic Action Plan. It’s VERY hard to get under my skin, but every so often something comes along that just gets to me. Did you know you’re spending around $95 000 each time that advertisement plays; to be told that you’re spending money on improving the economy?

A while back I wrote a piece on the different ways money is spent, and I encourage you to go through it if you haven’t already. It explains how when you’re not spending your own money for yourself, it tends to get wasted. This is especially true when it’s not your money and it’s not for you, which is called third party spending.

If given that $95 000 to spend, even assuming you can’t spend it directly on yourself, how many people do you think would have chosen to spend it on that advertisement? I’ll bet anything that even the people who spent it on the ads would have spent it elsewhere if given the choice; if it wasn’t set for that campaigns budget by the government.

I recently read an article that showed the government has spent $113 million on these type of advertisements since 2009, that tell us they are doing a good job improving the economy. Read the rest of this entry »

LeaderShiftIt’s time for power to go back to where it belongs; to the people. With politicians and the business elite making all our decisions for us, we are losing our freedoms each and every day, and our standard of living goes down with that loss.

LeaderShift, by Orrin Woodward & Oliver Demille, is a call for people to stand up and become who they need to be in order to take back our freedoms and prevent it from being lost again. It in no way supports Republicans, nor does it support Democrats; it supports the American people (and Canadian if you read it from my perspective).

It is written in the form of a business parable about the United States, but don’t let that fool you into thinking this is just for Americans. There are a number of proposals put forth in the book that could drastically change the way we run our society, and the principles behind them can be applied to any country.

It all starts with the Five Laws of Decline; If these laws are not addressed in the frame-work of a company or a nation, they will become its undoing. Leadershift will go through the details of how they apply to a nation, but the reasoning will become obvious as you go through them.

1. Sturgeons Law – 90% of everything is Crud (this includes workers, leaders, politicians…) This means that 90% of the people running for office (and being elected) can’t be counted on to do the right thing. Thankfully the other side to this law is that 10% of the people out there are good leaders. We just need to allow them to come forth.

2. Bastiats Law – People will do the least amount of work possible to satisfy their wants. This means that if someone can get what they want without doing anything or by getting someone else to do it for them, they will.

3. Gresham’s Law – When bad behavior is rewarded, more will occur; The good ones will be driven away. Through this law, If you need to be corrupt to get ahead in an organization (or country) those that aren’t corrupt will not even enter the field; if they are already involved, they will likely leave. They do not want to be bad people, and will not be part of something where they feel they will need to do something wrong. At the same time, Those that don’t mind doing something wrong will be much more likely to do so since they will be rewarded for it. Read the rest of this entry »

thumbs upI was approached by a gentleman at work yesterday, and was told I had to stop telling people I’m awesome. At first I was a little taken aback; thinking here is one of those guys who is always negative and can’t stand other people being in a good mood.

In any good book on leadership or personal development, it will go through the importance of having a good attitude, and how important it is to respond with something extraordinary when asked ‘how are you’ or ‘how’s it going’. It will also point out how some people will not be completely receptive to this, and we should not let it bring us down.

So now when someone tries to put down my awesomeness, I have a lot of fun!

I was told that I have to change what I say, because when someone refers to the word awesome, my name always comes up. He tried to you use this as a negative about me, but how would you like to have your name tied to the word ‘awesome’? I thought that was awesome!

He then explained to me how I was misusing the word and that I couldn’t be awesome. I told him if he preferred, I could start being amazing, great, super, fantastic or even phenomenal with him, but I wanted to know what was wrong with being awesome. Read the rest of this entry »

The Slight Edge by Jeff OlsonSuccess in anything is easy. It’s doing small and simple things continuously over time. The problem: these simple things are easy not to do.

I just finished reading ‘The Slight Edge’ by Jeff Olson, which I now consider to be one of my top 10 favorite books. The main point of the book: Success is easy; but so is failure. What is great is that we have the freedom to choose which path to take.

As we’ve gone through many times before, true success requires personal and professional development. Be careful here though; reading one book like ‘The Magic of Thinking Big’ or attending a leadership seminar is not enough. If it were, you would see many more successful people in the world due to how many leadership books get sold and how many people are attending leadership seminars.

Success requires reading good books on success, and listening to good information. It also requires the slight edge principle that Jeff Olson tells us about.

The slight edge is about doing simple things consistently over time. Read the rest of this entry »