Month: September 2012

Understanding the Metrics – a follow up

It’s hard in this day and age to be seen as credible. Doesn’t matter where you are or what you do. Credibility in what you say or what you do for the most part is looked upon with skepticism regardless of facts. Yet I would rather have to prove myself to the skeptic rather than just being seen through a credulous eye.

That is where I fondly refer to as the “Snake Oil Sellers” reside. They hurt far more than they will (or can) ever help, and in my view are the reason why the motivation genre (and a few others) suffers today. Which was my motivating factor to do something about it. In the end only results matter. Period.

So as a follow-up to my earlier post on this subject I wanted to shed some light on why I’m doing things and where. While simultaneously dispelling the absurd notion that most so-called  “Experts or Guru’s” know what’s really happening today. They don’t.

Back in Oct. of 2011 Seth Godin announced that his Squidoo® website had cracked into the top 100 websites in the U.S. coming in at #73. For anyone not understanding that achievement you need to realize that was beating NBC®, Hulu®, and Digg®. (and quite a few others that surprised many) He then announced they were launching a new addition for Squidoo with on-line magazines. I applied and was picked setting me up for that coveted chartered status.

When I talked with people whom carry themselves as “in the know” and discussed what I was doing they poo-pooed my reasoning. My discussion for why I wanted to be there was that I actually wanted to provide value for the readers because it’s exactly this group of entrepreneurs and readers that are bombarded with advice from people whom never did what they speak or write about. Most read a book and now they profess themselves as an “expert.”

Squidoo is made up of many entrepreneurs that need real information that’s easily understood, and actionable. They are the ones that are just starting out, or thinking about the leap. Many more are seasoned but are nervous about what to do next, or if what they’re thinking rings true or should be discounted as noise. These are the entrepreneurs that don’t need to hear gobbly gook. But that’s harder for them to find than ever. So I jumped at the chance to possibly have some impact.

So as I always say if numbers are numbers, and results are paramount here is some news that I couldn’t be happier with for the team at Squidoo.

When the magazines were launched they were #73. Today they announced their latest results or ranking. They cracked the coveted top and are now #50. That is just an amazing feat. And my heartfelt congratulations go out to them. Astonishing is an understatement for that accomplishment.

It is with great pride that I can sit here saying that I was able to contribute in my own small way. Personally I’m elated. As should all the entrepreneurs, and staff that make Squidoo possible around the U.S. and the globe. Results are the only thing that matters.

Results are always sweetest when shown to the nay-sayers

(P.S. That beats out both the New York Times® and Apple®)

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

Understanding the Metrics

One thing you have to be able to do in business of any size or shape is to understand the metrics. Or put another way “the numbers.” There are different ways to interpret the meanings of any measurement. Is it a temporary correlation? Is it coincidental or a causality? Sometimes you just have to go with your gut, and sometimes you need to disregard your gut and go with the numbers. Knowing where and when is more art than science, and the reason why people who are good at it make more money or impact. Trust me the numbers back it up. (yes pun intended.)

So in that vein I was asked the other day about my writings and a few other things. As I was explaining a few things the discussion started to get very “metric” based in the questions asked of me. So as I answered I thought it would be interesting to share some of the conversation and my thoughts about what we were discussing.

One question was: “I see you’re not writing any articles for a certain magazine any longer. Why?
I answered: “Because they moved from the platform where the people I wanted to support were to a private enterprise. Business is business. If I don’t know who’s checking account any money from ads or anything else goes, then I’m not interested. Regardless of traffic flow, exposure, or anything else so I stopped. Anything less and you’re not acting like a businessperson – you’re an amateur.”

Follow up question followed along these lines: “That was a big platform. One of the top 100 in the U.S. you said. Did you bite your nose to spite your face?”
I replied: “Actually no. Since I stopped I’ve concentrated in a few different areas and my traffic has actually increased. In the last 2 months since I stopped my site has gone from being read in 27 countries to I’m now routinely visited by over 38. The funny thing is there are days I can have twice as many readers from around the world than I did in the U.S. That’s been a fun thing to watch and a real metric to measure my depth of reach.”

Of course the most obvious question to follow was: “Well don’t you think it would be even more if you continued with the magazine also?” (What I said here has nothing to do with the magazine or the people there. I wish them all the success in the world and may contribute at another time. So please – no reading into something that is not there. This is only to share my insights with you from a business point of view.)

I replied: “When I first started writing it was from a chartered position. i.e., I was one of the first on board. It started from square one and with no “Likes.” As much as you know how much I dislike that metric, for many right now its the accepted metric du jour for marketing purposes in business.

So using that metric the mag went from 0 to 3265 in about 25 weeks. It’s the 1% metric and that’s the accepted multiplier within the industry, so the math works out to imply they had a little over 325K readers. That works out to an average it added about 13K new readers a week to get there. Or 130 new “Likes” per week. I stopped contributing the week after they moved. It’s been nearly 6 weeks. They should have added another 780 new additional “Likes” or to say another 78K new readers as that metric breaks out. As of today they’ve added 18. Not 18K – but 18 total. Previously that was a day – it been now over 6 weeks. I found that amazing. All the while I’m increasing both domestically and globally.”

I’m getting ready to launch a few projects that I’ve been working on for a while i.e., workshops, book, audio, and a few more. Announcements for those will be coming shortly.

One of the funniest metrics I found of late is something I never contemplated. Yet it’s now showing itself rather blatantly. Although I don’t do comments on my site needless too say I’m getting an increase in spammers trying to post regardless. This happens when your site is seen as getting enough views or mentions or re-posts, and a myriad of others that triggers the algorithms and they try to post regardless. Who are these spammers?

None other than the “porn” industry.

Is this the metric where I use my gut or the numbers?

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

Taxes and The Case of Paying More or Less

Over and over across every conceivable media outlet one headline is carried far more repeatedly than a Lindsey Lohan arrest. “Raising taxes on higher income earners.”

Personally I’ve grown tired of all I hear from far too many in the media and people in general. Most arguments have bordered on pathetic – and I believe I’m being charitable.

Most say (or think) they understand this issue, however it’s fairly obvious once they start speaking – they don’t. When one tries to engage the logic (or lack of) they get shouted down or brushed off. This discussion mirrors when parents and teenagers argue why or why not to be grounded. It’s all just emotions gone wild. Leaving most entrepreneurs unable to open their mouths as to defend wrongly placed assumptions or accusations.

The main reason? Most arguing are salaried employees of one stripe or another. Regardless of their levels of income or titles, most are unenlightened on the variable implications of taxes in business. Which for the entrepreneur is crystal clear.

This isn’t an argument for or against the raising or lowering of taxes. That is for you to decide. However the reasons and implications being bandied about today are ludicrous. And the cause and effects must be argued logically – not emotionally. They’re too important.

Taxes of any type force entrepreneurs to make decisions of consequence. More often than not immediacy is also dictated from what stays open – or what doors close. Whether to sell, buy, suspend, or worse – who stays, or who goes. It’s that simple. Period.

I may offend a few here, but it needs to be said:

If you’re a salaried individual working as an employee, regardless of how many degrees or alphabet soup used after your name. And you have never owned a legitimate business. Then I’m sorry to say far too many don’t know squat about taxes and their implications on business and entrepreneurs. Regardless if they earn a salary of $250K annually or more where this so-called “tax argument” is taking place.

Currently we hear political candidates and others express they themselves don’t mind paying a little extra to give others a break. Arguments on par with ” This tax increase would affect me, but I don’t mind paying a little more. Why should they?” It’s a specious claim at best, and is intended to make uninformed people believe they know what they’re talking about. They don’t.

First off one must understand a fundamental fact. A salaried employee making $250K does not experience a 1/2 of 1% increase of taxes (numbers are only for context) in the same manner as an entrepreneur or business that’s paying that salary. To the salaried individual it may seem an insignificant amount. To the entrepreneur it could be the equivalent of that employees entire salary – or more.

Let me demonstrate why the thinking or calculations are so different:

If an entrepreneur were to hire a person whom they would pay an annual salary of $250K. They would calculate that salaried person needs to produce in gross profit (not gross sales but profit) approximately 3 times their salary or more to warrant hiring them. Yes that’s correct, a gross profit of nearly $1 million dollars. That would translate at a 25% gross profit (this is for simple math) that individual would need to bring in $3 to $4 million dollars of total value.

Math breaks down somewhere along these lines.  One third goes to cover all the fixed overhead of the product (building-utilities-etc.) – One third goes to pay the employee as in salary – and finally one-third goes to the company’s bottom line.

Simplistic yes, but that’s how you break down complicated structures using “napkin math.” You think napkin math is for the undisciplined or rogue entrepreneur? Just ask Jack Welch. Billions of dollars of decisions and corporate markets were figured out on the backs of napkins as documented in books written on him. More should learn it.

So let’s take this basic math from an entrepreneurs viewpoint and directly apply it:

A business has sales of $40 Million annually. Economy hits the skids. Sales drop by 10%. That’s $4 million dollars in lost revenue. While coinciding with everyone arguing their taxes either should be, or will be raised. All this as a recovery in sales seems no where in sight. What can be done?

Answer: Increase productivity. How to do this with immediate results? Let go a salaried employee. Preferably one making $250K in annual salary that works in the affected department hit hardest by any slowdown within the company.

Using napkin math it adds up near perfectly. A 10% downdraft of revenue in a $40mm company equals $4mm. Let go just one of the employees that earns a salary of $250K and you have basically resolved that issue. Which is known as “increasing productivity.” By the way this is what many of those arguing for the increase are touting as a reason why taxes on business can or should be higher. (I guess they believe it’ll happen to someone else not them.) They’ll state “Business will adjust as to afford it through increased productivity.” Yes they will. Then cutting morphs into shuttering. Or just as insidious is jawboning a change in tax laws near daily with no clarity. You can induce stagnation, shuttering, layoffs, and more all in one swoop.

Here it is put a different way using a new car, however you can use anything you wish. Your 401K, real estate, furniture, what ever helps you understand.

You need a new car but it’s announced you’ll pay more in taxes next month if you wait. Then right before you buy you find the taxes are going to go down lower if you wait another 6 months. Then as you wait you hear the change has been cancelled.

Then you begin to hear negotiations are starting again, but the “experts” think it may pass lowering taxes more than originally thought. Only to hear weeks later the discussions have been halted and any signs of lowering are gone. Now talks are about raising even higher levies and they’re seen as inevitable. All this at the same time people are screaming and arguing everywhere that new cars should be banned and only used cars should be sold or made available.

Still buying that new car tomorrow? Welcome to the new world of the entrepreneur and business. Even worse if that entrepreneur or business sells cars. Let alone the employees of one.

Again make no mistake. I’m not saying one should or should not tax more – or less. What I am saying is the arguments and implications need to be based in real terms using logical examples based on factual data points.

This purely emotional form of debate currently taking place is nothing more than a debacle.

I’ll close my rant with this quote from one of my hero’s Andrew Carnegie from his book The Empire of Business 1902:

“The businessman pure and simple plunges into and tosses upon the waves of human affairs without a life-preserver in the shape of salary – He Risks All!” (emphasis is mine)

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

Stop Worrying About Your Job or the Competition

Too many today are frozen with fear. Their greatest worry? Well there’s a few but here’s what I view as the top two. Their job – or their competition. It’s this type of worrying that does nothing but cause inaction.

You won’t solidify your place in a job or marketplace with worry. It only creates inertia. This is the equivalent of trying to pour concrete over your shoes as to fasten your standing or position in a market. All you’ll do is create another rest stop for the birds.

One needs to shift thinking from worrying to an attitude and philosophy of making others worry about them. If all you do is shift your focus or viewpoint from the worrying to the standpoint of making others worry, that single change alone could alleviate most of your self-imposed torments.

Far too many wake up one day and believe today was the day that everyone on the planet was gunning for their job or market share. I hate to be the one to inform you, but regardless of economic conditions, someone has been gunning for your job and marketplace everyday since the day you or your company started. If you think about it. The day you or your company started that’s exactly what you did – began looking and gunning to compete for work or customers. The world has never changed. Just your viewpoint.

The consistent worrying never seems to take place when a person or entity is engrossed on moving forward. (a great example today is Apple®) Too busy to look in the rear view mirror to contemplate the competition. They’re also too busy at becoming better or more valuable to their customers or employer.

It’s only when one slows down or stops doing what moved them forward does the fear of competitors come forth. (Think Yahoo®)  Why? Because the shift has moved from moving forward to a fixation on rubbernecking to see who’s gaining in the rear view mirror. This being just as dangerous as driving a car in the same fashion. Fixate on the rear while not paying attention to the front, and it’s your turn on the side of the road.

Many people will point to the statement years ago from Intel® CEO Andy Grove on worrying incessantly about the competition. However I think and believe the intent of his statement has been adulterated to mean something it wasn’t.

Yes they were worried about competition, however that worry was used to imagine or construct scenarios where they may have been vulnerable as to innovate killer gaps to keep the competition in the dust. That’s a far cry from worrying as most perceive it.

Same thinking applies to worrying on the job. You become more valuable as an employee the day you jettison the fear of losing your job to the day you begin making yourself so valuable the company fears losing you. This also simultaneously produces reasons for a favorable eye within any competitors acquisition radar.

This thinking is so valuable not because it carries or suggests some form of egotistical or hurtful “step on everyone to get mine” mentality. Rather it opens up the doors for one to do the things necessary while using ones time efficiently to actually be that person or company competitors fear.

Stop worrying about others – start making others worry about you.

Fear the competition – or be it.

It’s your choice.

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

Audio Podcast from Mark’s “Prose Series”

What The “King’s Speech” Should Mean To You

Available_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_0824

This podcast and more available in iTunes®

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr in association with StreetCry Media. All Rights Reserved

The quick hitting no holds barred series based on “Mr. Engineer, please hit the record button and let’s go!” Designed and delivered to be thought provoking and unique for its forget about edits and retakes format.

Has the Buffet Rule Morphed Into the Sealy® Rule?

What happens when everything you thought you knew has been turned on its head? This is a question many ask themselves. However very few do this in their lives without a crisis.

For many when a crisis hits their lives will change forever on how they perceive risk going forward. While many more will never engage again in anything they now perceive as risky. Doesn’t matter how much money, time, roses or more is promised. They can’t or won’t be convinced otherwise. It’s the human condition.

If you watch the financial media of late you’ll notice one over arching theme regurgitated: “People will realize they need to get into the market rather than stay in cash.” That axiom might have been applicable before 2008, however that no longer exists as a truth for those with any net worth whether nearing retirement, or since retired.

Regardless of how the intellectual argument is made. After a crisis such as a market meltdown intellectual arguments are crushed by overwhelming emotional feelings of self-preservation. Let me explain.

I was fortunate to have grown up and lived with my Great Grandparents, and Great Aunt whom went through the Great Depression while they were in their middle ages. Their stories and perspectives are more relevant to me today than when I was younger. The reason is I am now of an age where I can interpret their stories with far greater understanding. One prominent fact I remember vividly to this day was: They never – ever – put money in a bank again. Ever! (Did I mention never?)

I lost them in the 1990’s when they themselves were well into their 90’s, and still no bank accounts. You think they were the only ones? I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts most reading this have similar memories of family members whom went through that crisis. It was a seminal event that no intellectual argument one could muster would change their minds. I believe we are at such a place today.

Say what you will about the markets. One thing has been constant which baffles most so-called “experts.” The higher the market climbs – the more money flows out – not in. Here is why I believe my hypothesis of what is taking place today will not change for possibly a generation.

The market we know of today prospered and was held aloft with the combined yearly contributions to 401k’s and more from a generation of baby boomers over the last few decades. The financial crisis of ’08 I contend effected their viewpoints about wealth and markets far greater and more severely than any Gen X, Y, Z, or other understands.

You’ll hear the argument on making money as per a percentage on this or that ad nauseam. Sure it makes sense intellectually. Just as the so-called “Buy and Hold” strategy can be touted to anyone under 30 as “See…See..Buy and Hold!” But that rings on deaf ears if you were close to retirement or retired in 2008.

Here’s what most know instinctively regardless of any financial planners investment diatribe: (These numbers are examples for context only.)

If in 2007 your balance of investments within your 401k had a value of $1 million dollars and you were close to retirement or retired – you were very content. Life was good.

So many could (and did) easily justify purchasing that new retirement home that was twice the size of the one they raised 4 kids in previously. After all, it was just the two of them now. Just as easy was taking out another 30 year mortgage for it while simultaneously using that new home as an ATM to purchase the new luxury car, SUV, and boat to fill the even larger attached garage. It was a great time to retire, and only looked like it was going to get better. It was the stuff dreams are made of. Almost too good to be true.

Then in 2008 not only did many lose those yearly percentage gains or dividend checks, but many lost 50 – 60 – 70 percent of those same investments. The new home in some places lost more than 50% within months of signing the dotted lines. Gas for the car, and SUV not only doubled but forget about using the boat. If you think it was expensive to drive you never had a boat.

This catastrophe in financial wealth all happened within 1 year. Not only did most have no idea on what to do. Even more unsettling was neither did their so-called “financial planning experts.”

Quicker than they signed on dotted lines to live the dream of retirement it all turned and became the nightmare on the cul-de-sac. Don’t underestimate the power and frightening affect the speed of what happened took on them. It may seem like ancient past for some, but for the ones in this category. It’s as clear and real as today. Forget about yesterday.

For the ones whom panicked and pulled whatever they could out at the bottom of the crisis they are gone and never coming back. Very few if any that stayed in will ever contribute again in amounts or percentages equal to levels prior the crisis. While many more have moved on with their lives in what ever fashion and will never trust or look at markets again.

This is a generational shift that not only was lived, but will be taught to their children, and grandchildren. And that is why I believe one can truly say: It’s different this time.

It’s different because it follows the real. Not the imagined or the hoped. Which when it comes to markets, “It’s different this time” is usually used to explain Unicorn and rainbow thinking. Rather than reality which is where I believe the term is relevant.

The ones that didn’t get out for what ever the reason. (They were too scared, or just didn’t know any other option so they just threw their hands up and stayed in.) in my opinion are causing the phenom we are seeing today. The one that makes all the “guru’s” scratch their heads. The higher we go – the more they want out.

It’s not that difficult to figure out if you think about it based on emotion rather than intellectual thinking. And is far more relevant to understanding what is taking place. Again the opinion on why is mine. However the phenom is not. People are leaving in droves.

If you’re one of the people described above this is what you know: In 2007 you had $1 million dollars. In 2008-09 you lost half if not more, and forget about making anything as far as dividends or interest. If you had $50K worth of yearly overhead you had 10 years at best before you were destitute.

If the market is now back to where you have your million back (or let’s say break even.) Your mentality is: “Phew! I’ll take the cash now thank you.” Because no matter what happens in the market. Your rationale is that you would have 20 years with the cash in your hands today. And that “kitchen table” math is far more important and relevant than anything – and I mean anything some financial planner is going to say. Especially if that planner appears to be no more than 28 and uses the term “Boo-ya” as an investing term.

If the commonly referenced Buffet rule is “Don’t lose the money.” Than I believe this new investing strategy is more akin to what I coined, “The Sealy® rule.” aka putting the money under the mattress. Both rules follow the most prudent rule of solvency.

Which is by far the most important investment strategy out there.

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

How To Get Out of a Sales Rut: Stop Selling

Regardless if you’re new to the profession of sales or a veteran. One thing is inevitable. You’re going to get into a rut where it seems the harder you try – the more diminishing the returns. Which leads to frustration, over thinking, then inaction.

So many so-called “Sales Guru’s” tout from the stage or books that this is where you should “double your efforts.” It’s a load of bunk.

I don’t know about you, but the last thing I wanted do when I got into a rut was go out and cold call. If I had a choice of shoveling crap barefoot for 8 hours or spend 10 minutes cold calling –  I would choose the full day shoveling. (And most sales veterans are nodding their head.)

Here’s what I did personally and teach others to do. I recommend this because it has proven results while accomplishing what a salesperson needs most – momentum. Nothing makes more sales than more sales. That’s not a play on words.

Rather than going out following the traditional mode of cold calling. I would bang doors of potential clients I had my eyes on previously asking for 5 minutes of their time. I only wanted to ask them a couple of questions while promising I wouldn’t try to sell them a thing. And if I did they could throw me out and I would never darken their doorway again. The difference with my example is this: I meant every word.

My version of prospecting is far different from most when contemplating the term “cold calling.” I’m making the case to stop selling when prospecting – not to stop getting yourself in front of potential clients. If you stop doing that you’ll lose any and all momentum. Period.

I never tried to hide who I was, who I worked for, or what I sold. I wasn’t trying to play some form of gotcha as to get my foot in the door. I was trying to accomplish the following:

  1. Continue getting myself in front of potential customers.
  2. If I was honest I could ask compelling qualifying questions i.e., “You know what I carry. Why haven’t you purchased from us previously?” or “I respect the loyalty you have to our competition. What are they doing right that we aren’t?”
  3. If I respected my promise of 5 minutes and adhered to it by my own accord. I might gain enough respect as to get another possible meeting. (So many try to ask for more time rather than asking to be excused because the time was up. That alone will separate you from the others.)
  4. The more people I saw the better I felt because It was the equivalent to working through an injury. The more I worked, the better I felt. (Just ask someone with arthritis, they’ll tell you it hurts more to stop.)
  5. I would find out things I didn’t know while making notes of who were worth pursuing, and who weren’t. And at times for the most important reason of all. I had real answers, and real information to tell some sales manager or boss who was reading that so-called “Guru’s” book that I despised. However unlike most I had pointed answers to all their questions while accomplishing a task they thought was important no matter how flawed. While at the same time saving my sanity and keeping up my momentum.

I could write a chapter or more on the benefits (and will be in my upcoming book) of this one simple change in prospecting. You may not be able to explain what you’re doing to your boss, or to others. However in the end. Only one thing matters in sales that needs no explanation.

Results!

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

September 11 – From My Perspective

In remembrance of  Peter Hashem – Flight 11,  Seat 20A – Struck the North Tower at 8:46:40 am EST.

As I always say when I post this column. This one’s a little different. A little more personal as I myself search for more perspective to this game we call life.

The only thought I’m consistently reminded of is – life is precious. And when it ends for what ever the reason chances are none of us will have any control of the timing or circumstances. So live to your potential everyday. Regardless of where you are in life. Because the unexpected or the horrific can happen to any one of us. Not just someone else as we so often think.

When the tragedy on September 11  happened it changed many of us. If not all. Like most I remember exactly where I was. I also remember vividly standing in line at my local bank moments after it happened. Watching the televisions while waiting in line with others in sheer disbelief. For all of us – time had stopped.

The days and months that followed with the heroism and outpouring of help and support is well documented everywhere. Living in New England at the time you either had gone to Ground Zero yourself to try and offer any help – or someone you knew did.

I owned a local Deli in NH at the time. The owner of a company who supplied me with breads went back and forth to Ground Zero as to pass out muffins and pastries to the rescue teams nightly. Then would travel back to New Hampshire to start his morning deliveries. No one complained. No one said how hard it was to do. No one was looking for credit. It was just done. Period.

On that day many of us changed. We viewed life a little bit different. Suddenly it hit you with laser like focus that life is precious, and death can come at any moment – from anywhere. No longer was this an esoteric exercise. This was life at its core. Playing out in front of our eyes leaving no gray area to ponder. You either got it. Or you didn’t.

In honor of that tragic event I set new rules for myself. New guidelines if you will for how I was going to move forward in life. I decided that I would live life my way. By my rules. And if I were to die today – so be it.

I was going to ensure with all my fortitude that I would pursue my aspirations. Not a life of just trying to get by or exist like so many do. While I’m here I’m not settling to merely survive – I’m here to thrive. After all, as tough as life is shouldn’t that be the prize we’re playing for?

September 11, 2001 changed my life forever. I say all this because unlike most who’ve only read or heard about the people who lost their lives on that tragic day. Peter was the younger brother of my close friends growing up. Life’s mysteries don’t just happen to someone else. They happen to all of us.

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

Elections – Bankers – and Quantum Mechanics

Currently I find myself in a quandary on politics and finance. I can’t help but feel I’m in some alternate universe or reality that only masters of science fiction like Phillip K. Dick or Arthur C. Clarke could envision.

It would seem we went to sleep in a world where A was followed by B. Then woke to find there’s really never been any alphabet at all.  Words now conform to models of quantum mechanics. They live in two realities. Just depends who does the viewing determines their reality.

As of today we have two people running for the highest office in the land. Both are telling everyone we need him to save us. One is an experienced businessman who’s never had experience as President and wants you to vote for him because in order to get business moving – you need to get political leaders working together.

Then we have another who has no experience as a businessman yet has experience as President who wants you to vote for him because he says to get political leaders moving – you have to get business leaders working together.

Both can point to different realities as proof they’re thinking is correct. It’s near maddening because if reality is purely observational. Then both can point where they want you to look as proof. In quantum theory both realities exist at the same time.

On the other hand everyone from the media to the ninety-nine per-centers look upon the Bankers as pseudo political leaders with vile, distrust and hatred. Yet, aren’t they exactly the ones who saved their 401ks?

Complaints about 401’s becoming 201’s and 101’s are now a thing of the past. We are now at levels as if the financial collapse of markets never took place. If you didn’t live through it to observe it, then looking at the markets today are just as if it never happened is it not? Quantum theory at play.

The universe where jobless numbers, business closings, housing foreclosures are now numbers or information of economic theories long since dispatched to the black hole of by gone economic theories. They seemingly no longer exist. That’s the prism of reality to now view the world.

If politicians were the ones to fix world economies. Then why isn’t the world clamoring to hear and decipher their every word? Nobody seems to really care any longer. Yet let it be leaked that a Central Banker needs to take a leak, and the world pauses to hear the zipper.

The media tells us today it’s the politicians who’ll save things. Yet haven’t they been inept at best? If it’s results that mean anything, whom is it the media keeps telling us saved the markets of the world? That’s right – The Central Bankers.

Place ten thousand of the worlds most famous speeches ever composed within the Hadron Collider and it would show results as if not a word were spoken. Yet, just the sheer mention that a vowel is to be mouthed by Bernanke or Draghi or something more, and it’s as if the worlds collided.

This is the new reality I’m afraid. And it’s not inside some billion dollar particle accelerator. We are living it. Let the rules of monetary policy or velocity be damned! This is the 21st century!

The unemployment rate has fallen once again and threatens to possibility have a 7 handle by the election based on more people losing work and not looking. Only quantum theory explains this in my mind.

Modern economist such as Milton Friedman and others whose work and research on sound money policy is required reading to anyone taking markets seriously. But now in this quantum world their views are no longer looked upon. Which is nearly the same as if they never existed in today’s reality.

This sounds like an experiment waiting to go bad by my way of thinking. But this is quantum theory so I guess it can – or did – or whatever. Lord knows I’m no rocket scientist –  just a thinker who stayed at a Holiday Inn® once.

Anyone with a logical grasp of monetary policies and its effects will tell you money printing will cause inflation and devalue the printers currency. Yet today the more the U.S. Federal Reserve prints – the lower interest rates fall.

Monetizing a nations debt is a fool’s errand. Yet we are now doing it at such a pace we could make a particle accelerator blush. While at the same time the U.S. dollar remains relatively strong as compared to the amount of printing. Breath taking or surreal to say the least.

If you think the above is mind bending. Just try to view Europe through the same prism and its more quantum theory in action.

The European Central Bank just announced it will do similar bond buying programs yet what happens to their currency? Their currency rises! Why? Because I guess the view of reality is more in line with you’re now saving the currency not devaluing it. Reality is all in how it’s viewed.

Politicians jawboning on doing this or that – meaningless. Draghi from the ECB (European Central Bank) whispers that bulge just might be a bazooka and stand back because the view in this prism is going to get the full Monty!

European markets rally not 1, not 2, but 3 to even 4 percent! Once again on pure speculation. Talk about power. Who wants to be a politician when you can have that kind of cause and effect on the wealth of nations. Impressive one must say regardless of the viewing station indeed.

However there is one troubling aspect to this theory that I believe the minds of Leonard Susskind or others would take up slide rules and commence swatting holes in all this new reality thinking.

I believe all this pseudo monetary reality will come to a rather unpleasant end. That end I’m afraid will be born out when all these ‘geniuses’ realize their experiments were not just subject to the reality of their views. But still conformed to the realities of what we call the “real world.” Never vanishing down some black hole to be lost as they try to argue.

But we’ll have to wait until others can be convinced to even look never mind see. Because currently today’s reality is what it is. However once the assumed models are proven to be illusions. The reality of what is real can return with frightening speed and repercussions.

We’ll just have to wait and see because that’s reality today.

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr

A Time Saver Tactic – Free of Charge!

If you’re anything like me you’ve followed the political machinations when it mattered which is consistently throughout the year. Now that we’re in the middle of conventions, and more you’ve probably tuned out. I believe this is actually a smart use of ones time at this stage of the game. Is there really anything you’ll hear at this stage of the game that would make you say: “Oh I didn’t know that. I’m flipping to the other guy now!”

No matter what side of the fence you’re on, If I had to bet I would wager you already know whom you’re going to vote for. As of today I can’t think of a single reason or logical case one could make where a thinking person concerned with their business, families welfare, and more would not have already decided whom they’re going to pull the lever for.

As I watch, listen, or read the pundits on both sides recite their political diatribes, or spin cycles on anything from what was implied by the way a candidate drank their morning coffee, to world implications if they rose from bed on the left or right side this morning. The stunning admonition that both sides are clamoring for is to acquire the coveted voter of the moment – the undecided.

I’m sorry. I can not see in today’s world of instant news, instant research, and more how anyone whom considers themselves as “informed” doesn’t already know all they need to know by now. If you needed to wait and hear what these candidates have to say at their conventions before you make up your mind then you’re not as informed as you think you might be. Sorry, but that’s how I see it.

Let me use this as my example before some of you throw objects at the screen. Regardless of the candidate. If at either of these conventions for some untold reason the nominee was unable to speak. Do you mean to tell me that you wouldn’t be able to vote if the election were tomorrow? That you would be unable to decide because you didn’t have enough information? Really? I mean…Really?

There was a time where conventions were the place to get all the candidates and parties ideas in a condensed version. News sources, and access were limited while hearing ideas or more from the candidates own mouth was an important litmus test for many. But those days are far behind us. In today’s world of information overload. You can probably find a reliable source to what color socks they put on in the morning never mind stances on any given topic.

Many of you this week are dealing with a shortened work week yet the workload may still be the same or has even increased. As you try to get things accomplished you know there is going to be that person whom has an opinion on everything and wants to express to everyone they come in contact with how ‘they are informed.’

I believe you can save yourself valuable time in this shortened week with a simple question. Just politely ask…

“I don’t care whom, but have you decided already?”

If the answer comes back as “No, I’m still deciding.” or some other dribble. Just politely end the conversation as easily and quickly as you can.

Anything more and you’ll just be wasting your time.

© 2012 Mark St.Cyr