Republican Establishment Using Kryptonite To Weaken Superman Trump

Bernie Sanders beat Hillary Clinton in Sunday’s Maine Caucus, while Marco Rubio easily beat Donald Trump in Hispanic-dominated US Common Wealth of Puerto Rico in the latest contests in the Democratic and Republican primaries.

What this shows basically is that the contest is not yet over. Donald Trump is going through a poor period as recent attacks by rivals Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio open him up to accusations of being ‘low energy’.

It seems that with his visible decrease of attacks on his opponents and his attempts to start being more presidential (as his wife had advised him) has hurt rather than helped him.

He is no longer seeming like the inevitable front runner he was just after Super Tuesday. What people knew about Trump before was that the more controversy he courted, the more popular he seemed to become, as anti-establishment Republicans saw in him the kind of person that will bring real change. But it seems all the attacks from his enemies – especially as the Republican Establishment gets more desperate to stop him- may have made a little bit of a dent on his energy levels, and his followers don’t like it. The more he dithers and goes back on old promises it seems, the less confident they are about him.

But Trump has 2 advantages that cannot be denied:

  1. The Republican Establishment doesn’t like Ted Cruz, whose strong base is also the anti-establishment Tea Party; and
  2. Trump already has a head-start on states won, so, even with the recent upsurge by Cruz, if he can limp along, stringing out one win in any 2 primaries, he will still do great. But by and by, don’t expect Trump to remain ‘low energy’ for long. Keep you posted.

Ps: The more conventional Trump tries to become, the more the conventionals are able to use electoral kryptonite on him.

 

Readmore about Sanders’ upset defeat of Hillary Clinton: US election 2016: Sanders beats Clinton in Maine caucuses – BBC News

How To Use Solid Mineral Extraction To Boost Yoruba Or South West Economy

If the Ooni of Ife, one of the premier traditional rulers of the Yorubas had his way, the gold in Ilesha would be exploited in a bid to attract more employment-bringing investment to Yoruba Land.
The Ooni is not the only person desirous of seeing an immediate exploitation of solid minerals in Yoruba Land or South West Nigeria. A regional commission of Yoruba states, the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) Commission at a recent roundtable, identified 10 solid minerals that can be exploited commercially in the Yoruba Land.
They include gold, tar sand, glass sand, construction sand, clay, oil and gas, limestone, granite, phosphate, gypsum, bitumen and silimanite, dimension stone, gemstone, marble, aquamarine, tantalic, feldspar, tourmaline, emerald, quartz, syenite and topaz.
What I see here is money, lots of money that don’t have to be at the beck and call of global crude oil prices. As far as recent experiences show, diversification away from crude oil is key; and it is not just agriculture or manufacturing that can play an effective role in a regional economy like that of Yoruba Land, but also the long overlooked mining sector.
In fact, mining can be a linchpin that would support other industries and give the economy great support. Let us look at what mining has done in the Australian state of New South Wales, for instance.
A Centre For International Economics (CIE) report in 2014 listed the following benefits of the mining sector to the New South Wales economy.
The mining industry of the state derived $12.5 billion in value added in 2012-13. The mining sector was estimated to purchase $9.6 billion of goods and services each year, and 60 per cent of these goods are sourced from within New South Wales, thus adding value to the states’ economy. And with another 22 per cent of goods and services being sourced from other Australian states, you can see the added value to other Australian states. This is something that can be replicated in Yoruba Land if the DAWN proposal is acted upon with enough political will by all Yoruba state governments and state ruling party leaderships.
About 70 percent of the minerals produced (in terms of value) in New South Wales are exported, bringing in foreign exchange – which is of course unencumbered by the ‘almighty’ global oil price – and boosting Internally Generated Revenue. Twenty one percent of the minerals are used by other industrial sectors in the state, boosting local content and industrialization; and making cost of production cheaper. Nine percent of the minerals go to be used in other Australian states.
The government of New South Wales also gets a lot of revenue in terms of taxation and fees frommining activities carried out in the state. These are all ways the South West Region or Yoruba Land can boost its Gross Regional Product, diversify its economy away from dependency on the Federation account, and oil. If the exploitation of the 10 commercially viable solid minerals is carried out with determination, it wouldn’t matter too much to the region if oil is at $25 dollars or at $85.
Professor Gbenga Okunola who facilitated the DAWN roundtable, presented a few obstacles to the exploitation of solid minerals in the region. These include: lack of funding, lack of clear-cut optimization model, misplacement and underutilization of capacity and lack of regional cooperation. Let us briefly analyze these obstacles and provide workable solutions to them.
• Lack Of Funding: With the recent fall of the crude oil price, this is of course a very serious obstacle. To make matters worse, it is no longer easy for state governments to borrow money from banks. At this junction the aim should be to seek out the mineral that is least expensive to extract and start exploiting it. Federal Minister of State for Petroleum has said that crude oil price may soon rise to $50. Let’s hope he is right, and then if that happens more mineral extraction projects can be launched at a faster rate. But before then, the best bet would be to copy the Japanese style or incremental improvements. For that to happen, the state governments and ruling parties have to be a bit more altruistic and apolitical. If the least expensive mineral to extract is in a PDP state, then APC governors and regional leadership should still support fully such a project, and vice versa. That is the only way it can work. If the extraction projects are done piecemeal rather than wholesale, it won’t be possible. State governments can commit to contributing no more than 5 percent of their revenue to this, and this percentage can be increased when immediate problems like outstanding arrears are sorted out. But the point is that those small contributions combined can be very effective.
For instance, remember the Barak Obama Campaign didn’t have access to major donors during Barak Obama’s first presidential campaign in 2008. What they did was to create a platform for smaller donors who frequently gave little amounts like $5, $3, 7 dollars, etc. In the end they had garnered a $100 million which he used to win the elections.
• Lack Of Clear-Cut Optimization Model: The optimization model to use is the Japanese strategy of incremental improvement or continuous improvement, rather than the more common model of Breakthrough Improvement or ‘improvement all at once’.
Continuous Improvement has been defined by the Institute of Quality Assurance as, ‘A gradual never-ending change which is: ‘… focused on increasing the effectiveness and/or efficiency of an organisation to fulfill its policy and objectives. It is not limited to quality initiatives. Improvement in business strategy, business results, customer, employee and supplier relationships can be subject to continual improvement. Put simply, it means ‘getting better all the time’.’
That is the model that should be adopted until the the availability of more funds makes the Breakthrough Model practical in the bid to profitably extract the minerals. A Yoruba proverb says that until you can hold a knife on its blunt edge, you have to be careful holding it on its sharp edge.
Let me add that although Continuous Improvement Model could seem to be a ‘poor man’s choice’, nothing could be further from the truth.
Continuous Improvement is widely credited as one of the key strategies that has kept Toyota as one of the world’s most formidable car manufacturers for many years now. For instance in 2013, Toyota sold a total of 9.98 million vehicles, more than any other car manufacturer in the world that year, largely thanks to the strategy of Continuous Improvement. Yoruba Land should adopt this strategy to gain economic advantages in solid mineral mining.
• Misplacement And Underutilization Of Capacity: It is hoped that if Incremental Improvement as an investment strategy is seriously put into practice, underutilization of capacity will gradually become a thing of the past.
• Lack Of Regional Cooperation: The greatest obstacle to regional cooperation in Yoruba Land is the perception that because there are several parties controlling the states, political cooperation to achieve a common goal is impossible. But that perception is not true. In fact there is a way for the governments of the South West/Yoruba states to come together on this issue of extraction of solid minerals and other economic issues even in the midst of severe partisan competition. This is the way below:
A South West Economic Council Should be formed following the guidelines below.
The membership must compriseof the following categories of members
1. Observers: The Ooni of Ife and The Alaafin of Oyo and any 6 monarchs they both agree through consensus to invite to join them in any given year at the meetings. These invited monarchs should be chosen on the basis of one for each state.
2. Governors of all the 6 Yoruba states, regardless of party affiliation. Each state represented by their governor would hold the rotating chairmanship of the Economic Council. The rotation would be done in alphabetical order.
3. Regional Leader of any party that has a governor in a Yoruba state. In the present case it should be Bola Tinubu of APC, and the South West Zonal Chairman of PDP. These Regional Party Leaders would be there as ex-officio members and patrons of the Council.
• The Council should adopt and seriously follow the motto, ‘All For One And One For All’ in decisions of investment: Meaning, decisions on investment should not be made primarily based on partisan considerations but based on a holistic view of what will benefit the South West economically.
• This pooling together of investments would not mean that state governors cannot pursue independent economic policies and projects, but simply mean that each governor now has the license to tout the success of any Council economic venture in any other South Western state as his own to his own people, adding them to his accomplishments for the larger Yoruba socioeconomic community.
• The Economic Council should have a standing secretariat and an Admin Secretary.
• The Council should liaise regularly with other South West economic bodies like the Oodua Investment Limited and the DAWN Commission.
If all these are done, creating jobs and revenue would only be the starting point of the economic rise of the South West or Yoruba states of Nigeria.

Mitt Romney pays for mistake of criticizing The Donald (without offering any alternative direction)

Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney who lost to Barak Obama in 2012,for some reason doesn’t like the Trump candidacy at all.

So, he went out and delivered an anti-Trump speech in which he didn’t give any clear alternatives to a Trump candidacy. It seemed to be an anything-but-Trump speech, as Romney didn’t endorse Rubio or Cruz.

After that Trump chewed him out, characterizing him as someone who was so desperate for power in 2012, he would have done almost anything thing to get an endorsement from him.

You have to give it to The Donald: He has a ready answer for almost anyone who blasts him. Maybe Mitt should have held his options like fellow investors and big-time Republican donors the Koch Brothers, who have decided not to fund any anti-Trump move because they haven’t seen any attack on Trump that stuck. Even former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg is wisely looking before he leaps.

The Republican Party should remember that there are dangers in stopping Trump, who can easily do a ‘Ross Perot’ on them. Last word: Mitts attack on Trump did not stick. It slid off. Please any attacks on Trump from now on should come with endorsements of the attacker’s preferred alternative. Thanks.

See part of Mitt’s blast and Trump’s counter blast: Donald Trump: Mitt Romney ‘would have dropped to his knees’ for my endorsement – CNNPolitics.com

Did Okorocha’s aides pocket N2 billion Imo State bailout funds?

According to PremiumTimes the online newspaper, some of Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha’s aides have been arrested regarding a N2 Billion Naira diversion of bailout money given to Imo State by the Federal Government.

If this is true (investigations are ongoing) then you have to think about the fact that many struggling civil servants in that state don’t know when they will receive their next salary.

We hope it is not true.

See details of the arrest: EFCC arrests Gov. Okorocha’s aides for pocketing N2 billion bailout funds – Premium Times Nigeria

How to grow taller, astronaut style

I was just reading about astronaut Scott Kelly who spent about a year in space. Before he travelled to space, he was exactly the same height with his twin brother. Now he is 2 inches taller than his twin, and he isn’t 17-years-old or even 21.

You ask how? Well, it turns out that the absence of gravity causes the spine to elongate out there, but when they come back to earth, the spine quickly contracts. So, expect him to measure exactly the same height as his twin soon.

But the lesson to be learnt is to always stand upright, as that naturally makes your spine straighter.

Read more about Scott Kelly’s increased height: Astronaut Scott Kelly taller after space stint – CNN.com