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
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.

Freedom cannot be legislated, its restriction can
Mar 31, 2015

Indiana voted in the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. In his WSJ piece, Gov. Mike Pence claims it was needed to protect the religious freedoms of Hoosiers. Every legislative act by its nature limits someone’s freedom. The only way of increasing freedom is by identifying existing laws that curb personal liberties and then eliminating them.  Hence, if Gov. Pence sees that under some circumstances, the religious freedoms of Hoosiers are not respected, he could correct the situation by eliminating laws causing this problem. We have the Bill of Rights, and it suffices. No “enhancements” are needed.

Greed-driven health care
Feb 27, 2015

The solution to our health care crisis is in the implementation of more market-driven mechanisms into our health care policy. This is the only way to give patients the freedom to make decisions regarding their care between them and their doctors; not having these decisions made by faceless bureaucrats. The biggest obstacle in implementing a change of this kind is in a deep public conviction that the introduction of the free market into health care will result in doctors, hospitals, the pharmaceutical industry and everybody else involved being guided by their greed, not the best interests of sick people. The biggest challenge in overturning Obamacare is not in Washington. It is in winning the argument with Americans that free-market-driven health care can serve their needs much better than the government-distributed one.

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The immigration debate is not about immigration

The economy needs more workers than can come here legally, so they have been arriving illegally. The most logical solution would be to adjust the number of available workers’ visas as soon as the problem started showing up. This way we would have much greater control over who is coming and living among us.

This most obvious solution is not favored by most Americans and has not been implemented because our fervent debate about immigration (or illegal immigration in particular) actually it is not about immigration at all.

“What part of illegal you do not understand?” the opponents of amnesty ask rhetorically. Most Americans do exactly as Romney and Tancredo did; when it comes to having their grass cut or their basement remodeled, they enjoy the price and do not inquire about the legal status of the workers.

Americans have passed on immigration laws that are in clear conflict with the rules of the free market and are against the basic economic interests of the all parties concerned. No wonder, Americans have not enforced these laws methodically. Americans are the only ones responsible for illegal immigration and all the mess it has caused. However, Americans blame illegal immigrants, Mexico, globalization, politicians, and the greed of big corporations — but not themselves.

U.S. immigration policy is a big fiasco. Voices for the meticulous enforcement of the current immigration laws ask to repeat what has failed so far, but to do so with greater determination. The most logical way out is to repeal current immigration laws. It will never happen, as overconfident Americans are too proud to acknowledge their own fault. It is not about resolving immigration issue anymore. It is about Americans’ false pride.

Until 1924, entrepreneurial Americans, in their pursuing of happiness, enjoyed the freedom of hiring whomever they pleased, regardless if that person came from across the street or across the ocean. Some Americans believe that they still should have the freedom to hire whomever they want; other believe that their freedom to pursue happiness should empower the government to protect them from others that are eager to work harder for less. This is their real bone of contention when they talk about immigration.

Liberties given to individuals unleashed the energy of entrepreneurs, which — as a result — created vast wealth of this country. By the nature of its creation, this wealth has not been distributed evenly; not all people pursuing happiness have been able to achieve it. Out of compassion, we created a gigantic welfare system assisting the least fortunate and many others along. The government was put in charge of securing happiness for every American. Unfortunately, for many Americans, this welfare state is what they perceive as one of the core American values.

The burden that illegal immigrants bring to government-distributed goods and services is a hot topic in the immigration debate. America was created on the concept that individuals should have the freedom to explore opportunities. It ended up that many individuals are standing in lines to receive government’s giveaways. Instead of turning their energy to fight forces of nature, and enriching themselves by work, they turn their energy into fighting each other in order to enrich themselves by getting more without work. Immigrants are perceived as competing for limited government distributed resources. Obviously, immigrants, legal or illegal, are not the real problem. The expectation that the government should dispense so much is.

Thanks to the free market system, the capitalists accumulated a huge wealth, and consequently, this nation can effort to support many individuals that take more than they provide to the society. However, the wealth of our country, though enormous, is not unlimited. Therefore, thinking of political solutions, we first need to preserve the political mechanisms that made this country rich. This is the leading thought behind some attempts to reform the immigration system. However, it clashes with the populist concept that corporate greed needs to be curbed; with an assumption that riches are given and their resources are unlimited, as well as the possibilities to milk them. This is the real agenda of many disagreements on the immigration issue.

All Americans talk proudly about freedoms in general, but in their practical decisions many are eager to trade liberties for government-provided security. Others are not afraid of taking on responsibilities and follow the famous Reagan mantra: “government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” At least on immigration, most Americans believe otherwise. In this aspect, the immigration debate is not about immigration but about how deeply the government should put its fingers into micromanaging the economy in general, and the labor market in particular.

About a hundred years ago, as long as it was do-able, most goods and services were produced and consumed locally. Today, “local” means anywhere on the Earth. Some see it as a great opportunity for America in leveraging its existing infrastructure. Others fear that the coziness and relative comfort that Americans enjoy would disappear with our opening up to the miseries of the outside world. Is it better for America to open up to global economy, or is it better to build legal and physical barriers isolating America from the wretchedness of the world? This is the real dilemma behind many disagreements in the immigration debate.

The immigration debate is about America defining itself at the beginning of the 21st century. What does it mean to be an American here and now? What do the fundamental concepts of individuals’ freedom that led to the original rise of America mean to us today, and do we care?

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 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 live in the Chicago area. I went through the hard times typical of many immigrants. Working in 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 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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