What am I thinking about on the anniversary of 9/11? How buggered America is and some proposed solutions to fix its problems.

The problems will not be solved by the government.

Also, look at what state governments have delivered to us recently in states like California, Texas, and New York.

The federal government bailed out big banks who preyed on average citizens in the 2008 crisis and overstayed in Afghanistan to the tune of two trillion dollars, and billions of dollars of military equipment we gifted to the Taliban recently in a pullout that resembled a back-alley abortion in Texas.

However, an important lesson the military and the SEAL Teams taught me is to never complain unless you can propose a solution to the problem — that’s a good philosophy to live by.

Thank you for your service isn’t good enough.

For my fellow veterans…

Time to pull up your socks, stop feeling sorry for yourselves, and move on with your lives.

We volunteered for duty, and it’s time to put our strong work ethic, and management skills to use on the outside. America needs you.

Our society desperately needs a veteran perspective to avoid a repeat of Afghanistan and a schizophrenic foreign policy that has more mistresses than Bill Clinton.

“Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country,” as JFK said.

Americans have to rise up and take action to fix America’s problems. We’re all in the fight, or at least we all should be.

Our politics, education, healthcare, and economy need massive attention or we will eventually share the same fate as the Miami condo tower that collapsed from disrepair, infighting, and neglect.

 

Politics

We need a massive political overhaul that dismantles the two-party duopoly that consolidates power into the hands of a few and gives us bad choices every four years.

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Recent examples are when the Clintons, in true Game of Thrones fashion, shoved Bernie aside for a presidential bid that was his by majority vote, and how Trump hijacked the Republican party for his own personal agenda. These are hard truths.

Implement vote by phone (if we can bank by phone we can vote this way), no parties (get rid of them all), campaign spending limits, and term limits (no strap hanging lifers anymore). I’d also advocate for an eight-year presidential term that would allow a leader to really set long-term goals without having to worry about re-election in four years. It would be hard for Putin or China to just wait out the Trumps of the future with an eight-year (two-term max) president. This would allow us to be more strategic as a country.

 

Education

Our educational system is in shambles from K-12 and beyond. Meritocracy is lost and we teach outdated subject material.

Gen Z’s teacher of the year award should go to YouTube. Our schools don’t prepare our kids for the future. They socialize them and that’s about it.

Our university system shackles the poor and the vanishing middle class with mountains of student debt all in the pursuit of an American dream that doesn’t exist anymore. Just look at the data around income inequality, it’s very real.

My son graduated from the Oregon public school system with a 4.3 grade-point average, full IB course load, and recognized as an Academic All-American for speech and debate, a near-perfect ACT score, along with a scholarship to Portland State summer camp for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics as a junior in high school.

All this and he still couldn’t get into a school of his choice in the U.S. because he’s Caucasian and his dad (me) makes a decent living. This is reverse discrimination, sorry not sorry. He and I agreed that the U.K. would be a better option. A three-year computer science degree in the Oxford system, less than half the cost of a decent American school, and quite a better environment that isn’t focused on pushing trendy cultural agendas, and more focused on preparing young people for a future that will lean on them heavily.

 

Healthcare

Our healthcare system is ruled by big insurance and drug companies.

A trip to the emergency room will cost you as much as a used car, and health insurance isn’t really insurance if you know what I mean. Someone getting really sick and needing a hospital stay will bankrupt most families. Don’t get me started on the unhealthy hospital food that would rival most prison cafeterias.

In the EU this is not the case. You can get a humane level of treatment for less than a few hundred euros; in America, the cost would climb into the six figures.

 

Economy

Our economy is one of the strongest and most recognized in the world, yet it’s propped up on putting our own citizens in debt.

We need to educate the future children of America on fiscal responsibility.

You can finance everything from an engagement ring, computer, clothing, power tools, and more.

How come we don’t teach personal finance and the power of compound interest in grade school?

The American government spends like it has an unlimited budget and rewards bad actors.

Our own citizens paid for banker fraud and negligence in 2008 (watch the Big Short movie) and what happened? The bank executives just got richer and Main Street paid for it.

This is a terrible incentive system and needs to be addressed, along with printing money indefinitely. I’m not a math major or an economist but as a small business owner, I find the whole system unsustainable and quite corrupt.

In my own experience serving at the Small Business Administration (SBA) as a veteran board member advocate, my fellow board members and I challenged the SBA for spending hundreds of millions on a veteran transition program that, among other problems, collected no data.

Our voices were not welcome or heard outside of that room on this issue and many others. At some point, I realized we were just an appointed board of veterans to make someone feel good and say, “Look, the veterans are involved!” It was a joke and a waste of taxpayer money and my time, so I resigned after one year.

All of the above scores an UNSAT in my book.

America is one of the richest countries in the world. We should give our citizens basic healthcare, free college education, and modernize our education system before we further handicap America’s future citizens.

Want to save America? Then it’s time to look for leadership that is willing to challenge the status quo in this country and make real and impactful change.

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