The Pistis Card: Good Jobs and Financial Health

History’s greatest figures achieved success by having pistis, “trust; commitment; loyalty; engagement.”

Pistis Card

It’s a sad truth of American life that the poorer you are the more you pay for banking.
For example, according to the Wall Street Journal, banks and other financial firms in 2016 generated $33 billion in fees related to overdrafts on checking accounts, this is the highest level in seven years. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has compared overdraft fees to a short-term loan with a 17,000% APR!
Mehrsa Baradaran, associate professor of law at the University of Georgia, and author of How the Other Half Banks, writes “As the banks are set up currently, the fees they charge are meant to dissuade small accounts, or accounts by people whose incomes are minimal and very uneven.”
As Baradaran writes in her book’s introduction, the banking industry has stopped serving those who are “too poor to bank”, pushing them into the arms of non-bank service providers to provide the most basic services: to cash pay checks, pay bills or transfer money. In exchange, she calculates that they fork over up to 10% of their income for these services.
In some cases, they don’t have an option: a bank may refuse to open an account for them. And banks have long been trying to “discourage” their smaller customers: fees on accounts where balances dip below a specified level even briefly can look extremely costly to a low-income household.

Financial Health

Financial Health for Everyone using Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain Technology
Our vision is an audacious one: to increase the number of individuals with positive financial health and well-being. To achieve financial health, people need day-to-day financial systems that build long-term resilience and opportunity. Financial health enables family stability, education, and upward mobility, not just for individuals today but across future generations. Promoting financial health is good for the American economy. Financially healthy consumers drive new opportunities for increased engagement, loyalty, and long-term revenue streams. Lasting financial health also has a positive macroeconomic impact on communities at local, regional, and national levels.
We are developing a financial adviser system with several artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities to help achieve this goal. This system learns from historical data to predict the account balances of individuals for a future time period, identify the recurring charges in their spending, determine unexpected large expenses, and analyze the category-wise spending behavior of user groups.

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Education is Disconnected from the Real World

Public schools were invented by factory owners who didn’t have enough compliant factory workers, and it worked great. For 100 years, we had this wonderful system…
People who have the hubris to dream of something bigger change the status quo.

Davos WEF

Schools tend to focus primarily on developing children’s cognitive skills rather than fostering skills like problem solving, creativity or collaboration.
~ World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum released its Human Capital Report with the subtitle “Preparing People for the Future of Work.”
The report states that “many of today’s education systems are already disconnected from the skills needed to function in today’s labor markets”.
It goes on to underline how schools tend to focus primarily on developing children’s cognitive skills – or skills within more traditional subjects – rather than fostering skills like problem solving, creativity or collaboration.
This should be cause for concern when looking at the skill set required in the Fourth Industrial Revolution: Complex problem solving, critical thinking and creativity are the three most important skills a child needs to thrive, according to the Future of Jobs Report.
“Millennials are on track to be the least entrepreneurial generation in recent history,” John Lettieri, the co­-founder of the Economic Innovation Group, testified before the U.S. Senate. The share of people under 30 who own a business has fallen by 65 percent since the 1980s and is now at a quarter-century low, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of Federal Reserve data.
“Creativity is as important now in education as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status.”
~ Sir Ken Robinson

Largest companies by market cap
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Will China Control the Future of AI?

Chinese flag AI

China Mobile Payment

Chinese AI companies have leaped ahead, so that today the most valuable companies in computer vision, speech recognition, speech synthesis, machine translation, and drones are all Chinese companies.
~ Kai-Fu Lee
According to Gartner, the global enterprise value derived from AI will total $1.2 trillion this year, a 70 percent increase from 2017. AI-derived business value is projected to reach up to $3.9 trillion by 2022.
Who Will Control the Future of AI?
Will it be Chinese companies, or will it be American big tech companies like Google, Amazon, Apple, or Facebook, who will use AI to increase their power or wealth; or will the benefits be more evenly and democratically available?

Terrance Jackson 2020

Our faith in the promise of America will move mountains and unleash unsuspected human potential where nothing will be impossible for us.
If we don’t want poverty in our nation, our businesses must pay living wages with decent benefits. And if we don’t want polluted air, water, and land, our businesses must behave in environmentally sustainable ways.

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Reversing Violence, Diabetes, Unemployment & Climate Change

Gladiators

At least 72 people were shot, including 12 fatally, over the weekend in Chicago, another eruption of violence in a city that has struggled with murders and shootings in recent years even as the national homicide rate hovers near historic lows.

California’s biggest wildfire on record was expected to burn for the rest of August, as hot and windy conditions challenged thousands of fire crews battling eight major blazes burning out of control across the state.

According to the CDC’s Diabetes Report Card, about 30.3 million people, or 9.4% of the US population, had diabetes in 2015. This total included 30.2 million adults aged 18 or older, or 12.2% of all US adults. About 7.2 million of these adults had diabetes but were not aware that they had the disease or did not report that they had it.
Members of some racial and ethnic minority groups are more likely to have diagnosed diabetes than non-Hispanic whites.

Diabetes chart

Kansas City is addressing these problems with urban farming

We are bringing these ideas to New York starting with a smart aquaponics system

Smart Aquaponics
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Whitey Goin’ to Mars But Hold On to Your Dreams…

Hold On to Your Dreams Because Soldier We Love You

On 27 September 2016, the SpaceX founder Elon Musk announced, via web video, the details of how SpaceX will get people from our rapidly deteriorating blue orb up to the dusty, seemingly inhospitable planet known as Mars. “What I’m really trying to do is to make Mars seem possible,” said Musk, sounding buoyant and optimistic. Then he dropped the heavy stuff:
There will be some extinction event. I don’t have some doomsday prophecy. The alternative is to become a space-going species.
[dead silence]
Which, I hope you would agree is the right way to go.
[clapping, followed by dead silence]

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EB-5 investment in New York

Chinese nationals, who often seek visas so that their children can receive an American education, account for a large percentage of EB-5 investors.
I recently connected with the VP of AI and Machine Learning at Unity Technologies, and we exchanged a couple of emails. This has led to our decision to having our students develop apps with the Unity game engine after building our chess-playing robot.
We are also working on having a group of students attend Unity Unite in Los Angeles in October.
On Thursday, November 15th @ 7 pm at the Larchmont Public Library, I will demo CHHE, an intelligent restaurant recommendation app and give a talk on applying artificial intelligence to local retail.
In addition, we are working on a Pokémon Go-type game called Ask, Seek, & Knock that will incorporate a new blockchain protocol called Avalanche.

Danny Lange

Yong Zhao
Yong Zhao books

Yong Zhao is a Foundation Distinguished Professor in the School of Education at the University of Kansas.
TJ: The EB-5 visa grants permanent U.S. residence to anyone investing a half million dollars in a U.S.-based development project. Eighty percent of EB-5 recipients are Chinese. According to a NPR report, Bryan Withall of Sino Outbound estimates that 70 to 80 percent of families are pursuing EB-5 visas for their children’s education. As “Wang” tells us:
I’m only doing this for my son’s education. He is in a good local school, but all they do is study for tests. The Chinese education system turns everyone into the same type of person.
Chinese students score higher than American students on international tests but many Chinese parents still want their children to be educated in the United States. Can you explain this?
YZ: I’ve written about this in various places, most extensively my book Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon: Why China has the Best (and Worst) Education in the World. The simple answer to this paradox is that test scores are not good indicators of education quality. In fact attempts to pursue test scores can be counter productive, damaging what actually matters for success in life, such as confidence, creativity, and love of learning.

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Amazon is a Bad Neighbor

It’s absurd that the working families and middle class of this country subsidize the wealthiest people in the United States of America.
AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.’
“The second is this, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
~ Mark 12:30-31
Jeff Bezos and Harvey Weinstein

Jeff Bezos and Harvey Weinstein

Loving Your Neighbor is Good for Your Health

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