All Our Children Can Create

Terrance Jackson for NR School Board

We can show fairly conclusively that all our children can create. The challenging part is that there is no magic moment of creation. Creators spend almost all their time creating, persevering despite doubt, failure, ridicule, and rejection until they succeed in making something new and useful. There are no tricks, shortcuts, or get-creative-quick schemes. The process is ordinary, even if the outcome is not.
Creating is not magic but work, and we must teach this to our children.
The best artists, scientists, engineers, inventors, entrepreneurs, and other creators are the ones who keep taking steps by finding new problems, new solutions, and then new problems again. The root is innovation is exactly the same as it was when our species was born: looking at something and thinking, “I can make this better.”
The vast majority—98 percent—of teachers say creating is so important that it should be taught daily, but when tested, they nearly always favor less creative children over more creative children.
This is not restricted to schools, and it persists into adulthood. Decision makers and authority figures in business, science, and government all say they value creation, but when tested, they do not value creators.
Why? Because people who are more creative also tend to be more playful, unconventional, and unpredictable, and all of this makes them harder to control. No matter how much we say we value creation, deep down, most of us value control more. And so we fear and favor familiarity. Rejecting is a reflex.

New Rochelle Magazine

Click images for draft of New Rochelle Magazine


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New Tax Code Hits Westchester Hard

In 2016, Westchester County ranked first in the nation in property taxes. Westchester residents paid on average $16,500 a year in property taxes, according to a report from ATTOM Data Solutions. High taxes are undermining the Westchester economy. If you were a company trying to find a location for a new office or distribution center, why would you come to the highest taxed county in the United States?
Now, we have another problem. The GOP’s tax plan is likely to advantage wealthy Americans in a number of ways, including estate-tax, private-tuition benefits, and especially commercial real estate. Yet, where the housing market is concerned, proposed changes — particularly those in the House version of the bill — are set to disproportionately affect wealthier homeowners. According to an article in The New York Times:
The bill, if enacted into law, could send home prices tumbling 10 percent or more in parts of the New York area, according to one economic analysis. It could increase the regional tax burden, complicating companies’ efforts to attract skilled workers. It could make it harder for state and local governments to pay for upgrades to the transit system and other infrastructure. And it could force cuts in federal programs that help immigrants, the elderly and other low-income residents afford the region’s high cost of living.

SALT deductions

Westchester residents and Westchester home values could both take a big hit when the new tax bill is enacted. At present the differences between the House and Senate versions of the tax bill will be reconciled by a conference committee and then enacted into law, but both versions include provisions that will be costly to many Westchester residents.

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Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google Should be Broken Up

Gladiators

In Fast Company, Douglas Rushkoff wrote “It’s Time To Break Up Amazon:”
Whatever you may think of Jeff Bezos, and whether or not antitrust regulations can justifiably be applied to a company whose expansion doesn’t raise but actually lowers costs for end consumers, may be beside the point. Many of us get that something is amiss, but are ourselves so deeply enmeshed in the logic of last century’s version of free-market industrial capitalism that we can’t quite bring ourselves to call this out for the threat it poses to our markets, our economy, and even our planet….

Douglas Rushkoff

The problem is, when an existing market is merely a means to another end, the company doesn’t consider the long-term effects of its actions. Amazon treated the book industry the same way companies like Walmart once treated the territories into which they expanded: Use a war chest of capital to undercut prices, put competitors out of business, become the sole employer in the community, turn employees into part-time shift workers, lobby for deregulation, and effectively extract all the value from a given region before closing up shop and moving to the next one.

Fat Cats

This model of doing business—one that even a proto-fascist like Henry Ford would have considered obscene—has not served corporations well. As the data now reveals, corporate profits have been steadily decreasing relative to corporate size over the past 75 years…. And by sucking their customers and suppliers dry, such companies end up destroying the marketplaces on which they depend for revenue. It’s a form of financial obesity, where the only thing left for the company to do is acquire a new marketplace, extract all its value, and move on.

Scott Galloway

At Business Insider’s IGNITION conference, Scott Galloway gave a presentation on why “The Big Four” — Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google — should be broken up. Galloway is a professor of marketing at the NYU Stern School of Business and the author of “The Four: The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google.”

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Dear Mr. Man Prince Tribute Concert

Dear Mr Man Prince Tribute

Might not be in the back of the bus
But it sure feel just the same
Ain’t nothing fair about welfare,
Ain’t no assistance in aids
Ain’t nothin’ affirmative about your actions
Till the people get paid

Prince was a great musician
“Prince came in, and he said to the labels, ‘Do not try to just put me with the urban group; I want the world. I want to be with the pop staff. I’m going to make rock and roll, as well as soul, as well as funk… I don’t want to just go to Soul Train, I don’t want to just open up for Rick James, I want to be on Dick Clark.’”

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Bringing the Digital Stewards program to New Rochelle

Please contact me (terrance[dot]jackson17[at sign]gmail[dot]com) if you are interested in helping to bring the Digital Stewards program to New Rochelle.
We are The Digital Stewards!
Digital Stewards
“The Digital Stewards are young adults who unlock the world of technology through self-discovery, problem solving, and creative critical thinking. We bridge the digital divide using a diverse set of technology and media skills, empowering young people’s dreams and creating new levels of success.”
We are a group of young adults who install, maintain, and promote the Red Hook Initiative Wifi network. Our main aim is to do outreach within the community, create partnerships with businesses and non-profit organizations relating to the network, identify possible installation sites to place routers and antennas on. We are hoping to create a safe, digital environment that’s beneficial to the community while maintaining digital infrastructure and justice. We are also available for hire for home network problems and computer fixes.
On October 6, 2016, an unprecedented $750 million plan to launch an ultra-fast internet service in Westchester County’s four largest cities (Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, White Plains and Yonkers) was unveiled as one of the most ambitious infrastructure projects since opening the Tappan Zee Bridge and Metro-North railroad.
Gigabit Westchester

Yonkers mayor Mike Spano speaks about the joint initiative to pursue gigabit broadband with New Rochelle mayor Noam Bramson, left, Bill Mooney, CEO of the Westchester County Association, White Plains mayor Tom Roach and Mount Vernon mayor Richard Thomas, Oct. 6, 2016 in White Plains. (Photo: Tania Savayan/The Journal News)

“What we’re learning is that digital infrastructure can be every bit as important (as roads and bridges),” New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson said. “As we come to rely on high-speed access to information – whether we are business, whether we are medical providers or whether we are residents – that kind of high-speed access is not going to be a luxury, it is going to be a requirement.”
Underrepresented groups need to participate in this plan.

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UWS Magazine

The new model of advertising and branding demands that companies improve public life and satisfy the needs of our higher sacred selves.

UWS - Daymond John

Click the image above for a rough draft of UWS Magazine.
Google has more revenue than all U.S. print newspapers and magazines combined.

ChartOfTheDay_709_Google_s_ad_revenue_since_2004_n
Ad Spending

Yet direct mail is still the biggest single direct marketing channel, worth around $45 billion a year in the US alone. But it’s increasingly clear that printed marketing communications work best when used in conjunction with digital channels such as email, personalized web pages (PURLs), database marketing, and mobile elements.
UWS Magazine is a free community magazine that will combine print with digital and video. UWS Magazine will initially be mailed to residential addresses in the 10025 zip code (Upper West Side [UWS] neighborhood in New York, NY). We will follow-up by mailing UWS Magazine to residential addresses in the 10024 zip code.
According to Forbes, 10025 is listed as #289 and 10024 is listed as #34 on “America’s Most Expensive Zip Codes.” In addition to the high income in these communities, there is also political influence. Zip codes 10025 and 10024 contribute about 37 times and 176 times as much, respectively, to political campaigns as the average zip codes.

Political contributions from 10025 and 10024

Our community magazines will create real innovation and real value for local families and businesses by understanding people as human beings, not consumers. The basic idea is to build a close personal relationship based on quality, service, friendship, loyalty, and communications. And, not based on discounts and deceptions.

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OpenCape: A Community-Owned Fiber Network

OpenCape

In 2006, Southeastern Massachusetts had communications problems. Inadequate bandwidth, limited broadband coverage, and poor cell phone service threatened to hold them back as the rest of the nation moved ahead. But that year an extraordinary public meeting of over a hundred local business, government, and community leaders tackled those problems head-on. Their conclusions:

  • Future economic development would require a completely new telecommunications infrastructure advanced enough to attract new businesses.
  • Our businesses and research institutions were finding it increasingly hard to compete globally due to the high cost and poor availability of broadband.
  • Each year we were losing thousands of talented workers who sought better jobs elsewhere, where broadband opened new doors.
  • Local government telecom and data system inefficiency often meant higher taxes and limited investments elsewhere.
  • Our schools and colleges were falling behind urban schools in attracting the best educators and developing the most relevant academic programs.
  • Our public safety officials were concerned that the lack of reliable communications networks could put our safety at risk.

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