What would Frank Burns do?
- From: "alt.politics.bush" <thomasw540@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Thu, 15 Apr 2010 10:13:04 -0700 (PDT)
14 April 2010
The Meta Network
I was working on what has become The Points of Light Program before I
met Frank Burns. I had an epiphany regarding the relationship between
the Lummi Nation, north of Spokane, Washington, and American Free
Enterprise capitalism, in the Adam Smith/Benjamin Franklin sense of
the word. The Lummi Nation is a operating model of what I mean by
“learning community”. I’m not sure there is much difference between a
leaning community and a learning organization, with this possibility:
a union local is a learning community and Boeing is a learning
organization, in the Hope is not a Method sense of the word, but the
Lummi Nation is one example of a learning community as a capitalist
Frank and I never discussed The Points of Light Program. We never got
past his too cool for school hot shot staff officer out to set the
business world on fire illusions. I didn’t know what group dynamics
before until after I met him, but I understood exactly what business
he was in and we were the only two people in the world in the same
business we were in. What he didn’t understand was that he was about
to get his teeth kicked in by Free Markets and there wasn’t anyway I
could have said to convince him he needed my help to mitigate his
incompetence during the steepest slope of his learning curve.
And now, I’m the only one left standing and I have all the stuff that
Frank validated to work with and I understand how it works, now, as a
result of incorporating Frank’s paradigm as fully as possible into my
existing world view purposefully. Whatever it is you think he was
trying to do, I am trying to do the same thing with The Points of
Here’s the thing: the operating model of the Command and General Staff
College and the financial models of Wharton School of Finance are
almost identical, especially the relationship of Rock Soup to Venture
Capital. It is one of those places in American society where a
military to civilian transfer of doctrine and performance technology
is the least disruptive and culturally neutral. A Army post commander
has a similar sense of community as a local community commercial bank
or S&L in the civilian economy. The Harvard Business Model, on the
other hand, has become largely a system of manners and superstitious
behavior, Alan Greenspan being the primary evidence. The leading edge
of the Harvard Business Model is gadgets as a substitute for efficacy,
the hedge fund being one category of gadget.
Which is why I have proposed to the West Point Class of 1962 to found
an entity to operate as a joint venture with the Army Community
Services in order to enlist retired West Pointers to distribute
JumpStart Training/Army Family Team Building to community
organizations like the WAMU community and provide resource support to
these communities over the arc of the 18th development process: Rock
Soup is part of their DNA. I’m not Jesus: I’m not challenging anyone
to follow me and become a Fisher of Men. These people are already
Fishers of Men. My model of high performance is to catch’em doing
something right and telling’em to do it again. Continue to March. Keep
on keeping on.
And that’s exactly what I was offering to Frank Burns when he opened
his shop back in the day. He and I were a perfect fit except that we
weren’t. The same thing happened between me and Jim Kimsey and I’m
still have no reliable strategy for avoiding whatever it is I’m doing
to cause this, but there it is. As they say, my behavior is the source
of my problems.
The economics of The Points of Light Program is like hydroponics and
each C-DAG placement occurs in a community pod, so to speak. In terms
of cash flows, as a structure, it is perfectly transparent how the $3
million goes from The DeConcini Deficit Reduction Trust to a local
bank and then disbursed by the community organization enlisted by each
US Representative or Senator into the 18 month development process.
The community organization would be obliged to account for the monies
as they would other routine business operations, but the diversity of
the outcomes will illuminate the dynamics of Jeffersonian Democracy in
at the micro-level of the American commonwealth.
The economics of The Points of Light Program is also the economics
underlying Reagan’s New Federalism. In particular, the Points of Light
Program is a mechanism for financing the unfunded mandate of New
Federalism by establishing a constructive improvement on the state’s
rights arguments based on an equal share in the Federal mandate by
adding the state’s responsibility argument based on an equitable
distribution of the Federal mandate across all constituencies, an
imperative writ into law by the Voting Rights legislation in 1963.
Without The Points of Light Program, Reagan’s New Federalism devolves
to the same status as Supply Side Economics: a half-assed idea.
My real question is: are there 30 people on The Meta Network more or
less in the metro area willing to take the short version of JumpStart
Training for Frank Burns’ sake if not out of professional curiosity.
This is still a work in progress and all contributions welcomed. I
can’t provide a venue or materials, but it don’t take much.
I had this epiphany around the Lummi Nation in May 1980, just after
Mt. Saint Helens blew her top. I flew over the crater on my way down
from Spokane to San Diego. I spent Memorial Day weekend in San Diego
and then drove all over Arizona and New Mexico looking at various
grant requests. I was something of the court of last resort on
marginal business plans of SBA and CSA clients. If it got to me, it
wouldn’t go any further until they were moving towards a more
substantial outcome than they were proposing at the moment. If Frank’s
business plan had got to me when we first met, he wouldn’t have got
the loan/grant. I mean, he had all the pieces and a couple of good
suits, but he came to a gun fight with a staple remover and a certain
confusion between the willing suspension of disbelief and the repeal
of the law of gravity.
And that’s the truth.
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