I’m sure there have been a lot of opportunities I’ve missed, but not because I didn’t want to gamble on them if there was even a decent chance to be successful. I was more than willing to take that chance. I got burned on a lot of my decisions but I did well on the others. Not one time have I ever said “If I’d only.” I’ve taken chances. I’ve been delighted by the ones that are successful and I have no regrets on the ones that were not successful.
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Any time an opportunity came up, even if it even smelled close to being good, I took a very close look and if it had merit I did it. I’m 75 years old. When I look back, there’s nothing I didn’t do that I wished I had done. I remember as a kid, and I must’ve heard the story 20 times, people saying, “When Coca-Cola started, my father had the opportunity to buy into the company for nearly nothing.” When a salesman came through town selling Coca Cola stock all of my friends didn’t want to take a chance and buy. They later joined in unison to say “If I’d only bought $20 worth of the stock I’d be a millionaire.” I don’t want to hear those words and I don’t like the stories. I don’t like them because they only show that the person telling them was short of confidence and character.
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
The worst words in the English language: If I’d only. I get so tired of hearing people say, “If I’d only bought that stock,” or “If I’d only gone to school,” or “If I’d only taken that job” and so on. All my life, I made a conscious effort never to put myself into a position where I would later say “If I’d only.”
Monday, September 16, 2013
Yesterday I turned 75, and I took the opportunity of a captive audience to again expound the importance of education in Nevada. Without a well-educated work force, without a citizenry capable of critical thinking and clear communication, America has little chance of competing on a global scale. And make no mistake--we are a global economy and a global citizenry. Education is not a privilege; education is not a luxury; education is the basis of every civilized society. Let's show the world we care, and we can. Support education in any and every way you can.
Friday, September 13, 2013
My family didn’t have two cars until I was 14. Our house had a one-car garage with no plans or ability to make it a 2-car garage. My father had an excellent job that paid good wages and mother didn’t work until I entered the 7th grade. Under today’s tests for determining success, my family was a failure. Yet looking back over those one car, one garage, one parent working and one parent staying at home, it seems to me my family was far more successful than its counterpart today, which must have both parents working, often more than a 40 hour week, both parents being stressed to the limit, and their children being denied the necessary time and attention from the parents. How can we have more, and at the same time, less?
Thursday, September 12, 2013
I want you to do yourself and me a favor. I want you to ask yourself why you are so ineffective in persuading others around you that if they don’t spend at least 20% of their time participating in government, education or health initiatives, that it won’t be long until the government, education and health care systems completely fail. When I graduated from law school in 1962, I took the bar review course in Arizona which was taught by a Chester Smith. He also was probably the best professor I had in my nine years of college. He made the following point over and over, and though I’m not sure that his mathematics were accurate, his concept of how one should spend his or her time was sound. He said, spend a third of your time working, a third of your total time involved with your family and a third of your time involved in the activities of your community. I’ll bet a survey of Americans would show that they spend 90% of their time thinking only of themselves, 7 ½% of their time thinking and being involved with their families, and 2 ½ % of their time being involved with the communities in which they live. It seems to me that’s a recipe for failure. May I suggest you take inventory of your own life to see how you invest your time, your money and your energy.
Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Luck has been a major contributor to my financial success. My net worth far exceeds the aggregate of my intelligence, efficiency, productivity and ambition. My family has given more than 80% of its net worth to education. It did so with the thought and belief that we could help raise the standard of living, even if by a little bit, of those around us. But I have to tell you, it’s very discouraging to see what poor use is made of our financial support. It depresses me to the point where I’d simply like to stop sending the checks and start building my bank accounts. Yet for some reason, I keep putting our family’s money into an education system that seems destined to implode.
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
There must be someone, some group, some political and some economic conspiracy that spends all of its time trying to ruin your life, making it impossible for you to succeed financially, while at the same time refusing to educate your children, provide adequate healthcare for you and your family, and will fulfill its purpose only when we’re all dead and buried. If those people or those groups exist, I haven’t been able to find them. We are our own enemy. All the damage we suffer is caused by us. I’d like to see a plan adopted by all of our citizens who are just turning 21 that would lay out the solutions to our health, education and general well being over the next 20 years.
Monday, September 9, 2013
Bitch, bitch, bitch—during the next two weeks do a quick analysis of how much time you spend each day complaining about how miserable your life is and accusing others of ruining your life. I’ll bet at least 90% of your time is spent complaining and possibly 10% of your time is spent trying to make your life better.
Friday, September 6, 2013
I went through my yearbooks from my four years at Las Vegas High School. I made a rough calculation that 90% of those who started, graduated. I look at my fellow Las Vegas High School graduates--Dick Brian, Charlie Thompson, Cheryl Purdue, Carolyn Sparks, Bill Wortman, Bob Miller, Larry Ruvo—and even though it was 50 years ago that we left school, when we see each other, we still have the buzz of excitement from growing up and living in Las Vegas. I don’t see that in Nevada High School graduates who finished school in the last twenty years.
Thursday, September 5, 2013
I know it’s much easier to understand the workings of your community when it has less than 25,000 residents. When my family moved here in 1951, the population of Las Vegas was 21,000. It was a town—though controversial with certain material flaws—that seemed to work together and made every effort to develop a common pride in the community. Do you think that growth, by itself, has killed that closeness? Or do you think times have simply changed so that everyone wants to be only part of himself and not part of any greater community?
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
I do interviews each noon of people who have serious effects on all of our lives. I am shocked and dismayed when I get phone calls from viewers who say they couldn’t care less about what the county commission is doing or what the superintendent of schools is doing, and they don’t want to listen to anyone who talks about anything that is more important than the soap opera they watch. That frightens me. Does it frighten you? Call me and we’ll discuss it. My office number is 657-3142, and my home number is 222-2298.
Tuesday, September 3, 2013
Did you ever ask for directions from someone who claimed to be a resident of Las Vegas for thirty years but had no idea where to send you? Even worse, these long term Las Vegas residents have no knowledge about any member of the county commission, the city commission, the lieutenant governor and even the governor. I don’t understand this—all of these people affect every Nevadan’s life. Why do you think we don’t care?
Monday, September 2, 2013
Curiosity may have killed the cat, but Americans these days have no fear of being injured in any way by being overly curious. I’m no psychologist or psychiatrist or sociologist, but I have lived through an era where my fellow students, fellow lawyers, fellow businessmen and fellow educators were driven by curiosity. I don’t know about you, but I think curiosity suffered a long, slow, painful death.
Friday, August 30, 2013
There are those who think I’m crazy. There have always been those who thought I was crazy. There are those who believe that it’s lunacy for me to really report news that goes right to the core of your values and those issues that truly affect your successes and those of your family. Our increase in news over the next two years, that is, an hour of news at 7 PM, an hour of news at 3 PM, and an additional hour of news sometime between 11 AM and 3 PM, is using a sledge- hammer to drive in a tack. It’s my belief that even the sledge-hammer won’t give you enough information to successfully plan the next year of your life, let alone the next 20 years of your life. Ask yourself one question: Am I going to have enough money to feed my self and my family when I can no longer work past 55 or 65, but I’m likely to live to be 85?
Thursday, August 29, 2013
Substantive news: news that’s more than an inch deep and 4 miles wide; news that really affects your life; news about more than whose house burned down, who was shot during a fight, and which politician is on the take. I call it news with substance. And I don’t see a lot of it on television. I may be making a big mistake in believing that the public understands that present news coverage of nearly all events that really do affect our lives is so shallow that it is of no importance.
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
When we ceased broadcasting Judge Judy, a television show that I find repulsive and an insult to the legal problems of this country, I got calls from many people protesting my decision. I was both amused and shocked by the response. But after some consideration, it began to trouble me greatly that the Judge Judy solutions seemed to be the guide for solving all of our problems. I believe that if you think the Judge Judy and her approach is the one that all of us should use as our guide to success, then we’re all in big, big trouble.
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
I’m told by some (not by all) that there simply isn’t enough news or written analysis that’s worthy of broadcasting to require more than local newspapers and local television stations to produce now. It’s my belief that those who hold this belief have either given up on trying to direct and influence the economic and intellectual policies of this country, or that they simply have no understanding of what’s going on around them. Whatever the reason, people had better begin to be engaged in the direction their government’s going, or the first thing they’ll know is that they’re falling off a cliff.
Monday, August 26, 2013
Sampling may work in buying cookies, ice cream, vegetables and automobiles, but sampling of the news does not work as a guide to what’s happening in the rest of the world. Americans have become samplers in everything they do, and sampling is not working to help the public know what policies to support that come from each of the two major political parties.
Friday, August 23, 2013
If your present situation in this economy is such that you’re not in the top 5% of the wealthy in this country, you’d better start looking to find out what, if anything, you can do to ensure that your standard of living when you retire will be sustained and supported by the assets you then have. If 60% of Americans have no net worth, I will bet that in ten years that percentage will rise to 85% — Not a very good outlook.
Thursday, August 22, 2013
For those of you who sincerely believe there is barely enough news to fill 3 half hour television broadcasts each day, let me say this to you. Your desire to get to the sitcoms and the game shows has become so voracious that you don’t even bother to learn about the financial piranhas that are consuming your house and eating your money and preventing your retirement when you thought you’d have a few bucks in the bank to live on. It’s our intention, because we have the ability to communicate with 97% of you, to provide you with some semblance of information that will help ensure your economic future. News to us is not limited to rape, robbery and mayhem, which in reality affects very few of you. We believe news should educate you so that when you get to the end of the road you will not find there is no place for you to sleep, eat or simply enjoy life.
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
I tie Monday’s and Tuesday’s thoughts to today’s thoughts and I will continue this theme through Friday. The middle class has spent too much of its time paying little attention to the social and economic factors that influence their lives. Americans love to be entertained and Americans love the seemingly never-ending amount of entertainment provided by a multitude of sources, including television. Many sitting in front of the television watching mindless sitcoms and so-called reality shows that really have no reality in them, believe that if they watch 30 minutes of 30 second news sound bites at least once a week, they will be able to understand and therefore control the direction of the American economy. I would say we’re in for a surprise, but I think the surprise is already very real, and I’m not sure that its effects will ever be changed. While you sat in front of the television set being entertained, the rich folks were planning their next step to freeze you out of the economy.
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Five years ago the stock market fell like a man trying to commit suicide by jumping off a thirty-story building. Today the stock market is over 5% higher than it’s ever been. This tells you the rich folks are back to being rich, and yet the poor folks didn’t get to ride along as the rich made their come-back. If the rich conclude they can remain rich without the financial support of the middle and lower classes, the rich will never see the middle and lower classes again in their rearview mirrors.
Monday, August 19, 2013
All of you either remember or have heard about the Great Depression of the late 20s and 30s. Stories of Wall Street millionaires losing all their money from the time the stock market opened and the stock market closed on the same day. I’m no economist, historian or social expert, but one factor sticks out in my mind: Everyone was affected by the Depression—the rich, the poor and those in-between. This latest economic disaster, while affecting many wealthy people, didn’t affect the wealthy as much as it affected everyone else. I think that’s a very significant fact and I intend to discuss it further with you this week.
Friday, August 16, 2013
I cannot imagine working hard for 40 years and reaching the age of 60+. What it must be like to find yourself unable to work with 20 years of life left and no savings to sustain your life. When I was born in 1938, life expectancy was 59 years; now it’s nearly 79. It is a different world and a different economy, and we must solve the problem of how we support those who have done so much, but whose lives now are extended far beyond their years of production.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
President Obama asserts that people who work a full week should be paid a minimum wage that is capable of sustaining their lives and their dignity as human beings. He’s right. This economy is created by every stratum of Working People. The rich folks may have been responsible for much of this economy’s success, but don’t you ever believe that the rich got rich without the Working Man’s production.
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
I’m not sure which world the rich folks live in—especially those who inherited their wealth. I’m mystified because it seems to me the Working Man who never seems to accumulate any funds to carry him even one year is vilified by the rich folks as a parasite. What’s wrong with my thinking?
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
There are no old brick layers, sheet rock hangers or concrete finishers. Their careers burn up their bodies at an early age. They don’t work for poor people—they work for rich people. And while their careers end before they’re 50, the rich folks’ careers and abilities to produce last into the 70s. It seems to me the rich folks ought to be thankful for the Working Man, for without the Working Man, there would be no rich folks.
Monday, August 12, 2013
THE WORKING MAN. Don’t tell me the Working Man doesn’t earn his wages. A hell of a lot of “Working People” work a hell of a lot more than their rich counterparts whose income far exceeds their work ethic, abilities, education or brains. I love construction. I was drawing 20,000 square foot houses by age 12. At present I’m building a barn at our home in Montana. Today (Sunday), I watched four men hang sheet rock. It is work I could never have done. They certainly earn their wages.
Friday, August 9, 2013
As chancellor, I made every attempt known to me, even though my knowledge and experience is not sufficient to bring the minorities into the main stream, to open doors for them to go through unmolested. I failed. But here I am again enlisting, if not your support, at least your ear so that maybe all of us (and it will take all of us) can move race relations in this country forward by more than the inch and a half it’s moved in the last 60 years.
Thursday, August 8, 2013
I don’t often go on major crusades. I tend to be involved in a lot of little ones. But whatever my concentration has been in these mini-crusades during the last thirty years, I intend to use my last years as a crusade to help the minorities and people of lesser financial means to enjoy a fundamentally secure and healthy life.
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Have you noticed the stock market lately? It’s over 15,000. And if that indicates to you that the economy has returned to good health and will prosper indefinitely, I think you might give this a thought. It’s the rich that drive the market, and it’s the rich who have separated themselves from the common man even more. Why shouldn’t the market go up if it means the rich don’t have to take care of the poor?
Tuesday, August 6, 2013
Hatred based upon race color and creed doesn’t seem to manifest itself in direct bloody confrontation. On the surface those direct shots may be the easiest to fix and the remedies simple to develop because all you have to do is pass a law that prohibits specific conduct. But there is no set of laws or policies that will solve this country’s race relations problems.
Monday, August 5, 2013
Since 2008 I’ve thought the world’s greatest and only problem was its economy. I saw the banking industry nearly take down an American economy; and yet, with all our economic problems, they pale when we consider the underlying problem of race relations. The economy can be fixed, new medicines can be invented to make us healthy, but there seems to be no remedy for the bigotry that dwells within each of us to some degree.
Friday, August 2, 2013
I believe there’s a great need for Las Vegas television stations to penetrate the minority communities and draw from those communities their needs for information, news and news analysis to become more and more part of our community. A recent poll of Hispanics shows that more than 80% of Hispanics would rather watch and listen to news in the English language than in Spanish. That will make our job easier. But we will not forget that the news needs of the minorities must be met within in-depth analysis following our news reporters infusing themselves into the minority communities with real interest and commitment.
Thursday, August 1, 2013
We will continue to test and experiment on the news and information needs of Southern Nevada. We know you have to kiss a lot of frogs to find a princess. But we’re ready to kiss a lot of frogs. We will be adding considerable substantive news programming that we hope will inform and educate you about most of the issues facing all of us. We’ll get it wrong many times, but given time and your continued suggestions, even though they sometimes are brutal and filled with four letter words, we think given a reasonable time, we’ll be able to produce a product useful to all of you.
Wednesday, July 31, 2013
The 7 PM news—I know this is causing Wheel and Jeopardy great heartburn—that we’ll no longer broadcast those shows. But as badly as I hate for our viewers to move to Channel 8, they will be broadcasting those programs at the same time that we broadcast them. It’s my strong belief that there are so many Las Vegans who do not reach home in time to see the 6 O’clock news that a one hour news broadcast from 7 to 8 will satisfy those needs.
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
In the last four years I’ve slowly replaced syndicated programming with news. Access Hollywood was the first to go and was replaced by Ralston. Judge Judy was the second to go and the 4 O’clock news was expanded to an hour. Our 12:00 news was expanded from one half hour to an hour, as we eliminated paid programming. Our next move in August will be to begin a 3 PM one hour news broadcast.
Monday, July 29, 2013
When I graduated from Las Vegas High School in 1956, NBC and CBS did a fifteen-minute news broadcast each night. ABC had only become a national network a few years before. Both NBC and CBS thought long and hard about expanding the evening news from fifteen minutes to thirty. They were concerned that there were not enough interesting subjects to fill thirty minutes. Nearly 60 years later we do news from 4:30 in the morning to 7; 12 to 1; and 4 through 6:30PM that includes NBC Nightly. Ralston Reports at 7:30PM and then news at 11PM. We believe there’s enough news of substance to add three hours to that.
Friday, July 26, 2013
Nevada’s minorities have become the majority and for some reason the new minority, formerly the majority, hasn’t wakened to the influence and importance this new majority has in our society. I need help to develop news programs that will respond to EVERYONE’S needs. I am open to all suggestions; my office number is 657-3142 and my home phone is (406) 933-9999 until September 10, and thereafter in Las Vegas at 222-2298. Don’t call before 5 AM, or after 11 PM.