Sunday, May 31, 2009

Creative Thinking Sunday:
James Allen’s 107 years old manifesto
As a Man Thinketh

“Let a man radically alter his thoughts, and he will be astonished at the rapid transformation it will effect in the material conditions of life,” wrote James Allen in “As a Man Thinketh,” published 107 years ago.

Long before “The Secret,” there were those extolling the virtual of thought and its effect. Is this from The Secret or Allen? – “The soul attracts that which it secretly harbors.”

Today we will look at gems from Allen’s century old book. Do they fit today or is the book ancient?

“There can be no progress, no achievement without sacrifice…”

“A man only begins to be a man when he ceases to whine and revile, and commences to search for the hidden justice which regulates life.” Today that’s called “karma.”

“Suffering is always the effect of wrong thought in some direction. Suffering ceases for him who is pure.

“Thoughts of fear, doubt, and indecision crystallize into weak, unmanly, and irresolute habits, which solidify into circumstances of failure, indigence, and slavish dependence.

“Man has but to right himself to find the universe is right.

“Man is always the master, even in his weakest and most abandoned state;

“Every man is where he is by the law of his being; the thoughts which he has built into his character have brought him there, and in the arrancement of his life there is no element of chance, but all is the result of a law which (SIC) cannot err. This is just as true of those who feel “out of harmony” with their surroundings as of those who are content with them.

“Man, therefore, as the lord and master of thought, is the maker of himself, the shaper and author of environment. Man is manacled only by himself.”

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tony Hillerman would have been 84 today
Celebrating life of Navajo mysteries writer

Tony Hillerman would have been 84 today.

The author of Navajo mysteries died in Albuquerque this past Oct. 26 following years of ailments.

Hillerman achieved the dream of many. For nearly 50 years he was a published author and at the end of his life, one of New Mexico’s richest men.

I first met Hillerman in the fall of 1972. He was chair of University of New Mexico’s journalism department and I needed his permission to enter the department as my major. That’s how things worked in the second quarter of the 20th Century.

For three years I studied under him. One of my fondest memories is him trying to teach me how to write a feature story.

Hillerman’s catch-phrase was “stay current.” In this role, he had his students read Tom Wolfe’s “The New
Journalism.” We had to learn this style of journalism.

Sitting in his office, Hillerman was trying to illustrate how to write creatively in long hand, what my children called cursive. After several futile attempts, he grabbed a black typewriter that sat on a grey stand. He pulled it close to his desk and began typing, giving up on hand writing his ideas.

“You too?” was my astonished remark. I had only been in the journalism program for two years, but I discovered ideas flew so fast in my brain, I need the added speed of a typewriter not to let them escape.

2007 and 2008 I had the honor of commemorating Hillerman’s birth with stories in the Arizona Republic.

From a 2008 St. Patrick’s Day communiqué, Hillerman said, “Have a book idea in my head, but too pooped out to start it.” So a book died with Hillerman.

Hillerman was a perfectionist. He would bemoan the demise of newspapers if he was alive to see the death of journalism.

In his day – and as students this is how we conducted ourselves – you spread a long net of sources for stories. I knew everyone from the governor, mayor, down to junkies. You never knew where you’d need a source covering a story.

If you ran with a story plied by a public relations practitioner, or Lord forbid, you actually used a news release, you’d be fired on the spot. This was the terrain Hillerman plied his craft as editor of The Santa Fe New Mexican.

On the other hand, other reporters held you to a high ethical standard. Hillerman taught my ethics class. I had a story about a county manager destroying a county car while he was allegedly driving drunk. He was not cited, but I had people in the car confim he had about five drinks before the accident.

The county manager came to the newspaper’s office, had a talk with the owner of the paper. About 15 minutes later, the owner of the paper said he was pulling the story. Not even a mention of the accident in his paper.

Peer pressure dictated that I was required to quit. Today’s journalist… who knows how today’s journalist would handle it? They probably wouldn’t have heard about it because it didn’t originate in a press release. My stuff was packed and I was gone. Hillerman’s values were upheld at that moment.

Hillerman’s influence will be felt by many as we, his students, continue the values he instilled during our ethics and reporting classes with him.

Thursday, May 21, 2009


In observance of Memorial Day, Creative Thinking Sunday will observe this holiday and return the last day of May!

Federal government bails out financial idiots
ruins what I had going with my credit card company

Now that the Federal government has interfered, er, taken over, I mean “regulated” credit cards, it won’t pay for my credit card company to give me the bonuses I’ve become accustomed to.

I’m their worst nightmare. I run up horrendous amounts each month and then pay it off within the grace period. I love bonus credit cards.

Just as the government came to the aid of financial idiots who purchased homes they could not afford, ran car companies into the ground buying gas guzzling SUVs they could not afford, the Federal cavalry has come to the aid again of the financial idiots who don’t realize you need to pay off your credit cards or you accrue interest. If you miss a payment, there are penalties.

Not anymore. The government, once again, said be as idiotic as you want when it comes to financial matters, we’ll rescue you and create financial chaos for those who are responsible by making sure the economy is so bad, their jobs are eliminated. Ha-ha to you intelligencia smart enough to be able to handle your money!

I don’t blame my credit card company, just as I don’t blame Detroit or banks. My credit card company will have no remedy – to stay in business – but to charge me interest immediately when I charge something.

My solution will be revert to cash or debit card, thus driving more workers from credit card companies into the unemployment line.

When will this nation wake up? The answer is it won’t, it will dissolve.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Must hear for public relations practitioners

Especially part about journalism background a requirement for practicing public relations. Click here.

Two nudes for children to view
Maricopa Community College doesn't learn

Talk about great marketing. The May issue of Paradise Valley Community College's student newspaper, Puma Press, has a front page article, "District reacts to student art display."

It is about an exhibit in the corporate, or district, office of the nation's second largest community college district. Seems the district, which is 75 percent female in its professional jobs, had complaints from its female workers about nudes in the art show.

The nudes were removed. The article states, "Since the display cases are in uncontrolled common areas and employees can not avoid passing the display cases, the action of removing certain pieces was taken by the District to maintain a certain comfort level for employees, says Tom Gariepy, District director of marketing and communication." Guess they like to capitalize District!

"We feel the space (at the District office) is not appropriate for certain types of art," says Gariepy.

So what does Paradise Valley Community College do? They have an art display right in front of its library with two nudes, one at least 14 by 20 inches in charcoal. This where children 7-12 walk by every day as part of the college's summer Kids College.

Great marketing , PVCC!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

You're kidding me, a quarter of million for a home?

From today's L.A. Times business section:
Southland median home price falls to $247,000 in April

Thought it was time to invest in property - oh well, when California falls in the ocean (another earthquake the other day), my property in Yuma will be worth more!

Monday, May 18, 2009

SECOND DECADE manifesto - U.S. unprepared for 21st Century baby boom

Before Miley Cyrus and her alter-ego Hannah Montana smashed chart records held by both Elvis Presley and The Beatles, I dubbed this generation of Tweens the Zack and Cody Generation.

When I saw the Disney show, I thought it would strike a chord with U.S. Tweens. I was right. At least for a year until Hannah Montana came along.

Marketing Sociologist impact: today’s toddlers are coming from the year of the greatest number of births ever in the U.S. According to authorities, whoever they may be, 2007 saw “more than” 4.3-million births, reportedly the greatest in history.

Today’s Tween has a spending power greater than $300-billion a year. Today’s toddler will topple that, easily.

I have again coined a name for today’s toddlers, for when they get to Tween and teen status – SECOND DECADE. They will grow during the second decade of the 21st Century, a period of great prosperity until the end of the decade, when things will get wobbly from an economic perspective.

Remember how schools had to be built to accommodate baby boomers of 1946 to 1957 and old-age homes needed to be erected as they grew old (oops, ahead of myself in history here)?

The next decade will see social institutions unprepared for the number of children coming of age in the next 20 years. You’re going to see schools groaning for teachers, a lack of doctors and dentists to serve these youths.

The U.S. is too concerned with Swine Flu to worry about how a large number of births will affect society. Not even President Barack Obama sees this coming.

Marketers are unprepared, too. Think of it. Miley Cyrus will be to this generation as Madonna is to today’s Tweens

A marketing prediction – the SECOND DECADE generation will be one of our nation’s most illiterate generations ever. The quality of education has significantly fallen over the past 50 years and there are quite a few illiterate people teaching in schools today. I saw this coming 40 years ago.

There’s a saying, and there’s a reason it’s a saying, “Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach.” I saw that cycle in my own college’s school of education. The less bright flocked to education, and they became the college professors – now retiring – of the teachers who are now teaching teens. It is a downward cycle that will have a profound effect on SECOND DECADE students.

Mainstream media is not addressing this issue of poor quality of education and a large number of births.

SECOND DECADE will have an even shorter attention span than today’s youth. Maladies like Attention Deficit Disorder will abound in SECOND DECADE youth.

For more information, contact

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Creative Thinking Sunday
21st Century ad jingles
Why we’re in a bad economy

When Pfizer announced it was giving free prescriptions to those who lost their jobs this year, I went about creating a slogan for them. Everywhere on the news was about the free Viagra, not Pfizer’s other drugs. So here’s the slogan: ”Pfizer - there for you when things get hard.”

Any good Marketing Sociologist campaign has a slogan. When I joined the Heart Association, its national slogan was “We’re Fighting for You Life.” I conducted the first ever public opinion survey for American Heart Association’s Arizona Affiliate. What it told me was people feared the death causes like Cancer and AIDS and were profusely donating to them compared to our organization.

Developed several campaign slogans:

Leading Cause of Death

More Americans die of heart disease than the next four leading causes of death combined

26 Arizonans die per day from Heart Disease

Half of every dollar donated goes towards medical research in Arizona

When you hear, Tastes good like a cigarette should, you think of Winston

Friends and Family made you think of MCI

One popular today, “I’m Lovin’ it,” McDonalds

King of Beers, Budweiser

Champaign of bottled beer, Michelob

It’s the water, Coors

Good to the last drop, Maxwell House coffee (I have Paul Stanley singing this jingle)

Breakfast of Champions – Wheaties

Okay, hottest brand in the world today – Twitter. What’s its slogan? Join the conversation?

How about the largest selling auto manufacturer, Toyota. No longer “Oh what a feeling.” It’s “Moving Forward.”

Ford? Used to be Job 1. Have no idea today.

Franklin Roosevelt’s 1930s economic stimulus had a name, “The New Deal.” What is President Barack Obama’s economic stimulus plan? I have no idea.

Any ruler knew when you took over a country; you put up posters, slogans. Worked in China, Cuba and the English commonwealth that became known as the U.S.A.

So today’s creative assignment is – you’ve already got an avatar that is your campaign poster. Mine is the guitar I built. So what is your slogan? Mine are “Worlds first marketing sociologist,” “Creating profits for companies,” “Fifty percent first year revenue increases,” and “Increasing profits by looking at how society operates, history and projecting all that into what will happen in the future.” What are yours? Write them down.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Traditional media waking up to smart Marketing Sociology

It took the severest economic slump since the 20th Century’s Depression to wake companies up to the power of Marketing and Marketing Sociology.

Friday the Denver Post said it should not be giving its content away free over the Internet. That’s a brilliant strategy. Why did all the business whizzes at the Denver Post – and other media –wait almost a decade to wise up?

I can get any television show – like J.O.N.A.S. or Hannah Montana, even classics like Phil of the Future, on YouTube or other sites the day after it plays on TV. Similarly, you can buy a DVD like Jonas Brothers 3D four months to the day it was released in movie theaters. Then I check it out from my library. I’ve saved thousands of dollars using this tactic.

I can wait four months for first run movies rather than $10 for the movie and about another $15 in popcorn and beverage. Before DVD or VHS/Beta, television would feature “first run” home movies – only a year after they had been released in the theater. Then they were edited for swearing and to make them fit within commercials. So you actually got about 50 minutes of the original movie.

Conan O’Brien is taking a smart Marketing strategy as he transitions into the Tonight Show hosting slot. I will admit, this is one of the best and smartest commercials in respect to the message of lifestyle and the impact of new media. Who did this ad? Let me tip my hat to him or her.

Why my best friend’s mother had to go to a segregated school
55 years ago today U.S. Supreme Court rules on school segregation

It was 55 years ago today the Supreme Court in the U.S. (and you’ll see why President Barack Obama’s appointment to the Supreme Court is so critical) ruled that school desegregation was illegal.

Even until 1963, less than a half-century ago, Alabama’s Governor George Wallace stood in a school house door denying “Negroes” admission to an all-white school.

The Supreme Court Decision was Brown versus Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. I invite you to click on the links and get educated.

Also famous in segregation history is Little Rock Nine.

My best friend’s mother was Hispanic, in New Mexico, and still had to go to a “non-white” high school in the ‘50s.