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Mindconnection eNL, 2018-04-15


In this issue:
Good News | Product Highlight | Brainpower | Finances | Security | Health/Fitness | Factoid | Thought 4 the Day

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1. Good News

Item 1. Congressman Yoder wrote, "McDonald's is making huge investments in its workforce due to the economic benefits of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The company, which employs around 2,500 people in the 3rd District alone, is investing $150 million in its "Archways to Opportunity" program, which provides tuition assistance and other education benefits to McDonald's employees. This will have a huge impact on McDonald's workers who are working hard while pursuing educational opportunities, and it's made possible by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act."

Item 2. For many small businesses, some breaks that appeared in the 1040 system for 2017TY already produced a significant savings. The savings are further reflected in smaller, more manageable quarterly estimated payments for LLCs and other pass-through entities. This means more funding for growth: buying inventory, paying contractors (read, "job creation"), paying for advertising, updating software, etc.

Item 3. The savings to small businesses in some long overdue 1040 relief is already boosting the economy, thus causing federal receipts to rise.

Item 4. Since the end of Barry Soetoro's "reign of error", new racist policies have not emanated from our nation's capital. After eight years of fomenting racism, the White House under new management is no longer engaging in this deceptive, divisive, disrespectful, and destructive behavior. And that is good news indeed. Now if only we could get the legacy media to stop spewing their hatred and stupidity, we'd really have something.


2. Product Highlight

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  • Compatible with aftermarket displays and virtually any wheels (factory or aftermarket) in any 2007 - current Jeep Wrangler.

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3. Brainpower tip

Use examples to analyze a situation or a proposal.

Here's an example for you (ha, ha). A city employee drafted a new 32-page regulation to inflict upon people working from home. One goal was to prevent undue traffic around a given home. Rather than restrict the number of vehicles, he restricted the number of people. If you have a home-based business, the home cannot receive more than three visitors at a time. Obviously, you can't invite over your two friends and their two children.

We lowly citizens are responding with examples that illustrate how unfair, impractical, and downright stupid this provision is. Here are the examples:

  1. I have a home business. Fluffy (her name was changed to protect the innocent) has a birthday party every year, and the same 4 people come to it. Has my cat violated the ordinance by hosting her party in a house that has a home-based business?
  2. We had a city police-sanctioned meeting in my home to solve a neighborhood crime problem. Six people showed up. Should we have made half of them wait outside?
  3. Suppose 8 people visit your home, and they all arrive in one van. Maybe it's a church prayer meeting. Or maybe you want to train 8 at-home workers such as Avon ladies or whatever. They aren't coming over all the time.
  4. What about [particular home on my street]? They have a garage full of junk, so all the vehicles are parked on the drive and the street. It often looks like they are hosting a party. The owner lives there with her boyfriend (two cars and a camper and a boat), her father (one van), and two boys. Plus a third boy is in college and stays there on break (another car). Plus each of the two younger boys has a different father and when Dad comes for visitation rights there's yet another car. They also have a visiting maid (she parks in front of my house, because that's the closest open space) and various other contractors and guests visiting.

These examples pertain to only one of several crazy or flatly illegal provisions in those regulations. In many cities, there is vast over-reach, serious over-spending, or some other issue that exemplifies government gone wild. If you don't like a regulation, come up with examples to show different ways in which it fails.

You can use the same technique at work. If you have a boss who is unreasonable, think of examples where applying his unreasonableness in other ways shows the folly. First try directly with the boss. If that falls flat, then start documenting his abuses. With each incident, cite an example or two to illustrate how stupid, lame, or counterproductive each of the listed abuses is. Just keep the list, and wait for an opportune time to spring it.

An opportune time might be when that boss is on the hot seat with upper management due to some departmental performance issue. Just pop into the VP's office (assuming your boss reports to that VP).

"Say, Carl, I want to schedule 20 minutes with you to fill you in on something important. If you're free now, that's fine. But if not, can you check your schedule?"

Carl is going to ask, "What is it?"

"Suppose the company came up with a rule that every car in the employee parking lot must line up with its bumper exactly two inches from the yellow line. And people who didn't get it right would have to go out there on company time and move their car. Regardless of the weather outside or what they were doing inside. Would you consider that unreasonable?"

Carl: "I'd consider that stupid. What's your point?"

You: "We have the same wasteful, demeaning pettiness occurring on a regular basis. Here, I made you a printout of the records I've been keeping. Nobody else has see this, I wanted you to have it because I trust you."

This scenario actually played out in the real world. Yes, it's a real example. And that boss was escorted out of the building two hours after the meeting with the VP.

4. Finance tip

The legacy media and other deceit outlets refer to medical insurance as "health" insurance. So does the medical insurance industry, violating the truth in advertising laws. Try filing a claim when you forget to pick up broccoli or your workout just wasn't very good last time.

People have been told they "need" this medical insurance. I've looked at several policies and cannot see the value proposition. What are they offering? High monthly rates combined with high deductibles for:

  • Contingencies with a statistically near zero chance of happening.
  • Treatments aimed at the symptoms of poor health decisions.
  • Pointless tests and exams.
  • Being put at risk for being one of the 780,000 Americans killed by "hospital errors" each year.

Now, I realize that's a simplification and there are probably more bullet point items that can be added and some of them might actually matter.

But let's assume you have a health care plan. By that, I mean over 70% of your food comes from the produce department, you eat zero processed foods, you train 5 or 6 days a week, you have a system for ensuring adequate rest, you do mentally challenging activities routinely, you have a satisfying social life, you actively reduce stress, and you practice good hygiene.

If you follow a good health care plan, only the first item on that bullet list matters. Anyone can slip and fall, breaking a bone. Anyone can get bit by a tick and suffer a massive infection that needs antibiotics and other treatment. Anyone can be injured through no fault of their own. But none of these things are likely to happen even once in a decade or two. Those are the things you insure against.

This is similar to the situation with automobile insurance, if you are a defensive driver and keep your car and yourself in good condition. It's very unlikely you will suffer some major, expensive incident. But it could happen. You pay a small annual fee for financial protection. I pay about $300/yr and have excellent coverage.

Same with the house. It stands almost no chance of catching on fire, but I pay a small fee to insure against that. I am not insured against stampeding elephants, attack by a Tyrannosaurus Rex, or other things that simply are not going to happen. What if there is a big cocaine party at my house and someone goes nuts breaking stuff? Well, I am not insured against that. I am not worried about that, because of lifestyle choices I make. It's not a possibility. Same for adult onset diabetes or colon cancer. I choose not to do the things that bring those illnesses on.

Medical insurance is very costly and I have yet to see a plan with excellent coverage. You're lucky if you get something with merely abysmal coverage.

Your insurance should cover you against "no fault" diseases or conditions such as ALS. People can get a no fault divorce and buy no fault automobile insurance, but that option does not exist with medical insurance. Consequently, all medical insurance is grossly overpriced for people who choose to opt out of the disease lifestyle.

It would seem to make sense that if you have made yourself disease-proof by rejecting the disease lifestyle, then you just need major medical and you can get a suitable and affordable insurance product. That, sadly, is not the case.

Major medical insurance is at least an order of magnitude more expensive than automobile insurance. Assuming you have a $15,000 deductible so that you can afford the premiums, what is actually covered? Only a percentage of the costs exceeding the $15,000.

If, for example, I fall and break a femur the insurance is worthless because the deductible is so high. Before Obummercare tripled insurance rates, I had a plan like this and it was about $1600 per year. I haven't checked rates, but based on the rise in rates that same insurance would cost about $5,000 per year today.

So-called "health" insurance is even more costly than major medical. If you are the equivalent of a defensive driver with a well-maintained car you have almost no chance of needing any of the medical services it covers except for things like treating broken bones. You'd probably be better off choosing major medical, with high premiums and high deductibles.

For example, I will never get diabetes. It's a self-inflicted illness unless you were born with it. The same goes for a very long list of illnesses, zero chance of getting the self-inflicted ones. Esophageal cancer, osteoporosis, and colon cancer are prime examples from that long list. I don't need to insure against something that won't happen. I also do not have insurance against the sun going cold, just in case you're wondering.

It's probably true that if you weren't born it with, it's a lifestyle disease; but maybe there is a short list of diseases can can afflict you regardless of lifestyle. And there are some choices that are not choices for many people, such as your occupation or where you live. Or that Tyson dumped toxic waste near your home and things like that. But generally, people get sick because they don't choose to live well.

Medical insurance would be affordable if practicing health care were common practice instead being the exception to the rule. But that is not the situation we are in. This insurance is inordinately expensive, yet all it provides is a net of financial protection that has large holes in it.

My tip here is to think very carefully about so-called "health" insurance and/or major medical. What are you actually being protected from, by the policy you are paying so much for? Many questions cannot be definitively answered here. You'll have to use your own judgment to manage the risk. Risk management is the purpose of insurance; make your decisions with that in mind.

If you buy insurance designed for the disease lifestyle fans but you don't embrace the disease lifestyle, is that a smart financial move? If you do not own a plane and are not even a pilot, would it make sense for you to pay for aviation insurance? I don't have renters insurance, because I'm a homeowner. People who do rent should have renters insurance. But it makes no sense for them to have homeowners insurance. I've never insured an original Rembrandt either, can you guess why?

Talk to your insurance agent about the possibility of a policy that is appropriate for your lifestyle. If you do "enjoy" the disease lifestyle, you have more important things to think about than how to pay for futile medical care as those diseases start hitting you. If, instead, you practice health care then try to find a policy that doesn't make you pay for other people's self-destructive lifestyles.

I hope you have already eliminated your risk of most diseases by rejecting the disease lifestyle that is so slavishly embraced by about 95% of the USA population. That 95% is driving the demand for medical care to a level way beyond what is seen in other countries. They are driving up their own costs, as well. The disease lifestyle is costly; the vast majority of its adherents wind up in abject poverty.

Yet it should not be the saving of money that is your motivation for practicing health care. Practice health care because you want to be healthy. Practice health care because you cannot buy health insurance at any price. No insurance can make up for the high cost and suffering of poor health care decisions.

5. Security tip

Traditionally in this space, I talk about such things as security from theft, security from assault, or security from a terrorist attack by the Institute of Reprobates and Sociopaths. Let's visit the topic of emotional security.

When you feel threatened that someone will withdraw approval of you or not approve of you in the first place, that's emotional insecurity. It can be corrosive, if not handled properly.

Parents can help their children feel emotionally secure by always having a "safe harbor." This does not mean never criticizing the child's behavior, but it does mean never treating the child in a diminishing way. A person can receive correction without being made to feel diminished.

Many people are insecure emotionally because their parents berated them or other children berated them, and they never got over that. Some people feel insecure because they have not worked at self-improvement and know they lag behind others in some way(s). There are many reasons a person might feel emotionally insecure. I believe any of those reasons can be overcome.

I have two tips, if you struggle with emotional insecurity:

  1. Set standards for yourself and obtain the will, skill, and discipline to meet those standards. Make them tough to meet, but not impossible.
  2. Accept feedback, but not demeaning input for others. You do not have to care what other people think of you, whether they approve or not means nothing because you know you are good. You met your own tough standards.

If you think you don't struggle with emotional insecurity, you are probably mistaken. Not recognizing the problem means you probably are not working on it and it is working on you instead.

Most of us endure abuse from toxic people and toxic situations. It may come from obnoxious coworkers, dysfunctional bosses, rude customers, whacked out drivers, and other negative people we can't avoid. We are bombarded with stresses and negative messages all day.

A narcissist is someone who is so extremely insecure emotionally that s/he lives in a fantasy world in which s/he has few, if any flaws. At the other end of the spectrum is the person so emotionally insecure that s/he lives in a fantasy world in which s/he has few, if any, virtues.

We are all flawed, and we all make mistakes. You have worth, and so do all those other flawed people who are out there making mistakes. The solution to emotional insecurity is to treat yourself and others with respect.

A basic part of treating yourself with respect is to set, and live up, to high standards. Then you can have confidence based on fact, and not have to rely on the opinions of others for your self-esteem or emotional security.

A basic part of treating others with respect is to view them as worthy human beings and be courteous toward them; no rudeness, name-calling, or other demeaning behavior. Then if they don't like you, that says a lot more about them than it does about you. Don't let it bother you.

Emotional security requires continual maintenance. If you put forth the effort, you will reap the rewards.

6. Health tip/Fitness tips

Recently, I started listening to an audio book called The Science of Being Well. Near the end of the second chapter, I stopped listening. Up to that point, everything the author said was false. There was no science to his approach. In fact, it conflicted with science.

That experience got me to thinking about this column. We are awash today in advice on health and fitness. How can you determine what makes sense and what does not?

Let me start the answer with an example. Robert Wichman and his wife Molly are both successful competitive bodybuilders. He took the photo you see at right. They own a studio in which one wall is lined with photos of their clients who have done great in bodybuilding contests.

Earlier this year, he asked me how I train biceps at full contraction.

For those who don't know, "full contraction" is the name of one range of motion. Midrange and full extension are the other two. Because gravity pulls in one direction, any barbell or dumbbell training must be broken into these three ranges. In my late teens and early 20s, I trained on Nautilus equipment; it used a cam system to change accommodate this and allow you to use a single exercise for the full range of motion.

So I showed him the classic arm across the chest biceps curl. Then he showed me a way to do it bent forward; basically, you rotate your standing biceps curl to align the full contraction with the straight down pull of gravity. You can do both arms at the same time this way, saving time and allowing for shorter rest between sets.

In terms of principles, he didn't show me anything new. He showed me a different, and I think better, way to do what I was already doing. When I tried it, the first thing I said was, "Wow, I can really feel that!"

He didn't come up with some off the wall idea that doesn't come from some form of science. In this case, his advice came from basic mechanical physics. His advice repeatedly proves itself on the competition stage, also.

We had a discussion about how much protein a person should eat. It's commonly advised not to consume more than 20g of protein at a time (there is a reason for that, but it's a special case that cannot be extrapolated to protein in general).

He said Ronnie Coleman, to support his 300lbs, would need to be eating 20g at least 20 times a day.

To get a sense of scale, note that Ronnie requires about 4400 calories per day to maintain his huge, ripped physique.

Lose weight, be strong, burn fat, gain muscle

Lose weight, be strong, burn fat, gain muscle

Top photo taken 16SEP2016, just days before 56th birthday; bottom photo taken 3 days after 56th birthday

And this theory doesn't say how long between "at a times" you need. How does the body know when to start the clock again? The 20g rule just does not make sense when you do a little looking around. Many of the restrictive practices that allegedly are "key" to a great body similarly do not pass muster. They just make life more difficult.

When someone tells you something that seems extreme or particularly novel about diet or training, try to determine:

  • What principle(s) it's based on.
  • What principle(s) it might conflict with and why.
  • Where the science is behind the claim.
  • Whether that person has a body that proves the claim.
  • Whether other people are getting good results.
  • If it even passes the "smell test".

Quite a bit of the diet advice that's trendy now has zero basis in science. Most of it involves long stretches of not eating. But your body requires fuel, and it requires frequent refueling. This advice fails on all six metrics bulleted above.

The intermittent fasting and other types of meal-skipping train your body to conserve fuel. So it will store fat and resist adding muscle. Is that the kind of body you want, fat and under-muscled? If so, why go through the discomfort of being hungry? Why not just eat garbage and not train?

Bodybuilders eat five or six meals a day, and not because of peer pressure. It's because that's necessary to have the energy for intense training and because it confers other benefits. For example, a person who is a bit pudgy can become lean in a few months just by eating small six meals a day rather than three big ones (all else staying the same). This benefit exists due to the "softened" response of the endocrine system combined with a slight increase in metabolic rate.

Construction workers typically eat five or six meals a day, also. I worked construction for about six years. We always had a mid-morning snack and an afternoon snack. These snacks were more like small meals than mere snacks. You might have an apple or an orange, but you'd also have peanut butter or a hard-boiled egg or maybe even a sandwich. We had to keep our energy up.

Don't accept diet or training advice just because someone has put a fancy name on a practice or technique you have not seen before. Always compare it to the principles that underlie "old school" training. If you don't know those principles, the best thing you can do for your health and appearance is to invest the time to learn them.


At, you'll find plenty of informative, authoritative articles on maintaining a lean, strong physique. It has nothing to do with long workouts or impossible to maintain diets. In fact:
  • The best workouts are short and intense.
  • A good diet contains far more flavors and satisfaction than the typical American diet.

7. Factoid

One-third of Baby Boomers of pre-retirement age have no savings at all. For most of them, the reason is not their fault. Long-term unemployment, IRS attack, medical expenses for parents, college expenses for their kids, and their own medical expenses are all causes. Worse, many are deep in debt. A significant percentage of people over 65 are still paying student loans, for example.

8. Thought for the Day

If you're having a bad day, try doing something nice for another person. This is amazingly effective.


Please forward this eNL to others.


The views expressed in this e-newsletter are generally not shared by criminals, zombies, or brainwashed individuals.

Except where noted, this e-newsletter is entirely the work of Mark Lamendola. Anything presented as fact can be independently verified. Often, sources are given; but where not given, they are readily available to anyone who makes the effort.

Mark provides information from either research or his own areas of established expertise. Sometimes, what appears to be a personal opinion is the only possibility when applying sound logic--reason it out before judging! (That said, some personal opinions do appear on occasion).

The purpose of this publication is to inform and empower its readers (and save you money!).

Personal note from Mark: I value each and every one of you, and I hope that shows in the diligent effort I put into writing this e-newsletter. Thank you for being a faithful reader. Please pass this newsletter along to others.

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